ASHEVILLE, N.C. (May 10, 2018) -- Three Grasshoppers pitchers combined to strike out 13 batters, but the Tourists built an early lead en route to a 9-3 win over Greensboro on Thursday at McCormick Field. Hoppers starting pitcher Brady Puckett struck out six but lasted just 3.0 innings, his shortest outing of the year.
Asheville scored three runs in the first and built up a 6-1 lead through three frames, thanks in large part to a bevy of Greensboro errors in the second and third innings. The Grasshoppers committed a pair of errors to open the second inning, with missed catches by first baseman Lazaro Alonso and second baseman Garvis Lara resulting in men on base. The fielding miscues resulted in a pair of unearned runs, and one inning later, Puckett's throwing error on a pickoff attempt allowed Ryan Vilade to score for the third unearned run against the Greensboro starter.
In total, Greensboro (15-16) committed a season-high five errors on the day, including two by Lara.
Tourists starting pitcher Will Gaddis (2-1) earned the win, working 7.0 innings and allowing three runs on nine hits while striking out seven and walking none. Puckett (1-3) took the loss, allowing six runs (three earned) on eight hits.
Puckett combined with relievers Nestor Bautista (five strikeouts) and Travis Neubeck (two strikeouts) as the trio matched the largest strikeout total of the season for Greensboro -- the Hoppers also fanned 13 on April 9 against Augusta.
Asheville added two runs in the sixth on a Casey Golden 2-run home run (8) and another run in the seventh, negating Greensboro's 2-run seventh when Lara belted his first home run (1) of the season, scoring Zach Sullivan who doubled earlier in the frame.
Greensboro wraps up this 3-game series against Asheville on Friday at 7:05 p.m. at McCormick Field before making the team's first trip to SRP Park in North Augusta, S.C., starting on Saturday to open a 4-game series against the Augusta GreenJackets. The Grasshoppers return to First National Bank Field on Thursday, May 17, to begin an 8-game home stand, and tickets are available online at gsohoppers.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.