In what has become somewhat of a norm in Blue Crabs games, defense and pitching told the story on Friday night. Southern Maryland took on the New Britain Bees in the series opener of a four game, three day set, and it was a close one. Southern Maryland left the tying run at second base in the bottom of the ninth, allowing New Britain to come out on top by a score of 2-1.
Michael Kelly (L, 0-1) got his first start on the season for Southern Maryland, and tossed four innings while allowing just one run. His counterpart, Christian Friedrich (W, 1-0) tossed six scoreless innings for the Bees.
New Britain got the scoring started in the second inning. Deibinson Romero singled which gave way to Jonathan Galvez to rope him in with an RBI double. New Britain kept the scoring going in the sixth when Alexi Amarista tripled to begin the inning. Adam Choplick, who came in relief for Kelly, followed up the triple with back-to-back strikeouts before allowing an insurance run single from Romero to put the Bees up 2-0.
Southern Maryland didn’t get the bats going until the bottom of the ninth when drama ensued. Jon Griffin hit a double to right field, and after being replaced on the base paths by Kent Blackstone, Cory Vaughn hit a laser line drive to left field to bring in Blackstone and make the game within one run. Vaughn advanced to second base on a wild pitch from New Britain Bees closer Jose Rosario (S, 2), but would end up being stranded in scoring position to secure a 2-1 Bees victory.
The Blue Crabs play again tomorrow, May 11th, for a double header with the Bees at Regency Furniture Stadium.