Woodbridge, VA-The Salem Red Sox (24-12) took the final game of the series at Pfitzner Stadium on Sunday, as the Potomac Nationals (18-18) could not manage a second rally of the game in a 5-2 loss. The P-Nats went down 2-0 after half an inning, tied the game up over the next two frames, but gave up three runs in the fourth inning. RHP Jefry Rodriguez (L, 3-2) equaled his shortest outing of the season, as the right-handed starter allowed five runs, three earned, over four innings. The bullpen due of RHP Sam Held and RHP Mariano Rivera did not allow a hit over the final five innings for Potomac.
Salem struck early with two runs in the top of the first inning, as an error by 2B Bryan Mejia led to two runs. Rodriguez walked a pair of Red Sox batters, and after 1B Josh Ockimey struck out, 2B Jose Sermo reached on a fielding error by Mejia. The error plated CF Trenton Kemp, while RF Kyri Washington made it 2-0 Salem with an RBI single.
The P-Nats cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the first inning. CF Victor Robles led off the frame with a double, and with two outs, 1B Ian Sagdal came through with an RBI single. RHP Daniel Gonzalez (ND) strike out RF Rhett Wiseman , as the P-Nats left the bases loaded in the frame. Potomac left 14 men on base in the loss and went just 2-14 with RISP.
In the bottom of the second inning, Potomac tied the game on yet another two-out RBI hit. With runners on the corners, 3B Kelvin Gutierrez plated DH Matt Page with a single, though once again, Potomac left two men in scoring position, as Gonzalez got C Taylor Gushue to ground out.
Rodriguez struggled to get through the fourth inning for Potomac, as Salem tagged the righty for three runs in the frame. SS Chad De La Guerra, who entered the game one inning prior after Sermo left with an injury, led off the inning with a single. Washington followed with a double, which put two men in scoring position with no outs. Rodriguez retired C Austin Rei, but 3B Jordan Betts plated both runners with a double to left field. 2B Nick Lovullo followed with an RBI single, which made it 5-2 Salem, the eventual final.
Gonzalez pitched just three innings in his Carolina League debut, but the Salem bullpen did not allow a run over the final six innings. RHP Jordan Weems (W, 4-1) allowed just one hit over three-shutout innings, RHP Austin Glorius gave up two hits and walked a pair over 1.1 innings of shutout baseball, while LHP Bobby Poyner (SV, 3) struck out four over 1.2 scoreless frames.
Off of the series loss, Potomac sits a season high six games behind the Red Sox in the Northern Division standings. Up next for the P-Nats is a four-game series vs. the Wilmington Blue Rocks, which gets underway Monday night. RHP Joan Baez (1-4, 5.74) will get the start for Potomac. Baez enters off of consecutive outings in which he surrendered just one earned run. For the Blue Rocks, RHP Scott Blewett (1-3, 4.05) is set to start in the series opener. Blewett allowed a season high six earned runs in his last start, a loss to Potomac on 5/10. First pitch is set for 7:05pm on Monday 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.
Monday night is another $1 Monday presented by The Washington Post. Both grandstand tickets and hot dogs will be sold for just $1 each. The series continues Tuesday night with another Deuces Wild Tuesday. Grandstand tickets are just $2 each, while the P-Nats will offer $2 player performance-based concessions specials, as well as $2 Wild Card concessions specials. Wednesday brings another Winning Wednesday. If the P-Nats win, redeem your ticket for another ticket of equal value for the next Wednesday home game! Wednesday contests and raffles will provide Nine Innings of Winning throughout the game. 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 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.
-- Potomac Nationals --
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.