Behind stellar defense and a little power, the Savannah Sand Gnats defeated the Augusta GreenJackets 2-0 on Sunday afternoon at Historic Grayson Stadium to take two of three from the Jackets. Augusta finishes their final first half road trip with a 3-3 mark.
Savannah turned three double plays behind three different pitchers to quell any rally the GreenJackets could manage. The seventh inning was the only time all game the Jackets could manage two runners on base at the same time when Charlie Culberson doubled with two outs to move Andy D'Alessio to third. Josh Stinson came out of the Savannah bullpen to strike out Vladimir Frias to end the inning, the only batter Stinson faced.
The Sand Gnats scored first on a fielder's choice in the second with Jefry Marte being given the RBI credit and Savannah added to the lead on a tape measure home run hit by Sean Ratliff to lead off the fourth. The blast was estimated to have traveled more than 415 feet, clearing the 16-foot high fence in dead center.
After the Ratliff homer, Ari Ronick settled in to retire the last 15 hitters he faced, picking up the complete game in the loss. Ronick (3-4) threw eight innings, holding the Gnats to just the pair of runs on four hits without a walk and with six strikeouts, three of which came in a dominant seventh inning.
Kyle Allen (3-4) threw 6.2 shutout innings to get the win, allowing three hits and walking three but striking out five and receiving two of the double plays turned by the Savannah defense. Eric Beaulac held the Jackets to two hits over the final two frames to pick up his first save of the season.
The 2-0 decision marks the fifth time in the month of June out of seven losses that the GreenJackets have been shutout. The only other time this season the Jackets were held without a run came on April 9th - Opening Day when the Sand Gnats picked up the 3-0 win over the GreenJackets.