- In his first Advanced-A at-bat the newest Wilmington Blue Rock announced his arrival in style. Wil Myers'
two-run single in the opening-inning set the tone in the Blue Crew's 3-0 victory over the Lynchburg Hillcats on Thursday night at Frawley Stadium.
Myers, who got promoted from Low-A Burlington and arrived on the Riverfront after Wednesday night's game, belted a single past a diving third baseman and into left field in the first. The knock came with the bases loaded, as Jarrod Dyson had singled, Christian Colon was hit by a pitch and Eric Hosmer drew a walk. Nick Francis followed with a bloop-single that fell just in front of a diving Efrain Contreras in shallow right field and scored Hosmer.
The hit gave Wilmington a three-run lead, which was more than enough thanks to the effort of starting pitcher Chris Dwyer.
Dwyer (6-3) allowed seven hits, but nary a run in six-plus overpowering innings. The left-hander whiffed nine and walked only two. He set down the side in order twice and faced the minimum three times.
The starter did do some tap dancing as he averted major damage in the third. Dwyer allowed a lead-off single to Contreras, but watched catcher Salvador Perez gun him down trying to steal second base. He then got Kevyn Feiner to fly out to center field for the second out, but back-to-back walks were followed by a Felix Perez single to load the bases. Again it was the strikeout which came to Dwyer's aid, as he got Neftali Soto to chase a curveball in the dirt.
Dwyer whiffed Soto three times, and got six of the other eight batters in the Lynchburg lineup on strikes once each. He ran into issues with fatigue in the seventh, allowing each of the first two batters to reach on singles. At that point he got the hook in favor of reliever Harold Mozingo.
Mozingo entered with two on, and after a fielder's choice and a walk, the sacks were full with just one down. But the VCU product preserved the shutout with a strikeout and a grounder to third.
He worked his way out of another jam in the eighth. Consecutive one-out walks, gave Lynchburg a great chance, but another strikeout and a fielder's choice groundball ended the inning.
Mozingo burned through the Hillcats with greater ease in the ninth. He did surrender a one-out double, but retired the other three batters he faced to nail down his third save in as many chances this season.
Wilmington wraps up this three-game series against the Hillcats at Frawley Stadium on Friday night at 7:05 p.m. Right-hander Bryan Paukovits (0-1, 27.00) takes the hill for a second time as a Blue Rock. He will be opposed by Lynchburg right-hander Lance Janke (3-5, 6.00). As is the case during every Friday home game in Wilmington, there will be fireworks after the game. For tickets call 302-888-BLUE or visit bluerocks.com.
PEBBLES OF KNOWLEDGE:
Christian Colon's initial struggles continued on Thursday night The fourth overall selection in the MLB draft just three weeks ago, ran into some bad luck in his third game as a pro. Colon hit into a pair of double plays, and has now been the source of three twin killings since arriving in Wilmington. He did score the first run of his career in the opening inning, but in three games, Colon is 0-for-12.
Jarrod Dyson made his return to the Wilmington lineup for the first time since 2008. Dyson, who spent a sizable chunk of spring training with the big club and is on the Royals' 40-man roster, had three hits and scored a run. The center fielder doubled in the seventh and registered singles in the first and fifth frames.
The Rocks and Hillcats will enjoy a rubber-match encounter on Friday night. Wilmington has had plenty of success in such contests this season, posting a 4-1 mark and two straight wins. The Blue Crew is also looking for its third straight series victory, something the team has not accomplished in 2010.
The victory moved Wilmington back into a first-place tie atop the Carolina League Northern Division's second-half standings.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.