Rodriguez tallies career-high six RBI in 10-9 loss

Julio Rodriguez crushed his first-career grand slam and posted a two-run double Tuesday

Julio Rodriguez crushed the first grand slam of his professional career Tuesday night against Delmarva. (Joe Williams)

By Kyle Youmans / West Virginia Power | August 13, 2019 10:06 PM

SALISBURY, Md. (August 13, 2019) - Julio Rodriguez posted a career-best six-RBI night, but the Power dropped a back-and-forth affair with the Delmarva Shorebirds, 10-9, Tuesday evening at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium.

Rodriguez finished the outing 3-for-4 with a two-run double and a second-inning grand slam that combined for his six RBI in the loss. It is the second six-RBI game for a Power batter this year and the first since Onil Pena reached that total on June 25 against Greensboro.

West Virginia (25-26, 62-59) opened the scoring in the first inning with an Austin Shenton RBI groundout that made it 1-0 Power. However, Delmarva (32-18, 80-39) answered in the bottom of the first, as Ryne Inman surrendered three runs on one hit and five walks and did not make it out of the inning, leaving with a 3-1 Shorebirds lead. 

In the second, West Virginia continued to put runners on against the struggling Dallas Litscher, who issued two walks early in the frame and allowed an RBI single to Ryan Ramiz that brought the Power within one. After the single, Matt Sanders walked to load the bases for Rodriguez, who cleared the bags with his first career grand-slam, a no-doubter over the left-field wall that gave West Virginia a 6-3 lead.

Logan Rinehart returned to the hill after closing out the first inning for Inman, but ran into some issues early in the second. Four of the first five batters stroked singles to start the frame that was capped by a two-run knock from former Power infielder Ryne Ogren that closed the lead to one. Delmarva added two more in the stanza on a two-run double off the bat of Seamus Curran that put the 'Birds ahead 7-6. 

Rinehart delivered two scoreless frames in the third and the fourth, but conceded another run in the fifth on an Ben Breazeale RBI base hit that extended the Delmarva lead to 8-6. Litscher also settled down and held the Power lineup scoreless until the sixth, when an error from Adam Hall scored Charlie McConnell from second and cut the Shorebirds lead in half at 8-7. With runners at second and third after a wild pitch, Julio doubled down the left-field line and scored two more runs to put the Power out in front with a 9-8 advantage. 

Elias Espino (2-3) entered in the sixth and provided the elusive shutdown inning, but gave up the tying run in the seventh on a Nick Horvath solo homer that knotted the game at nine. Later in the inning, an RBI triple from Johnny Rizer scored J.C. Encarnacion from first and handed the Shorebirds a 10-9 lead.

Juan Echevarria (3-0) and Felix Bautista (S,3) combined to hurl the final 3.1 scoreless innings out of the Delmarva bullpen and shut the door on West Virginia.

The Power concludes their three-game series with the Delmarva Shorebirds Wednesday evening at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. RHP Devin Sweet (7-4, 2.98 ERA) gets the ball for West Virginia, while Delmarva sends righty Gray Fenter (6-2, 1.88 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.

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