Game 17: Ducks at Bluefish
Good morning, Ducks fans! Today marks the second time this year that the Ducks will compete on the road with a 10:35 a.m. start time. The first time the Flock played this early in the morning, it was the front end of a doubleheader against the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs on May 1. In that game, Long Island tallied the most runs it has scored this season, defeating the Blue Crabs 11-1. Lew Ford and Fehlandt Lentini combined to go 4-for-7 from the plate with one home run (Ford), four runs scored and eight RBI in the morning contest. Today, the Flock will look to carry momentum from their comeback win last night against the Bluefish.
Bridgeport struck first last night with a pair of unearned runs in the first inning against Ducks starter John Brownell. Long Island responded the next half inning with a pair of runs off Bridgeport starter Tomo Ohka, highlighted by a RBI single from Cody Puckett to even up the ballgame at two. The Bluefish quickly regained the lead in the bottom of the second on a two-run homer from Cody Overbeck. The score remained 4-2 until Ford drove home Lentini with a RBI single in the fifth inning to cut the Ducks deficit to 4-3.
The Bluefish offense was held in check for the rest of the night with Brownell in cruise control after the second inning. Only one Bluefish baserunner reached second base after the second against Brownell, who finished the game after seven innings of work, allowing four runs (one earned) on five hits, one walk and seven strikeouts. While he left on the hook for a loss, the Ducks scored two runs against Bluefish reliever Scott Maine in the eighth to put Brownell in a position to get the win. Scoreless eighth and ninth innings of relief for Long Island secured the comeback win.
CLICK HERE to read a full recap and listen to the audio highlights from Tuesday’s game.
The win improved the Ducks to 8-8 on the season, while the loss dropped the Bluefish to 9-8 this year. Long Island also took a 1-0 lead in the Ferry Cup series with the win last night. The Ducks are looking to become the first team since the Cup’s inception in 2009 to win it in consecutive seasons.
Wednesday morning, the Ducks will have righty Bobby Blevins on the mound. The Briarcliff, N.Y. native makes his fourth start of the season for the Flock. He is 1-1 through three starts with a 4.00 ERA, four walks and 16 strikeouts in 18 innings of work. Blevins toes the rubber against Bridgeport righty D.J. Mitchell, who makes his fourth start of the year. Mitchell is currently 1-1 with a 2.63 ERA, nine walks and 15 strikeouts through 13 and two-thirds innings.
Here are today’s game notes:
Ducks vs. Bluefish: Today marks the second meeting of the season between the Ducks and Bluefish and the second of 10 meetings between the two at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard in 2014. Long Island and Bridgeport have played 266 games against each other all-time, with the Bluefish holding a slim 134-132 advantage in the series and a 75-57 edge in Bridgeport. Both teams have played for the Ferry Cup since 2009, and the Ducks have won it in three of its five seasons (2009, 2011, 2013).
Bullpen Dominance: The Ducks bullpen tossed two scoreless innings on Tuesday. In their last four games, Ducks relievers have combined for a 2-0 record with a 1.80 ERA and two saves. In 15 innings of work, the relief corps has allowed just three runs on seven hits, with six walks to 16 strikeouts.
Fehlandt’s on Fire: With a single on Tuesday, Fehlandt Lentini extended his on-base streak to 11 consecutive games. That’s the longest on-base streak by a Duck this season and is tied for the third-longest streak in the Atlantic League this season. During the streak, he is batting .370 (17-for-46) with five doubles, 10 RBI, five runs and four walks. In that span, he has also raised his batting average from .200 to .318, good for ninth in the Atlantic League, and his on-base percentage from .273 to .365.
Ford’s Fury: Despite losing his hitting streak on Sunday, Lew Ford extended his on-base streak to nine consecutive games with a single and hit by pitch on Tuesday. In those nine games, the former big leaguer is batting .486 (17-for-35) with three doubles, one homer, eight RBI, nine runs and four walks. During the streak, Ford has increased his batting average from .185 to .355, which ranks fourth in the Atlantic League, and his on-base percentage from .207 to .414, which is good for fifth.
Cardiac Quacks: The Ducks earned their first win of the season when trailing after seven innings on Tuesday in Bridgeport. They are now one of just three Atlantic League teams to have a victory when trailing after seven innings this season (Blue Crabs, 2; Bridgeport, 1). Six of Long Island’s eight wins have been come-from-behind victories. The Ducks are also tied for the league-lead in road wins with six and have the second-best road record in the league at 6-3 (Lancaster, 6-2).
Brodin is Back: After being held without a home run through his first 12 games of the year, Joash Brodin hit home runs in consecutive nights in the weekend series against Lancaster. A two-run homer Friday night, along with a three-run shot Saturday night, has now given Brodin two home runs and eight RBI on the season. Brodin added two more hits on Sunday, along with three hits, a run and a stolen base Tuesday to stay hot. During the last four games, Brodin has raised his batting average from .135 to .200.
Puckett Picks Up Another: Cody Puckett has picked up hits in six straight games and in eight of his last nine, raising his average from .174 to .305 in the process.
On the Air: Today’s game will be broadcast on the Ducks official YouTube channel, Youtube.com/DucksBaseball. The game can be heard online by CLICKING HERE. Marc Schwartz will call the play-by-play.
Finally, here are today’s lineups:
#24 Fehlandt Lentini – CF
#5 Chris McClendon – 3B
#20 Lew Ford – DH
#22 Joash Brodin – 1B
#13 Adam Bailey – LF
#2 Cody Puckett – 2B
#15 Jon Myers – RF
#23 Brian Peacock – C
#30 Sergio Miranda – SS
#18 Bobby Blevins – RHP
#7 James Simmons – CF
#11 Sean Burroughs – 3B
#15 Brandon Boggs – LF
#22 Cody Overbeck – 1B
#33 Ramon Castro – 2B
#19 Luis Lopez – DH
#20 Denny Almonte – RF
#9 Luis Rodriguez – C
#5 Juan Martinez – SS
#18 D.J. Mitchell – RHP
We’ll be updating this post throughout the day from The Ballpark at Harbor Yard, so be sure to refresh often.
UPDATE (10:56): Bridgeport grabs a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first on a RBI triple from Brandon Boggs.
UPDATE (11:22): Ducks tie it on a RBI single from Sergio Miranda in the top of the third! First RBI of the year for Miranda. We’re tied at 1-1.
UPDATE (11:59): Heading to the bottom of the fifth inning, we are still tied up at 1-1 here in Bridgeport.
UPDATE (12:10): Bridgeport grabs the lead on a RBI double from Sean Burroughs in the fifth. Heading to the sixth inning, 2-1 Bluefish.
UPDATE (1:03): Ducks tie it up again! Cody Puckett with a two-out, two-run single in the eighth ties the game at 3-3!
UPDATE (12:32): Luis Rodriguez adds a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the sixth to increase the Bridgeport lead to 3-1.
UPDATE (1:15): Still tied at 3-3, heading to the bottom of the ninth inning in Bridgeport.
UPDATE (1:21): Fernando Hernandez works a 1-2-3 ninth inning, and we have some extra baseball in Bridgeport today! All tied at three, heading to the 10th
UPDATE (1:51): On to the 12th we go in Bridgeport, still tied at 3-3
UPDATE (2:22): Bridgeport wins it in the 13th on a RBI single from Luis Lopez. 4-3 Bluefish, final. Recap to follow shortly.