Game 81: Ducks vs. Revolution
In a series which saw each game decided by no more than two runs, the Ducks came up short, dropping Sunday’s rubber match in a 2-1 final. Somerset took the three-game set with the victory as well, winning the middle contest and finale at Bethpage Ballpark. The York Revolution now visit the Duck Pond for a four-game series to close out the homestand.
Sunday’s game was a low-scoring one, highlighted by strong pitching performances from both teams. Somerset starter Lucas Irvine contained Long Island’s strong offense, holding the Ducks to one run on five hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out eight. The Flock’s lone run came in the second on catcher Mike Blanke’s long solo homer to left field that exited Bethpage Ballpark. It was Blanke’s fifth homer of the season. Somerset also got on the board in the top of the second against Ducks starter Darin Downs. Nate Spears hit a RBI single to right field that scored a run. The winning Pats run came in the fourth frame courtesy of Michael Burgess. Somerset’s right fielder hit a solo shot to right field that put the road team on top. Kyler Newby and Jon Hunton combined to hold the Ducks hitless in the final two innings. Hunton also earned his 21st save in a 1-2-3 ninth.
Downs suffered the loss for Long Island in his second start with the team, and is now 0-1. He tossed five innings, allowing both runs on four hits while walking and striking out four. The southpaw threw 45 strikes on 69 pitches. Reliever Bruce Kern looked fantastic in his three innings of relief. The righty allowed just one hit and struck out five without issuing a walk. Blanke finished with two hits, including the homer. Prentice Redman, Blake Davis, and Bryan Sabatella each had one hit apiece.
CLICK HERE to listen to the call of Blanke’s homer
CLICK HERE to watch postgame interviews with Kevin Baez and Darin Downs
CLICK HERE to view Sunday’s box score
Long Island’s ace, John Brownell, will open the team’s series with York on the mound. The righty enters the opener at 7-2 with a 2.91 ERA through 14 starts. In 95 and two-thirds innings, Brownell has allowed 35 runs (31 earned) on 78 hits while walking 23 and striking out 72. He has faced York twice this season, combining to go 1-0 (won his first start of season against the Revs) with three runs (two earned) allowed on eight hits. Number seven is coming off of his best start of the season, a complete game shutout from Clipper Magazine Stadium against the Lancaster Barnstormers on July 15. Brownell allowed four hits, walked two, and struck out five in the stellar performance, a 5-0 Ducks win.
The Revolution, losers of 11 of 16 contests, will send Rommie Lewis to the hill. The lefty comes in at 6-7 with a 3.60 ERA in 15 starts. Lewis has surrendered 42 runs (36 earned) on 94 hits 87 and one-third innings pitched. He has walked 24 and struck out 61, having last faced the Ducks on June 2, a 3-0 Long Island victory. Lewis allowed three runs on four hits in five innings with five walks and strikeouts, taking the loss. He has gone three straight starts of six and one-third innings, with the last one coming on July 16 in Sugar Land. The Revs won 5-1, lifting Lewis to his sixth win. He allowed one unearned run on four hits with one walk and seven strikeouts.
Here are tonight’s game notes:
Ducks vs. Revolution: Tonight marks the 165th all-time meeting between the Ducks and Revolution. The Ducks currently lead the series 84-80 and have a 48-33 edge at Bethpage Ballpark. It also marks the 10th of 16 scheduled games between the two teams in 2015. Long Island leads the season series seven games to two. Eight of the nine games have been decided by three runs or less.
Home Cooking: Despite Sunday’s loss, the Ducks still boast a 29-9 home record this season. Their .763 home winning percentage is the best in the Atlantic League. Somerset ranks second at .682 (30-14). As a team, the Ducks have a .308 batting average and 3.09 ERA at home. Comparatively, they have a .264 batting average and a 3.28 ERA away from Bethpage Ballpark.
Blanke Blasts One: Mike Blanke’s solo home run to left field in the second inning on Sunday was his fifth longball of the year. He became the sixth Duck with five or more homers this season, and three of Blanke’s five home runs have come during the month of July. The Ducks have now gone deep in five consecutive games, hitting eight longballs in that span. In addition, they have hit 17 home runs this month, which is already more than in any other month this season.
Oh, What a Relief He Is: Bruce Kern tossed three scoreless innings of relief after Darin Downs started on Sunday. The right-hander has not allowed a run in his last 10 innings on the mound and has yielded only one run in his last 15 innings. Since the first inning of his start against Somerset on July 5, Kern has given up just six hits and one walk while striking out 16.
Blake’s a Beast: Blake Davis collected another hit on Sunday. The infielder has now picked up at least one hit in five consecutive games and in nine of his last 10 contests overall. In those 10 games, he has a .364 batting average (12-for-33) with two doubles, one triple, two RBI and four runs. In that span, he has raised his season batting average from .167 to .225.
What Can Brown-ell Do For You?: Tonight’s starter, John Brownell, has been dominant in his last three starts. The right-hander has combined to allow just three runs in 22 innings of work, good for a 1.23 ERA. In that span, he has given up 15 hits and five walks while striking out 11 batters. Brownell became the first Duck to throw a complete game this year on Tuesday in a 5-0 win at Lancaster.
On the Air: Today’s game will be broadcast on the Ducks’ official YouTube channel. Live streaming video and audio will be available online by CLICKING HERE. Michael Polak will call the play-by-play. Fans can also follow a pitch-by-pitch account of the game via Pointstreak’s GameLive application by CLICKING HERE.
Finally, here are tonight’s starting lineups:
#44 Bryan Sabatella – RF
#5 Delta Cleary, Jr. – CF
#2 Cody Puckett – 3B
#50 Randy Ruiz – DH
#33 Jon Griffin – 1B
#40 Steve McQuail – LF
#9 Mike Blanke – C
# 6 Carlos Hughes – 2B
#12 Dan Lyons – SS
#7 John Brownell – RHP
#15 Alfredo Patino – 2B
#21 Wilson Valdez – SS
#4 Eric Patterson – RF
#33 Brandon Boggs – LF
#37 Bryan Pounds – 3B
#7 Andres Perez – 1B
#16 Yeicok Calderon – DH
#34 Salvador Paniagua – C
#1 James Simmons – CF
#41 Rommie Lewis – LHP
We’ll have updates for you throughout the game from Bethpage Ballpark as the Ducks and Revolution begin their four-game series! You can also follow the Ducks on Twitter (@LIDucks) for updates all year long!
UPDATE (6:44): TOP 1: John Brownell strikes out the first batter he faces and we are underway from the Duck Pond!
UPDATE (6:45): TOP 1: Eric Patterson’s two-run homer to right-center puts the Revolution on top 2-0.
UPDATE (6:59): BOT 1: Jon Griffin with a RBI single to right scoring Delta Cleary, Jr.! 2-1 Revs lead.
UPDATE (7:06): TOP 2: Andres Perez with a solo HR to left field. 3-1 York.
UPDATE (7:08): TOP 2: Yeicok Calderon follows up with a solo homer of his own to right field. 4-1 Revs.
UPDATE (7:52): BOT 4: Steve McQuail goes DEEP to left-center field! A solo shot, 4-2 York. Fifth homer for McQuail in five starts as a Duck.
UPDATE (8:21): BOT 6: Randy Ruiz…one swing ties it up!!! A two-run BOMB to deep left-center and this is a 4-4 ballgame!
UPDATE (8:46): BOT 7: Dan Lyons sends one out to deep left-center field! A go-ahead solo shot for LI! They lead 5-4! Lyons’ sixth of the season!
UPDATE (9:21): FINAL: Ryan Kussmaul works around a leadoff triple to start the ninth and gets the save! Ducks win 5-4!
Posted on July 20, 2015, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged 2015, Atlantic League, Baseball, Bethpage Ballpark, Darin Downs, Long Island Ducks, Mike Blanke, Somerset Patriots, York Revolution. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.