Augusta, GA – The GreenJackets (26-9) dropped their third straight with a 7-1 loss to Columbus Catfish (23-12) on Friday night. The GreenJackets dropped their first series of the season losing three of the four games and starter Rob Grace allowed a season high six runs in three innings for the loss.
Grace allowed four runs in the first inning on four hits as Augusta fell behind early. Desmond Jennings led off the game with a single then Maiko Loyola doubled to set up Cesar Suarez. Suarez then connected for a two-run double giving Columbus a 2-0 lead. Quinn Stewart then walked and Ryan Royster hit into a force out for the first out of the inning.
Grace was able to get the next batter to strike out then allowed a two-out two-run double to Matt Fields to cap off the scoring in the frame and put Columbus ahead 4-0.
Grace (1-2) allowed six runs on eight hits in three innings of work while walking one and striking out two.
Grace also allowed a two-run homer in the third inning to Matt Fields to put Columbus up 6-0.
The GreenJackets were held off the board by Catfish starter Heath Rollins, connecting for only one hit over the first seven innings. Rollins retired 16 straight batters between the second and seventh innings before allowing a leadoff single to Brett Pill in the eighth. Matt Weston then reached on a fielder’s choice when Pill was safe at second on a throwing error from Rollins.
The Catfish made it 7-0 in the fifth inning when Jairo de la Rosa drove home a run with a one out RBI double off reliever Kevin Pucetas. Pucetas worked five innings and allowed one run on two hits while striking out four and did not walk a batter.
With one out in the eighth the GreenJackets plated a run when Henry Gutierrez was safe at first on a throwing error from Brett Grandstrand and Pill came home to score to make it 7-1 Columbus.
Rollins (3-0) worked a season high eight innings allowing just two hits and one unearned run while striking out seven.
The GreenJackets head out on the road for four games against the Drive in Greenville, SC beginning on Saturday. Augusta will send right-hander Adam Cowart (6-1, 2.03) to the hill as they look to snap a three game skid. Greenville will counter with right-hander Travis Beazley (3-3, 4.67). Game time is at 7:05 p.m.