The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (13-20) dropped their return home against the Long Island Ducks (18-14) 1-0, behind a complete game shutout from Matt Larkins (6-6).
Southern Maryland’s starter Daryl Thompson gave up a leadoff single to Quinton Berry to start the game, with Berry moving up to second on a stolen base. A groundball moved him up to third, before a strikeout and a popup ended the inning, as Thompson escaped falling into an early deficit.
The Blue Crabs threatened in the first as well, putting two men aboard against Larkins. Edwin Garcia got it started with a one-out single, stealing second to move into scoring position. L.J. Hoes drew a walk, putting two on with just one out in the inning. Larkins forced two flyouts from the next two batters, working out of the jam to start his outing.
The pitcher’s duel got underway after that, as both starters settled in for their respective teams. Thompson retired 15 straight batters after the leadoff single, with a single to Giovanny Alfonzo serving as the only runner to reach base over the right-hander’s final six innings of work.
Larkins found his rhythm on the other side as well, working three straight 1-2-3 innings from the third-fifth innings. An infield single from Jose Lozada started the sixth, with Lozada moving to third on back-to-back groundouts. After a walk put runners on the corners with two outs, Larkins escaped the trouble once again, this time getting a flyout to end the inning.
Thompson returned to the mound for the seventh, working another scoreless frame, before being removed from the 0-0 game. Zack Thornton (2-2) came on out of the bullpen, and immediately allowed a double to the first batter he faced. Thornton then picked up a strikeout, bringing up Giovanny Alfonzo with the runner in scoring position. Alfonzo hit a slow-roller towards third, where Lozada charged and tried to throw on the run to first, overthrowing the first baseman. The error allowed Alex Burg to come around from second, giving the Ducks the first run in the ballgame.
Larkins headed back to the mound with his 1-0 lead, cruising through the eighth inning. The right-hander headed back out for the ninth, looking to finish off his second complete game shutout of the season. Hoes led-off the inning with a single, tagging up on a flyout from Cory Vaughn. That brought up Zach Cone with two outs, who flared a popup to very shallow center field, where Dan Lyons was able to make an over-the-shoulder catch to end the game.
The loss pushes the Blue Crabs losing streak to four games, all against Long Island. The team has only managed to put up three runs in the last four days, including two complete game shutouts by the Ducks pitching staff.
The Blue Crabs return to action Friday, August 11th for game two of the four-game series against the Ducks. Southern Maryland will send RHP Drew Hayes (6-5, 3.76) to the mound, looking to snap the losing streak. He will matchup with Long Island’s LHP Rafael Perez (7-7, 4.37). First pitch in the game scheduled for 6:35 P.M. on Friday at Regency Furniture Stadium.
For more information on the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, or to reserve your seat today for any of the Blue Crabs upcoming home games, please visit our website at somdbluecrabs.com or call us at 301-638-9788.