FredNats enjoy warm welcome, but fall short to Shorebirds
Despite the home-field advantage and an early lead, the FredNats dropped their home opener 7-5 to the Delmarva Shorebirds.
The eagerly anticipated matchup marks the first of 60 home games scheduled in Fredericksburg this summer. The FredNats (0-7) and Shorebirds (4-3) play five more times through Sunday, and a total of 36 times this season.
After a moving pregame ceremony that featured appearances by owner Art Silber and Fredericksburg mayor Mary Katherine Greenlaw, the FredNats got off to a strong start on the field. Geraldi Diaz singled for the first hit in the new ballpark, and a few batters later Jake Randa hit a two-run blast into the right field bullpen off Delmarva starter Jake Lyons for the ballpark’s first home run.
Staked to a 3-0 lead, Fredericksburg starter Karlo Seijas turned in a solid performance. The righty went 3.2 innings of one-hit, two-run ball, striking out six. Though Bryan Peña allowed two inherited runners to score, he turned in 2.1 scoreless innings of his own to give the FredNats a 3-2 lead heading to the seventh.
The Shorebirds were given a baserunner in the seventh when Fredericksburg’s Kevin Strohschein committed an error at first base. A wild pitch and a walk followed, and Gunnar Henderson made the FredNats pay with an opposite-field, three-run homer off Jordan Bocko (L, 0-1) to claim the lead. J.D. Mundy capped the big inning two batters later with a solo shot of his own.
Trailing 7-3 heading to the bottom of the ninth, the FredNats mounted a rally against reliever Griffin McLarty (W, 1-0) in his fourth inning of work. A Randa double, Landon Dieterich single and Jake Boone RBI single brought the score to 7-5, but with the tying run at the plate Thomas Girard (S, 1) entered and struck out J.T. Arruda to end the game.
The FredNats continue their series against the Shorebirds on Wednesday as RHP Pedro González faces off against Delmarva’s RHP Brandon Young. First pitch from FredNats Ballpark is scheduled for 7:05, with FredNats On Deck beginning at 6:50 on the FredNats Baseball Network. A video broadcast of every home game is available with a subscription to MiLB.tv.