The Blue Crabs are back in town

Lancaster, PA – The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (19-27) won the series finale against the Lancaster Barnstormers (26-21) 6-0 Thursday, Aug. 24, with a five-run third inning leading the way.

Both teams stranded runners on base in the first two innings, before the Blue Crabs finally capitalized in the third. Back-to-back walks put two runners aboard with one out for the clean-up hitter, Michael Snyder. Snyder came through with a double, scoring Edwin Garcia, while also moving L.J. Hoes around to third. Devon Rodriguez followed with a single to score Hoes, before Cory Vaughn was hit by a pitch to load the bases. After Luis Gonzalez (0-1) picked up a strikeout for the second out, a single from Patrick Palmeiro scored Snyder and Rodriguez. Luis Alen followed with a single of his own, scoring Vaughn to put Southern Maryland up 5-0 early.

The Blue Crabs gave Gaby Hernandez (10-3) another run to work with in the fourth. Jose Lozada led off with a single, stealing second with two outs, and advancing to third on an error from the catcher. After a walk to Snyder, Gonzalez delivered a wild pitch, that allowed Lozada to cross, extending the lead to 6-0.

Hernandez continued to dominate the Barnstormers hitters on the other side, allowing just three hits over his final four innings. Southern Maryland threated again in the top of the seventh, loading the bases before a double play and a strikeout ended the inning with no runs. Hernandez would not return to the mound for the bottom of the seventh, being lifted after six scoreless innings.

The All-Star turned his six-run lead over to Rob Carson, the first to answer the call to the bullpen. Carson picked up right where Hernandez left off, working a scoreless seventh. Jesse Beal did the same in the eighth, striking out two in a scoreless inning of work, before Cody Hebner headed out for the bottom of the ninth.

Hebner walked the leadoff man in the ninth, putting Sean Halton aboard with nobody out. The right-hander responded by striking out back-to-back batters, before a strikeout of Lance Zawadzki finished the game. The shutout victory secured a split in the series for the Blue Crabs, leaving with two wins against the Barnstormers.

The Blue Crabs return to action Friday, August 25th starting an eight-game homestand with four against the Sugar Land Skeeters. Southern Maryland will send RHP Brian Grening (7-6, 3.56) to the mound, looking to start the series strong. He will matchup with Sugar Land’s RHP Jake Hale (9-5, 3.33). First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 P.M. on Friday at Regency Furniture Stadium.