Woodbridge, VA-Behind an early home run and a season high seven doubles, the Wilmington Blue Rocks (19-21) picked up their fifth win in the past six games. 1B Chris DeVito tallied a two-out, two-run home run in the top of the first inning against LHP Matthew Crownover (L, 3-1), while Wilmington had a man reach scoring position in seven of the nine frames. RHP A.J. Puckett (W, 4-3) allowed just two runs on three hits over 6.1 innings in the victory.
SS Nicky Lopez led off the game with a double, and after Crownover struck out the next two batters, DeVito made it 2-0 Wilmington with his first Carolina League home run. Crownover gave up four earned runs over 6.2 innings, which matched the total runs that he had allowed in 27 innings prior to Wednesday night's matchup.
The P-Nats immediately answered against Puckett, as DH Austin Davidson homered with one out in the bottom of the first inning. The home run for Davidson was his second in as many nights.
Wilmington plated the eventual winning run against Crownover in the top of the fifth inning. CF Cody Jones led off the frame with a double and moved to third base on a bunt single by 3B Jecksson Flores. Lopez grounded out to SS Edwin Lora , which plated a run and made it 3-1. Wilmington left two men in scoring position in the inning and finished the game 4-18 with RISP.
Puckett faced just one over the minimum through the first five innings, though Potomac pulled back within one in the sixth frame. 2B Bryan Mejia led off the inning with a double, and after a sacrifice bunt by LF Telmito Agustin , CF Victor Robles tallied his seventh RBI of the season with a groundout. Potomac left the tying man at first base in the frame.
The Blue Rocks tallied an insurance run in the seventh inning and another in the ninth. A pair of two-out hits from Lopez and 2B D.J. Burt made it 4-1 Wilmington in the seventh inning, while an unearned run scored on a double by Burt off of LHP Taylor Guilbeau in the ninth. RHP Gabe Cramer (SV, 3) struck out four and allowed just one hit over 2.2 shutout frames.
The loss leaves Potomac in fourth place in the Northern Division, just 0.5 games ahead of the Blue Rocks, who sit in last place in the division. The two teams will meet in the series finale Thursday night at Pfitzner Stadium. LHP Hector Silvestre (3-1, 3.83) is set to start for Potomac. Silvestre has gone at least five innings in six straight starts. For Wilmington, LHP Cristian Castillo (2-2, 3.20) is scheduled to make his second start of the season against the P-Nats. The left-handed starter allowed three earned runs over five innings in a no-decision on 4/16.
First pitch is set for 7:05pm on Thursday night. The Potomac broadcast will get underway at 6:50pm with the P-Nats Leadoff Show. You can listen to the Potomac broadcast at potomacnationals.com or on the TuneIn Radio App.
The homestand concludes with a Thursday Cheers, which will feature $1 drink specials. It's also another College Night Pfitz Party. With proof of a student ID, grandstand tickets will be $5 and the Picnic Area will feature water pong, cornhole, and trivia. The series finale is also Jimmy Buffett Night at The Pfitz. Pfitzner Island will be reminiscent of a Margaritaville Paradise with a host of drink specials and cheeseburger deals, along with plenty of Jimmy Buffett inspired décor.
The Potomac Nationals of the Carolina League play at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge, Virginia, and are the Carolina League affiliate of the Washington Nationals. The Potomac Nationals have claimed five Carolina League Championship titles (1982, 1989, 2008, 2010, and 2014) and nine CL Northern Division Championships. Sponsorship opportunities for the 2017 season and beyond are available, as well as corporate outings for the 2017 season to watch the future stars of the Washington Nationals at The Pfitz. For more information on Potomac Nationals 2017single game tickets, season tickets, mini plans, group outings, and picnic packages, visit the P-Nats online at www.potomacnationals.com or call the Potomac Nationals Ticket office at 703-590-2311.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.