The Game: The Charlotte Stone Crabs dropped the regular season finale to the Sarasota Reds 4-0 on Sunday evening at Charlotte Sports Park. With the loss, the Stone Crabs finished their inaugural season with an overall record of 71-66 and are headed to the playoffs. The Sarasota Reds also had a milestone of their own as they ended their franchise affiliation with Sarasota and leave the Florida State League on a winning note.
Both clubs endured a scoreless pitchers duel until the fifth inning when Sarasota struck for four runs in the inning. Jordan Wideman got the scoring rally started with a single to center followed by a single by Dave Sappelt. Neftali Soto followed with an RBI double to score Wideman and move Sappelt to third. Alex Buchholz followed with a ground ball to third that scored Sappelt as Greg Sexton’s throw home was errant. Jose Gualdron then drove home two more runs with a triple that gave the Reds the 4-0 lead.
After the big inning, the pitching duel resumed and neither side pushed across another run despite coming close a few times. The Reds closed the door and took the 4-0 win.
The Stone Crabs worked through the bullpen in preparation for the post season as six pitchers saw action on the night. Jake McGee pitched 3 shut-out innings and allowed 2 hits while striking out 4. Kevin Boggan was tagged with the loss, allowing 3 runs (2 earned) on 3 hits in 1 1/3 innings of work. Marquis Fleming threw 1 2/3 innings and allowed a run on 1 hit and recorded 5 strikeouts. Austin Hinkle and Tommy Rafferty followed, both throwing an inning each of no hit baseball, Rafferty struck out 2 of the 3 batters he faced. Josh Satow pitched the final inning, not a allowing a run on 2 hits with a strikeout. Matt Fairel was the winning pitcher for Sarasota, throwing an 8 inning shut-out.
What Went Right: Matt Hall; 2 for 3 at the plate.
What Went Wrong: Kevin Boggan; tagged for 3 runs in 1/3 innings leading to his 6th loss of the season and raising his ERA to 4.28 on the year.
A Look Ahead: The Stone Crabs will be off on Labor Day in preparation for the post season. The Stone Crabs will face off against the Fort Myers Miracle in game one of the FSL South Division Championship on Tuesday at Charlotte Sports Park. Jeremy Hall is scheduled to start game one of the best of three series.