Augusta GreenJackets 2023 file photo by Mike Adams/Augusta Good News
Augusta GreenJackets 2023 file photo by Mike Adams/Augusta Good News

Fireflies didn’t have enough grit to beat the GreenJackets April 26

(Story courtesy Augusta GreenJackets)

COLUMBIA – The Columbia Fireflies debuted a brand new identity April 26, birthing the Carolina Grits jerseys and marketing as an homage to the regional delicacy. The origin story would prove less than heroic, however, as the Grits mustered just two hits across nine innings.

Augusta scored once in the first and never gave back the lead, holding firm for all nine innings behind stellar pitching to take a 5-1 victory in Columbia and even the series at two wins apiece.

Garrett Baumann was his usual dominant self, allowing two hits and just one run in six brilliant innings as he earned his second win of the year. Baumann now has an ERA of 1.25,  and an opposing batting average of just .111. Baumann ceded the ball after six to Luis Vargas, who did not allow a hit and faced the minimum in the final three frames to pick up his second save in as many outings.

The GreenJackets’ offense got its initial run of the day on an RBI single from Drew Compton, who utilized the swing to extend his hit streak to 13 games as part of his torrid start to the 2024 season. The GreenJackets added another on Diego Benitez’s first home run of the year, and that spelled an early end to the night for the usually dominant starter Hunter Patteson. Patteson lasted just 2.2 innings, thanks to a high pitch count that was noteworthily increased by an absurd 16-pitch at bat from Joe Olsavsky that contained 11 foul balls.

While Augusta went dormant in the middle innings, but added some key insurance in the final two at bats of the night against righty Nicholas Regalado. Regalado allowed an RBI double to Compton in the eighth, and watched Augusta tack on two more in the top of the ninth thanks to a bases-loaded walk drawn by Jace Grady, and a wild pitch that scored Olsavsky from third base.

The GreenJackets’ pitching staff has found its rhythm over the last two nights, as five pitchers have combined to allow just two runs and five hits in the last 18 innings played, which has led directly to two Augusta wins. Tonight’s win brought the Jackets to within a game of .500, since they now sit at 9-10 on the year and 4-3 against the Fireflies. Columbia is 11-7, and falls to second place in the division after being overtaken by the Fayetteville Woodpeckers, who were victorious tonight in their game against the 9-9 Down East Wood Ducks.

Another well-pitched endeavor is to be expected tomorrow, as Adam Maier takes the ball for his 4th start for Augusta, doing battle with Blake Wolters. Wolters was last year’s second round pick and comes highly touted from the Illinois prep ranks, while Maier has navigated injuries and season cancellations to become an intriguing prospect amongst the substantial stable of young arms in the Braves’ organization.

The GreenJackets will be back home at SRP Park on April 30, for a six-game homestand against the Charleston Riverdogs. The fun-filled week includes Country Night, Star Wars Night and Pavos Salvajes de Augusta Night, when Augusta takes the field in their Copa de la Diversion jerseys on Cinco de Mayo. More info about all the exciting occurrences can be found here.

Augusta Good News, a member of the Georgia Press Association, is a local, digital newspaper. Subscribe to the newsletter 

Support Local Journalism

Local stories on local people, organizations and events. That's the focus of Augusta Good News, a member of the Georgia Press Association. And you don't have to go through a paywall to find these stories. An independent voice in Augusta, Ga., Augusta Good News is not funded by a billionaire or a large corporation; it doesn't have celebrity reporters who have agents. It's local people who are invested in the community and want to tell its stories. You can support local journalism and help us expand our coverage by becoming a supporter. Through Ko-Fi, you can give once or set up a monthly gift.

Comments are closed.