KINGSPORT, Tenn.- A day following a combined 25 runs off 32 hits between the Kingsport Mets and the Johnson City Cardinals, Sunday's affair saw the two clubs go for five runs off 16 hits as the Cardinals narrowly escaped Hunter Wright Stadium with a 3-2 victory in Game 2 of the three-game set.
Zeros spanned across the scoreboard for the first four innings of play as neither offense could get anything going. In fact, both the Mets (9-13) and Cardinals (10-14) combined for only two hits in the first four frames as starting pitching dominated with 12 strike outs during the time.
Johnson City finally broke the scoreless ballgame in the top of the fifth inning when Chase Pinder singled to right field to bring in Carlos Talavera who walked prior in the frame. The run-scoring hit was the first run to cross the plate on either side as the Cardinals gained a 1-0 lead midway through five.
The visitors tacked on two more runs with a run in both inning seven and nine to go up 3-0 heading to the bottom of the ninth inning. In the seventh, Irving Lopez drilled a sacrifice fly to deep center to plate the first run while he again drove in another two innings later with a single to left field.
Down by three runs, Kingsport looked to make it back-to-back walk-off wins Sunday afternoon and mace things interesting by scoring two runs in the frame off two hits and an error. But the home team ultimately fell 3-2 in the second game of the series.
Juan Uriarte drove in the first run of the game for Kingsport with an RBI single up the middle while Raphael Galdu drove in the second three batters later with an RBI groundout to the short stop. Angel Manzanarez came to the plate with the tying run just 90 feet away on third base-looking to walk it off like he did the night prior. However, this go around, Manazanarez lined out to his counterpart at second base to end the game with a 3-2 final in favor of Johnson City.
The K-Mets, who managed only two nine innings runs off seven hits throughout the day had no one record multi hits on the afternoon. Both Uriarte and Gladu recorded RBIs on the day while Jeremy Vasquez and Uriarte scored the only runs for the home team.
Johnson City plated three runs off nine hits on Sunday as Lopez drove in two and Pinder singled in another.
Schlesener (1-1) picked up a well-deserved win for the Cardinals following five-plus innings of scoreless baseball with a career-high 10 strikeouts on the day. The southpaw strung together five-consecutive strikeouts at one point while retiring the first 10 batters he faced on the afternoon. Evan Guillory pitched three-plus inning of relief of two-run baseball while Jacob Patterson tallied his fifth save of the season.
Taking the loss in the outing was Carlos Hernandez (1-1) as the right-hander surrendered two runs in five innings of relief. Luis de los Santos started the game for Kingsport and pitched three scoreless innings while yielding only one hit.
The series finale is set to begin Monday night at 6:30 p.m. from Hunter Wright Stadium. Coverage of the contest can be found on the Kingsport Mets Baseball Network at kmets.com or on Tune In Radio with the Braeden's Barbeque Pregame Show starting at 6:15 p.m. Carlos Hernandez gets the nod for the Kingsport Mets on the bump.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.