Tag Archives: Hank Aaron Stadium

BayBears Shut Down Suns

 

David Holmberg and two relievers combined on the Mobile BayBears (Double-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks)1-0 win over the Jacksonville Suns at Hank Aaron Stadium August 2, 2012. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

After scoring 24 runs in their previous two games, the Jacksonville Suns were shutout in the series finale 1-0 by the BayBears on Thursday night at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile.  The Suns have been blanked 10 times this season, three times by Mobile.  Jacksonville suffered a shutout loss for the first time in a month.
 
The BayBears scored the only run of the night in the bottom of the fourth inning against Suns starter Jose Alvarez.  Brent Clevlen led off with a single and went to third on a fly out by Ryan Strieby.  Alfredo Marte then drove in his 61st run of the season with a ground out to short, with Clevlen coasting across the plate.  Marte made his return to the lineup after serving a three game suspension for throwing a punch in a brawl against Mississippi last week.
 
BayBears starter David Holmberg kept the Suns off balance throughout the night, and at one point retired 10 batters in a row.  The BayBears have four shutouts this season, with three of them against the Suns. Trevor Bauer blanked the Suns May 6th, and Chase Anderson turned the trick May 9th as part of the BayBears five-game sweep of the Suns at the Baseball Grounds in the first half.
 
Chris Gutierrez and Shawn Bowman each finished 2-for-4.  Danny Pertusati’s seventh inning double was the only extra-base hit for the Suns.  Jacksonville was 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position, and left 10 men on base during the night.   It was the first game of the series that the Suns were held without a home run.  Jacksonville belted nine homers off of seven different pitchers in the five games.
 
Suns starter Jose Alvarez (4-6) went the distance in the loss.  He allowed just the one run on five hits over eight innings.  It’s the second time this season that Alvarez has tossed eight innings, the last time he earned Pitcher of the Week honors with a 2-0 shutout against Tennessee.  David Holmberg (3-4) scattered five hits and struck out a season-high seven in 6.2 innings of work for the win.  Eury De La Rosa pitched the final two innings to earn his second save of the season.
 
The Suns lost a game in the standings to South-leading Montgomery, falling four games behind the Biscuits.  The stage is now set for a showdown for first place in the South Division with the Biscuits invading Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville for a five-game series starting Friday night.  LHP Graham Taylor (6-8, 4.09) will take the mound for the Suns.  RHP Merrill Kelly (6-1, 3.55) will start his fourth game of the season for the Biscuits. 
 
 

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Suns Even Series With BayBears

 

Danny Pertusati and Kyle Skipworth each hit a home run in the Suns 9-1 win over the Mobile BayBears at Hank Aaron Stadium August 1, 2012. Photo Courtesy: Jacksonville Suns

By Steve Kolbe

The Jacksonville Suns evened their series with the Mobile BayBears at two wins apiece, with a 9-1 win Wednesday night at Hank Aaron Stadium.   The win, combined with Pensacola dropping both games of a doubleheader to Tennessee, has the Suns tied with the Blue Wahoos for second place in the South Division.
 
The Suns took the lead in the top of the second inning against BayBears starter Chase Anderson.  Kyle Skipworth and Kyle Jensen were both hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs.  Jensen was hit on the hand and would later leave the game with Donnie Webb taking his place in the outfield.  With one out in the inning, Danny Pertusati hit his second home run in as many nights to put the Suns up 3-0.  The Suns improved to 41-18 when scoring the first run of the game.  Jacksonville has outscored opponents 114-77 in the first two innings this season.
 
The long ball continued to play a roll for the Suns in the fourth inning, when Kyle Skipworth belted his 14th home run of the season to increase the lead to 4-0.  The Suns have hit nine home runs (against seven different pitchers) in the four games of this series, after hitting just four in the first 15 meetings of the year against the BayBears. 
 
Brent Clevlen accounted for the lone BayBears run with a solo home run in the home half of the fourth inning of off Suns starter Brian Flynn. 
 
With reliever Eric Smith on the mound for the BayBears in the eighth, the Suns batted around to double the lead.  Chris Gutierrez led off with a double, Paul Gran singled, and Kyle Skipworth walked to load the bases.  Donnie Webb cashed in with a double to the gap in left-center, driving in both Gutierrez and Gran to pad the lead to 6-1.  Webb is now 2-for-4 this season with the bases loaded.  Ben Lasater followed with a single to drive in two more runs to make the score 8-1.  The Suns added a run in the ninth when Kyle Skipworth hit a flyball to left field, Wladimir Sutil was unable to make the catch, allowing Gran to score from second base for the 9-1 final.
 
Paul Gran went 2-for-5 and scored two runs.  Ben Lasater  finished with two hits and drove in two runs.  Kyle Skipworth reached base four times and scored three runs.  He hit a home run, was hit by a pitch, walked, and reached on an error.
 
The Suns have won five of their last seven games, and 12 of the last 17.  The BayBears had their first sub-.500 month of the season by finishing 10-18 in July.  Mobile has just three wins in the last 14 games, a stretch that includes a season-high seven game losing streak.  In the series, the BayBears are 7-for-34 with runners in scoring position, and have left the bases loaded four times.
 
Suns lefty Brian Flynn (1-0) allowed one run on three hits over six innings to earn his first win with the Suns.  Two of the three hits he surrendered were infield singles.  Chase Anderson (3-3) gave up four runs on two hits in his five innings of work in the loss.  Anderson, a Southern League All-Star, entered the game with only three home runs allowed in his previous 15 starts, but both of the hits he surrendered to the Suns on Wednesday were home runs.
 
The Suns look to win the series on Thursday with the first pitch scheduled for 8:05 PM from Hank Aaron Stadium.  LHP Jose Alvarez (4-5, 3.95) will take the mound for the Suns.  LHP David Holmberg (2-4, 4.63) will start for the BayBears.

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Suns Split Marathon Doubleheader With BayBears

 

The Suns and BayBears began a double header on July 31st at 6:05PM central time. The final out of game two was recorded August 1st at 1:05AM central time. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

The Jacksonville Suns and Mobile BayBears split a doubleheader at Hank Aaron Stadium, with the BayBears claiming game one in 10 innings 3-2, and the Suns winning the night cap 15-3.  During the twin bill the calendar changed from July to August, with first game starting at 6:06 PM on July 31st, and the final out of game two secured in the books at 1:05 AM August 1st.
 
The Suns took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third inning in game one when Jake Smolinski hit his fourth home run of the season, a solo blast off of BayBears starter Brett Lorin.  Smolinski has hit all four of his home runs in the second half.
 
The BayBears edged in front in the bottom of the fifth against Suns starter Bryan Evans.  Mobile third baseman Matt Davidson doubled to right-center to drive in Chris Owings to tie the score 1-1.  Brent Clevlen then drew a walk and Ryan Strieby reached on a error to load the bases.   David Nick forced in the go-ahead run with a walk to give the BayBears a 2-1 lead.
 
Kyle Skipworth hit a solo home run in the top of the sixth inning off of Mobile reliever Eury De La Rosa to tie the game 2-2.  Skipworth has six home runs and 10 runs batted in over his last 11 games.
 
The game went into extra innings, and the BayBears ended the contest in the tenth inning.  Rossmel Perez and Wladimir Sutil each singled to start the rally against Suns reliever Bobby Bramhall.  Chris Owings then walked to load the bases.  Matt Davidson walked on a full count to force in pitcher Bo Schultz with the winning run in the 3-2 victory.  The Suns have played seven extra-inning games this season(4-3), with all of them on the road.
 
Curt Smith, Ben Lasater, and Jake Smolinski each finished with two hits for the Suns.  Matt Davidson had two hits and drove in two of the BayBears runs in the game.  The BayBears were 1-for-14 with runners in scoring position, and left 16 men on base.
 
Bobby Bramhall (1-2) allowed one run on two hits in the loss.  Suns pitchers combined to walk 11 batters in the game.  Bo Schultz (1-2) pitched the tenth inning for the win.
 
In game two, the Suns started quick and never looked back in the 15-3 win.  Curt Smith and Paul Gran each drove in a run in the first inning to put the Suns up 2-0.  Jacksonville has scored at least one run in the first inning 33 times this season (24-9).
 
Mobile countered in the home half of the first against Suns starting pitcher James Leverton, scoring three times to take a 3-2 lead.  David Nick drove in two runs with a single, and Brent Clevlen drove in a run with an infield hit.  The Suns would go on to score 13 unanswered runs the rest of the night.
 
In the top of the second, after Shawn Bowman was hit by a pitch, Danny Pertusati put the Suns in front to stay with his first Double-A home run.  His blast to left-center gave the Suns a 4-3 lead.  The Suns have hit at least two home runs in the first three games of the series at Hank Aaron Stadium
 
In the fifth inning, Curt Smith hit his eighth home run of the season and Jake Jefferies drove in a run with a single to increase the lead to 7-3.  Smith finished the game with four RBI’s.  Jacksonville exploded for a season-high seven runs in the seventh inning, capped by a three-run home run by Kyle Jensen.
 
Seven different Suns players scored a run in the game, with six players crossing the plate at least twice.  Jake Smolinski, Chris Gutierrez, Curt Smith, Kyle Jensen, and Shawn Bowman each scored two times.  Danny Pertusati scored three runs for Jacksonville.  Seven different Suns drove in at least one run.  Curt Smith drove in four runs, Kyle Jensen drove in three, and Danny Pertusati and Jake Smolinski each had two RBI’s.
 
Game four of the series is Wednesday with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM from Hank Aaron Stadium.  LHP Jose Alvarez (4-5, 3.95) takes the hill for the Suns.  LHP David Holmberg (2-4, 4.63) will start for the BayBears.
 

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Suns And BayBears Postponed

 

Severe weather with heavy rain caused unplayable conditions at Hank Aaron Stadium, forcing the game between the Suns and BayBears to be postponed. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

 By Steve Kolbe

The Jacksonville Suns scheduled game against the Mobile BayBears was postponed due to unsafe playing conditions at Hank Aaron Stadium.  The game has been rescheduled as part of a double header, with the first game of the seven inning twin bill slated to begin Tuesday night at 7:05 p.m. EST.  The second game will start approximately thirty minutes after the conclusion of the first game.
 
Severe weather in the Mobile area brought with it heavy rain and strong winds on Monday afternoon.  A large portion of the left-center field fence at “The Hank” was knocked over onto the warning track, but was repaired prior to the scheduled game time.  The tarp was blown off the infield, with rain being absorbed by the infield dirt, in particular a section by the second base position.  After a long conversation between both managers and Hank Aaron Stadium officials, the field was deemed unsafe for play.
 
RHP Bryan Evans (3-6, 4.15) will start game one for the Suns on Tuesday with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.  LHP James Leverton (2-0, 3.21) will return to the starting rotation for the night cap.  RHP Brett Lorin (3-6, 4.73) will take the mound in the first game for the BayBears.  RHP Gaby Hernandez (0-7, 6.05) gets the call for game two. 

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BayBears Rally To Down Suns

 

Kyle Greene belted a pinch-hit grand slam in the eighth inning for his first home run of the season to lead the BayBears past the Suns 9-3 at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile, Alabama. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

The Mobile BayBears scored nine unanswered runs to defeat the Jacksonville Suns  9-3 on Sunday night at Hank Aaron Stadium.  The BayBears erased a 3-0 deficit to snap a season-high seven game losing streak, and in the process ended the Suns three-game winning streak.  Jacksonville hasn’t won four straight games in three months (April 4th through May 2nd). 
 
Jacksonville took the lead in the second inning against BayBears starter Mike Bolsinger, when Kyle Jensen smashed a towering solo home run to left field to put the Suns up 1-0.  According to Hank Aaron Stadium staff, the home run was the longest hit at “The Hank” this season.  Jensen leads the Suns with 13 round trippers this season. 
 
In the top of the third inning,  after Suns pitcher Matthew Neil drew a walk,  Jake Smolinski hit a two-run home run to increase the lead to 3-0.   Smolinski has hit all three of his home runs in the second half of the season.  Smolinski’a blast ended a stretch in which 10 straight Suns homers had been hit by the trio of Kyle Skipworth, Kyle Jensen, and Donnie Webb.
 
The BayBears put a run on the board in the home half of the third, when Chris Owings connected for a solo home run off of Matthew Neil to cut the Suns lead to 3-1.  Neil tossed six innings allowing just that one run, and was in line for the win to snap his personal six-game losing streak when  the game was put in the hands of the Suns bullpen.
 
Reliever Jordan Conley entered the game for the bottom seventh with a two-run lead, and allowed the first four BayBears batters to reach base.  Ryan Strieby led off with a double, and what followed changed the course of the game.  David Nick hit what appeared to be a routine grounder to second, but the ball took a bad hop and veered severely to the right away from second baseman Alfredo Lopez, with Nick safe with an infield single.    Conley then committed a balk to move the runners to second and third with no outs.  Rossmel Perez singled to drive in Strieby to cut the lead to 3-2, and Dan Kaczrowski followed with a RBI single with Nick crossing the plate to even the score 3-3.  
 
Bobby Bramhall took over for Conley on the mound, and Vladimir Sutil promptly drove in the go-ahead run with a ground out to give the BayBears the lead 4-3.  With Mobile attempting a double-steal, a throwing error by catcher Jake Jefferies allowed a run to score and the BayBears had tacked on another for a 5-3 advantage.  The Suns have blown a three-run leads in a loss just twice this season, both times on the road (May 23rd at Chattanooga and July 29th at Mobile).   
 
In the bottom of the eighth inning  Matt Davidson doubled, Ryan Strieby was hit by a pitch, and David Nick scratched out an infield single to load the bases with no outs.  Bramhall retired the next two batters he faced, but pinch hitter Kyle Greene didn’t allow the Suns to escape the inning, connecting for a two-out grand slam to make the score 9-3.  It was Greene’s first round tripper of the season, and the BayBears fourth grand slam. 
 
After not allowing a grand slam in the first 104 games of the season, the Suns have been nicked for a grand slam in two straight games.  The Baybears won for just the fifth time when trailing after the sixth inning (5-38), while the Suns lost for just the fourth time when leading after six (36-4).
 
The nine runs are the most that the BayBears have scored against the Suns in a game this season.  Mobile has won 11 of 16 games in the season series.  After winning three of the first five games of the year against the BayBears, the Suns have lost 10 of the last 12 meetings.  The Suns are 30-35 against their rivals from the South Division, 9-11 in the second half. 
 
Jake Smolinski, Paul Gran, and Danny Pertusati each finished with two hits for the Suns.  Pitcher Matthew Neil reached base on an error and scored a run.  A Suns starter has reached base in five straight games, and scored a run in three straight.  Every player in the starting lineup for the BayBears had at least one of the 12 hits with Chris Owings, David Nick, and Rossmel Perez each with two. 
 
Neither starter figured in the decision on Sunday night.  Matthew Neil held Mobile to one run on five hits in his six innings of work.  He struck out six without walking a batter.  It’s been a tale of two different season’s for Neil.  He began the year with seven straight wins (6-0 with Jupiter), including a victory in his first Double-A start with the Suns June 6th against Pensacola.  Since June 11th, has made nine starts, and lost six straight decisions.  Jordan Conley (1-3) allowed four runs on four hits in the loss, and didn’t record an out.
 
Mike Bolsinger allowed three runs on five hits over six innings in his ninth start of the season.   Eric Smith (2-0) pitched the seventh inning for Mobile to earn the win.
 
Game two of the series is Monday with the first pitch scheduled for 8:05 p.m. from Hank Aaron Stadium.  RHP Bryan Evans (3-6, 4.15) will start for the Suns.  RHP Brett Lorin (3-6, 4.73) will take the mound for the BayBears.
     

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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BayBears Top Suns 4-1

BayBears left fielder Marc Krauss hits his fourth home run of the season to lead Mobile to 4-1 victory over the Suns. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

 
 
 
By Steve Kolbe
 
The Jacksonville Suns fell to the Mobile BayBears 4-1 in the series finale at Hank Aaron Stadium on Monday afternoon.
 
Mobile scored first in the bottom of the third against starting pitcher Omar Poveda on a sacrifice fly by Marc Krauss to make it 1-0.  In the fourth, the BayBears scored two more to increase the lead to 3-0.  Archie Gilbert and Dan Kaczrowski drove in the runs.  The final run of the day for Mobile came on a solo home run in the fifth inning by Marc Krauss.  It was his fourth homer of the season.
 
The Suns scored their only run in the ninth when Ryan Patterson doubled and was driven in by a double from Chris Gutierrez.
 
BayBears starter Patrick Corbin improved his record to 2-0.  He pitched seven innings allowing just two hits.  Omar Poveda started for the Suns and went five innings, allowing seven hits and four runs.  He’s now 2-1.
 
The Suns and BayBears are once again tied for first place in the South Division.  Jacksonville finished the 10-game road trip with a record of 7-3.  The Pensacola Blue Wahoos are at the Baseball Grounds to begin a five game series starting Wednesday night.

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Suns Top BayBears To Claim First Place

BayBears manager Turner Ward looks on as the Suns score seven runs in the eighth inning in 7-0 win. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

 By Steve Kolbe 

When the day began, Jacksonville and Mobile each had a share of first place in the South Division of the Southern League, by night’s end the Suns were all alone after a 7-0 win at Hank Aaron Stadium.
 
Hits were hard to come by for the first seven innings, with the starting pitchers allowing a combined five hits.  Both Graham Taylor of the Suns and Chase Anderson of the BayBears were in control from the moment they stepped on the mound on Monday night.  Taylor retired the first nine batters he faced in the game, and allowed just two singles in his seven innings.  Anderson was just as tough, surrendering only three singles in his seven innings while striking out 10 Suns batters.
 
Jacksonville broke through in the eighth inning by sending 12 hitters to the plate against relief pitcher Kevin Munson.  After Jose Duarte struck out to lead off the inning, the next six Suns batters would reach base.  Pinch-hitter Donnie Webb walked, Dallas Poulk singled, and Paul Gran was hit by a pitch to load the bases.  With Suns runners all around, Kyle Jensen drove a ball deep into center field for a base-clearing triple to give the Suns a 3-0 lead.  Jensen now has 12 runs batted in this season.  It was Jacksonville’s third triple of the year. 
 
Jensen wasn’t standing around on third for long.  Kyle Skipworth drove him in with a single to make the score 4-0.  Skipworth and Jensen both finished the night 1-for-5.  The rough inning for Mobile pitcher Kevin Munson continued when Curt Smith lined a double into left field, and Skipworth came in to score increasing the lead to 5-0. 
 
The inning wasn’t over.  Chris Gutierrez and Jose Duarte drew walks to load the bases for a second time.  Donnie Webb then walked for the second time in the inning to force in the Suns sixth run.  A batter later, Gutierrez scored on a wild pitch and the Suns had a 7-run inning with seven different players crossing the plate.  Jacksonville scored seven runs on six hits by the time the inning came to an end.  It’s the most runs the Suns have scored in an inning this year.  Their previous big inning was  in the seventh, with five runs against Chattanooga in a 7-6 win April 14th.
 
The shutout was the Suns third of the season.  Jacksonville posted a    2-0 win Opening Night against Huntsville, and a 7-0 win last week in Pensacola.  Three Suns pitchers combined for the three-hitter.  Winning pitcher Graham Taylor is 1-1 on the season.  He allowed just two hits in seven innings, walked three and struck out three.  Kyle Kaminska pitched a perfect eighth, and Garrett Parcell worked the ninth giving up just one hit.  Keith Munson allowed four hits and seven runs in just two-thirds of an inning in the loss and is now 1-2 this season.
 
The Suns 11 wins this month equals their win total from last April, when they finished with an 11-12 record in the first month of the season.  The road trip comes to an end on Tuesday morning when the Suns play the BayBears at 11:35AM at “The Hank”.  Omar Poveda takes the mound for Jacksonville looking to run his record to 3-0.  Lefty Patrick Corbin gets the start for Mobile

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The Suns Win A Close Affair; Share First Place

Jacksonville back on track with a 4-3 victory at Hank Aaron Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

 
A day after the Suns had their five-game winning streak come to an end, a fast start on Sunday afternoon propelled Jacksonville to a 4-3 win in Mobile.  The Suns and BayBears are once again tied for first place in the South Division of the Southern League with identical 10-8 records.
 
Paul Gran tripled off of starting pitcher Derek Eitel to start the game.   It was the second triple of the season for the Suns.  After Ryan Patterson walked, Curt Smith drove in the first run of the game when BayBears third baseman Matt Davidson committed an error allowing Gran to score for a 1-0 Suns lead, with Patterson advancing to third on the miscue.  Kyle Jensen followed with a sacrifice fly to right for his eighth RBI of the season, and Jacksonville led 2-0.  Mobile has been outscored in the first inning this season 14-3. 
 
The BayBears have committed five errors in the series and 23 total in the season’s first 18 games.  During the 2012 season, Mobile had the fewest errors in the league with only 98.
 
Mobile cut the lead in half in the second inning against Suns starter Zach Neal when they loaded the bases with no outs.  BayBears catcher Rossmel Perez grounded into a double play with Brent Clevlen scoring from third to make it 2-1.  It could have been worse, but Neal was able to limit the damage and avoid the big inning. 
 
Jacksonville scored in the third inning, when Curt Smith made it to first safely to avoid hitting into a double play.  Jensen then drove in his second run of the game with a double to left field to increase the Suns lead to 3-1.
 
Mobile cut the lead to 3-2 in the bottom of the fourth when Marc Krauss walked to start the inning, and scored when Archie Gilbert doubled into left-center to drive in his first run of the season.  Krauss reached base in all four of his trips to the plate during the afternoon, finishing with a single and three walks.
 
The Suns scored the eventual game-winning run in the sixth when Jake Jefferies and Chris Gutierrez singled, and Donnie Webb reached base on an error.  With the bases loaded and no outs, pitcher Zach Neal grounded into a double play, with Jefferies scoring to make the score 4-2 Jacksonville.
 
Reliever Josh Schmidt took over for Neal and pitched the seventh.  The BayBears scored their final run of the game in the inning when Gilbert singled, and then stole both second and third.  He now has six stolen bases this season after swiping 26 last year.  Gilbert scored from third on a ground out by Raoul Torrez and Mobile trailed 4-3, but that’s as close as they would get. 
 
Evan Reed pitched the last two innings to earn his fifth save of the season.  He allowed one hit and struck out two.  Mobile did get the tying run aboard in the bottom of the ninth, when Archie Gilbert singled for his third hit of the game.  Knowing that Gilbert already had two stolen bases and that he wanted to get in scoring position, Reed tossed numerous times over to first in an attempt to keep the speedster close.  Reed finally caught Gilbert leaning the wrong way, and picked him off to end the game and give the Suns the 4-3 win.  It was the third base runner that Suns hurlers have picked off on the road trip.  Omar Poveda and Wade Korpi each had a pick off against Pensacola, with Korpi’s coming in the bottom of the twelfth in a game the Suns won in the very next inning.
 
Zach Neal improved his record to 2-1, pitching six innings and allowing six hits and two runs.  He’s allowed only three runs in his first three starts of the season.  Schmidt pitched the seventh, allowing a hit and a run.  Since letting a ninth inning lead slip away in a loss to Huntsville, Reed has now converted his last four save opportunities.
 
Paul Gran finished 1-for-3, scored a run, and stole a base.  Chris Gutierrez went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles.  Curt Smith drove in his sixth run of the season.  The Suns are now 8-1 when they score the first run of the game, the BayBears are 0-5 when they give up the game’s first run.
 
The Suns have won six of the first eight games on the season’s first road trip, and five of those wins have been by a single run.  Game four of the series in Mobile is Monday night at 7:05PM with Graham Taylor scheduled to make his fourth start of the season.  The BayBears counter with Chase Anderson, who will be making just his second start at the double-A level.

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BayBears Stop Suns 8-1

BayBears ace Trevor Bauer improved his record to 4-0 with 8-1 win over the Suns on Saturday night. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

The Jacksonville Suns five-game winning streak came to an end on Saturday night with an 8-1 loss to Mobile at Hank Aaron Stadium.  The BayBears became the first team in the South Division to reach 10 wins this season, and once again are alone in first place with a record of 10-7.  

BayBears starter Trevor Bauer entered the game with a league-best 3-0 record and a 0.57 earned run average.  Suns starter Bryan Evans came into the game looking for his first win of the year.  Bauer, the third overall draft pick in 2011, was sharp throughout the game.  And with his fastball reaching 97 miles per hour, he allowed only four hits in his seven innings of work.  Evans matched Bauer pitch-for-pitch throughout the night, including getting the BayBears to hit into three double plays.  Evans held Mobile  hitless through the first five innings. 

In was in the sixth inning that the BayBears finally broke though against Evans.  Leadoff hitter Trevor Bauer drew a walk on four pitches.  It was the fourth time in the game that Evans walked the leadoff batter in an inning, and this time he couldn’t pitch his way out.  After Bauer advanced to second on a wild pitch, he then scored the game’s first run on a sacrifice fly by Wladimir Sutil to make it 1-0.  Mobile scored four runs in the inning, with the big hit coming of the bat of the Southern League’s top hitter Matt Davidson, who blasted a two-run homer to left-center field.  By the end of the inning Mobile had collected four hits and scored four runs. 

Suns reliever Chris Squires took over for Evans in the sixth, and in his one-and-a-third innings of work allowed two runs on four hits.  The BayBears tacked on two more runs in the seventh, when the first four batters in the inning reached base. Catcher Rossmel Perez led off the inning with his second double of the season.  Pinch hitter Kyle Greene walked, and Raoul Torrez singled to load the bases.  Wladimir Sutil then drove in his second run in as many innings to increase the lead to 5-0.  Brent Clevlen added a run by lifting a sacrifice fly to center, and the Suns trailed 6-0. 

It was more of the same in the home half of the eighth for Mobile hitters, when Alfredo Marte singled off of Suns lefty Wade Korpi to lead off the inning.  That brought Marc Krauss to the plate, and after hitting a long foul ball to right he straightened a pitch out and hit a two-run home run over the right field fence for an 8-0 BayBears lead.  The runs were the first that Korpi has allowed in his last three appearances. 

Trevor Bauer improved to 4-0 with the win.  He pitched seven innings and scattered four hits while striking out eight and walking only two.  The only Suns batter to reach second base was Ryan Patterson, who doubled in the seventh.  In the game, Jacksonville had just four runners in scoring position.  Bryan Evans pitched five-and-a-third innings and lost his first game of the season (0-1).  The BayBears nine hits and their eight runs all came from the sixth inning on.  The Suns were limited to just four hits in the game, and scored their only run in the ninth inning on a sacrifice fly by Ryan Patterson.  It was the first run that Jacksonville has scored in the ninth inning this season. 

Game three of the series is 2:05PM on Sunday afternoon with Zach Neal scheduled to make the start for the Suns.  He’s 1-1 with a 0.69 ERA in his two starts this season.  Neal has allowed only one run in his 13 innings pitched.  Charles Brewer takes the hill for the BayBears looking for his first win of the year.  Brewer has already allowed two home runs in his first three starts this year, after giving up just two home runs all of last season.

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Suns Continue Winning Ways In Mobile

BayBears starter Tyler Skaggs struck out a career-best 12 batters in a loss to the Suns at Hank Aaron Stadium. Photo Courtesy: Mobile BayBears

By Steve Kolbe

With a share of first place on the line, the Jacksonville Suns continued their winning ways on the road, powering past Mobile 5-1 at Hank Aaron Stadium.  Jacksonville has used a five game winning streak to improve to 9-7 and tie the BayBears atop the South Division.  Last April, the longest winning streak the Suns put together was two games, when they finished the first month of the season 11-12.  The Suns had two five game winning streaks all year during 2011, May 23-28 and June 16-23.  They’ve matched that mark already. 

The first meeting of the season between the Suns and BayBears began as a pitcher’s duel, with Jacksonville’s Jose Alvarez and Mobile’s Tyler Skaggs stealing the spotlight.  Alvarez breezed along until the fourth inning, when Brent Clevlen hit his first home run of the season to give the Bay Bears a 1-0 lead.  The BayBears had three hits in the game, and all were off the bat of Clevlen.  He finished 3-for-4 with a single, double, and a homer.  

Jacksonville managed just three hits in the first six innings against Skaggs, who was cruising along allowing just a pair of singles by Shawn Bowman and a double by Kyle Skipworth.  Skaggs tied his career high for strikeouts in a game by fanning 12 of the first 22 Suns batters he faced in the game. 

Everything changed for the Suns in the top of the seventh inning.  With one out, Curt Smith reached base with an infield single.  It appeared that Chris Gutierrez was going to pop out to first baseman Yazy Arbelo, but he dropped the ball for an error and gave Gutierrez another swing.  He made it count, ripping a double into right-center and Smith scored all the way from first to tie the game 1-1.  Jose Duarte put Jacksonville in front 2-1 when his double to left drove in Gutierrez.  Gutierrez has driven in four runs and scored five times in his last four games. 

The rough inning for Skaggs continued when pinch-hitter German Duran came to the plate for just the second time this season, and launched a two-run home run over the left field wall.  It was a towering blast that padded the Suns lead to 4-1.  Mobile entered the game with a team ERA of 3.10, second-best in the league behind the Jackson Generals.  The Suns have scored 30 runs during their five game streak. 

In the eight inning, Shawn Bowman hit his third home run of the season to straight-away center to increase the lead to 5-1.  The Suns have hit 16 home runs this season, most in the league and five more than both Jackson and Mobile.  Bowman and Kyle Skipworth are tied for third in the league with three round trippers each. 

The Suns bullpen was strong once again.  Jose Alvarez went four innings, allowing two hits and one run while striking out four and didn’t factor in the decision.  The losing pitcher was Tyler Skaggs, he pitched six-and-a-third innings and allowed seven hits and four runs.  Kyle Kaminska pitched two innings without allowing a hit and earned his second win of the season.  Wade Korpi pitched the seventh, Garrett Parcell the eighth, and A.J. Ramos the ninth.  Overall, Jacksonville relievers tossed five innings and allowed just one hit.  Jacksonville hurlers struck out eight without walking a batter.  

Shawn Bowman finished the night 3-for-4.  Kyle Skipworth was 2-for-4 with two doubles.  Skipworth is batting .340 in his last seven games in the starting lineup.  He’s hit safely in each game, going 10-for-29.  The win was Jacksonville’s first when they allow their opponent to score first, they were 0-6 entering the game. 

Game two of the series is Saturday night at Hank Aaron Stadium.  The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05PM with Bryan Evans making the start for Jacksonville looking for his first win of the year.  Former first-round draft pick Trevor Bauer takes the mound for the BayBears.  He leads the Southern League with a record of 3-0 and a 0.57 ERA.  Bauer was the third overall pick by the Diamondbacks in the 2011 draft.

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