Game 92: Ducks at Riversharks

10584523_10203614720943136_1337188797_o(Photo courtesy of Christine Zichittella-Heeren)

This road trip has seen quite a variety of games. From a couple of big performances by the Ducks offense to a few nail biters in which the Ducks were victorious to a few heartbreakers, Long Island has experienced quite a range of emotions during the first nine games of their season-long 10-game road trip. Tonight, the Ducks have a chance to close out the stretch with a winning record thanks to their largest comeback victory of the season on Thursday night.

Through the first seven innings against the Riversharks, things seemed bleak for the Ducks. The offense had managed just one run against Wes Torrez, and Camden had homered twice against Shaun Garceau on their way to a 5-1 lead. After a tough loss on Wednesday night in which the Ducks lost leads of 1-0 and 2-1, it was time for the Flock to turn the tables. In the eighth inning of Thursday’s game, the Ducks certainly did that.

Long Island turned the tide in the series by sending 11 men to the plate against the Riversharks bullpen, scoring six runs to match their season-best for a single inning this year. Four hits, including key two-out singles by Jon Myers and Dan Lyons, as well as three walks allowed by Cole Kimball and a fielding error by second baseman Mike Albaladejo on a hard liner from Adam Bailey, brought the Ducks from four runs down to two runs up. Long Island had struggled to put together big innings in their four losses so far on the trip, but the six-run eighth inning on Thursday proved to be a huge lift for the team.

On the mound, the Ducks bullpen was splendid in relief on Shaun Garceau. Celebrating his 30th birthday, Josh Lansford threw a scoreless inning in the seventh, striking out two batters with a runner on second base. He would ultimately earn his fifth win of the season. Bob Zimmermann then came on for the eighth inning after the Ducks took the lead and allowed just a two-out walk in a scoreless frame. Finally, with Long Island leading by three in the ninth, Brett Lorin was called upon to try and earn his first save of the year. He allowed a leadoff single to Zack MacPhee but retired the next three Riversharks batters in order to finish the ballgame and even the series at a game apiece. After Garceau allowed five runs over six innings to Camden, the bullpen settled things down and pitched the Ducks to victory.

CLICK HERE to read a full recap from Thursday’s come-from-behind win, complete with audio highlights.

With a chance to win the series and finish the road trip at 6-4, Mitch Talbot will take the mound for his third start of the season. He last took the mound in the day game of Sunday’s twinbill at Bridgeport and earned the win in that start, tossing five innings of three-run ball. The former big leaguer allowed four hits and a walk while striking out three to collect his first win as a starter and second overall this year. His first win came in relief against Camden on July 5 when he pitched one inning and gave up a homer to Carlos Hughes.

The Riversharks will hand the ball to another former big leaguer in Taiwan native Fu-Te Ni. The southpaw enters with a record of 1-2 on the year with a 5.86 ERA in 27 games (three starts) combined between the Riversharks and Lancaster Barnstormers. Ni earned the win his last time out, tossing seven innings of three-run ball against the Sugar Land Skeeters on Sunday in a 9-3 victory. He allowed six hits and no walks while striking out a season-high nine batters. Ni has appeared in six games against the Ducks this year, all out of the bullpen, and all with the Barnstormers. He’s combined to allow five runs on nine hits in six and one-third innings.

Here are tonight’s game notes:

Ducks vs. Riversharks: Tonight marks the 16th meeting of the season between the Ducks and Riversharks and final of 10 games between the two in Camden. The Ducks currently lead the series nine to six. Long Island and Camden have played 260 games against each other all-time, with the Riversharks holding a 134-126 advantage and a slim 69-66 edge in Camden.

On-Base Machine: Brendan Harris collected a RBI double in the eighth inning on Wednesday and has now reached base safely in 24 consecutive games. That’s the longest active on-base streak in the Atlantic League. During the streak, Harris is batting .291 (25-for-86) with three doubles, one homer, 12 RBI, 14 runs and 21 walks. The former big leaguer has earned a hit in 19 of the 24 games.

Back with a Bang: After missing four games with a hamstring injury, Adam Bailey has now picked up multiple hits in each of his three games since returning to the lineup. In those three games, he is 9-for- 16 at the plate with two doubles, two RBI and two runs. Bailey has a hit in six consecutive games and is batting .517 (15-for-29) during the streak. His three-hit game was his 25th multi-hit contest of 2014.

Good Things Come in Pairs: Jon Myers, Dan Lyons and Fehlandt Lentini all had two hits on Thursday. Lyons earned his third straight multi-hit game and fourth in his last five games. Myers collected his second consecutive multi-hit contest, and Lentini picked up his third in his last four games. Lentini leads the Flock with 25 two-hit games and is second on the team with 34 multi-hit games (Ford, 36).

Cardiac Quacks: Thursday’s comeback from a four-run deficit was Long Island’s largest come-from-behind win of the season. Their previous high was three, done multiple times, most recently on July 6 against the Riversharks at Bethapge Ballpark. The Ducks have now totaled 27 comeback wins in 2014.

Starter Success: Ducks starting pitchers have overall been strong during the current road trip. In the nine games thus far, they have combined to post a 3.45 ERA, allowing just 26 runs (23 earned) over 60 innings. In those nine starts, they have given up 56 hits and just eight walks while striking out 35.

Oh What A Relief It Is: The Ducks have won five of their last seven games, and in those five wins, the Ducks bullpen has been outstanding. Long Island relievers have tossed 13.2 scoreless innings during the five victories, allowing just six hits and six walks while striking out nine. Brett Lorin has now appeared in 11 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, a span of 9.2 innings.

On the Air: Tonight’s game will be broadcast on Long Island’s home for news, traffic and weather, 103.9-FM LI News Radio. Live streaming audio will also be available by CLICKING HERE. Michael Polak will call the play-by-play.

Finally, here are the lineups for tonight’s game:

Ducks
#24 Fehlandt Lentini – RF
#25 Brendan Harris – 3B
#20 Lew Ford – CF
#13 Adam Bailey – DH
#2   Cody Puckett – 2B
#14 Brandon Bantz – C
#22 Joash Brodin – 1B
#15 Jon Myers – LF
#30 Sergio Miranda – SS

#32 Mitch Talbot – RHP

Riversharks
#4   Zack MacPhee – CF
#7   Mike Albaladejo – 2B
#14 Bryan Pounds – 3B
#19 Jose Julio-Ruiz – 1B
#34 Ryan Strieby – RF
#25 Brian Van Kirk – LF
#9   Jose Morales – C
#2   Chase Patterson – DH
#5   Brandon Chaves – SS

#15 Fu-Te Ni – LHP

Stay tuned for updates throughout the game as the Ducks look to end the road trip with a winning record and take a second consecutive series.

UPDATE (7:31): TOP 2: Cody Puckett puts the Ducks on top with a solo home run to left in the second inning! It’s his sixth longball of the season!

UPDATE (7:40): BOT 2: A RBI double to right-center by Brian Van Kirk ties up the ballgame at one.

UPDATE (8:32): BOT 5: Mitch Talbot strikes out the side and now has seven K’s on the night! Ducks and Riversharks remain tied at one.

UPDATE (8:43): TOP 6: Brendan Harris puts the Ducks in front with a two-run homer to left! His fourth longball of the year gives Long Island a 3-1 lead!

UPDATE (9:19): BOT 7: WHAT A CATCH BY JON MYERS!! Full extension dive robs Chaves and leaves a runner stranded at third after he got there with no outs!

UPDATE (9:41): BOT 8: Bryan Pounds ties the game at three with a two-run homer to left-center off of Jeremy Accardo.

UPDATE (9:48): BOT 8: Jose Morales’ two-out RBI single to center after a pair of walks gives Camden a 4-3 lead.

UPDATE (9:56): FINAL: Ducks are retired in order in the ninth, and the Riversharks win 4-3. Long Island ends the road trip at 5-5.

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Posted on August 1, 2014, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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