Taylor made: Squirrels deal Erie a pair of shutouts
The Flying Squirrels (45-60) handed first place Erie (54-51) a doubleheader, double shutout defeat on Saturday night in front of 8,077 fans at The Diamond. Richmond’s Cory Taylor fell two outs shy of a no-hitter in a 3-0 win in game one, while Matt Lujan guided the Squirrels to a 2-0 victory in game two. The Squirrels have now won three consecutive games and will seek to make if four straight in the homestand finale on Sunday at 12:05 p.m.
Taylor turned in his finest start of the year, limiting the SeaWolves to just one hit over seven innings of work. Taylor (4-8) has faced Erie twice this season and has not allowed a run over 14 combined innings. The righty allowed just one hit – a triple with two outs in the seventh – and struck out five in the victory.
Taylor set the tone for Richmond in game one, retiring the first 16 batters he faced. He punched out a pair of SeaWolves in the first inning and picked up a trio of groundball outs in the second. Taylor needed just seven pitches in the third inning and 31 overall through the first three frames
Erie’s A.J. Ladwig was also sharp over the first three frames. Ladwig spaced out a pair of base hits in the first and third inning, until he fell into trouble in the fourth. Myles Schroder jump started the Richmond offense with a double and scored when K.C. Hobson laced a base hit to right center field. Hobson eventually came around to score after on Brandon Bednar’s single. Bednar made it a 2-0 lead.
Taylor’s dominance continued to be the storyline as the game progressed. The righty needed only five pitches in the fourth inning and 12 more in the fifth.
The SeaWolves finally reached base for the first time with one out in the sixth inning. Taylor walked Wade Hinkle after falling behind in the count, 3-1. He quickly recovered by striking out Logan Watkins to end the inning.
Hunter Cole extended the Squirrels lead to 3-0 in the sixth with a solo blast over the right field wall.
The Squirrels sharp pitching continued into game two on Saturday with Matt Lujan returning from injury to earn the win. Lujan (2-3) lasted five innings, allowing just three hits in the win.
Facing a bullpen start for Erie, the Squirrels gathered a pair of runs in the second inning that held up throughout the contest. Slade Heathcott smacked a double down the right field line to make it a 1-0 game and C.J. Hinojosa added an RBI groundout to go ahead, 2-0.
Erie threatened late and out-hit Richmond 7-3 in the defeat. Spot starter Victor Alcantara suffered the loss, tossing three innings in the defeat.
Right-hander Seth Rosin backup up Lujan with a pair of outs in the sixth and Jarret Martin struck out Christin Stewart to finish the frame. Closer Tyler Cyr loaded the bases in the seventh before recording a fly ball out to end the night. Cyr earned his 13th save of the season, one off the league-lead.