DANVILLE, Va. - The Danville Braves rallied from an 8-2 loss to shutout the visiting Kingsport Mets in a 9-0 victory Tuesday night. The win was the D-Braves' fifth in six games and gave the team back-to-back series victories for the first time since June 25-27 at Bluefield and June 28-30 at Pulaski.
Lisandro Santos hurled five innings of shutout ball, allowing two hits and three walks and striking out a career-high seven batters. Santos and the three relievers used in the game combined for 15 strikeouts, the team's second-best total this season. They allowed just three hits all game and posted the second shutout of the year despite allowing six walks.
Willie Carter turned in a 3-for-4 day at the plate, adding a two-run double. Charles Reyes went 1-for-2 with two walks, two stolen bases and three runs scored, and Cody Milligan went 1-for-3 with a pair of walks as well. Milligan leads the league with 41 walks, which also gives him sole possession of third in team history for the most walks drawn in a single season. Danville took advantage of five Kingsport wild pitches, scoring on three of them.
The first inning saw Kingsport draw a walk and a single to put runners on the corners with two outs before Santos got out of the jam with a strikeout. Danville didn't get on base until the second inning with a Carter single and Cody Birdsong walk, though both were stranded after an inning-killing double play.
In the bottom of the third, Reyes drew a one-out walk and stole second base. Milligan earned a free pass to put two on for Brandon Parker, who advanced the runners with a groundout. The second wild pitch of the game from Kingsport allowed Reyes to open the scoring for Danville and make it 1-0.
The Mets put runners on second and third with a walk and a double in the fifth inning, but Santos once again preserved the shutout, this time on a fly out to left field. In the bottom half of the frame, Reyes drew a leadoff walk and Milligan singled to put him on third. Reyes scored on a wild pitch for the second time in the game to make it 2-0 and a Parker sacrifice fly scored Milligan for the 3-0 lead.
The D-Braves truly broke the game open in the bottom of the seventh inning. Reyes singled with one out on the board before stealing his second base of the night. Milligan drew his second walk of the night and Parker singled to load the bases for Beau Philip. Philip didn't get a chance to swing at a pitch, as the first pitch of the at bat hit him to bring Reyes home and make it 4-0. Connor Blair followed with an RBI fielder's choice and Carter's subsequent two-run double pushed the score to 7-0.
Danville wasn't quite finished, as a Ray Hernandez walk and a Victor De Hoyos single put two on in the eighth. The fourth wild pitch of the night from the Mets advanced them to third and second, respectively, and Reyes delivered an RBI groundout to add an eighth run to the scoreboard. The fifth and final wild pitch of the night from Kingsport scored De Hoyos before a strikeout and a groundout ended the inning.
In the top of the ninth, reliever Kenny Wells hit a batter and walked the next two to load the bases, giving Kingsport a glimmer of hope. Wells buckled down and struck out the next three Mets he faced to end the game and preserve the shutout. The win matched the biggest of the year for Danville, equaling a 15-6 victory over Princeton on July 6.
Next up for Danville is a two-game series against the Burlington Royals that will conclude the season-long eight game homestand.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.