Miami Sports Day

SUNS: Suns Win 4-0, Then Blue Wahoos Pitch 6-0 No-Hitter

Photo by Marie Cox

Jacksonville Suns right-handers Jake Esch and Tyler Kinley combined for a seven-inning, 4-0 shutout in Game 1 of a doubleheader Friday night, but Pensacola Blue Wahoos right-handers Jackson Stephens, Matt Magill and Carlos Gonzalez combined for a seven-inning no-hitter in a 6-0 Game 2 final in front of 4,010 at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

Jacksonville (18-23) extended its winning streak to four games before being no-hit for the first time since Aug. 24, 2013, when Montgomery’s Victor Mateo pitched a nine-inning complete game for a 3-0 win over the Suns. Pensacola (25-17) pitched the first combined no-hitter by a Jacksonville opponent in the latter club’s Southern League history.

In Game 1, Esch (5-4) struck out five of the first six batters and went six scoreless innings, allowing four hits and no walks with six strikeouts.

Pensacola right-hander Sal Romano (1-3) matched him for five shutout innings, until Suns center fielder Yefri Perez started a rally with a sixth-inning, one-out single to center field. Perez stole second base before a two-out intentional walk to left fielder Austin Dean.

First baseman Brady Shoemaker then hit his fourth home run of the season to the right-center field bleachers for a 3-0 Suns lead. Right fielder Moises Sierra followed with his third home run to left field, making it 4-0. Kinley worked around a single and an error before finishing a scoreless seventh inning.

In Game 2, Stephens (3-3) worked around errors by second baseman Brandon Dixon in the first and fourth innings and lone walks in the second and third innings. The only Suns baserunner in scoring position was Perez, who walked and stole second base – his 30th of the season – in the third inning.

Magill struck out all three batters in the sixth inning. Gonzalez finished a string of 11 Suns retired in order with a perfect seventh inning. Pensacola scored three runs in the third inning and one in the fourth off right-hander Chris Mazza (1-1), and two runs on shortstop Alex Blandino’s seventh-inning single.

The Suns continue their series with Pensacola at 6:05 p.m. Saturday, when Suns right-hander Austin Brice (2-2) is scheduled to face Blue Wahoos right-hander Barrett Astin (3-0).

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