CHARLESTON, SC - There were nothing but zeros on the scoreboard on Tuesday at Joe Riley Park. That was, until the ninth inning. After eight and half scoreless frames, Charleston walked off against the Fireflies for a second straight night and won, 1-0.
Even despite the loss, the Fireflies still remain five games out of first place but with just 19 games left. Columbia (23-28, 47-70) must win on Wednesday to ward off a series sweep.
Willy Taveras (L, 5-11) had pitched wonderfully in his two scoreless innings out of the bullpen and had retired Charleston's (26-25, 63-58) Canaan Smith to begin the ninth. However, the next batter, Josh Stowers - who drove in the game-winning run in the 10th on Monday - bunted for a single up the third-base line. Taveras then battled against cleanup hitter Eric Wagaman who eventually ripped a double to the right-center field wall. Stowers scored as the throw came back into the infield.
Columbia's pitchers were brilliant on Tuesday. The visitors held Charleston to just seven hits. The bar was set high by starter Colin Holderman who worked 4.2 shut-out frames. Holderman, who's still on somewhat of a pitch limit after returning from injury in late July, struck out four and allowed just four singles. Reliever Jose Moreno followed with 1.1 scoreless innings as well.
None of the Fireflies could top what RiverDogs starter Luis Medina did on Tuesday. The 20-year-old Yankees prospect logged a career-high seven innings and tied his career high with 10 punchouts. Medina surrendered just two hits and walked one. At one point, the right-hander retired 13 consecutive Columbia hitters. Reliever Daniel Ramos (W, 1-0) picked up the win in his RiverDogs debut.
Chandler Avant collected two of the Fireflies three hits. Avant doubled in the second and singled in the eighth.
This is the second time this season Columbia has lost a game, 1-0. On May 2, Delmarva defeated the Fireflies by that score, but that day, the Shorebirds scored their lone run in the seventh. This was the deepest a game that Columbia was playing had gone scoreless since May 7, 2018. That day, the Fireflies and Lakewood BlueClaws went scoreless into the 10th, where Columbia ultimately fell, 5-1.
The series finale is scheduled for Wednesday at 7:05 ET. Right-hander Christian James (3-8, 4.48) is set to face Charleston's righty Roansy Contreras (8-5, 3.77). You can listen to the action at FirefliesLiveStream.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.