By: Kyle Crooks / Jacksonville Suns
The Jacksonville Suns (10-14) get set to start a five-game set against the Mobile BayBears (15-9) with a first pitch slated for 7:35 p.m. ET Tuesday night from Hank Aaron Stadium.
This series will end a 10-game road trip for Jacksonville before heading back to Bragan Field on May 11th to face the Pensacola Blue Wahoos.
The Suns are losers of four-straight games while facing back-to-back walk off defeats to the Chattanooga Lookouts. In the series, Twins top prospect Byron Buxton finished 11-for-23 (.478) with seven extra base hits, six RBI, eight runs scored, and a pair of stolen bases. For Jacksonville, David Adams was impressive at the plate finishing the five-game set 7-for-14 with four RBI.
Zack Jones (W, 1-0) earned the victory out of the bullpen for Chattanooga tossing a scoreless ninth relinquishing two hits while striking out a pair of batters. Casey McCarthy (L, 0-1) took the loss for Jacksonville after entering in the ninth and allowing the game-winning home run to Buxton. After eight scoreless innings at AT&T field, Carlos Paulino would start out the ninth frame with a walk for Chattanooga to then be moved into scoring position via a sac bunt by Heiker Maneses. Then Buxton (HR, 3) stepped to the plate against Suns reliever Casey McCarthy, who would relinquish the walk-off two-run home run to clinch Chattanooga’s 2-0 victory. Kendry Flores provided his strongest outing of the year tossing eight scoreless frames surrendering only one hit while walking a batter and striking out five in a no decision. Lookouts starter D.J. Baxendale worked 6 and 1/3 scoreless innings allowing three hits while walking four and striking out six in his start for the Lookouts.
Suns Manager David Berg in his appearance on “Suns Last Call” on the Suns Baseball Network, emphasized heading into the series opener with Mobile that “it’s a new series, new team, and they’re not going to be facing the best player in baseball,” (reference to Buxton).
Tonight’s pitching matchup will see Jacksonville’s right-hander Austin Brice to be opposed by Mobile righty Brandon Sinnery. Brice comes into tonight 0-2 with a 6.48 ERA having earned a no decision on 4/30 against Chattanooga. The right-hander tossed four strong innings allowing one run on four hits while walking two and striking out six. Sinnery in his last start worked 5 and 2/3 frames allowing one run on eight hits while walking a pair and fanning three batters, in his second winning decision of the year in a matchup with Biloxi. The right-hander has the sixth-best earned run mark (1.61) in the Southern League. His contract with the Lincoln Saltdogs of the American Association was purchased by the Arizona Diamondbacks back in 2013. This is the first taste of double-A for the native of New Jersey.
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 7:20 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 (10-14) @ Mobile BayBears (15-9)
Starters: JAX: RHP Austin Brice (0-2, 6.48 ERA) vs. MOB: RHP Brandon Sinnery (2-1, 1.61 ERA)
Who’s Hot: David Adams finished the Chattanooga series 7-for-14 (.500) with four RBI. Sharif Othman is riding a six-game hit streak into tonight while Ryan Rieger possesses a five-game hit streak.
Suns Spots: Here’s a note from the official Jacksonville Suns game notes:
-Matt Juengel currently is first in total games played (25), second in at-bats (97), and fourth in total bases (45). Starter Kendry Flores is first in batting average against (.146) and WHIP (0.75) while closer Sean Donatello is tied for first in saves (6). Lay Batista has manufactured the league’s fourth-best average against (0.97) for relievers.