[Via email from the Bowling Green Hot Rods' broadcaster Tom Gauthier.]
Anthony Scelfo homered and drove in two runs on Saturday night but it wasn’t enough to prevent the Hot Rods (16-12, 50-48) from losing to the Hagerstown Suns 6-2 in front of 4,404 fans at Bowling Green Ballpark. The loss gives the Suns the series victory by a 3-1 margin. It also leaves the Hot Rods in third place in the South Atlantic League Southern Division after wins by Asheville and Augusta.
Scelfo struck first in the bottom of the first, two pitches into the game. On an 0-1 count against starter Trevor Holder (W, 2-0), Scelfo lined his lined his fifth home run of the season into the Hagerstown Bullpen for a 1-0 lead. The homer was Scelfo’s third of the series, giving him his fourth RBI.
He added a fifth RBI, second of the night, in the fifth inning. Jeremy Beckham reached on an error, stole second, and advanced to third on a single by Robi Estrada. That’s when Scelfo came to the plate and roped a line drive to deep right, scoring Beckham to drive in another run.
Scelfo’s efforts weren’t enough on this Saturday night, as Hagerstown tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the third inning against Matt Moore. James Keithley struck out to lead off the inning, but reached first base on a wild pitch. He went to second on a single, third on a sacrifice bunt, and then scored on another wild pitch by Moore to tie the game.
An inning later the Suns took the lead for good with a two-out rally against Moore. The left-hander recorded the first two outs of the inning before walking the Nos. 7 and 8 hitters to bring up the nine-man, Robert Jacobsen. The DH made Moore pay, roping a double down the left-field line to score Michael Guerrero for a 2-1 lead.
Moore got out of that inning but would be finished for the night. He went four innings, his shortest outing since he went four against Rome on June 1. He gave up just four hits but walked four, the most since a four-walk game at Charleston on May 26. He finished with three strikeouts, falling to 6-4 on the season.
Once Moore left, the Suns added to their lead with two in the fifth against Tyree Hayes. They added another run in the seventh on back-to-back doubles from Steve Lombardozzi and Derek Norris. In the eight, against Diego Echeverria, another double by Jacobsen capped off the scoring to give the Suns a 6-2 lead.
Bowling Green finished the game with eight hits, including another double by Jason Tweedy. Robi Estrada had a pair of hits as did Mike Sheridan.
The home stand continues on Sunday night as the Hot Rods welcome in the Lake County Captains (Cleveland Indians), a team that will join the Hot Rods in the Midwest League in 2010. RHP Chris Andujar (9-2, 2.41) faces Lake County’s LHP Chris Jones (3-2, 4.98) in the series opener. First pitch is at a special start time of 5:05 PM. Gates open at 3:30 PM for season ticket holders and 4 PM for the general public.
Sunday is IGA Kids Fest featuring games and activities for children throughout the night. Fans will have the chance to walk home with special prizes including a PlayStation 3, Hot Rods suite tickets, and many more. Plus, the first 1,000 kids 12 & under will receive a special back-to-school backpack presented by IGA. For tickets, visit www.bghotrods.com or head to the Hot Rods ticket office at the corner of 8th Avenue and Center Street at Bowling Green Ballpark. You can also follow the game on the radio with Tom Gauthier at 1340 WBGN and www.bghotrods.com. Pre-game coverage begins at 4:50 PM CDT.