Augusta Free Press

Mejia’s masterpiece leads Squirrels in series finale

Flying Squirrels lefty Adalberto Mejia turned in a Memorial Day masterpiece on Monday as he shutdown Erie (20-30) in a 1-0 Richmond (17-33) win at Jerry Uht Park. Mejia hurled 8 2/3 innings and struck out a career-high 10 batters to earn his second consecutive win. The 22 year-old was one out away from hurling a complete game shutout but Jeff McVaney singled to send Mejia out of the game. Tyler Rogers came on to pick up the final out and earn his fifth save of the season and split the series two games apiece. Richmond concludes the eight game road trip with five wins and returns to The Diamond on Tuesday, May 31st with a Silver Squirrels Night. The full promotional schedule can be found here.

Erie’s Anthony Fernandez worked around trouble in the first inning after a walk and an error put a pair of runners aboard. Fernandez stood strong and struck out Ricky Oropesa and Hunter Cole to keep the game scoreless at the outset. Fernandez held the Squirrels without a hit until Hunter Cole singled with two outs in the fourth.
Mejia (2-1), coming off a seven-inning shutout performance on Tuesday, was even more impressive in his ninth start of the season. The lefty picked up a pair of inning ending double plays to close the second and fourth innings and keep his pitch count low. Mejia needed just 54 pitches to make his way through the first five innings.

Richmond managed to score the only run of the game in the top of the fifth against Fernandez. Myles Schroder opened the inning with a single and stole second base to move intoscoring position. Eliezer Zambrano then delivered a one-out single down theleftfield line to score Schroder.

Fernandez was removed after six innings of work and was hit with the loss in a solid performance. The lefty allowed the one run on three hits with six strikeouts in the effort. Fernandez was replaced by right-handed reliever Jose Valdez in the seventh inning.

Mejia chugged right along and dominated throughout the day. The lefty punched out a career-high ten Erie hitters and hurled 8 2/3 innings to earn his second consecutive win. Mejia picked up two quick outs in the ninth but Jeff McVaney singled to left to end his complete game bid. Tyler Rogers then entered and retired JaCoby Jones to end the game and secure his fifth save of the year.