Richmond pasts Akron, 8-2
The Richmond Flying Squirrels (62-41) pasted the Akron RubberDucks (57-47), 8-2, on Tuesday night at Canal Park. The win netted the series for the Squirrels as they sent the RubberDucks to a sixth consecutive loss. With the win, the Squirrels gain a 5 ½ game edge in the Western Division and climb to a 10-game cushion for playoff positioning.
The Squirrels erupted against right-hander Will Roberts in the third inning, plating three runs for a 3-0 lead. Myles Schroder started the inning with a single into left-center field. Skyler Stromsmoe followed and put two aboard with a single to right. Tyler Graham bunted the runners up and Matt Duffy knocked in the first run of the night with a ground out. jarrett parker then drilled a two-run home run off the batter’s eye in center field for a 3-0 advantage. Parker victimized his former college teammate – Roberts – for his 10th of the year.
Right-hander Clayton Blackburn made the start for the Squirrels, but returning from the Disabled List, was on a limited pitch-count. He turned in three scoreless innings, allowing four hits. He walked none and struck out two. He was ineligible for the win.
Richmond doubled their lead in the fourth inning. Devin Harris got them started with a one-out single. Tyler LaTorre followed with a single before Schroder launched a three-run home run over the “Tiki Terrace” in right field. Schroder’s third of the year gave the Squirrels a 6-0 advantage.
Roberts walked LaTorre to open the sixth inning, which he would not last through. An out later, Stromsmoe recorded his third single of the night. Roberts was lifted in favor of right-hander Adam Miller. Miller promptly allowed a single to Tyler Graham to load the bases and then uncorked a wild-pitch to score LaTorre. Richmond held a 7-0 lead.
Roberts (10-10) was charged with a season-high seven earned runs on a season-high 12 hits. He walked one, struck out one and was defeated by Richmond for the first time in his career (five starts).
With Blackburn ineligible for the win, right-hander Edwin Quirarte (8-4) claimed a victory for his third straight appearance. He was nearly perfect over three scoreless innings – facing just one over the minimum.
Ricky Oropesa crunched a moon-shot of a home run off Miller in the seventh inning as the Squirrels stretched their lead to 8-0. Oropesa clanked his fourth of the season off the video board in right-center field.
The RubberDucks capped the scoring with a pair of runs against right-hander Jose Casilla in the eighth inning. However, Casilla handled two innings of relief and handed it off to righty Cody Hall for the ninth. Hall worked a scoreless frame to finish the win.
The finale of the three-game series is scheduled for 12:05 p.m. on Tuesday night at Canal Park. Richmond RHP Austin Fleet (7-1, 3.03) will make the start against Akron LHP Shawn Morimando (1-0, 1.50). The Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup begins at 11:35 a.m. on Sports Radio 910 and SportsRadio910.com.