P-Nats shake Blue Rocks

The Potomac Nationals offense put on a show Tuesday night against the Wilmington Blue Rocks, and defeated their Northern Division opponent 11-1.

Much like the 5.9 earthquake shook all of the East Coast earlier in the afternoon, Potomac’s offense shook Wilmington’s starting pitcher,Tyler Sample, in the early innings of the ball game.

It was the Rocks, however, who notched the first run in thetop of the first on an RBI single by John Whittleman.  Unfortunately for Wilmington, that was the only run theyscored the entire game.

The P-Nats responded quickly with two runs of the own in thebottom half of the first.  JeffKobernus led the offense off with a one-out single to left and later stolesecond to put him into scoring position with two outs.  A costly error by Wilmington’s firstbaseman on Steven Souza’s ground ball scored Kobernus from second, which tiedthe game at one.  Sandy Leonknocked Souza in a few pitches later on a single up the middle.

The very next inning, the scoring continued for theNationals and the errors continued for the Blue Rocks.  After a leadoff walk by Jose Lozada anda single by Sean Nicol, Eury Perez laid down a sacrifice bunt that Sample wasunable to field properly and was charged with an error.  Two batters later, Kobernus smashed asingle up the middle and scored two runs.

After a double steal by Perez and Kobernus, the Rocksdefense failed their pitcher again. Destin Hood grounded a ball to the third baseman, Whittleman who bobbledthe ball, which allowed Perez to score and Hood to reach first safely.  Hood then advanced to second on anerrant throw by the first baseman and men were left on second and third.  Steven Souza knocked in the fourth andfinal run of the inning on a sacrifice fly.  After two innings, Potomac’s offense had six runs and theRocks defense had four errors.

Three more P-Nats runs came across in the fourth inningthanks to two bases loaded walks and an RBI single by Sandy Leon.  Another two insurance runs were platedin the eighth on a two-run double by Francisco Soriano which finalized thescore at 11-1.

Soriano, Kobernus, Souza and Leon all had two RBIs on thenight and Kobernus led the offense with a four-for-six performance with threeruns.  Kobernus also swiped twobags on the night which increased his league-leading total to 48.

Potomac’s starting pitcher, Sammy Solis, had a solid secondstart after being activated from the DL with four innings of work, four hits,one earned run, and six strikeouts. It was reliever Neil Holland (3-0) who was credited for the win, though,for his three innings of scoreless relief.  Rocks starter Sample received the loss (7-12).

The three-game series between the two clubs resumes tomorrow at 7:05 p.m.

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