Some early struggles on the mound were of no help to Fayetteville as the Woodpeckers dropped their Friday night contest to Myrtle Beach 6-1, and saw their early season win streak end at four games. The Pelicans brought five runs across the plate in just the first two innings as the pitching staff failed to locate the strikezone throughout the evening.
Opening the night on the mound for Fayetteville, JP France ran into trouble early, allowed a walk, a pair of singles, and two runs in the frame. France recorded only two outs before being removed from the game, allowing three runs on the day when his line was closed. Making an early entrance from the bullpen, Leovanny Rodriguez had issues throwing strikes. Rodriguez allowed each of the first five batters he faced to reach base safely, including a trio of walks to start the second inning followed by a two-run double. The righty would only record two outs in the second frame before also being replaced. Finally showing some consistency out of the bullpen, Hunter Martin put together 2.1 innings of scoreless ball to bridge the gap to the tandem starter Enoli Paredes. Paredes exhibited similar struggles on throwing strikes early, issuing a career-high five walks over three innings of work, including a bases loaded walk in the fifth inning to give the Pelicans their sixth run.
As the pitching staff labored, the offense was quiet for all but the second inning. After a pair of early walks, Michael Papierski served a line drive single into center field to drive in a run for his second RBI of the year. The run was the last breath of offense for the Woodpeckers, however, as they only managed four baserunners over the final seven innings of the game. Myrtle Beach starter Paul Richan tossed five innings of one-run ball while allowing only three hits, and the right-hander was benefited by high quality work out of the bullpen. Tyler Peyton, the first reliever for Myrtle Beach, faced only nine batters and recorded nine outs, while right-hander Ben Hecht tossed a scoreless ninth inning to finish things off.
With the loss, Fayetteville drops to 5-4 on the season, but thanks to a Carolina Mudcats postponement and a Down East Wood Ducks loss, the Woodpeckers are still tied for second place, only 1.5 games out of first. Fayetteville will try to take the third game of the four-game tilt tomorrow at 6:05PM when Peter Solomon takes the mound for his second start of the season.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.