Game 113: Ducks vs. Riversharks
Although the Ducks won big in their first game of three against the Riversharks, game two was a different story. The Flock struggled to get timely hits late in the ballgame, leading to a 3-2 loss at Bethpage Ballpark on Saturday night. After putting up 14 runs on 16 hits the night before, the team collected five total in the middle contest. However, the Bluefish also fell on Saturday. Combined with a Patriots win, the Ducks are now tied for first place in the Liberty Division with Somerset, with Bridgeport trailing both squads by two games.
Long Island opened the scoring in the first frame off of Camden starter Jeff Singer. The 21-year-old made his first professional start on Saturday after making seven relief appearances for the ‘Sharks since being signed on July 17 out of college. Sean Burroughs’ RBI single bounced through the hole and into left field to make it 1-0 Ducks. However, following that run, Singer settled in nicely against a tough Ducks offense. Meanwhile, Darin Downs looked great through his first three innings against Camden’s offense. Things got difficult in the fourth inning. Playing small ball, the Riversharks put up a three-spot and all of their runs on a RBI double from Joel Guzman and a long homer to left from Daniel Rockett. The RBI double was set up by Paddy Matera’s well-executed sacrifice bunt. The Ducks would manage one more run in the sixth against Singer before the bats went cold. It was Burroughs again, this time driving in Dan Lyons with a long double to right field. Lyons had doubled down the left field line the at-bat before. But, Singer got the final out of the inning before handing the ball over to his bullpen. Camden’s reliever did not disappoint, holding the Flock hitless in the final three innings. Dan Blewett, T.J. Chism, Rob Bryson, and Matt Gorgen combined to complete the win for the Riversharks.
Downs took the loss as a result of the three-run fourth for the ‘Sharks. He moved to 2-4, but threw seven innings for the second straight start, matching his season-high. Singer earned the win in his first start and is now 1-0. He allowed the two Long Island runs on five hits in six innings. Burroughs finished with the pair of RBI hits, while Lyons, Delta Cleary, Jr., and Nelfi Zapata each had one hit.
CLICK HERE to listen to highlights from the middle contest
CLICK HERE to watch postgame interviews with Kevin Baez and Sean Burroughs
CLICK HERE to view Saturday’s box score
The Ducks will now need a win on Sunday to take the three-game series before crossing the sound for a crucial series with the Bridgeport Bluefish. John Brownell gets the start in the rubber match, entering at 9-3 and looking for double digits in wins this year. The righty will make his 21st start, having thrown 135 and one-third innings for a 3.19 ERA. Long Island’s ace has allowed 54 runs (48 earned) on 112 hits while walking 35 and striking out a league-high 110 batters. After winning his previous two starts, Brownell struggled in Somerset on August 18. Despite allowing six runs (five earned) on six hits in four innings, he took a no decision as the Ducks bailed the starter out with an 8-7 victory.
The last-place Riversharks will try and swipe the set with Bill Murphy on the hill. The southpaw has struggled this season, but is coming off by far his best performance of the season. Murphy is 4-13 with a 5.02 ERA through 22 appearances (21 starts). In 2015, he has tossed 129 innings and allowed 79 runs (72 earned) on 136 hits with 62 walks and 94 strikeouts. Although he has 13 losses, the former Duck went the distance in his previous start against the Lancaster Barnstormers on August 18 in New Jersey. The ‘Sharks won 11-0, while Murphy threw a two-hitter in nine innings with 10 strikeouts. The starter had a season-high in strikeouts and tied a season-low for hits allowed.
Here are tonight’s game notes:
The Faithful Flock: Saturday’s crowd of 7,240 marked the Ducks’ 10th sold out crowd of the season. Long Island has now hosted 649 sold out crowds all-time, an Atlantic League record. Since the inaugural 2000 season, a total of 6,592,905 fans have come through the gates of Bethpage Ballpark, which is also a league record. The Ducks currently lead the Atlantic League in average attendance for 2015 at 5,297 fans per game.
Ducks vs. Riversharks: Tonight marks the 280th all-time meeting between the Ducks and Riversharks. The Ducks currently lead the series 140-139 and have a 70-69 advantage at Bethpage Ballpark. It also marks the 15th of 18 scheduled games between the two in 2015. The Ducks lead the series 10 games to four and have outscored Camden 95-47 overall this season.
Break Out the Bats: Despite Saturday’s loss, the Ducks are still hitting extremely well of late. In their last 11 games, the Ducks have totaled 71 runs and 129 hits. That’s an average of 6.5 runs and 11.7 hits per game. Long Island leads the Atlantic League this season in batting average (.280), hits (1,088) and runs (529).
Dan’s the Man: Dan Lyons picked up a double and two walks on Saturday and has now reached base safely in 28 of his last 29 games dating back to July 23. In that span, he is batting .355 (39-for-110). Lyons has also hit safely in 15 straight games and has scored at least one run in 13 of his last 15 contests. In the 15 games, he is batting .393 (24-for-61) with two homers, 13 RBI and 20 runs scored. The hitting streak is one shy of the longest by a Duck this year, which was accomplished by Randy Ruiz from June 26 to July 16.
Cody’s Crushing It: Cody Puckett added another walk on Saturday to extend his on-base streak to 19 straight games. During the streak, he is batting .321 (25-for-78) with four doubles, one homer, 14 RBI and eight runs. The on-base streak is nine games shy of the longest by a Duck this year. That was accomplished by Lew Ford, who reached base in 28 straight games from June 7 through July 5 before being signed by Tijuana of the Mexican League.
Sean’s Sizzling: On Saturday, Sean Burroughs collected two hits for the sixth time and multiple hits for the seventh time in 13 games since joining the Ducks. The infielder also earned two RBI to account for his fourth multi-RBI game. The former big leaguer has hit safely in 10 of his last 11 games, with multiple hits in seven of his last eight contests. Since joining the Ducks on August 10, Burroughs is batting .382 (21-for-55) with two doubles, one homer, 12 RBI and seven runs.
On the Air: Tonight’s game will be broadcast on the Ducks’ official YouTube channel. Live streaming 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.
Sugar, We’re Going Downs: Darin Downs tossed his third quality start in his last four outings with seven innings of three-run ball on Saturday. In his last four starts, the southpaw is 2-1 with a 3.46 ERA, allowing 10 runs in 26 innings. In that span, he has given up 20 hits and 14 walks while striking out 18 batters.
Finally, here are tonight’s starting lineups:
#27 Anthony Vega – LF
#5 Delta Cleary, Jr. – CF
#12 Dan Lyons – SS
#25 Sean Burroughs – 1B
#2 Cody Puckett – 3B
#9 Mike Blanke – C
#39 Nelfi Zapata – DH
#40 Steve McQuail – RF
#6 Carlos Hughes – 2B
#7 John Brownell – RHP
#2 Michael Rockett – CF
#9 Brandon Chaves – SS
#10 Paddy Matera – 2B
#3 Carlos Guzman – 1B
#27 Joel Guzman – DH
#1 Daniel Rockett – RF
#12 Jose Gil – C
#52 Evan Crawford – LF
#47 Zach MacPhee – 3B
#14 Bill Murphy – LHP
Check back here for updates all game long as the Ducks and Riversharks complete their three-game set at Bethpage Ballpark. You can also follow the Ducks on Twitter (@LIDucks) for updates all year long!
UPDATE (5:20): MID 1: Riversharks lead 1-0 after Carlos Guzman’s RBI single to center. Ducks coming up to bat!
UPDATE (6:11): BOT 3: Ducks take a 5-1 lead! RBI doubles for Dan Lyons, Mike Blanke and a two-run double for Sean Burroughs highlight the inning!
UPDATE (6:40): MID 5: John Brownell works out of a bases loaded jam with one out and doesn’t allow a run! Ducks stay ahead 5-1!
UPDATE (7:58): FINAL: Ducks take the rubber match and series with a 5-1 win on Sunday! Sean Burroughs with three hits and a great outing for John Brownell!
Posted on August 23, 2015, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged 2015, Atlantic League, Baseball, Bethpage Ballpark, Camden Riversharks, Darin Downs, Long Island Ducks, Sean Burroughs. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.