Squirrels wrap up series sweep of Senators

Richmond Flying SquirrelsAlfred Gutierrez fired six innings of one-run ball and struck out a season-high 10 batters to help the Richmond Flying Squirrels beat the Harrisburg Senators, 7-1, on Sunday at The Diamond.

It was the first series sweep at home this season for Richmond (46-78, 23-34) and the first home series win since April 4-7 against Hartford.

Gutierrez (Win, 8-5) allowed Harrisburg (65-58, 23-30) to score its lone run of the afternoon three pitches into the game. After Andrew Stevenson led off with a single, Luis Garcia doubled to left-center field to give the Senators an early lead. Harrisburg loaded the bases with one out, but Gutierrez struck out back-to-back batters to end the threat.

The Flying Squirrels struck for four runs on two hits against Kevin McGowan (Loss, 1-2) in the bottom of the first. With the bases loaded and zero outs, Joey Bart lofted a sacrifice fly to right field to bring in Bryce Johnson and tie the game. Two batters later, Jalen Miller sent a soft line drive to shallow left field to plate Heliot Ramos. Ryan Howard capped the scoring with a two-out, two-run, automatic double to left-center field.

Richmond added its final three runs in the third. After Peter Maris doubled and Miller bunted for a hit, Zach Houchins belted a three-run homer to left field to put the Flying Squirrels up, 7-1. It was the ninth home run of the season for Houchins, who now leads the Flying Squirrels with 41 RBIs.

Gutierrez retired 17 of the final 18 batters he faced, retiring 15 consecutive batters between the first and sixth innings. He completed six innings for the second time this season, allowing one run on three hits and one walk while throwing just 84 pitches. Gutierrez froze Michael A. Taylor in the sixth innings for his 10th strikeout to become the second Flying Squirrels pitcher to strike out 10 batters in a single game this season and the 30th all-time.

Ryan Zimmerman went 1-for-2 with a single and was hit by a pitch while playing seven innings at first base in a rehab appearance.

The Flying Squirrels begin a three-game series against the Erie SeaWolves on Monday when Ryan Halstead (2-5, 3.51 ERA) starts against Anthony Castro (5-2, 4.34 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. and coverage begins with the Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup at 12:35 p.m. on Sports Radio 910 the Fan and 105.1 FM.

The Flying Squirrels want your help finding some pups a new home on Monday on Dog Adoption Day presented by VCA Animal Hospital. Fans are invited down to the field to walk their dogs around the warning track from 5:45-6:05 p.m. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.

Dogs are admitted free in Funnville every Monday home game. Please request a dog-friendly seating section if accompanied by a pet (Sections 101-103, 203-204 and General Admission first base side).

For tickets or more information, call 804-359-3866 (FUNN), visit SquirrelsBaseball.com/Tickets or stop by the Flying Squirrels box office.

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