LAKEWOOD, N.J. (August 8, 2019) - Ryne Inman hurled the first-ever nine-inning complete game shutout in Power history in a 3-0 win over the Lakewood BlueClaws Thursday night at FirstEnergy Park.
The biggest threat to Inman's gem came in the bottom of the eighth, as Carlos De La Cruz doubled down the right-field line and advanced to third on a wild pitch with just one out. With a runner just 90 feet away from breaking the shutout, Inman (8-7) buckled down and retired the next two hitters on strikes to send his scoreless outing to the ninth.
Inman began the ninth inning with 93 pitches, but struck out the first batter of the frame and induced a ground out a couple pitches later for out number two. McCarthy Tatum worked the count full against Inman, but offered up at a breaking ball in the dirt that was fielded by Jake Anchia, who made a strong throw to first to end the ballgame.
The final out of the game was Inman's 12th strikeout, a career-high for the right-hander, and tied for the second-most by a West Virginia starter in team history (second time this season, Devin Sweet, July 28 at Rome).
Both starters dealt to begin the ballgame, as they each faced the minimum through the first two frames, including the second inning, where Inman struck out the side in order. Onil Pena got the offense underway in the top of the third with a roped double all the way to the wall in right-center field off Tom Sutera (0-2). Later in the frame, Charlie McConnell laced a triple off the left-field wall and scored Pena from second that gave the Power (22-24, 59-57) a 1-0 advantage.
Inman surrendered his first base hit of the day in the third, but set down the next two hitters to avoid any real danger. In the fourth, Lakewood (19-25, 48-66) managed to get a runner into scoring position after a leadoff single from Tatum and a hit and run that pushed Tatum to second. The next batter, Malvin Matos, skied a fly ball to right field, where Julio Rodriguez reeled it in and gunned down Tatum on a perfect throw as he was attempting to advance to third.
West Virginia expanded the lead in the fifth with a one-out double off the bat of Mike Salvatore and a sacrifice fly for McConnell's second RBI of the day that made it 2-0. Inman only needed seven pitches to do away with the side in the bottom of the inning and received some defensive help again in the sixth, as McConnell came up with a diving catch in deep left-center field.
The Power tacked on another insurance run in the eighth inning, as Julio reached on an infield single and advanced to second on a walk to Bobby Honeyman. A couple pitches later, Julio scored from second base with some savvy base running on a wild pitch to give West Virginia a 3-0 lead.
The Power continues their four-game series with the Lakewood BlueClaws Friday night at FirstEnergy Park, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. RHP Devin Sweet (6-4, 3.04 ERA) gets the ball for West Virginia, while Lakewood sends righty Rafi Gonell (4-1, 4.83 ERA) to the bump. Pregame coverage begins at 6:45 p.m. on The Jock 1300 and 1340 AM, as well as online at wvpower.com and via the TuneIn Radio App and MiLB First Pitch App.
The Power returns to Appalachian Power Park on Thursday, August 15, as they welcome the Hagerstown Suns to town for a four-game series. The highlight of the homestand comes on Saturday, August 17, as the first 1,000 fans can get a Jarred Kelenic prospect T-shirt giveaway, courtesy of Marshall Orthopaedics. West Virginia will also host a special postgame fireworks show following the final out Saturday, presented by Constellium. For tickets and more information, call the Power at 304-344-2287 or visit www.wvpower.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.