By Cameron White / Greenville Drive | August 8, 2017 10:30 PM ET
Kannapolis, NC - Falling behind early didn't faze the Greenville Drive on Tuesday night, as Jerry Downs belted a two-run homer in a four-run sixth to help the Drive defeat the Kannapolis Intimidators 5-3. With the win, the Drive have clinched a victory of the three-game series.
The big inning for the Drive (22-22, 63-50) began with back-to-back singles by Tyler Hill and Santiago Espinal, and a pair of wild pitches by the Intimidators (19-26, 58-55) allowed the Drive to cut the deficit to 3-2. With Roldani Baldwin on second and Danny Dopico (3-4) on the mound, the stage was set for Downs, who delivered his first home run of the year to put the Drive ahead.
The rally made a winner out of Jhonathan Diaz (5-4), who allowed three runs in five innings. The Drive bullpen continued its recent outstanding work, as Hunter Smith and Joan Martinez combined to shut out the Intimidators over the final four innings. Martinez didn't allow a hit in the last two frames to notch his first save with Greenville.
Kannapolis took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Blake Rutherford hit a one-out double and came home on Micker Adolfo's sacrifice fly.
They tacked on two runs in the fourth when Zach Remillard drew a bases-loaded walk and Alex Call grounded out to bring home a runner.
The Drive added an insurance run in the top of the eighth when Jagger Rusconi, in his first game since coming off the disabled list, dropped an RBI single to left to score Brett Netzer, who reached on a fielder's choice.
Hill, Rusconi and Mitchell Gunsolus each collected two hits for Greenville.
The series finale will begin at 7:05 PM on Wednesday night in Kannapolis. Right-hander Hildemaro Requena (6-3, 2.80) takes the mound for the Drive as they go for a series sweep, and right-hander Dylan Cease (0-4, 3.86) will start for the Intimidators.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.