After striking out the first batter, Charlotte starter Miguel Gonzalez was struck in the face by a liner and had to exit the game. Chris Beck was pressed into service and pitched gamely until the 5th inning, when he gave up five runs in that frame. Reliever Blake Smith and Matt Purke combined to finish the last four innings and the only blemish was a run against Smith in the 6th.
The Knights offense did the beleaguered pitching staff no favors by going 0-8 with RISP and stranding ten men on base. Danny Hayes took matters into his own hands and knocked himself in with a solo shot and also added two more hits. Catcher Omar Narvaez, who was pushed to Charlotte due to the ripple effect from the Alex Avila/Kevan Smith injuries, is making the most of the opportunity and went 3-4 Sunday and is now hitting a cool .545 in three games for the Knights. Jacob May went 2-4 and Tim Anderson went 1-4 and added his first walk of the 2016 season. Anderson is notoriously swing-happy and only walked 9 (!) times in 2014 but to his credit, upped that total to 24 walks in 2015.
The Knights will be hoping for starter Jacob Turner to go deep into the game Monday when they return home to face Columbus.
Starter David Holmberg allowed two runs over seven innings to earn his first win of the season as the Barons held off a late rally to win the finale against the Pensacola Blue Wahoos. Catcher Jeremy Dowdy homered for the second consecutive game and slumping Eddy Alvarez went 2-3 with an RBI to lead the offense. Alvarez must of been happy to see the calendar flip to May because he hit a meager .145/.241/.174 in the first month of the season. After Peter Tago allowed a couple of runs to score in the 8th, Brian Clark played closer for the night and pitched a scoreless 9th inning to earn the first save of his professional career. Clark has been nothing short of spectacular this season, only allowing one run and one walk over 14.1 innings.
Starter Brandon Brennan will look to get on track during a matinee on Monday.
Jordan Stephens battled through his start, allowing four walks and and three hits but only two earned runs over three innings of work. Andre Wheeler had a nice appearance in relief of Stephens, tossing three innings and allowing one run to score. The Winston-Salem bats were led by Marcus Davis who went 2-4 with a double and Hunter Jones who went 1-4 with a double. Nick Basto went 0-4 to snap a nine game hitting streak and a streak of reaching base in every contest this year.
Winston-Salem returns home and will welcome the Cubs affiliate Myrtle Beach Pelicans by sending out starter Blair Walters.
19 year-old Micker Adolfo was the hero on Sunday as he launched a three-run home run to give the Intimidators the win. The home run was Adolfo’s first since 2014 and hopefully just the beginning for him since he has plenty of raw power in his swing. The Kannapolis defense committed three errors and made life tough on their pitchers, but starter Tanner Banks and reliever Brannon Easterling were able to battle through and earn the win and the save, respectively.
Landon Lassiter went 0-4 with two strikeouts to end his streak of reaching base in every contest he has played this season.
Kannapolis will send Johnathan Frebis to the mound on Monday to finish the series against Columbia.
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