P-Nats, Dash split Saturday doubleheader

Potomac NationalsAfter rain washed out all five Carolina League games on Friday night, the Potomac Nationals (7-10) and Winston-Salem Dash (8-9) split their doubleheader on Saturday night, while all 10 teams in the league completed a twin bill. Potomac picked up a 6-2 win in game one, while the Dash held on for a 5-2 win in the back half of the doubleheader.

In the opener, the Dash jumped out to an early lead against RHP Malvin Pena (ND). 1B Jameson Fisher drew a two-out walk for the Dash in the first inning, while RF Tyler Frost followed with an RBI double, which made it 1-0 in favor of Winston-Salem. Potomac answered right back against RHP Cristian Castillo (L, 0-2) in the club’s first trip to the plate, as 2B Cole Freeman tallied his first Carolina League home run, a solo blast to left field.

Both teams struck again in the second frame, as the Dash pulled ahead 2-1 on a two-out RBI single from CF Luis Robert, but the P-Nats responded with a three-run home half of the second inning. C Jakson Reetz drew a leadoff walk, while SS David Masters followed with his team-leading fourth home run of the season. Masters’ home run gave Potomac a 3-2 lead and proved to be the difference in the final score. The P-Nats added another in the frame on an RBI single from DH Osvaldo Abreu, as Castillo was charged with four runs on six hits over four innings in the loss.

After four frames from Pena, Potomac turned to RHP Steven Fuentes (W, 1-0), who in turn pitched the final three innings. Fuentes retired the first six batters that he faced, but ran into trouble in an effort to close out the game in the seventh inning. The Dash alternated baserunners with outs through the first five batters of the inning, which brought LF Craig Dedelow to the plate as the potential tying run with the bases loaded, but Fuentes notched his fourth strikeout of the night, which capped Potomac’s 6-2 win.

The back half of the doubleheader saw no scoring through the first three innings, as RHP Lincoln Henzman (ND) worked three perfect innings for the Dash, while RHP Luis Reyes (L, 0-2) didn’t allow a hit over his first three frames.

Things fell apart for Reyes in the Dash’s fourth trip to the plate, as all nine spots in the lineup came to the plate in a five-run inning. Winston-Salem loaded the bases with no outs on a single and consecutive HBP’s, while 3B Tate Blackman grounded into a fielder’s choice out at the plate for the first out of the inning. While Reyes looked like he may have an opportunity to escape without any damage, RF Jordan George thought otherwise, as he notched the Dash’s first grand slam of the season with a home run down the right field line. Winston-Salem added another run and made it 5-0 on an RBI double from Dedelow in the frame.

After Henzman departed for RHP Zach Lewis (W, 2-1), Potomac finally had some offensive success. Freeman singled with one out in the fourth inning, stole second base, and then took third base on a wild pitch. A sacrifice fly from LF Telmito Agustin followed and plated Freeman, which got Potomac on the scoreboard. 1B Aldrem Corredor followed with a solo home run, his second home run of the season, as Potomac cut the deficit to three runs and trailed 5-2 after four innings.

LHP Grant Borne relieved Reyes after four frames and tossed three shutout innings out of the Potomac bullpen, his second consecutive shutout outing of at least three innings. The Potomac offense however failed to plate another run against Lewis, though threatened in the sixth inning. Consecutive two-out walks to Freeman and Agustin brought Corredor to the plate as the potential tying run, and despite a string of nine straight balls, Lewis got Corredor to ground out on a 3-0 offering, which ended the inning. Potomac got the tying run into the on-deck circle against RHP Luis Ledo (SV, 3) in the seventh inning, but never got that man to the plate.

Off of the doubleheader split, Potomac will turn to Sunday afternoon in an effort to split the overall four-game series. RHP Kyle Johnston (0-3, 9.53) is set to start for Potomac. Johnston allowed seven runs over just three innings in his last start on Tuesday night. For the Dash, they’ll look to win the series on the arm of LHP John Parke (1-0, 2.25). Parke tallied a no-decision against Potomac on April 11th, as he allowed two runs over six innings. The left-handed starter has gone at least five innings in each of his first three 2019 starts, and hasn’t been charged with more than two earned runs in any of those outings.

First pitch at Northwest Federal Field on Sunday afternoon is set for 1:05pm. The Potomac broadcast will get underway at 12:50pm with the P-Nats Leadoff Show. You can listen to the Potomac broadcast at potomacnationals.com or on the TuneIn Radio App.



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