Game 117: Ducks at Blue Crabs

Field

The Ducks’ struggles in Bridgeport continued on Wednesday night, as the Bluefish completed their three-game sweep of the Flock. Long Island fell 6-1 in the finale, amassing three hits as a team after reaching double digits in the first two games of the set. Ducks pitching also had difficulty, as the ‘Fish moved into a tie for first place with the Somerset Patriots. Bridgeport also clinched the 2015 Ferry Cup Series with the win, leading 14-10 with three games to play. Long Island, now one game back of first place, travels to Southern Maryland to begin a four-game series with the Blue Crabs on Thursday.

All of Long Island’s scoring came in the first inning against Bluefish starter David Anderson. The 22-year-old was making his third start with Bridgeport since joining the team a few weeks ago and had never faced the Ducks. After Fehlandt Lentini walked to lead off the game, Sean Burroughs would later pick up one of the team’s three hits on a RBI single to left field. After that, Anderson settled in and allowed just two more hits through six strong innings. Mike Blanke smacked a long double to center in the fourth and Delta Cleary, Jr. reached on an infield single up the first base line in the sixth to account for the other hits. On the mound for the Ducks was Ian Marshall. The righty threw a 1-2-3 first inning and then worked out of a difficult bases loaded jam with a 6-4-3 double play in the second. However, the third inning was when Marshall really began to struggle. In the inning, three batters worked walks with the bases loaded and earned a RBI in the process, including opposing starter David Anderson, who was forced to hit for injured catcher Luis Rodriguez. Rodriguez left the game after the second with an injury. Five batters walked in total during the frame. Andres Rodriguez had a RBI fielder’s choice in the inning, while Marshall allowed another run to score on a wild pitch. All of this made for a five-run third from which the Ducks could not bounce back. Bridgeport’s bullpen held the Ducks hitless in the final three innings, while the ‘Fish tacked on an insurance run in the seventh on Ethan Chapman’s RBI single to seal the 6-1 victory.

Billy Buckner fired two and one-third innings of relief in place of Marshall. Of the seven outs he secured, six of them were strikeouts. Marshall fell to 7-7 with the loss, allowing five runs on three hits with seven walks in two and two-thirds innings. Anderson improved to 2-0 for Bridgeport, allowing one run on three hits in six innings with four strikeouts for the second straight start.

CLICK HERE to listen to Sean Burroughs’ RBI single

CLICK HERE to view Wednesday’s box score

The Flock now begin their four-game set with the Blue Crabs on Thursday night. Darin Downs will be on the mound for the Flock, coming in at 2-4 with a 4.53 ERA through eight starts. In 43 and two-thirds innings, the lefty has allowed 22 runs on 37 hits while walking 22 and striking out 33. Opponents are hitting .246 against the former big leaguer. Downs last started on August 22 at Bethpage Ballpark against the Camden Riversharks, a game the Ducks lost 3-2. Downs took his fourth loss of the season by allowing three runs on six hits in seven innings while walking one and striking out six.

The Blue Crabs, who have already punched their ticket to the postseason by winning the first half in the Freedom Division, will counter with Daryl Thompson. The righty is currently 5-4 with a 3.64 ERA through 12 starts (one complete game). Through 76 and two-thirds innings, Thompson has given up 33 runs (31 earned) on 81 hits. He has walked 21 and struck out 46. Another former big leaguer, Thompson has not faced the Ducks in 2015. His last start came on August 22, a 7-4 win over the Lancaster Barnstormers at Regency Furniture Stadium. The Maryland native picked up the “W” with seven shutout innings.

Here are tonight’s game notes:

Ducks vs. Blue Crabs: Tonight marks the 150th all-time meeting between the Ducks and Blue Crabs. Southern Maryland currently leads the series 77-72 and has a 39-29 advantage at Regency Furniture Stadium. Tonight is also the 13th of 20 scheduled games between the two teams in 2015. The Ducks lead the series 10 to two and have won eight straight games, all at home. They have outscored Southern Maryland 53-37 during the streak and 63-45 this season.

I Can See Cleary Now: Delta Cleary, Jr. connected for a single on Wednesday and has now hit safely in 11 consecutive games. During the streak, the outfielder is batting .467 (21-for-45) with one double, one triple, two RBI and eight runs scored. Cleary, Jr. ranks third on the Ducks with 110 hits, trailing only Cody Puckett (124) and Dan Lyons (120).

Sean’s Sizzling: Sean Burroughs picked up another hit on Wednesday and has now hit safely in 14 of his last 15 games, with multiple hits in 10 of them. Since joining the Ducks, he is batting .400 (28-for-70) with three doubles, one homer, 15 RBI and eight runs scored. The former big leaguer has compiled a .333 batting average (30-for-90) this season at The Ballpark at Harbor Yard.

Beast in the Bullpen: Billy Buckner continued his success out of the bullpen with two and one-third innings of scoreless baseball on Wednesday. He allowed just one hit and two walks while striking out six during the appearance. In seven relief outings with the Ducks, the former big leaguer has given up just two runs (one earned) in 16 innings, good for a 0.56 ERA. He’s yielded nine hits and nine walks in those 16 innings as well while striking out 26 batters.

I’ll Have the Veal: Donnie Veal tossed another scoreless inning of relief on Wednesday. The southpaw has now made 10 consecutive appearances without allowing an earned run. In that span, he has given up just four hits and four walks while striking out 11 batters in eight and one-third innings. The former big leaguer has struck out 23 batters in 16 and one-third innings thus far with the Ducks.

Off to the Races: Anthony Vega stole his 13th base of the year on Wednesday when he swiped second in the seventh inning. The outfielder now has an .867 stolen base percentage this season (13-for-15). As a team, the Ducks have stolen 120 bases in 2015, good for second in the Atlantic League behind Bridgeport (123). However, they lead the league with an .811 stolen base percentage.

On the Air: Tonight’s game will be broadcast on the Ducks’ flagship radio station, 103.9-FM LI News Radio. Live streaming audio will also be available online by CLICKING HERE. Chris Buckley 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:

Ducks

#22 Fehlandt Lentini – RF
#5 Delta Cleary, Jr. – CF
#12 Dan Lyons – SS
#25 Sean Burroughs – 3B
#9 Mike Blanke – DH
#2 Cody Puckett – 2B
#27 Anthony Vega – LF
#39 Nelfi Zapata – C
#40 Steve McQuail – 1B

#23 Darin Downs – LHP

Blue Crabs

#1 Fred Lewis – RF
#7 Grant Zawadzki – 3B
#29 Zach Wilson – 1B
#36 Jovan Rosa – DH
#14 Bryant Nelson – 2B
#6 Jamar Walton – LF
#4 Casey Frawley – SS
#18 Keith Castillo – C
#3 Antone DeJesus – CF

#20 Daryl Thompson – RHP

Keep it here for updates all game long as the Ducks and Blue Crabs kick off their four-game series from The Ballpark at Harbor Yard! You can also follow the Ducks on Twitter (@LIDucks) for updates all year long!

UPDATE (7:22): TOP 1: Ducks strike for two runs and lead 2-0 on RBI singles from Sean Burroughs and Mike Blanke! Darin Downs now warming up on the hill!

UPDATE (8:19): TOP 4: Dan Lyons! A three-run shot to left field and the Ducks take a 5-0 lead! Lyons now with 11 HR and 64 RBI in 2015.

UPDATE (8:37): BOT 4: Southern Maryland posts a pair of runs in the inning to make it 5-2 Ducks.

UPDATE (8:43): TOP 5: Mike Blanke with a solo shot to deep left-center! Ducks go up 6-2! What a shot!

UPDATE (10:03): FINAL: Ducks win 6-3! Amalio Diaz wraps up the win in the ninth!

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Posted on August 27, 2015, in Game Previews, Game Recaps and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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