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Wednesday, April 17, 2013
WEDNESDAY's STAR: Two Potomac Nationals pitchers combined on a 10-strikeout six-hitter and the visitors broke open Wednesday's Carolina League businessman's special with a three-run fourth inning to defeat the Salem Red Sox 4-2 and claim a three-game sweep.
BIG INNING: Salem starter Henry Owens retired nine of the first 10 batters.
But with two outs in the fourth inning, Jason Martinson, the No. 14-ranked prospect in the Nationals chain according to Baseball America, lined a single to right. Caleb Ramsey followed with the first walk issued by Owens. Then Adrian Sanchez found the gap in left for a two-run double before stealing third. Justin Miller reached on a fielding error by shortstop Nick Natoli as the run scored. Cole Leonida struck out to end the inning with a 3-1 Nationals lead.
"The thing is, you can almost go back and all our losses and we have one inning where we give up multiple runs," Salem manager Billy McMillon said. "Today, we give up three in the fourth and one of them was unearned."
Owens, a 20-year-old 6-foot-6 left-hander who was a 2011 sandwich pick, gave up no more runs or hits and finished with seven strikeouts and two walks while scattering three hits over five innings.
"I've only given up runs this year on innings that I've walked guys," said Owens, Salem's youngest player. "That's the most important, to keep guys off the bases. First guy gets a hit, not many times are you going to give up three hits in a row. I have to focus on that. "
In two prior no-decision starts, Owens had given up two runs in 10 innings.
PITCHING OPPOSITE: Potomac right-handed starter Taylor Jordan was relieved by Tyler Herron in the eighth. Jordan scattered six hits over seven innings, struck out five and walked none. Herron, signed this year as a free agent, picked up there and struck out five of the six batters he faced.
Between the two of them, 110 pitches were thrown.
"First time this early in this league I've seen a guy go seven innings - very impressive outing," McMillon said.
wakeup call: Wednesday's 11 a.m. game was scheduled to start less than 13 hours after Tuesday's 12-inning 3-2 win by the Nats. Tuesday night McMillon reminded his guys of the early game and counseled them to get some sleep. But it's never easy to shut down immediately after quitting time.
"And these are a bunch of 22-year-olds," the manager said.
loose threads: In two of the three losses to Potomac, Salem took an early lead. The Sox were up 1-0 in the first inning Wednesday when Sean Coyle led off with a single and eventually scored on an error. Salem is now 0-5 in games in which it led after one inning. ... This was the first series win for Potomac this year. ... Only former Salem ace Matt Barnes had more 2012 strikeouts (133) in the Red Sox system than Owens did (130) when he was at Greenville.
NEXT UP: Salem visits Lynchburg for four games starting tonight. The Sox send right-hander Kyle Stroup (0-1, 5.00) to pitch against right-hander Mark Pope (0-0, 8.31) in the opener.
Nationals 4, Sox 2
ab r h bi ab r h bi
Burns lf50 0 0Coyle 2b 4 1 1 0
Taylor cf 4 0 0 0F.Sanchez lf3 0 1 0
Dykstra 3b 2 0 0 0Cecchini 3b4 0 0 0
Martinson dh4 1 2 0 Jacobs cf 4 1 1 0
Ramsey rf 3 1 0 0DeLaCruz dh4 0 1 0
A.Sanchez ss4 1 2 2 Garcia 1b 3 0 1 0
Miller 1b 4 0 0 0 Natoli ss 3 0 0 1
Leonida c 4 1 1 1 Johnson rf 3 0 1 0
Norfok 2b 4 0 0 0 Escobar c 3 0 0 0
Totals 34 4 5 3Totals 31 2 6 1
Potomac 000 300 001— 4
Salem 100 000 100— 2
E — Leonida (1, throw), A. Sanchez (2, throw), Natoli 2 (3, fielding, fielding), Cecchini (4, throw). 2B — A. Sanchez (2), Jacobs (4). HR — Leonida (1). SB —A. Sanchez (2), Norfork (2), Coyle (4). CS — F. Sanchez (3).
IP H R ER BB SO
Jordan W, 1-0762005
Herron S, 1 20 0 0 0 5
Owens L, 0-1533227
Scott 31 0 0 1 2
Ogando 11 1 1 0 2
WP — Owens.
Umpires — HP: Miller. 1B: Merzel.
T — 2:42. A — 2, 543.
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