By: Kyle Crooks / Jacksonville Suns
The Jacksonville Suns (10-13) will try to salvage the final game of their five-game set against the Chattanooga Lookouts (12-11) with a first pitch slated for 7:15 p.m. ET from AT&T field.
Yesterday’s 14-13 loss featured an offensive explosion between both squads who combined for 27 runs on 30 hits.
Nick Burdi (W, 2-3) earned the victory for Chattanooga out of the bullpen although he would allow go-ahead run in the ninth. Sean Donatello (L, 0-1) (BS, 1) tried to nail down the save in the bottom of the ninth, but instead allowed the game-winning single to Levi Michael. Donatello would surrender two earned runs on three hits while walking two and not striking out a batter.
The Suns would get on the board first after David Adams ripped a RBI single to right field bringing home Viosergy Rosa to leap his squad in front 1-0 in the top of the second. In the third Kenny Wilson (HR, 2) would push Jacksonville out to a 2-0 lead courtesy of his solo home run to center. The Suns were not done, tacking on one more run after Adams lined his second run-scoring base knock to extend the scoreboard advantage to 3-0. Chattanooga got in the scoring column in the last of the third. First a fielding error by Suns first baseman Rosa on a Stuart Turner groundball, a Byron Buxton two-run triple, a Dalton Hicks RBI single, and Miguel Sano’s (HR, 5) second home run of the series, a two-run shot all helped manufacture the six run frame. Chattanooga would now posses a 6-3 lead through three innings at AT&T Field. Jacksonville wouldn’t trail for long when the offense took front and center with two outs in the top of the fourth. With two men on, Matt Juengel would provide a RBI single to bring the Suns deficit to within two runs. Rosa then knotted the score at six, when he mashed a double that brought home a pair of baserunners. Adams finished off the frame putting the Suns back on top after mashing a two RBI double to create a 8-6 cushion over the Lookouts.
This seesaw affair continued with more offense in the bottom the fourth. First a Hicks run producing single brought the Lookouts to within a run. Next man to the plate D.J. Hicks would tie the score at eight apiece, via a sacrifice fly that plated Turner.In the last of the seventh, facing Suns reliever Lay Batista, Adam Walker II (HR, 6) put Chattanooga back in front with a solo blast over the left field wall that gave his team a 9-8 lead.The top of the eighth would see Jacksonville put together a four spot to take the lead. Rosa got it started with a RBI single that tied that tied the score at nine. Next batter Zack Cox provided an encore with a RBI single of his own to put the Suns up 10-9. Carlos Lopez manufactured the big blow when he ripped a two-run double to provide a pair of insurance runs and a 12-8 scoreboard advantage.In the bottom of the frame Chattanooga would tie the score. First Michael’s two-run triple brought his team to within one then Sano’s sac fly bringing in Michael would bring the tally to 12-12 through eight innings.In ninth the Suns would once again take the lead after Austin Nola’s sacrifice fly sent home Wilson from third after is one out triple. Jacksonville now would lead 13-12.Chattanooga would rally working the bases loaded against Suns closer Sean Donatello, and Heiker Meneses would work a walk to knot up the scoring. Bases still full, Michael would end the game with his walk-off single that earned the Lookouts a 14-13 victory.
Jacksonville dropped its third series out of five to start the year, and has dipped to its lowest point below .500 (10-13).
Tonight’s pitching matchup will feature Suns right-hander Kendry Flores, to be opposed by Lookouts righty D.J. Baxendale. Flores has taken a loss in his last three trips to the mound, and in his first year of double-A, he has posted a 1-3 record attached with a 3.57 ERA. In his last outing he lasted 7 and 1/3 innings relinquishing two earned runs on three hits while walking two and striking out a season-high eight batters on 4/29 against Birmingham. The right-hander controls the fourth-best average against (.175) in the Southern League. Baxendale enters tonight’s contest with the league’s second-best earned-run mark (1.07). The former 10th round draft pick out of Arkansas his last time out worked 6 and 1/3 frames against the Tennessee Smokies in which he allowed one run on five hits while walking one and striking out eight for the second time in four starts.
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 7:00 p.m. ET on the Suns Baseball Network.
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.
Matchup: Jacksonville Suns (10-13) @ Chattanooga Lookouts (12-11)
Starters: JAX: RHP Kendry Flores (1-3, 3.57 ERA) vs. CHA: RHP D.J. Baxendale (2-0, 1.07 ERA)
Who’s Hot: David Adams in his last two starts has gone 6-for-9 with four RBI. Kenny Wilson extended his hitting streak to four games, after going 3-for-6 with three runs scored and blasting his second home run of the year. For the series Wilson is 5-for-14 (.396) having scored four runs and tallied three extra base hits. Viosergy Rosa has emerged with the bat going 6-for-16 (.375) in this series, accompanied with five runs scored, two extra base-hits, and three RBI. Zack Cox’s at the plate in this series is 5-for-13 (.385) with a pair of RBI and five runs scored.
Suns Spots: Here’s a note from the official Jacksonville Suns game notes:
-With the 14-13 loss last night the Suns have dropped their third series of the year. After taking their opening series against Jackson, they have lost three of their last four five-game sets. Jacksonville has dipped to its lowest point under .500 (10-13) this year, and have fallen five games back of Mobile in the Southern League South Division standings.