The Will call on Thursday’s Hoppers-Crawdads contest

from Will Cornelius Hoppers’ media:

Crawdads End Hoppers’ Streak With Offensive Outburst

GREENSBORO, NC — The Grasshoppers’ snapped their two-game winning streak Thursday night, as the visiting Hickory Crawdads tagged the Hoppers’ staff early and often to take game three by a score of 9-4.

The Hoppers’, who had previously won five straight against the Crawdads, struggled mightily in the opening frame. Starter Kyle Kaminska (7-7) retired the first batter he faced, but allowed two straight singles before an error in the field helped runners to second and third with just one out.

The Crawdads pieced together one single and a pair of doubles next, bringing home three runs to hang a five spot on Kaminska and the Hoppers to begin the game.

The Hoppers’ righty would churn out a scoreless inning in the second, and get some offensive support in the bottom of the inning, as right fielder Justin Bass worked a lead off walk and moved into scoring position after a balk.

Daniel Pertusati picked up the RBI in the next at-bat, serving a line drive into right field to bring home Bass and cut the Hickory lead to four.

But the Hickory offense was clicking on all cylinders tonight, and continued to rain down hits on Kaminska. The Crawdads added one run in the third inning, followed by two more in the fourth. The Hoppers’ righty made his exit following the two-run fourth, and left the contest having allowed eight runs on nine hits.

Kaminska’s counterpart, Crawdad’s righty Wilmer Font (7-2), took care of business on his side of the ball, surrendering just two runs despite seven total hits. Font tossed three scoreless over his five innings of work, and fanned four before yielding to the Hickory bullpen.

Lefty Yoon-Hee Nam was the first to get the call out of the visitors’ bullpen, and was immediately welcomed by Justin Jacobs, who crushed his 9th homer of the season over the wall in left field.

Nam did, however, retire the side in order after the blast, and later churned out a scoreless seventh inning. Corey Ragsdale, next in line out of the bullpen for the Crawdads, ran into control problems in the eighth, but escaped unharmed despite issuing two free passes.

Fabio Castillo came on for Hickory in the final frame, but didn’t fare as well as Ragsdale did in his scoreless seventh. Ben Lasater, already with two hits on the day, belted his 15th homer of the season off Castillo to cut the lead to five runs.

Lasater led all hitters with his three-hit night, and scored two runs to pace the Hoppers from the clean up spot. The Grasshoppers managed 10 hits on the night, but still fell short in pursuit of their third straight win, falling to Hickory for the first time this series.

The Grasshoppers (50-59) will continue the current series tomorrow when they host the Crawdads in the finale. With a win in tomorrow’s contest, the Hoppers will take the series three games to one, a feat they have yet to accomplish in the second half.

First pitch of the finale is scheduled for 7:05 p.m., with fireworks to immediately follow the conclusion of the game.

Will Cornelius
Media Relations, Intern
Greensboro Grasshoppers Baseball