GreenJackets catch fire

  • Thursday, April 17, 2014

Staff photo by T.J. Lundeen GreenJackets third baseman Brandon Bednar snags a line drive to start a double play against Charleston.

The Augusta GreenJackets are off to a hot start to the season, winning their last five games to move within half a game of first place in the South Atlantic League Southern.

After splitting the opening series with the Charleston RiverDogs, the GreenJackets (7-4) hit the road to Savannah, where they took one of three games from the Sand Gnats.

Augusta dropped a doubleheader to Savannah on Tuesday, losing 6-5 and 3-1, but have not lost since.

The GreenJackets beat the Sand Gnats 8-3 on Wednesday and swept the RiverDogs 5-1, 8-1, 8-2 and 3-2 from Thursday through Sunday.

On Monday night, the GreenJackets started their second home stand against the Savannah Sand Gnats (7-3) only to have the second half of the game suspended due to heavy rain.

Left-handed pitcher Christian Jones had a no-hitter through five innings. Jones (0-1) has seven strikeouts and only walked one man.

In the bottom of the fifth inning, Leonardo Rojas had a double through the hole at second. With one out and Rojas on second, the game was suspended.

The rest of Monday’s game was to be completed on Tuesday, with Tuesday’s game to start right after.

The GreenJackets won the final game of the series against the Charleston RiverDogs (3-7) on Sunday night at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Ballpark.

The GreenJackets were the first to score, in the top of the first inning, when Brandon Bednar doubled down the left field line.

After Devin Harris was walked, Christian Arroyo singled to right field, allowing Bednar and Harris to each score.

Shortstop Abiatal Avelino was walked in the bottom of the first. Avelino stole second and third base. With Avelino on third, Aaron Judge singled to center field, and Avelino scored.

It was in the fourth inning when the GreenJackets scored their final run of the game. After Shawn Payne doubled down the left field line, Tyler Horan singled to left center field. With Payne on third base, Leonardo Rojas grounded into a forced out allowing Payne to score.

The rest of the game was quiet until the bottom of the ninth inning when Charleston began to rally.

The win completed the sweep over Charleston.

After two losses to Savannah, the GreenJackets beat the Sand Gnats 8-3 on Wednesday night at Grayson Stadium.

Augusta experienced an offense explosion in the beginning of the third inning. Five hits and a fielding error by the Sand Gnats led to the teams’ eight runs of the night. Runs were scored by Rojas (2), Ross, Paulino, Payne, Arroyo, Chavez and Horan.

Right-handed pitcher Chase Johnson (1-1) earned his first win of the season as a GreenJacket. In 5.2 innings pitched, Johnson allowed three hits and had four strikeouts.

Savannah scored their three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Colton Plaia scored the teams’ first run off a single to right center field by Gavin Cecchini. After a GreenJackets pitching change, L.J. Mazzilli singled through the hole, and runners on second and third each scored a run.

The GreenJackets are scheduled to finish up their series with Savannah on Wednesday, and will travel to play at Lexington from Thursday to Saturday before returning home to play Hagerstown next week.

The North Augusta Star

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