Bowie, MD - The Bowie Baysox (18-16) posted five runs in the first inning and held on to defeat the Flying Squirrels (13-19) by a final of 5-3 on Thursday night at Prince George's Stadium. The game was delayed at the start nearly an hour due to rain and was played in frigid conditions. Richmond starting pitcher Matt Lujan suffered the loss but lasted six innings despite the early offensive attack. Game two of the series from Bowie will be Friday night at 6:35 p.m.
Following the 55-minute rain delay, Hunter Cole put the Squirrels on the board in the first inning by launching his first home run of the year off of Bowie starter David Hess. With one out, Cole delivered ano-doubt shot over the left center field wall for a 1-0 lead. Hess retired the next two batters and needed only nine pitches to finish the first inning.
The Baysox countered with an extensive five-run bottom of the first inning to grab a 5-1 lead. The scoring began with one out and a runner on first base. Facing the lefty Lujan, Austin Wynns launched his third home run of the season, a line drive shot over the left center field wall for a 2-1 lead. Bowie added three more runs on a total of seven hits to pull ahead 5-1. Lujan used 31 pitches in the first inning but still managed to pitch deep into the game.
Richmond had a few opportunities to pull closer in the early innings. The Squirrels loaded the bases against Hess in the second but could not score. C.J. Hinojosa lined out to left field to get Hess out of trouble and keep Bowie ahead, 5-1. The lengthy second forced Hess' pitch count to 44 after just two innings. He lasted 5 2/3 innings in the outing to earn the win.
Lujan settled in after the first inning bombardment and worked around a single in the second and a two-out double in the third. The left turned in the game's first 1-2-3 frame in the fourth and finished strong with six innings worked. Lujan (1-2) suffered the loss while allowing five runs - all in the first - on ten hits. He walked one and struck out five, using 85 pitches in the start.
The Squirrels chipped away at the lead and Hess with a pair of runs in the sixth inning. Hess loaded the bases in the sixth and was removed for Jesus Liranzo. Eliezer Zambrano then slashed a single to left and C.J. Hinojosa worked a walk to make it a 5-3 contest. Liranzo finished off the inning to close out the line for Hess. The righty earned the win by allowing three runs on five hits over 5 2/3 innings. He threw 114 pitches and walked four.
Liranzo returned for the seventh inning and Ryan Meisinger pitched the eighth and ninth for the save. Richmond's Jose Flores turned in two a flawless innings in relief to back Lujan.
The Squirrels continue their seven game road trip on Friday in Bowie. Richmond will attempt to end their two-game slide by tossing RHP Cory Taylor against Bowie LHP Tanner Scott. First pitch is 6:35p.m.
Flying Squirrels individual tickets, mini plans and group packages are on sale by contacting the Richmond box office at 804-359-FUNN or online at www.squirrelsbaseball.com
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.