Lefty Adam Conley is expected to take the hill for the Suns against Mississippi.
By Andrew Green / Jacksonville Suns
Entering tonight trailing the Mobile BayBears by half a game, the Jacksonville Suns look to regain their place at the top as they take on the Mississippi Braves tonight at 7:05 p.m. at Bragan Field.
Tonight gives fans a chance to break out their Halloween costumes and wear them again at the ballpark for Halloween Two Months Early. All fans dressed in their best costumes will be entered in a Suns Halloween costume contest for various prizes. Fans should also be wary of Zombies, as they will be trying to take over the park.
The first 3,000 fans through the gates will also receive a special Suns replica orange and black cap, while it’s also a Steak Me Out To The Ballgame Night at the Baseball Grounds. For only $25.00, you can get a tender eight ounce bacon-wrapped filet mignon, baked potato, sald and non-alcoholic beverage in the Sundowner Lounge, as well as a General Admission ticket. The Bloodmobile will also be at Bragan Field and the Suns encourage all fans to donate blood. The first 25 donors receive two tickets to the game, along with a hot dog and soda voucher and a special Suns gift.
The Suns dropped out of first place last night with their loss to the Braves coupled with the Mobile BayBears’ win over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos last night at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile, Ala. Jacksonville and Mississippi are now a half game back of the BayBears with just three games remaining in regular season play.
Left-hander Adam Conley (11-7, 3.23 ERA) is expected to take the mound for the Suns in search of his 12th win of the year. The southpaw suffered the defeat in his most recent outing on August 25 at Montgomery despite yielding just two earned runs on three hits in 7.2 innings pitched. In his lone outing against the Braves on May 21 at Mississippi, the Washington native earned the win after allowing two earned runs on five hits in six frames of work.
Slated to oppose Conley this evening for the M-Braves in the third game of the series is right-hander Aaron Northcraft (8-8, 3.40 ERA). Northcraft last pitched on August 25 versus Huntsville after relinquishing just three hits while striking out seven in 5.1 innings thrown against the Stars. The 23-year-old faced Jacksonville on May 21 at Trustmark Park and suffered the loss after allowing five earned runs on seven hits in five frames.
Fans can listen to the game on the Suns Baseball Network, with the “Voice of the Suns” Roger Hoover entering his second season as Jacksonville’s Director of Broadcasting. Hoover is assisted by Matt Leland and Andrew Green. Leland and Green will host the UF Health Suns Pregame Show beginning at 6:50 p.m. ET on the Suns Baseball Network.
Below are more notes on tonight’s game, direct from the official Suns game notes compiled by Roger Hoover. The entire game notes for tonight’s contest can be viewed by clicking here.
Brady Named Southern League Post-Season All-Star: The Southern League announced Friday that Suns closer Michael Brady was named to the league’s Post-Season All-Star Team as the circuit’s top relief pitcher. Brady leads the league with 22 saves in 24 opportunities, which ranks three ahead of Montgomery Biscuits right-hander Juan Sandoval’s second place mark of 19. In save situations this year, Brady has accumulated a 0.35 ERA, allowing a lone earned run in 26.0 innings of work in those 24 chances, in addition to recording a 0.73 WHIP. Opposing hitters have also managed just a .185 batting average (17-92) against the 26-year-old in those situations. Overall this season, the California native has posted a 2-2 record and 1.59 ERA (9 ER in 51.0 IP) in 47 appearances for the Suns and has finished a league-high 43 contests, while his 47 outings rank him tied for fourth among all Southern Leaguers.
Half Game Back With Three To Play: Jacksonville’s loss last night, combined with the Mobile BayBears’ victory over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos at Hank Aaron Stadium, means Mobile now leads the South Division second half standings by a half game over the Suns and Braves. If the season were to end with the standings the way they look now, Mississippi would clinch the South Division’s second playoff spot, essentially the Wild Card, since they own a 2.5 game advantage over the Suns in terms of overall record. With Mobile winning the first half, league rules state that should a team win both halves, the team with the next best overall record would make it to the Southern League Postseason. Since 2005, when the Eastern and Western Divisions were realigned into North and South Divisions, the Wild Card has been used three times, including in both divisions in 2010. The Tennessee Smokies and Jacksonville Suns both won each half of their respective divisions that season, with the West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx and Mobile BayBears moving on to the postseason. The Smokies also reached the postseason with the Wild Card in 2007 when the Huntsville Stars won both halves of the North Division.
You Never Forget Your First: C/INF Austin Barnes launched his first homer of his Double-A career in last night’s 3-2 loss to the Mississippi Braves. Prior to joining the Suns on August 6, Barnes blasted four longballs with the High-A Jupiter Hammerheads, with his last one coming in his final game in a Hammerheads uniform on August 5 versus the Lakeland Flying Tigers. The 23-year-old’s single-season career-high for homers in a season is 12, which he achieved last season with the Single-A Greensboro Grasshoppers. In addition, last night marked the first time Barnes started at second base since September 3, 2012 with the Grasshoppers. In 16 games this year for the Suns, the California native has posted a .333 average with a homer and four RBI.
Let’s Make It A Dozen?: Tonight’s Suns starter Adam Conley looks to become the Southern League’s second 12-game winner this season, and would join Mobile RHP Archie Bradley in that category with a victory tonight. The southpaw is currently tied with five other hurlers for second in the league with 11 wins in 2013. That 12th win would mark the first time since 2010 a Suns pitcher has earned that many victories ina season, when both former Suns right-handers Tom Koehler (16-2) and Elih Villanueva (14-4) accomplished that feat. A victory would also give Conley more victories this year than he had in his professional career coming into the 2013 campaign. In his first 28 professional games (26 starts) prior to this year, Conley compiled an 11-5 record.
Suns Spots: Jacksonville Suns pitchers have combined for a 2.93 ERA (78 ER in 240.0 IP) this month, which ranks second in the Southern League…Only Mobile’s 2.37 ERA (70 ER in 239.0 IP) in that span is better…In five games against the Braves this season, INF Chris Gutierrez owns a .467 average (7-15) with two runs, two doubles, a triple and three RBI…Tonight’s starter Adam Conley in his last four starts has received a total of just four runs of support (1 R/game) from the Suns’ offense, including none in each of his last three outings…That’s in comparison to a combined 23 runs scored (5.75 R/game) in his previous four starts from July 14-August 3…Infielders Jaime Pedroza(.389, 7-18 in seven games) and Edward Salcedo (.348, 8-23 in seven games), along with OF Jose Martinez (.368, 7-19 in six games) have each hit above .340 against the Suns this season…Salcedo has launched two homers, while Pedroza and Martinez have each mashed one.
Tonight’s broadcast will air on the Suns Baseball Network’s flagship station 94.1 Classic Rock WSOS-FM, plus the Suns’ mobile app. Click the link below to listen live online.
Listen live to the Suns and Braves August 31, 2013
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