|Sammy Solis (6-2, 2.72) vs.
Richard Zagone (4-2, 2.97)
|Taylor Hill (0-2, 3.16) vs.
Brent Powers (4-2, 3.84)
Rain forced a postponement in Auburn and complete series shift in Richmond yesterday, while the Potomac Nationals might have wished for more with a 5-1 loss to Frederick in six innings.
Both Auburn and Frederick have more rain forecast for today. The Doubledays and P-Nats both trail their series 1-0, with Auburn facing elimination tonight and Potomac staring at a possible 2-0 deficit.
Meanwhile, the tenor of the E.L. West Divisional series has changed dramatically with the two-day postponement and series shift to Richmond for Games One and Two. Simply put: The Squirrels have owned the Sens at the Diamond, winning 10 of 15 games played there this season. Ironically, Richmond was one of the few that Harrisburg couldn’t handle on the road, with a 38-19 record against the rest of the Eastern League.
Thus, instead of the chance to go up 2-0 and hit the road needing to win just one, it’s the opposite: They have to take at least one on the road and hope to come home with the series tied. Statistically, the chances are the same; psychologically, the game has changed.
Back to Frederick… Paul Demny’s season-long bugaboo — the big fly, he led the Carolina League with 18 surrendered — came back to bite him in the [prosterior] with two given up in the four-run 4th that overcame an early 1-0 deficit, courtesy of a Steve Souza home run in the top of the 2nd.
Much like Auburn in its Game One, the woulda-coulda-shoulda game that fans like to play doesn’t apply. The P-Nats were stifled by Jacob Petit (again, he beat them twice in two regular-season starts) with just three hits and two walks given up over six innings and only two reaching second base — Souza and Sandy Leon on a double two batters later. That kind of offensive production might win a game in soccer, but in baseball, it’s too much to ask for a 1-0 win in the playoffs. Particularly against a lineup with nearly 300 games of AA experience.