By: Kyle Crooks / Jacksonville Suns
The Jacksonville Suns (10-18, 39-58) and the Birmingham Barons (19-8, 52-44) will get set to play game four of their series tonight from Bragan Field with a first pitch set for 6:05 p.m. ET.
The Suns have a possible series loss on the line tonight if they were to drop game four of this five game set. A loss would not only drop the Suns to 20 games below .500 on their overall record, but would also provide the club with the their fifth series loss of the second half. This year JAX have won only six of their 20 series played.
Tonight’s pitching matchup will feature Jacksonville right-hander Scott Lyman to be opposed by Birmingham righty Frankie Montas. Lyman enters this start 0-6 alongside a 7.27 ERA in seven starts with the Suns. His last trip to the hill came on 7/19 against Mississippi, in which Lyman would work five and a third frames allowing four runs (all earned) on seven hits while walking two and striking out five in a 87-pitch performance, that saw him take his sixth straight losing decision in 2015 with JAX. He has made one prior start against Birmingham a year ago, and that day the native of California relinquished seven runs (six earned) on eight hits while walking two and striking out three in a losing decision. Prior to his call up to Jacksonville the 25-year old put together a solid first half with the High-A Jupiter Hammerheads earning Florida State League Mid Season All Star honors after posting a 7-1 mark alongside a 1.61 ERA in 11 starts.
Montas will take the ball for Birmingham 3-1 while sporting a 2.31 earned run mark in 16 trips to the hill. The righty would earn a victory in his last start against Pensacola on 7/19, after he twirled five scoreless frames allowing only a pair of hits while fanning eight batters. On 7/20 he earned Southern League Pitcher of the Week honors. The native of the Dominican Republic earned a call up to the parent club White Sox earlier in the month of July but did not make an appearance.
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 5:35 p.m. ET on the Suns Baseball Network.
Sunday is Bark In The Park & Kids Run the Bases! The Baseball Grounds will go to the dogs as all dogs get in for just $2.50! Plus after the game and before the concert all kids can run the bases, courtesy of VyStar Credit Union & 97.9 KISS-FM!
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: Birmingham Barons (19-8, 52-44) @ Jacksonville Suns (10-18, 39-58)
Starters: BIR: RHP Frankie Montas (3-1, 2.31 ERA) vs. JAX: RHP Scott Lyman (0-6, 7.27 ERA)
Who’s Hot: Carlos Lopez has hit safely in 37 of his last 48 games, and during the stretch he has manufactured a .312 average (58-for-186). Sharif Othman has hit safely in 10 of his last 12 games, in which he is 12-for-44 (.273) at the plate. Shortstop J.T. Riddle is batting .368 in his last nine games while producing a hit in eight of his last nine games. Zack Cox generated a 4-for-4 night on last Monday, and finished the Pensacola series 5-for-7 while hitting a blistering hot .440 in his last eight games. Matt Juengel has begun to heat up posting a .364 average in his last nine games accompanied with five RBI.
Suns Spots: Here’s a note from the official Jacksonville Suns game notes:
-Closer Sean Donatello is first in saves (14) in the Southern League. Matt Juengel rests second in home runs (15), third in RBI (56), and total bases (153). Carlos Lopez has tallied 98 hits, which is good for fourth, and he’s tied for fourth in games played (92). Viosergy Rosa sits third in walks generated (51). For relievers, Brian Ellington controls the second-best ratio of fewest baserunners/9IP (9.00), average against (.191), and K/9 ratio (9.45). Starter Austin Brice has the fourth-best K/9 ratio for starters (9.86). Zack Cox controls the fourth-best batting average in the league (.318).