Contreras goes seven, Lockridge earns three hits in losing effort
By: Riverdogs Media
A handful of patient first-inning at-bats weren’t enough for the RiverDogs, as they fell 8-5 in 12 innings for the third straight loss in extra innings to Augusta in front of 5,018 at Joe Riley Park.
A pair of singles in the top of the ninth off of Wellington Diaz brought the tying run across for the GreenJackets, and Augusta regained the lead three innings later on a two-run triple by Ismael Munguia.
The tying run in the ninth was an anomaly in yet another display of dominant late-inning work from the mound for both pitching staffs, as the marker was the one of just two scored in regulation after the first inning. Roansy Contreras, looking to rebound from his disappointing start last Monday, labored through the top of the first frame.
He needed 24 pitches to get the first three outs, and allowed three GreenJackets (22-20) runs to score on a triple, walk, double, groundout and sacrifice fly. Augusta’s first inning lead marked the third time this series that it plated the initial run.
Charleston’s (23-20) hitters didn’t take kindly to Augusta’s early lead, and with the help of a pair of bases-loaded walks, contributing to a total of four first-inning free passes allowed by Jesus Ozoria, the RiverDogs were able to even the contest on an RBI single by Ricky Surum.
Ozoria didn’t last through the first frame, as Augusta manager Carlos Valderrama yanked his starter after he was able to get just the first couple of outs. The start marked the shortest by a pitcher against the RiverDogs this season.
The Augusta relief corps was far from perfect, but Preston White, Ryan Walker and Luis Amaya combined for 8.1 solid innings to hold the RiverDogs off the board for the rest of the game, save for Brandon Lockridge’s 13th double of the season. The knock completed a brief sixth-inning rally, plating Eduardo Torrealba after he singled with one away. Torrealba scored for the 11th consecutive game, and has now earned at least one hit in 10 of those 11 contests, hitting 13-for-38 (.342) in that span.
On the other side, Contreras shrugged off the shaky first inning and completed seven innings for the first time this season, tying his career-high set on July 16 last season with Staten Island. He allowed just one hit in the final six frames, and walked just one against seven strikeouts, also a season-high.
Wellington Diaz relieved Contreras in the eighth inning, and pitched a scoreless eighth inning before allowing Augusta to bring the tying run home in the top of the ninth.
Diaz was brought back out to start the 10th by interim manager Jody Reed, and promptly gave up the go-ahead run on a Munguia single.
Charleston got the run right back in the bottom half, on a double by the red-hot Mickey Gasper, his 11th two-bagger of the season.
The two clubs traded scoreless halves of the 11th inning, before Augusta took the lead for good in the 11th on the triple by Munguia off of Aaron McGarity (2-3, 5.60). A sac fly by Shane Matheny put it out of reach, scoring the eighth GreenJackets run.
The loss marked Charleston’s third straight on the heels of the three-game sweep of the West Virginia Power, as well as the fifth loss the Dogs have suffered in extras overall this year. The 12-inning affair lasted 4 hours and 25 minutes, the longest game of the season for Charleston and the longest since the Dogs played a four hour, 39 minute game at Columbia in 14 innings on September 3, 2016. The defeat marked the fourth of five games in the homestand to go to extra innings with Charleston’s lone victory coming on Wednesday night over West Virginia.
Sunday was a day for the youngsters in attendance, as the kids had a blast at ballpark celebrating the beloved Charlie T. RiverDog’s birthday on the Ashley View Pub’s party space before the festivities on the field kicked off. As part of an MUSC Health Family Sunday, everyone who came out to the game enjoyed free parking, and the kids received free food and ran the bases following the final out.
The RiverDogs look to salvage a game in the series finale Monday night, sending Jio Orozco (3-2, 2.68) to handle the duties on the rubber. looking to continue a masterful stretch of pitching in which he has completed at least six innings in five straight starts. Opposing Orozco will be Keaton Winn (2-2, 3.69), making the start for his club one day later than anticipated after being scratched from his scheduled start Sunday evening.
For those who can’t make it to Riley Park, catch the game on WTMA 1250 AM in the tri-county area, online streaming on the TuneIn Radio app and on MiLB.tv with a subscription. Fans can “Make Fun” with the RiverDogs all season long down at The Joe. Single-game tickets, including options to the Riley Park Club, are available at riverdogs.com/tickets or by contacting the RiverDogs front office at 843-577-3647 (DOGS). A full schedule and list of game times for the 2019 season is available at riverdogs.com.