Stellar pitching guides P-Nats to shutout win

Potomac NationalsJust hours after completing the longest game of the season thus far, the Potomac Nationals (26-20) returned to action for the third game of their series against the Winston-Salem Dash (27-23).

After being shutout by the Dash on Friday and defeated in extra innings last night, Potomac got back into the win column on Sunday afternoon, beating the Dash, and the rain, by a final score of 4-0.

Potomac received all the offense that they would need in their first trip to the plate, as CF Blake Perkins led off the frame with a walk and eventually came around to score on an RBI single from 1B Jake Noll.

In a pitcher’s duel between RHP Wil Crowe (W, 6-0) and Winston Salem’s Jimmy Lambert (L, 3-5), the P-Nats’ starter was able to pick up the win, throwing six innings of scoreless baseball while striking out five on the day. The biggest threat to Crowe’s shutout effort came in the top of the fifth inning after Winston-Salem loaded the bases on two singles and a walk with just one out. With the tying run just 90 feet away, Crowe forced SS Yeyson Yrizarri to bounce into a 6-4-3 double play to end the threat and keep the game at 1-0.

The P-Nats immediately supplied some much-needed insurance for RHP Ronald Pena (SV, 1), who entered the game for Crowe in the seventh. In the bottom half of the inning, Potomac scored three runs on just one hit against Lambert. C Jakson Reetz started off the inning by reaching on a throwing error by Yrizarri and scoring all the way from first on an RBI double from SS David Masters.

After Masters advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt from LF Edwin Lora, DH Blake Perkins drove him in on a sacrifice fly to advance the lead to 3-0. 3B Branden Boggetto, who walked after Lora’s sacrifice, scored on an error from Dash C Nate Nolan following a strikeout of 2B Bryan Mejia. Mejia swung and missed on a two-strike offering from Lambert, but took off for first after the ball bounced away from Nolan. The catcher launched the ball into right field, allowing Boggetto to cross home to cap off the three-run inning.

Lambert was lifted before the next batter in favor of RHP Danny Dopico, who completed the final 1.1 innings of the game for Winston-Salem. Lambert was a tough-luck loser in today’s game, allowing only one earned run over 6.2 innings of work.

Pena picked up right where Crowe left off, tossing three innings of shutout baseball to notch his first save of the season. The 2017 Carolina League All-Star had to battle a light rain in the ninth, but still managed to strikeout five batters on the day.

The P-Nats will host Winston-Salem on Memorial Day for the final game of the four-game series. RHP Joan Baez (2-2, 5.08) will take the ball for Potomac. Baez is coming off back-to-back outings in which he has allowed just one run. Tanner Banks (2-2, 3.00), who has picked up a win in each of his last two outings, will make the start for the Dash.

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 or on the TuneIn Radio App.

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