Charlotte avoids the sweep with a 5-4 win over Gwinnett
Pre-game: Charlotte Knights (28-34) vs Gwinnett Stripers (28-33)
Coming into today's game (June 11, 2023), the Stripers are coming in hot.
On top of playing improved baseball (7-3 over their last 10 games), they have played at an extremely high level during the 6-game series against the Knights. En route to winning the first 5 games of the series (click HERE for our recap of yesterday's 6-2 win), they have outscored Charlotte 30-14.
Coming into today's game, Gwinnett's Justus Sheffield (first start/appearance with the Stripers) looks to continue the pitching staff's dominance during this series, as they are allowing 2.8 runs per game. On offense, infielder Braden Shewmake (7 HR and 28 RBI's), infielder Vaughn Grissom (.319 BA along with 20 RBI's), and infielder Joe Dunand (.359 BA along with 7 HR and 19 RBI's) look to continue the team's offensive push which is currently scoring 6 runs per game in this series.
The Knights are looking to avoid getting swept and halting their current slide (as they have won twice over their last 10 games). Outfielder Victor Reyes (.311 BA with 11 HR and 47 RBI's), designated hitter Carlos Perez (.249 BA with 9 HR and 22 RBI's), and infielder Erik Gonzalez (.254 BA with 24 RBI's) are hoping to jumpstart the offense. Starting pitcher Jesse Scholtens (2-2 with a 4.22 ERA) takes the hill in an effort to slow down the Stripers' offense.
Likewise, we have to compliment the grounds crew for their efforts in getting the field game ready given the on and off rain/pending weather concerns.
Game recap: Charlotte avoids the sweep with a 5-4 win over the Stripers
Gwinnett scores in the 2nd and 3rd inning to stake an early lead for their starter, Justice Sheffield. Thanks to a 2nd inning RBI single by Hoy Park and a 3rd inning RBI single by Braden Shewmake, the Stripers take an early 2-0 lead.
In the top of the 4th inning, the Knights' bats come alive and eventually chase the Stripers' starter (Sheffield goes 3.2 innings and allows 5 runs (earned) on 4 hits, along with 4 strikeouts and 3 walks). Charlotte's Laz Rivera gets things going with an RBI single; Sebastian Rivero's grand slam gives the Knights the lead (5-2).
In the bottom of the 4th inning, Gwinnett cuts into the Charlotte lead. Justin Dean's ability to leg out a groundout and avoid hitting into a double play makes it a 5-3 advantage for the Knights. Gwinnett would continue to work their way back in the game. In the bottom of the 6th, Daniel Robertson's RBI double makes it a 1-run game (5-4).
Pinch-runner Forrest Wall is the beneficiary of an errant throw by catcher Sebastian Rivero abs he steals 2nd base. However, he is later thrown out at home plate on a fielder's choice off the bat of Daniel Robertson in the bottom of the 8th, keeping the game at 5-4. The Knights' reliver, Nick Padilla (who earns his 4th save of the season in pitching a scoreless 9th inning and getting 2 strikeouts), would shut the door and close out the game, preserving a 5-4 win and ensuring the team salvages one game (to avoid a sweep).
Charlotte's winning effort is led by Sebastian Rivero (1 for 4 with a grand slam/4 RBI's) and Yolbert Sanchez (2 for 4). Once starting pitcher Jesse Scholtens is knocked out of the game (4 innings pitched, allowing 3 runs (all earned) on 7 hits while striking out 2), the bullpen does a solid job in containing the Stripers' offense (5 innings pitched, allowing a run on 2 hits). Reliver Edgar Navarro (his first of the season) as he pitches 2 no-hit innings while ringing up 3 strikeouts.
Hoy Park (2 for 3 with a RBI) and Daniel Robertson (2 for 4 with a RBI) lead the Gwinnett offense.
The Stripers take the series by winning 5 of the 6 games. They'll hit the road and start a 6-game series against the Nashville Sounds while the Knights head to Durham to compete against their in-state rivals (the Durham Bulls).
Notes: All video recorded by Andrew Snorton. To view the 2023 season playlist, click HERE.