Despite three base hits and a run batted in from Mike Ford, the Charleston RiverDogs lost an 8-2 decision to the Augusta GreenJackets on Saturday night in front of 6,136 fans at Joe Riley Park.
The RiverDogs have a 3-6 record after their fourth consecutive loss, while the GreenJackets are now 6-4. Augusta has won the first three games of this four-game set at Riley Park.
All eight of Augusta's runs were scored before the RiverDogs scratched the scoreboard. After scoring two in the first inning, the GreenJackets drove in Brandon Bednar from first base on a Devin Harris double in the third that increased the lead to 3-0.
The lead doubled in the fourth on a two-run double by Tyler Ross and a run-scoring groundout from Ryder Jones that built a 6-0 advantage. In the top of the sixth inning, John Polonius and Ross both scored and brought the lead to eight runs.
Charleston added its only scores in the sixth and seventh innings. Tyler Wade had a leadoff walk in the sixth and scored on Ford's double that cut the Augusta advantage to 8-1. A double from John Murphy, coupled with a GreenJackets throwing error, scored Michael O'Neill in the seventh to trim the gap to 8-2.
Ford finished the game 3-of-4, while Murphy had two hits in his third consecutive multi-hit outing. The best RiverDogs effort on the mound came from reliever Philip Walby, who retired all six batters that he faced while striking out three in a row. Walby has yet to allow a baserunner in four innings pitched this season.
Augusta's Carlos Diaz earned the victory and evened his record at 1-1. Charleston's Brady Lail was tagged with the loss and also has a 1-1 record this season.
The finale of this four-game series will be a battle between southpaws as RiverDogs LHP Caleb Smith (1-0, 0.00 ERA) faces GreenJackets LHP Matthew Lujan (1-0, 1.13 ERA). Sunday's game is scheduled to start at 5:05 p.m.
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