By: Kyle Crooks / Jacksonville Suns
JACKSONVILLE Fla. – Today the Jacksonville Suns (9-9) will play the series finale against the Birmingham Barons (8-10) and the 20th and final game of an historic April home stretch with a 1:05 p.m. ET first pitch from Bragan Field.
Jacksonville earned a series victory last night in their 6-5 win, but look to climb back above .500 once again with a victory today.
In last night’s contest the scoring began in the bottom of the first for the Suns after a pair of walks to start the inning, would soon be followed by Matt Juengel’s RBI fielder’s choice, then by Ryan Rieger’s two-run double, leaping Jacksonville to a 3-0 scoreboard advantage.Moving to the second Birmingham crept closer with a solo run driven in courtesy of a Danny Hayes RBI double to get his team on the board now trailing 3-1.In the third frame Jacob May provided a lead off double to set the table for Tim Anderson, who promptly laced a run-scoring single to set the score at 3-2 through three frames.Birmingham tacked on another run in the fourth after Christian Marrero (HR, 2) blasted his second home run of the year on the first pitch he saw to tie the score at three apiece. The Suns quickly regained the lead in the last of the fourth courtesy of Austin Nola’s sac fly that sent home Carlos Lopez from third. The Suns now lead 4-3 through four innings. The fifth saw Juengel (HR, 4) blast his fourth home run with two outs to double up Jacksonville’s lead to 5-3.The Suns two-run lead would only last until the sixth. Marcus Lemon’s two-run triple, brought home both Jeremy Farrell and Joey DiMichele who each reached after a pair of two-out singles. The game was now knotted at five.Jacksonville maneuvered back on top when David Adams lined a go-ahead RBI single off of Barons reliever Kyle Hansen that plated Juengel to finish the scoring at 6-5.
Suns starter Chipper Smith lasted 6 and 2/3 innings allowing five runs (all earned) on six hits while walking a batter and striking out five in his no decision.
Today’s pitching matchup will feature right-hander Kendry Flores taking the mound for Jacksonville, and he’ll be opposed by Birmingham righty Tyler Danish. Flores in his last start lasted 5 and 1/3 innings allowing three runs (all earned) on five hits while walking two and striking out four on 4/22 against Biloxi. The Suns right-hander has taken a loss in his last two trips to the mound against Montgomery and Biloxi, in which he surrendered a combined nine runs over 9 and 1/3 innings that ballooned his earned-run mark to 4.11. Flores’ last win came in his opening start against Jackson in which he lasted a strong five innings surrendering only one earned on two hits. The Barons will send righty Tyler Danish to the hill. Danish is coming of a no decision against Pensacola after tossing a strong six scoreless innings in which he allowed only three hits while walking two and striking out seven. He would pick up victories in his first two starts against Mobile and Chattanooga working a combined 10 innings relinquishing six earned runs on 14 hits while walking three and striking out nine. The second-round pick of the White Sox in 2013 is the 7th best prospect within the organization according to Baseball America.
Today features a Businessperson Special and Baseball in the SUNShine! Get a Homeplate Box seat, Large Hot Dog and Large Beverage of Choice for just $15.50, sponsored by 1010XL!
The 2015 season of Suns baseball is presented by EverBank, the official banking partner of the Jacksonville Suns. Sponsorships, group outings, and season/individual game tickets are currently available by calling the Suns front office at (904) 358-2846.
Fans can listen to the game live on the Suns Baseball Network, with Roger Hoover providing play by play. Roger Hoover and Kyle Crooks will host the Memorial Hospital Suns Pre-Game Show, beginning at 12: 50 p.m. ET on the Suns Baseball Network.
Matchup: Birmingham Barons (8-10) @ Jacksonville Suns (9-9)
Starters: BIR: RHP Tyler Danish (2-0, 3.38 ERA) vs. JAX: RHP Kendry Flores (1-2, 4.11 ERA)
Who’s Hot: Matt Juengel finished 2-for-4 last night with a home run, three runs scored, and two RBI. Juengel now has five multi-hit games this season and four contests with multiple RBI.
Suns Spots: Here’s a note from the official Jacksonville Suns game notes:
-Matt Juengel currently is tied for first in total games played (19), knotted in second in total bases (37), and third in total at-bats (73) in the Southern League. After Sean Donatello nailed down his fifth save in five tries last night he is slotted as second in saves (5).