Busby, Cruz shine in 13-2 drubbing

West Virginia posts 14 hits in Thursday's offensive outburst

Oneil Cruz went 4-for-6 with an RBI and two runs scored on Thursday. (Sam Santilli)

By David Kahn / West Virginia Power | May 10, 2018 7:31 PM

HAGERSTOWN, MD (May 10, 2018) - Dylan Busby finished a triple shy of the cycle and Oneil Cruz went 4-for-6 with three doubles as the Power offense exploded for 13 runs and 14 hits in a 13-2 victory over the Hagerstown Suns on Thursday evening at Historic Municipal Stadium.

Busby tallied four RBI for the second straight night, this time collecting them on one swing, as the Florida State product crushed a grand slam to right-center field in the third that cleared the multi-level sign wall. Busby's bases-clearing roundtripper gave the Power (19-13) their first grand slam since Clark Eagan hit one on May 21, 2017, at Columbia. On the night, Busby finished 3-for-5 while adding a double, a single and three runs scored to his credit.

Cruz registered the fifth four-hit game of his career, as the Dominican native stroked three doubles and a single to go along with an RBI and a run scored on Thursday. Cruz's effort marked the fourth four-hit game for a West Virginia slugger in 2018.

Domingo Robles (2-3) tossed a quality start in the victory, as the left-hander spun six innings for the second straight outing, holding Hagerstown (10-23) to two runs on three hits while striking out two. Beau Sulser and Joel Cesar spun the final three innings out of the bullpen for the Power, ceding just three hits and fanning a pair. The bullpen has now allowed just eight earned runs over their last 51.2 innings pitched, good for a 1.39 ERA, with 51 strikeouts.

West Virginia started the scoring in the second as Kyle Watson stroked an RBI single against Suns starter Jackson Stoeckinger (1-3) to give the Power a 1-0 edge. One inning later, Busby blasted his grand slam to break the game open at 5-0.

In the fourth, West Virginia tacked on three more runs as Lolo Sanchez and Cruz blistered back-to-back run-scoring doubles and Deon Stafford plated Cruz on a fielder's choice grounder to bring the score to 8-0.

After the Power made it 10-0 in the fifth on Watson's third home run of the season, Hagerstown cracked the scoreboard against Robles, with Branden Bogetto and Kameron Esthay coming across to score on a fielder's choice ground out from Cole Freeman. 

West Virginia responded, however, as Calvin Mitchell led off the sixth with a home run to right-center, his fourth of the season. Following a Busby single, Rodolfo Castro roped a double that brought in Busby to make it 12-2. With Mason Martin at the plate, A.J. Bogucki uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Castro to advance to third, and a throwing error by Suns catcher Alex Flores sent him across the plate to cap the scoring on Thursday.

The Power go for the series sweep against Hagerstown at Historic Municipal Stadium on Friday evening, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. RHP Sergio Cubilete (0-2, 15.43 ERA) heads to the hill for West Virginia, while the Suns counter with LHP Nick Raquet (2-3, 2.84 ERA). Pregame coverage begins at 6:45 p.m. on The Jock 1300 and 1340 AM, as well as online at wvpower.com, via the TuneIn Radio App and the MiLB First Pitch App.

After their trek through Maryland and New Jersey and a league-wide off day on Wednesday, May 16, West Virginia returns to Appalachian Power Park to face off with the Lexington Legends in a four-game series. The Power's second May homestand includes another Rock 105 Thirsty Thursday, a postgame fireworks show, presented by UniCare Healthplan of West Virginia and Electric 102.7, a Kidz Sunday Funday and an umbrella giveaway on Saturday, May 19. West Virginia will also host Power to End Stroke Night on Thursday, May 17, along with Military Appreciation Night on Friday, May 18. For tickets and more information, call the Power at 304-344-2287 or visit wvpower.com.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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