Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Augusta, GA – Clayton Blackburn fired eight strong innings of one-run ball for the Augusta GreenJackets as they won their second straight game over the Savannah Sand Gnats. Augusta’s 10-1 victory on Tuesday night in front of 3,907 at Lake Olmstead Stadium gives the GreenJackets a 5-4 record in their longest homestand of the season.
The GreenJackets got on the board in the second inning on Jeff Arnold’s two-run homer to take a 2-0 lead. In the fourth, Augusta added three more runs on RBI doubles by Arnold and Elliott Blair and a run-scoring single from Kelby Tomlinson. They made it a 9-0 game in the sixth by sending ten hitters to the plate and scoring four times on two hits, four walks and a hit batsman. Shawn Payne singled home a run, Ben Thomas doubled home two and a sacrifice fly by Jose Flores capped the inning. Thomas would single home Augusta’s tenth run in the seventh inning.
Blackburn (6-2) cruised early on in his fifth straight win, retiring 13 of the first 14 hitters he faced. He gave up two hits in each the fifth and seventh innings before getting out of both frames unscathed. Finally the Sand Gnats struck against him in the eighth to break up the shutout on a Yucarybert De La Cruz solo home run to make it a 10-1 game.
In eight innings – his second-longest start of the year – Blackburn scattered seven hits and allowed a run. He didn’t walk anyone and struck out nine, one shy of his career-best.
Andrew Berger fired a 1-2-3 ninth inning to seal the win for the GreenJackets. Augusta’s 14 hits made the contest the sixth game in the second-half, out of 13 total, where the GreenJackets had ten or more hits. They had ten or more hits in just 12 games during the entire first half.
The GreenJackets finish their season series against Savannah with wins in 12 of the 25 games between the teams. Augusta heads to Asheville on Wednesday to open a five-game series on Independence Day against the Tourists. Chris Marlowe (1-4, 3.43) takes the ball for the GreenJackets in the opener against Alex Gillingham (3-5, 4.41). First pitch comes at 7:05 p.m. with radio pregame coverage beginning at 6:50 p.m. on ESPN Radio 1340 AM and online at www.greenjacketsbaseball.com.
The GreenJackets return home to open an eight-game homestand next Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. Single-game tickets for any GreenJackets home game are currently available by calling the GreenJackets front office at 706-922-WINS and online at www.greenjacketsbaseball.com.