(UPTOWN CHARLOTTE, NC) - With their most complete performance of the season both on the mound and at the plate, the Charlotte Knights crushed the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders 15-1 on Tuesday night at BB&T Ballpark in the opener of their three-game series.
The Charlotte offense set a new season-high with 23 hits and tied a season-high with 15 runs as all nine starters recorded at least one hit, with eight producing a multi-hit game.
It began with a barrage of singles in the first. The opening five hitters all singled to bring home three runs for the Knights, with Daniel Palka driving in the first two and Yermin Mercedes plating the third. In the third, the Knights doubled their lead to 6-0 with RBI doubles from Palka, Seby Zavala, and Charlie Tilson.
Two innings later, the Knights broke the game open for good as Zavala launched a solo home run, his 18th of the season, for the seventh Knights run. Nick Madrigal plated another on a single to score Danny Mendick. Luis Robert capped the inning's scoring with a two-run double to left as the Knights passed the double-digit mark with 11 runs through five innings.
Mercedes drove in three more runs with an RBI double in both the sixth and seventh inning. Madrigal's first Triple-A double capped Charlotte's scoring in the bottom of the eighth.
All the offense proved to be more than enough for Charlotte starter Kyle Kubat (W, 4-1). In his best start since joining the Knights, Kubat gave up just two hits with three walks and two strikeouts over 6.0 scoreless innings to earn the win. Matt Foster then threw 2.0 scoreless frames with two strikeouts. Zach Thompson gave up a run in the ninth but rebounded to finish the Knights' 11th win in their last 14 games.
Offensively, Robert finished a home run shy of the cycle with three runs and two RBI in a 4-for-5 performance. Madrigal went 4-for-6 with three runs and two RBI in the win. Mercedes drove in four runs and Palka drove in three of his own as the Knights went 11-for-26 with runners in scoring position.
The Knights and RailRiders continue their series on Wednesday night. Donny Roach (3-6, 7.98) is expected to start for Charlotte. Pregame coverage of the 7:04 p.m. game is set for 6:50 p.m. on 730 The Game ESPN Charlotte. The "Voice of the Charlotte Knights" Matt Swierad and long-time Knights radio broadcaster Mike Pacheco will have the call for all of the action.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.