Game 112: Ducks vs. Patriots

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After a series in Bridgeport that was chock full of runs and hits for the Flock, the focus of Thursday’s series opener between the Ducks and Patriots shifted to the mound. Long Island and Somerset combined for just four runs and 11 hits, but the Ducks found themselves on the winning side of a 3-1 final score. With the victory, the Ducks earned their third consecutive win overall, fourth straight against the Pats and eighth win in their last 10 games.

Long Island compiled just six hits off of David Harden and the Patriots bullpen, but ultimately, they only needed one. That came in the second inning when Joash Brodin’s two-run home run to right-center field put the Ducks on top 2-0. Brendan Harris added some insurance in the fifth with a RBI single that scored Brodin. After racking up double digit hit totals in five consecutive games, Long Island showed that they didn’t need a ton of offense to earn a victory.

Another big reason for the win was Shaun Garceau, who turned in a strong performance on Thursday night. Despite claiming after the game that only his fastball was effective, the right-hander tossed 121 pitches over seven and one-third innings and allowed only four singles and one run. That run also scored in part because of a couple close calls on the basepaths that went Somerset’s way. Garceau didn’t have his best control, walking five batters during his outing, but he limited the damage and stranded five runners on base. The Ducks bullpen shut the door from there, with Tommy Organ striking out Luis Montanez to leave two runners on the eighth and David Kopp tossing a scoreless ninth.

CLICK HERE to read a full recap from Thursday’s series-opening win, complete with audio highlights and postgame interviews with Kevin Baez, Garceau and Brodin.

The Ducks now lead the season series against their Liberty Division rivals eight games to six and have moved to within four games of the Patriots for first place. A week ago, the Ducks’ chances to win the Second Half Liberty Division title seemed to be slimming by the day. Now, thanks to four wins over the Pats and six wins in seven games overall, the Ducks are very much alive for the division crown in the second half.

Tonight’s game will feature another rematch from last weekend’s series, as Mitch Talbot will take on Matt Zielinski. Talbot fell into a 2-0 hole in the first innings last Sunday, but he rebounded to allow just one run over his final five innings and pick up a quality start. The Ducks offense gave the former big leaguer the victory when they scored four runs in the third, two in the fifth and two more in the eighth. Talbot now has a 3-1 record with a 3.27 ERA in eight games (six starts).

On the other side, Zielinski will be looking to rebound after he was roughed up for six runs (five earned) on nine hits and two walks in five innings last Sunday. The third inning was his toughest, as the Ducks sent nine men to the plate and scored four runs on five hits and an error. With the loss, Zielinski dropped to 8-7 with a 3.59 ERA in 21 games (18 starts) this year, and the southpaw has now lost each of his last three starts. In three games (one start) against Long Island, he is 1-1 with a 5.02 ERA, allowing eight earned runs in 14 and one-third innings of work.

Here are tonight’s game notes:

Ducks vs. Patriots: Tonight marks the 15th meeting of the season between the Ducks and Patriots and eighth of 10 games between them on Long Island. The Ducks lead the series eight to six and have a 5-2 lead at home. Long Island and Somerset have played 279 games against each other all-time, with the Patriots holding a 140-139 lead. However, the Ducks have a 76-67 edge at Bethpage Ballpark.

Go Go Garceau: Shaun Garceau won his fourth consecutive start and 12th overall this season with seven and one-third innings of one-run ball on Thursday night. In his last four starts, the right-hander has a 4-0 record with a 2.49 ERA, allowing seven runs in 25 and one-third innings. During that span, he has given up 22 hits and nine walks while striking out 16. Garceau is now tied with teammate John Brownell for the Atlantic League lead in wins this year and is fourth in innings pitched (135.2).

Starter Success: Ducks starters are now 10-1 with a 2.15 ERA (26 earned runs in 109 innings) after Garceau’s outing on Thursday. In that span, they’ve allowed 94 hits and 24 walks while striking out 67. Dating back to August 2, the starters are 12-2 with a 2.13 ERA, allowing 31 earned runs in 131 innings.

Oh, What a Relief They Are: The Ducks bullpen tossed one and two-thirds innings of scoreless ball on Thursday night. In the last 11 games, Ducks relievers have allowed four runs over 25 innings (1.44 ERA). In that span, they’ve yielded 18 hits and seven walks with 23 strikeouts. Tommy Organ threw a scoreless two-thirds of an inning and now has tossed six and two-thirds shutout innings as a Duck. In his seven games, the southpaw has allowed just five hits and one walk while striking out eight.

Ford’s On Fire: Lew Ford extended his hitting streak to seven straight games with a double on Thursday. During the streak, he’s batting .481 (13-for-27) with six doubles, five RBI and 10 runs. Ford has scored a run in six of the seven games and has reached base safely in 10 of his last 11 games.

Brodin Blasts One: Joash Brodin’s two-run home run in the second inning was his seventh longball of the season. The third-year Duck has gone deep twice in the last five games after hitting a solo homer on August 17. The Ducks have now homered in 14 of the 20 games so far during the month of August. Brodin finished with two hits and two RBI to collect his 28th multi-hit game and 14th multi-RBI contest.

Mitch is Masterful: Mitch Talbot has been superb since moving to the starting rotation. In six starts, he is 2-1 with a 2.70 ERA, allowing nine runs on 26 hits and eight walks with 21 strikeouts in 30 innings.

On the Air: Tonight’s game will be broadcast with live streaming audio on the Ducks official YouTube channel. Fans can follow all the action by CLICKING HERE. The game can also be heard on Long Island’s home for news, traffic and weather, 103.9-FM LI News Radio. Marc Schwartz will call the play-by-play.

Finally, here are tonight’s starting lineups:

Ducks
#24 Fehlandt Lentini – RF
#25 Brendan Harris – 3B
#20 Lew Ford – CF
#6   Bill Hall – DH
#13 Adam Bailey – LF
#2   Cody Puckett – 2B
#14 Brandon Bantz – C
#22 Joash Brodin – 1B
#12 Dan Lyons – SS

#32 Mitch Talbot – RHP

Patriots
#13 Jeff Dominguez – 2B
#5   Ty Wright – LF
#35 Daryle Ward – 1B
#15 Corey Smith – 3B
#2   Luis Montanez – RF
#21 Adam Donachie – DH
#8   Cory Harrilchak – CF
#37 Damaso Espino – C
#12  Edwin Maysonet – SS

#31 Matt Zielinski – LHP

Keep it here for updates throughout the game at Bethpage Ballpark as the Ducks look to win their fourth consecutive game.

UPDATE (7:23): BOT 1: Ducks take the lead on a RBI groudout from Lew Ford! Flock in front 1-0!

UPDATE (7:42): TOP 2: Somerset tie the game at one on a solo home run from Luis Montanez, but Talbot responds to strand the bases loaded.

UPDATE (8:12): BOT 3: Ducks regain the lead! Brendan Harris with a RBI single to score Dan Lyons and provide the Flock with a 2-1 lead!

UPDATE (9:00): TOP 5: Somerset plates six runs (four earned) on five hits and a pair of Ducks errors to take a 7-2 lead.

UPDATE (9:50): BOT 7: Ducks get a run back on a passed ball by Somerset catcher Damaso Espino. Patriots still in front 7-3.

UPDATE (10:25): FINAL: Ducks fall to the Patriots 8-3. Recap to follow shortly.

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Posted on August 22, 2014, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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