(Story courtesy Augusta GreenJackets. File photo Mike Adams/Augusta Good News)
NORTH AUGUSTA – The Augusta GreenJackets left the bases loaded twice on Saturday, as the Fredericksburg Nationals got back in the win column, 7-3. Fredericksburg (9-13, 39-46) jumped into the lead in the second inning, while Augusta (11-12, 42-46) had gilt-edged chances to break the game open but failed to do so.
Before the game began, the GreenJackets joined local servicemembers to commemorate the 17th annual Military Appreciation Day at SRP Park, complete with a full color guard and a massive American flag unfurled in center field. The game got underway with Adam Shoemaker on the mound for Augusta, who was unable to avoid the free passes which have daunted him this season. While Augusta took a 1-0 lead in the first on an E.J. Exposito RBI, Shoemaker gave up four runs in the top of the second, walking three.
Landon Harper entered in relief of Shoemaker in the top of the second. Augusta would not return to the scoreboard until the bottom of the fourth, leaving the bases loaded in the third. After three straight singles from Andrew Keck, Jose Dilone, and Francisco Floyd, Tyler Collins drove a single up the middle to bring a run home and make it 4-2. However, the next three men were retired by Nationals starter Jose Atencio, who left the bases loaded for the second time.
The Nats got a run back in the top of the fifth after a triple from Paul Witt, restoring the 3-run lead. The ‘Jackets responded in kind, leveraging a Jeremy Celedonio single and an error and turning it into an Andrew Keck RBI groundout to make it 5-3. The see-saw battle continued with the FredNats putting up runs in each of the sixth and seventh, scoring off of Estarlin Rodriguez to push the score to 7-3. Ronaldo Alesandro retired all six men he faced in the last two frames, but the damage had been done as the FredNats took the game 7-3.
Augusta finishes the series at home tomorrow with a Back-To-School Supply Drive Sunday. First pitch is at 1:35 p.m., with Seth Keller making the start. To purchase tickets and learn more about the week’s homestand, visit https://www.milb.com/augusta/fans/gj-homestand-preview. The next homestand for Augusta will begin on Aug. 1 against the Columbia Fireflies (Kansas City Royals).
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