Waldorf, MD. – The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (8-16) dropped game one of a doubleheader against the New Britain Bees (8-16) 7-3, before bouncing back to take game two 3-2..
After a scoreless first started the night, the Bees grabbed the lead in the second. Ozney Guillen started the inning with a single, before a successful hit-and-run with James Skelton put runners on the corners with nobody out. Darren Ford followed with a third straight single, scoring Guillen for the first run in the game. Brandon Cumpton (2-2) the forced a flyout and double play, escaping the inning with just one run on the board for the Bees.
The Blue Crabs took the lead in the bottom of the third, putting up a pair of runs in the inning. Johnny Bladel got the offense started in the inning with a single, moving around to third on a double from Edwin Garcia. Teodoro Martinez followed with a sacrifice fly, scoring Bladel to tie the game, and move Garcia up to third. Ryan Strausborger came through with a two-out single, scoring Garcia to put the Blue Crabs ahead 2-1.
The Bees offense came alive in the fourth, retaking the lead with six runs in the inning. Jamar Walton led off with a single, moving up to second on a stolen base. A walk to Ozney Guillen put two on with nobody out for the catcher James Skelton. Skelton dropped a perfect bunt down the third base line, leading to a throwing error at catcher that allowed Walton to score on the hit. Ford followed with another single, scoring Guillen and Skelton to add to the lead. Two more singles came later in the inning to add another run, before a double from Jason Rogers put the lead at 7-2 for the Bees.
Andy Van Hekken (1-3) was strong on the mound for New Britain, settling in after struggling in the third. The southpaw allowed just two hits across the next three innings, maintaining the five-run advantage. He came back out to the mound for the bottom of the seventh, looking to finish off the complete game.
A double and an error started the final half-inning of the game, leading to the removal of Van Hekken in favor of Mike Hepple. The reliever forced a double play from the first batter he faced, picking up two outs but allowed Cory Vaughn to score. Back-to-back singles extended the game before a line drive right at the shortstop finished off the 7-3 victory for the Bees in game one.
After a 30-minute break in between, both teams returned to the field for the game two of the doubleheader. New Britain immediately grabbed the lead, scoring one in the first. Darren Ford led off the game with a single, stealing second to move into scoring position. A flyout moved Ford up to third, where he scored easily on a single from Jason Rogers to take a 1-0 lead.
Southern Maryland responded in the second with a solo homerun from Vaughn, his third of the season. The tie game didn’t last long, as the Bees retook their one-run lead in the top of the third. After two quick outs, an error in right field extended the inning allowing Matt Tuiasosopo to reach base. Rogers made the most of the error, doubling to allow Tuiasosopo to score and put the Bees ahead 2-1.
The Blue Crabs offense fought back in the bottom of the fifth, taking their first lead of the day. After a long flyball recorded out number one, Frank Martinez got on base with a single. Devon Rodriguez followed with a two-run shot to right field, his first homerun of the season. That gave Drake Britton (2-1) a 3-2 lead moving into the fifth.
The southpaw Britton settled in nicely after the first few innings, retiring the final six batters he faced on the night. He turned the one-run lead over to Sam Runion in the sixth, who worked a 1-2-3 inning. Craig Stem (S,2) then came on for the seventh, looking to finish off game two. After easily retiring the first two batters, a soft double over the third base bag allowed Guillen to get into scoring position. A wild pitch moved Guillen 90-feet from tying the game while Stem battled Walton at the plate. A 10-pitch at-bat was finally won by Stem when he got Walton to groundout to second, securing the 3-2 win for the Blue Crabs.
The Blue Crabs return to action Thursday, May 23rd for series finale of a four-game home series against the New Britain Bees. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 P.M. on Thursday at Regency Furniture Stadium.
For more information on the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, or to reserve your seat today for any of the Blue Crabs upcoming home games, please visit our website at somdbluecrabs.com or call us at 301-638-9788.
About the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs
The Blue Crabs play 126 regular season games in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball Clubs. The Blue Crabs play at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf, Maryland with affordable family fun. The franchise will begin its 11th season in April 2018. Please call 301-638-9788 or visit http://www.somdbluecrabs.com for more information.
About the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB)
The Atlantic League has been a leader in professional baseball and a gateway to Major League Baseball since 1998. Over 38 million fans have attended Atlantic League games and more than 900 players and 50 managers and coaches have joined MLB organizations directly from the ALPB. The Atlantic League emphasizes winning baseball games, showcasing the talent of top-caliber players and offering affordable family entertainment.
For more information, please visit www.AtlanticLeague.com.