Game 78: Ducks vs. Patriots
GAME TIME/LOCATION: 6:35 p.m. at Bethpage Ballpark (Central Islip, NY)
TONIGHT’S MATCHUP: The Long Island Ducks (5-2, 45-32) and Somerset Patriots (5-3, 43-35) meet for game two of a three-game series. After dropping the first five games to the Patriots, the Ducks have been victorious in four of the past six. Long Island has posted an 8-2 record to open up the month of July. Over the stretch, the offense has combined for eight home runs and a .294 batting average, while the pitching staff’s ERA is 2.98.
YESTERDAY’S RESULT: Mark Minicozzi and Mike Dowd homered to mount a 6-3 Ducks comeback win over the Patriots.
Long Island jumped out to a 2-0 lead against Will Oliver in the first inning. Dan Lyons’ sacrifice fly and a wild pitch did the damage. In the third, the Patriots evened the score on Eric Farris’ run-scoring single and John Brownell’s wild pitch that scored Mycal Jones. Somerset took a 3-2 lead in the fifth on David Vidal’s two-out run-scoring single.
Mark Minicozzi led off the bottom of the seventh with a game-tying solo home run. Two batters later, Mike Dowd crushed a two-run shot to give the Ducks a 5-3 lead. Long Island added another insurance run in the eighth on Lyons’ sacrifice fly.
Brownell turned in his eighth consecutive quality start, improving to 7-3. The right-hander struck out four over seven innings, giving up three runs on seven hits and two walks. Jeremy McBryde, who pitched one inning of relief, took the loss. Todd Coffey collected his 14th save with a scoreless ninth. Oliver, the Somerset starter, pitched six innings, yielding two runs on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
Delta Cleary Jr. and Minicozzi paced the Ducks with two hits apiece.
ON THE MOUND: Darin Downs is 2-1 with a 2.57 ERA in his past four starts and will face Somerset for the first time since May 20. In that start, the left-hander struck out 11 batters over eight innings, allowing two runs on five hits in a 9-3 Ducks win. The Florida native leads the Atlantic League strikeout category. With 95 Ks entering tonight, he has an eight strikeout lead over Bryan Evans of Lancaster.
Somerset righty Donovan Hand takes the hill against the Ducks for the first time as a starter. Hand faced Long Island over one and two-third innings on May 21. Hand has made six consecutive starts, winning three. In five of his six outings, Hand has allowed one or fewer runs. The most recent trip to the hill, on July 9 versus Lancaster, the Alabama native and former Cincinnati Reds pitcher allowed one run on six hits with two strikeouts and a walk in six innings.
FOLLOW ALONG: Tonight’s game will be broadcast on the Ducks’ flagship radio station, 103.9-FM LI News Radio. Streaming video and audio will be available online by CLICKING HERE. In addition to updates in this post, fans can follow a pitch-by-pitch account of tonight’s game via Pointstreak’s Game Live application by CLICKING HERE.
DUCKS GAME NOTES: For tonight’s full Ducks game notes, please CLICK HERE.
#27 Anthony Vega – LF
#22 Fehlandt Lentini – RF
#5 Delta Cleary Jr. – CF
#2 Cody Puckett – 3B
#12 Dan Lyons – SS
#26 Mark Minicozzi – 1B
#15 Ruben Gotay – 2B
#29 Mike Dowd – C
#21 Mike Blanke – DH
#23 Darin Downs – LHP
#1 Mycal Jones – CF
#91 Aharon Eggleston – LF
#3 Eric Farris – 2B
#8 David Vidal – 3B
#24 Bryan LaHair – 1B
#6 Brian Van Kirk – 1B
#20 Trayvon Robinson – RF
#4 Yovan Gonzalez – C
#14 Luis Mateo – SS
#37 Donovan Hand – RHP
UPDATE (7:10): END 2: The Ducks and Patriots are scoreless. Darin Downs has retired six in a row, Cody Puckett with LI’s lone hit.
UPDATE (7:22): TOP 3: Darin Downs strikes out three in the inning, stranding a runner at second. He’s the first Atlantic League pitcher to 100 Ks this season.
UPDATE (7:51): BOT 4: Cleary Jr. hits his a solo shot and Ruben Gotay clobbers a two-run bomb! The Ducks lead the Patriots 3-0.
UPDATE (8:16): BOT 5: The Ducks take a 5-0 lead over the Patriots as Cleary Jr. and Cody Puckett deliver RBI singles.
UPDATE (8:23): BOT 5: Mark Minicozzi adds a two-run double, driving in Cleary Jr. and Cody Puckett . Long Island leads Somerset 7-0.
UPDATE (8:57): END 7: Long Island has a 7-0 lead over Somerset. Darin Downs: 7 IP, 7K, 5 H, 0 BB, 0 R.
UPDATE (9:17): FINAL: Long Island shuts out Somerset 7-0 behind Darin Downs’ strong seven innings and home runs from Cleary Jr. & Gotay.
Posted on July 16, 2016, in Game Previews and tagged 2016, Atlantic League, Darin Downs, Donovan Hand, Long Island Ducks, Mark Minicozzi, Mike Dowd, Somerset Patriots. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.