Following six shutout innings from Charleston RiverDogs starter Luis Severino, the Asheville Tourists scored four runs in the seventh and held off a late RiverDogs comeback during a 4-3 Asheville victory on Friday in front of 4,578 fans at Riley Park in South Atlantic League action.
The RiverDogs dropped to 27-27 while the Tourists climbed to 30-23.
Gosuke Katoh produced a 1-0 RiverDogs lead in the bottom of the third inning. Katoh tripled to left field ahead of Tyler Wade, whose sacrifice fly against Johendi Jiminian created a one-run advantage. Katoh also tripled in the fifth but was left at third base in that inning.
Severino was very efficient in his fourth quality start this month. Asheville's Raimel Tapia got a double and a single, but Severino retired the other 17 batters that he faced. Severino struck out five and recorded 52 strikes on 73 pitches in six innings of work.
In the top of the seventh, Asheville came from behind and took a 4-1 lead. Omar Luis walked Zach Osborne and Tapia before both runners moved up on Ryan McMahon's sacrifice bunt. The runners scored during a go-ahead single from Wilfredo Rodriguez that put the Tourists up 2-1. Following a fly out, Ashley Graeter homered to left-center field. Graeter's two-run shot was his fourth home run of the season.
Jiminian protected the lead with a perfect seventh inning to close his start. Jiminian gave up only one run and three hits in seven innings pitched. Following Katoh's second triple, Jiminian set down the last seven batters that he faced.
Charleston sliced the difference to 4-3 during an eighth-inning comeback. Eduardo de Oleo's double led off the frame. Trent Daniel struck out the next two batters until Jose Rosario kept the inning alive with a single. Aaron Judge doubled to score both runners and trim Asheville's lead to one. However, a groundout closed the inning with the potential tying run in scoring position. Tourists closer Dylan Stamey held Charleston scoreless in the ninth to end the game.
Jiminian picked up the victory and has a 6-2 record this season. Luis was charged with the loss, falling to 1-2. Stamey converted his ninth save for Asheville. Severino did not factor in the decisions but now has a streak of 14.0 consecutive scoreless innings pitched in home games.
Titus the Wonder Dog utilized his batboy skills to receive bats during the second inning. The game was followed with a fireworks display. Boys Scouts Night was celebrated at The Joe, which also featured an overnight campout on the field. Entertainment during the campout was provided by the RiverDogs' new video board, including a screening of "The Sandlot."
Game three of this four-game series is set for 6:05 p.m. Saturday. RiverDogs LHP Ian Clarkin (1-2, 3.97 ERA) will start against Tourists RHP Zach Jemiola (4-5, 7.19 ERA).
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