KINSTON, N.C. (DEWDS) – The Wood Ducks got out to a 1-0 lead but were unable to add on in the middle innings, while the bullpen faltered down the stretch, in a 4-2 loss Wednesday, in front of a season-best 2,777 at Grainger Stadium.
Down East (23-10) has now lost back-to-back games, and has scored four runs or fewer in all ten losses this season.
The Woodies got on the board first, in the second inning. Diosbel Arias led off with a single, and came into score three batters later on a Melvin Novoa double, that was the result of a missed popup behind third base.
The Pelicans (12-21) answered quickly. In the top of the third they got a single from Zach Davis, who then stole second, and came into score on a Jimmy Heron single, to tie the game at 1-1.
That was all that Jake Latz would allow in his best outing of the year. He fired five innings, giving up a run on four hits, he walked two, and struck out six.
He was matched by Pelicans righty Paul Richan (win, 3-2), who delivered six innings, allowing just one run on five hits, he struck out eight, and did not walk a batter.
Myrtle Beach took the lead in the sixth against Cole Uvila (loss, 1-1). They led off with back-to-back singles, and later in the frame, Jhonny Bethencourt came through with a sacrifice fly to left, to make it 2-1.
The Pelicans drew two walks in the seventh to force Uvila from the game, and then Peter Fairbanks allowed a single to Tyler Payne, to push the lead to 3-1. The visitors added a run on four more Woodies walks, to increase their advantage to 4-1. Wood Ducks pitching walked a season-high ten in the ballgame.
The Woodies did get a run back in the ninth, as Novoa singled home Ryan Dorow, who walked to begin the frame, but left the tying run stranded on base to end the ballgame.
The Woodies will look to salvage the finale Thursday night at 7 p.m. when they send righty Reid Anderson (2-0, 1.35) to the mound to face off with pelicans right-hander Javier Assad (1-3, 3.38). It’s Thirsty Thursday at Grainger Stadium where fans can purchase Busch Light and Natural Light for just $1, presented by Budweiser. The broadcast will begin at 6:50 p.m. on 960AM The Bull, and online on 960thebull.com as well as the MiLB First Pitch and TuneIn radio apps. For tickets and more information visit woodducksbaseball.com or call (252) 686-5172.