CHARLESTON, WV (April 6, 2018) - Travis MacGregor tallied a career-high 12 strikeouts over 5.1 innings of work, but Greenville used a two-run ninth inning to overcome a pair of single-digit deficits to defeat West Virginia 4-2 on Friday evening at Appalachian Power Park.MacGregor, the 25th-best prospect in the Pirates' system per
CHARLESTON, WV (April 6, 2018) - Travis MacGregor tallied a career-high 12 strikeouts over 5.1 innings of work, but Greenville used a two-run ninth inning to overcome a pair of single-digit deficits to defeat West Virginia 4-2 on Friday evening at Appalachian Power Park.
MacGregor, the 25th-best prospect in the Pirates' system per MLB.com, was marvelous in his Low-A debut, allowing one earned run on four hits while soaring past his career-high in strikeouts. The Clearwater, Fla., native tossed 87 pitches, 64 for strikes, but was saddled with a no-decision. MacGregor set down the first six batters he faced, including five via the strikeout.
As a pitching staff, West Virginia arms set down 17 Greenville batters via the strikeout, doing so for the first time since July 7, 2017, when Power pitchers turned away 17 Braves in Rome, led by southpaw Oddy Nunez's eight punchouts. West Virginia pitching has not tallied more than 17 strikeouts in a contest since an April 9 affair versus Rome, when former Power star Luis Escobar led a 20-strikeout effort in Charleston, with Escobar accounting for 12 of the 20 Ks.
With the game knotted at two in the ninth, Power (0-2) right-hander Blake Cederlind (0-1, 18.00) made his 2018 season debut on the hill. Cederlind retired the first batter he faced with a strikeout before allowing a single to Drive (2-0) shortstop Frankie Rios. Rios was quickly erased from the basepaths on an attempted steal for the second out, but things unraveled from there. Cederlind served up a double to Samuel Miranda and a triple to Kervin Suarez, who scored on an errant throw by Power second baseman Rodolfo Castro to make it 4-2 Greenville.
Denyi Reyes (1-0, 0.00 ERA) set down West Virginia in order in their final offensive frame, sealing the victory for the Drive. Reyes picked up the win after tossing five innings of relief, surrendering two hits and an unearned run while striking out five. Greenville arms punched out 10 Power batters on the evening, bringing West Virginia's offensive strikeout total to 23 through the first two games.
Power batters have not struck out 23 times over a two-game stretch since August 20 and 21, 2017, at Greenville, when West Virginia's offense was saddled with 11 and 14 Ks, respectively.
The Power opened the scoring in the second frame, as Oneil Cruz worked a leadoff walk against Drive starter Kutter Crawford. Mason Martin followed suit to put runners at first and second before Castro sacrificed them over and Ryan Peurifoy plated Cruz with an RBI groundout.
Both teams tacked on a run in the fifth inning. Jagger Rusconi reached third on a fielding error by Calvin Mitchell to start the fifth, and, the next batter, Michael Osinski, laced a single to center to score Rusconi and tie the game at one. However, Dylan Busby plated Rafelin Lorenzo on a sharp grounder to third that Everlouis Lozada could not handle smoothly to push the Power back out in front 2-1.
Cole Brannen led off the sixth by crushing a fly ball to deep right-center field, quickly cruising around the basepaths to third base and being awarded home plate as Cruz's throw sailed past Busby into the Greenville dugout.
Blake Weiman hurled 2.2 innings of shutout relief for West Virginia, giving up just three hits and recording three strikeouts in the loss.
The Power and Drive continue their four-game series on Saturday afternoon at Appalachian Power Park, with first pitch slated for 2:05 p.m. RHP Gavin Wallace (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will toe the slab for West Virginia while Greenville sends RHP Nick Duron (0-0, 0.00 ERA) to the bump. Pregame coverage begins at 1:45 p.m. on The Jock 1300 and 1340 AM, as well as online at wvpower.com, the TuneIn Radio App and the MiLB First Pitch App.
For tickets and more information on Opening Weekend, call the Power at 304-344-BATS or visit www.wvpower.com.