Kinston, N.C. (DEWDS) – The Down East Wood Ducks were limited to just one baserunner between the second and eighth innings, while the Mudcats continued to build on their lead late, in a 7-2 loss, Friday.
Carolina (1-1) never trailed in the ballgame, striking first in the second inning against Down East (1-1) starter Tyler Thomas (loss, 0-1). With two outs, Dallas Carroll singled, and Zach Clark walked, setting up Ryan Aguilar for an opposite field two-run double, to give Carolina the 2-0 edge.
Thomas worked four innings, allowing four hits, two runs (both earned), he walked two, and struck out three.
The Wood Ducks did cut the lead in half, in the bottom of the second. Yanio Perez worked a one-out walk, and two batters later Yonny Hernandez also drew a free pass. Eric Jenkins then singled up the middle to bring home Perez and make it 2-1.
After laboring through the first two innings, Carolina starter Nelson Hernandez (win, 1-0) settled in, working five innings, giving up a run on four hits, he walked two, and struck out five.
For the second night in a row, the Mudcats capitalized against the Down East bullpen. After Sal Mendez escaped a bases loaded jam in the fifth inning, he loaded the bases again in the sixth, and allowed a run on a walk to Aguilar, extending the lead to 3-1. The Mudcat first baseman reached base in all four plate appearances in the game. Carolina would add one more run in the seventh against Alex Eubanks, on a sacrifice fly from Mario Feliciano to bring home Tristen Lutz, pushing the advantage to 4-1.
Eubanks stayed on for the eighth, and the Mudcats stuck for three more runs, resulting from back-to-back doubles from Joantgel Segovia and Eddie Silva to push the game out of reach, at 7-1.
The Woodies did get one run back with a two out rally in the eighth, as Bubba Thomson doubled, and Leody Taveras singled him home. Taveras now has six hits and five RBI in his first two games of the season.
Emmanuel Clase picked up two strikeouts in a scoreless ninth for the Wood Ducks, in his first appearance of the season, while Chris Dula finished off the win for the Mudcats.
The teams will play game three of the four game set tomorrow at 6 p.m. when the Wood Ducks send righty A.J. Alexy (0-0, -.--) to the hill to face off with fellow right-hander Noah Zavolas (0-0, -.--) for the Mudcats. The first 1,000 fans through the gates at Grainger Stadium will receive a 2019 Woodies t-shirt, presented by Pepsi. For tickets and more information visit [woodducksbaseball.com]woodducksbaseball.com or call (252) 686-5172.
The game can also be head on the Wood Ducks baseball network, on 960AM The Bull, and [960thebull.com]960thebull.com along with the MiLB First Pitch and TunIn Radio Apps beginning at 5:50 p.m.