Game 29, Take II: Ducks at Barnstormers

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The Ducks have continued their winning ways on the road in 2014. Despite Monday’s series finale in Sugar Land getting rained out, the Ducks took two of three in Texas and have now won four of five series on the road this season. As a team, Long Island is 9-5 away from Bethpage Ballpark, which is good for the best road record in the Atlantic League to this point. It’s obviously important to defend your home field, as the Ducks did by going 5-2 during their most recent homestand. However, being able to go into an opponent’s home park and take a series from them as frequently as the Ducks have thus far deserves praise.

Also deserving of recognition is Ducks right-hander Shaun Garceau, and he received an honor today by being named Atlantic League Player of the Week. The right-hander made two starts, one at home against Southern Maryland and one on the road against Sugar Land, and was dominant in both. Garceau tossed 16 scoreless innings during the week, allowing just eight hits and five walks while striking out 12 in a pair of victories. Included in that was a complete game shutout on Sunday where he threw 131 pitches, 88 of which were for strikes. This now makes it two straight weeks in which a Duck received Player of the Week honors after Lew Ford earned the distinction for the week of May 12-18. Congratulations to Shaun on a well-deserved honor.

Today, the Ducks flew from Houston to Baltimore and bussed up to Lancaster where they open a three-game set tonight with the Barnstormers. This marks Long Island’s second trip to Clipper Magazine Stadium this year, and following this series, the two teams will have played each other nine times over the first five weeks of the season. Not to mention, the Barnstormers will return to Bethpage Ballpark next Monday through Thursday. Lancaster leads the series 4-2, but the Ducks won two of three during their most recent matchup May 9-11.

Right-hander Jared Lansford gets the start for the Ducks to open the series. So far, he has done a good job in the starting role that he received this season. In three starts, he is 1-0 with a 2.31 ERA, having allowed five runs (three earned) in 11 and two-thirds innings. One area he would like to work on is walks, as he has allowed nine while striking out 12. His first start of the year came in Lancaster, and he tossed three scoreless innings, yielding two hits and three walks while striking out five. On the other side will be southpaw Clayton Tanner, who has struggled out of the gate. The California native is 1-2 with a 7.22 ERA through six starts and has given up 44 hits in 28 and two-thirds innings. His only win though came at Long Island on May 8 when he surrendered just one runs on six hits while striking out four in six innings.

Here are tonight’s game notes:

Ducks vs. Barnstormers: Tonight marks the seventh meeting of the season between the Ducks and Barnstormers and the fourth of 10 games between the two in Lancaster. The Barnstormers currently lead the series 4-2. Long Island and Lancaster have played 180 games against each other all-time, with the Ducks holding a 95-85 series lead and a 50-43 advantage at Clipper Magazine Stadium.

Offensive Machine: Lew Ford extended his on-base streak to 21 consecutive games with a hit and two walks on Sunday. That’s the longest by a Duck this season and the longest in the Atlantic League in 2014. Ford has also now hit safely in 13 consecutive games, which is the longest by a Duck and second-longest in the Atlantic League this year. Ford leads the league in batting average (.383) and ranks second in hits (41) and on-base percentage (.451), third in total bases (65) and slugging percentage (.607), and fourth in RBI (24) and runs (24).

Lew Launches One: Ford’s solo home run to left-center in the ninth inning on Sunday was his fifth longball of the season. That ties him with Adam Bailey for the team lead. The former Major Leaguer earned his 1,100th career minor league hit and 101st career homer. Long Island has now hit 19 home runs as a team in 2014.

Cody’s Streak Continues: Cody Puckett has now reached base in 18 consecutive games after collecting a hit on Saturday. That’s the second-longest on-base streak by a Duck this year behind Ford. Puckett has earned at least one hit in 16 of those 18 games.

Pitching Leads the Way: With a complete game shutout on Sunday, Shaun Garceau continued a streak of terrific starting pitching by the Ducks. During their last seven games, the starters are a combined 5-0 with a 1.08 ERA. In 50 innings, they’ve allowed just eight runs (six earned) on 40 hits and 13 walks with 31 strikeouts. Long Island has now earned four shutouts of opponents this season and have yet to be shut out in a game.

Back to Form: After a slow start to the year, Garceau has turned things around in his last three starts, earning wins in each of them. The righty has allowed just three runs in 23 innings (1.17 ERA) in those three starts and has given up just 14 hits and five walks while striking out 16. In his first three starts, Garceau yielded 19 runs in 11.1 innings (15.09 ERA), 24 hits and five walks with nine strikeouts.

On the Air: Tonight’s game will be broadcast live on the Ducks official YouTube channel. Live streaming audio will be available online by CLICKING HERE. Michael Polak will call the play-by-play.

Finally, here are tonight’s starting lineups:

#24 Fehlandt Lentini – CF
#2   Cody Puckett – 2B
#20 Lew Ford – DH
#22 Joash Brodin – LF
#50 Randy Ruiz – 1B
#25 Brendan Harris – 3B
#15 Jon Myers – RF
#27 Keith Castillo – C
#12 Dan Lyons – SS

#21 Jared Lansford – RHP

#1   Yusuke Kajimoto – 2B
#11 Lance Zawadzki – SS
#2   Blake Gailen – CF
#8   Cole Garner – LF
#35 Austin Gallagher – 1B
#54 Brock Kjeldgaard – DH
#7   Greg Golson – RF
#31 Tony Delmonico – 3B
#27 Juan Apodaca – C

#10 Clayton Tanner – LHP

Keep it here for updates from Clipper Magazine Stadium throughout the ballgame as the Ducks look to set a new high water mark at five games over .500.

UPDATE (7:06): We are underway at Clipper Magazine Stadium under cloudy skies!

UPDATE (7:21): Cole Garner with a RBI single to center. It scores Yusuke Kajimoto, who reached on an error, to put Lancaster ahead 1-0.

UPDATE (7:47): A two-out, two-run single to left by Kajimoto in the second increases the Barnstormers lead to 3-0.

UPDATE (7:57): The Ducks get on the scoreboard in the third on Cody Puckett’s sac fly to right! 3-1 the score.

UPDATE (8:40): After Austin Gallagher homers to make it 4-1 Lancaster, Cody Puckett responds with a RBI double to left. 4-2 halfway through.

UPDATE (9:00): Jared Lansford works a second straight 1-2-3 inning in the sixth and has now struck out a season-high six in the ballgame.

UPDATE (9:27): The Barnstormers have scored five runs in the seventh and now lead 9-2.

UPDATE (9:32): A two-run double by Golson rounds out the inning. Seven-run frame puts the ‘Stormers ahead 11-2.

UPDATE (9:46): Ducks get a run in the eighth on a RBI groundout to short by Ford. Now an 11-3 game.

UPDATE (10:01): Cephas Howard closes it out for Lancaster, and the Barnstormers take game one of the series 11-3.


Posted on May 27, 2014, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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