By Roger Hoover / Jacksonville Suns
After a thrilling 2-1 win in yesterday’s game, the Jacksonville Suns (5-2) look to take a lead in their series with the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (5-2) as the clubs square off in the third game of the series tonight at Blue Wahoos Stadium at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Yesterday the game was scoreless until the top of the ninth inning, when back-to-back sacrifice flies from Matt Juengel and James Roberts brought in Jacksonville’s two runs. The Wahoos also scored in the bottom of the ninth on a Ray Chang sacrifice fly, but Suns reliever Victor Araujo held on for the save as the Suns evened the series.
Jacksonville and Pensacola are now part of a three-way tie atop the Southern League South Division standings with Biloxi, all 5-2 to begin the 2016 season.
Tonight Jacksonville turns to right-handed pitcher and Marlins No. 14 prospect Austin Brice on the mound. Brice didn’t allow any runs during his six innings of work against the Barons last Saturday, and he also didn’t walk any batters while striking out six. He’ll be opposed by Blue Wahoos right-hander Sal Romano (0-0, 3.38 ERA).
Here are more notes on tonight’s contest from the official Suns game notes:
RBI Factory: The Suns lead the Southern League with 38 runs batted in through the first seven games of the season. The next closest team in RBI is Biloxi with 29, and the Suns have driven in 18 more runs than their opponent tonight, Pensacola (20). Jacksonville infielder J.T. Riddle is tied atop the Southern League lead with seven runs batted in, even with Biloxi’s Garrett Cooper and Jackson’s Guillermo Heredia.
Patience is a Virtue: The Suns lead the Southern League with 30 walks drawn through the first seven games of the year. This combined with solid hitting have the Suns atop the league in on-base percentage at .358. Jacksonville’s Austin Dean leads the Southern League with six walks drawn through the first seven games. While the Suns lead the league in walks, Jacksonville has also struck out 47 times, the fourth-fewest in the Southern League.
Speedy Suns: Jacksonville’s first two hitters in the batting order Yefri Perez and Jeremias Pineda are tied atop the Southern League with five stolen bases each through the first six games of the season. Pineda had an impressive performance on Sunday with four stolen bases, as the Suns combined to steal six bases, the most that Jacksonville head done in a game since 2008. The Suns are tied with Mobile for the Southern League with 11 stolen bases as a team.
Fans can listen to the game live on the Suns Baseball Network, with Roger Hoover providing play by play. Hoover and Andrew Gibson will host the pregame show Suns On Deck beginning at 7:15 p.m. ET. The game can be heard locally on FM 102.3 The Beach, on the TuneIn Radio app, as well as online by clicking the link below:
ABOUT THE SUNS: The Jacksonville Suns are beginning a new era of affordable family fun under new ownership in 2016. With a FUNdamentally Different promotional schedule and a new lineup of ticket packages for the upcoming season, there is a reason for everyone to get part of the action by calling the Suns at (904) 358-2846 or visiting http://www.jaxsuns.com.