SALISBURY, MD: The Thursday night matchup between the Augusta GreenJackets (13-18) and Delmarva Shorebirds (13-20) turned into a rollercoaster in the final two innings as the GreenJackets surged from behind to top the Shorebirds by a score of 10-7 for their third straight win.
The GreenJackets were forced to play catch-up for the first time in the series as they fell behind 1-0 in the first inning after a bases-loaded balk.
It remained 1-0 into the fourth until Wednesday’s standout, Connor Blair, tied the game with an RBI double to the wall in left-center to score Brandon Parker and make it a 1-1 game.
But the Shorebirds answered with three runs in the bottom of the frame on a two-run homer Roberto Martinez, followed by a sacrifice fly by Erison Placencia to put Augusta behind 4-1.
In the next inning, the GreenJackets would chip away at the deficit with an opposite-field, solo home run by Eliezel Stevens to pull Augusta within two at 4-2.
That score would stay in place all the way into the eighth until the offense for the GreenJackets broke out in a major way. After two hits and a walk to start the inning, Connor Blair drew a bases-loaded walk to get Augusta one run closer at 4-3. They’d then tie the game on a passed ball that scored Brandol Mezquita as it was now 4-4. With one out, Victor De Hoyos hit a hot grounder to second that he just beat out at first to avoid a double play, plating home the go-ahead run in the process to give the GreenJackets their first lead at 5-4. They’d add on some key insurance runs after that with Eliezel Stevens bringing in two on a misplayed popup in the infield making it a 7-4 game. They’d continue on with a run-producing single by Geraldo Quintero to score Stevens to up the lead to 8-4. Brandol Mezquita would conclude the inning with an infield hit to score Quintero, but a bad throw to first allowed Stephen Paolini to score, giving the GreenJackets a 10-4 advantage.
Delmarva wouldn’t go down without a fight as they manufactured three runs of their own in the bottom of the eighth. With the bases loaded and two outs in a 10-7 game, Mishael Deson hit a long fly to deep-center, by Stephen Paolini made the catch right up against the wall to end the inning with Augusta still up by three.
In the ninth, Tyler Owens finished the job for the GreenJackets by getting through the inning in four batters to close out a 10-7, come-from-behind win for Augusta.
Peyton Williams (2-2) earned the win in relief with Tyler Owens (3) picking up his third save. Carson King (0-1) was the losing pitcher for the Shorebirds.
Another double-digit run-scoring performance by the Augusta offense was highlighted by Eliezel Stevens who went yard in the fifth for his second homer while also collecting three RBIs in the game. Connor Blair drove in two more runs with a double and bases-loaded walk as he went on to reach base four times. Brandol Mezquita, Geraldo Quintero, and Victor De Hoyos each provided RBIs as well.
The GreenJackets will now go for a fourth-straight win and a series victory on Friday night as they send AJ Smith-Shawver to the mound to face Darlin Alcantara for Delmarva with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium.
The tenth homestand of the season for the GreenJackets begins on Tuesday, August 16 against the Charleston RiverDogs (Tampa Bay Rays) with $2 TWOsday and First Responder Tuesday