Squirrels dump Baysox, 6-1
The Richmond Flying Squirrels (17-18) rolled behind another phenomenal outing from right-hander Chris Heston to a, 6-1, victory over the Bowie Baysox (15-19) in front of a capacity-crowd of 9,560 on Friday night at The Diamond. The Squirrels also celebrated the arrival of the one millionth fan in franchise history to The Diamond.
Heston (3-2) earned his third win of the season over seven innings. He worked around brief early trouble, and allowed just a lone unearned run on the evening. He conceded five hits, walked one and struck out three. Heston has allowed just two earned runs over his last five starts (31.2 IP), lowering his overall ERA to 0.84 with his effort on Friday.
Bowie left-hander Cole McCurry got the Squirrels started in the bottom of the first inning when he walked lead-off hitter Gary Brown. Brown promptly stole second base and advanced to third when Ryan Cavan lined a single into right field. Tommy Joseph bounced into a double play, but Brown scored on the play, giving Richmond their first lead, 1-0.
The Baysox pulled even with an unearned against Richmond right-hander Chris Heston in the third inning. Carlos Rojas opened the inning with an infield-single to third base. Daniel Mayora complicated the issue when he threw wildly past Jose Flores at first base. Rojas wound up at second base with nobody out. He advanced to third on a groundout and tied the game when Jonathan Schoop lined a sacrifice-fly to center field.
The floodgates opened for Richmond against McCurry in the bottom of the third as they broke the game open with five consecutive hits to start the inning. Brown again reached to start trouble, this time on a bunt-single. Cavan followed with a hit-and-run single to right field that moved Brown to third base. Joseph laced a run-scoring single into left field on the first pitch from McCurry, bringing in Brown for a 2-1 lead. Mayora made it four straight singles to load the bases and bring Chris Dominguez to the plate. Dominguez fell behind, but caught a breaking-ball from McCurry and crushed a grand slam to left field. The blow put the Squirrels ahead, 6-1, and marked just the third grand slam in Squirrels’ franchise history. It was the second grand slam as a Squirrel for Dominguez.
McCurry (0-6) did settle in, and retired the final 10 hitters that he faced. However, the damage was done, and he was doomed to the loss over six innings. He was charged with six earned runs on seven hits, walked one and struck out three.
Left-hander Ari Ronick and right-hander Andy Reichard each worked a perfect inning of relief to finish the victory for the Squirrels. Right-hander Robert Hinton fired two scoreless innings of relief in defeat for Bowie.
The four-game series continues with game three at 6:35 PM on Saturday night at The Diamond. Richmond LHP Mike Kickham (1-3, 3.51) will make the start against Bowie RHP Zach Clark (2-2, 4.54). Tickets are available and can be purchased at SquirrelsBaseball.com. Pregame coverage will begin at 6:05 PM on Sports Radio 910 and SportsRadio910.com.