Game 63: Ducks at Skeeters
GAME TIME/LOCATION: 6:05 p.m. CDT at Constellation Field (Sugar Land, Texas)
TONIGHT’S MATCHUP: The Long Island Ducks (32-30) look to make it three consecutive victories in Texas when they battle the Sugar Land Skeeters (26-36) in game three of a seven-game series. Long Island has won four of their past six games, while Sugar Land has lost five consecutive games. Both teams are in third place in their respective division, with the Ducks sitting six games in back of first in the Liberty Division and the Skeeters trailing the Blue Crabs by 10 and a half games in the Freedom Division. The Ducks now lead the season series three games to two over Sugar Land.
YESTERDAY’S RECAP: The Ducks racked up 12 consecutive hits for a second consecutive night and combined that with a quality start from John Brownell to earn a 6-3 win over the Skeeters on Saturday night.
Facing former Duck Bobby Blevins (4-4), the Ducks erupted for three runs in the third inning to take an early lead. Fehlandt Lentini drove in the first run with an RBI double, and two batter later, Lew Ford drove in a pair with a two-run double. Blevins settled in to toss three scoreless innings after that, but the Ducks rallied for a run in the seventh inning. Lentini doubled with two outs, and Anthony Vega followed with a grounder up the third base line. The ball kicked off of Bryan Pounds’ glove for an infield single, and Lentini scored on Pounds’ error to increase Long Island’s lead to 4-0.
Brownell (5-1) dazzled over the first six innings, yielding just two hits and a walk without giving up a run. Sugar Land scratched across a run against him in the seventh when Joel Guzman’s sac fly drove in Pounds. One inning later, Brownell allowed a two-out single to Kevin Ahrens, and Kevin Baez summoned John Lannan to face lefty Travis Scott. Scott drew a walk, setting the stage for Pounds, who drove a two-run triple to right-center field. With the lead now just 4-3, Henry Hirsch came in from the bullpen and struck out Anthony Giansanti to end the threat.
Long Island got their two-run lead back in the ninth against Julio DePaula. Dan Lyons scored from third on a passed ball, and Ford connected for his second double and third RBI of the night, scoring Vega from third. Amalio Diaz came on for the bottom of the ninth and yielded a walk and a single with one out in the frame. However, he induced a ground ball from pinch hitter Lance Zawadzki for a game-ending double play, which was started by an incredible diving stop up the middle from Elmer Reyes.
ON THE MOUND: Matt Larkins (2-6, 5.12 ERA5-) takes the mound in the third game of the series for the Flock. The right-hander is coming off of a tough outing against the Somerset Patriots in game two of Tuesday’s doubleheader. He allowed six runs on nine hits in five innings, walking one while striking out six. Prior to that, the second-year Duck had given up just eight runs over 32 innings in his previous five starts, good for a 2.25 ERA. Larkins has also been terrific on the road this year, compiling a 3.38 ERA in his six games and an even better 2.54 ERA in just his five road starts. The Idaho resident took a no-decision against the Skeeters on May 30 at Bethpage Ballpark, but he pitched well, giving up only one run on four hits and four walks over six innings while striking out six. Long Island won the game in extra innings, 3-2.
The Skeeters will counter with Brett Marshall (5-3, 5.11 ERA) on Sunday evening. The right-hander enters the outing after suffering the loss on Tuesday night in New Britain. He gave up five runs on eight hits and two walks over five and one-third innings and struck out four batters in the 7-4 defeat. Sugar Land has lost each of Marshall’s last two starts, though he turned in a quality start in the first of those two. Tonight will be the third-year Skeeters’ first start of the season against Long Island. In 2016, he went 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA in two starts against the Ducks, yielding eight runs on 10 hits and 11 walks in eight innings of work.
FOLLOW ALONG: Fans can follow all the action for tonight’s game, and every Ducks game in 2017, on the Long Island Ducks Broadcast Network. Streaming HD video and audio via BoxCast will be available on the team’s official Facebook page through Facebook Live, on the Ducks’ official YouTube channel and at LIDucks.com in the Video Center. 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.
#24 Fehlandt Lentini – RF
#5 Delta Cleary Jr. – CF
#20 Lew Ford – LF
#26 Angelo Songco – DH
#23 Alex Burg – C
#15 Jordan Pacheco – 1B
#30 Ruben Gotay – 3B
#6 Giovanny Alfonzo – 2B
#12 Dan Lyons – SS
#44 Matt Larkins – RHP
#7 Josh Prince – 2B
#4 Kevin Ahrens – SS
#16 Travis Scott – 1B
#15 Bryan Pounds – 3B
#21 Anthony Giansanti – RF
#38 Joel Guzman – DH
#36 Hector Olivera – LF
#3 Albert Cordero – C
#6 Derek Miller – CF
#2 Brett Marshall – RHP
UPDATE (6:15): TOP 1: Fehlandt Lentini leads off the game with a triple and scores on a groundout by Lew Ford! Ducks take an early 1-0 lead!
UPDATE (6:26): BOT 1: Skeeters put the first two on, but Matt Larkins retires three straight to keep Sugar Land off the scoreboard!
UPDATE (7:01): BOT 3: After a two-out walk by Kevin Ahrens on a close pitch, Travis Scott drives an RBI double to right-center, tying the game at one.
UPDATE (7:33): END 5: Larkins retires the side in order for the second consecutive inning and has set down seven in a row! Still 1-1 as we go to the sixth.
UPDATE (7:47): BOT 6: Larkins continues dealing, as he strikes out the side! The righty has struck out five tonight!
UPDATE (8:07): BOT 7: Skeeters put runners at the corners with two outs, but Larkins gets Derek Miller to ground out to short! 1-1 as we head to the eighth.
UPDATE (8:28): BOT 8: Patrick Crider and Zac Treece combine for a scoreless eighth inning! We head to the ninth, all tied at one.
UPDATE (8:46): TOP 9: Ducks take the lead! RBI singles from Jordan Pacheco, Giovanny Alfonzo & Lentini put the Flock in front 4-1!
UPDATE (9:04): FINAL: Long Island native Rob Rogers earns his first save of the year, & the Ducks earn their third win in a row, 4-1 over the Skeeters!
Posted on June 25, 2017, in Game Previews and tagged 2017, Amalio Diaz, Atlantic League, Bobby Blevins, Brett Marshall, Constellation Field, Fehlandt Lentini, Henry Hirsch, John Brownell, Lew Ford, Long Island Ducks, Matt Larkins, Sugar Land Skeeters. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.