Augusta GreenJackets June 4, 2024. Mike Adams/Augusta Good News
Augusta GreenJackets June 4, 2024. Mike Adams/Augusta Good News

Homers raise Myrtle Beach to victory June 6

(Story courtesy Augusta GreenJackets)

NORTH AUGUSTA – The Myrtle Beach Pelicans received home runs from both Andy Garriola and Jacob Wetzel to make up three of their five runs scored, never relinquishing a fourth-inning lead as they defeated the GreenJackets 5-2 Thursday at SRP Park.

After back-to-back games delayed by rain, the sun was shining and the breeze was blowing out at SRP Park, with both starters dueling through the early frames. Davis Polo continued his stellar work against the Pelicans, following up his six scoreless innings in Myrtle Beach in May with three straight zeroes to start the night. His counterpart, 2023 second round pick Jaxon Wiggins, made his Single-A debut in style, allowing just one hit and striking out five in three scoreless innings of his own.

The Pelicans attacked Polo in his second trip through the order, unleashing a barrage of barrels on the young righty in the fourth inning. Jacob Wetzel and Cristian Hernandez led off the inning with singles up the middle, and both advanced on a wild pitch. That movement allowed Wetzel to score on an Alfonsin Rosario sacrifice fly that opened the scoring.

In stepped Garriola, the team’s leader in long balls. The former ODU Monarch turned on an inside fastball that seemed to miss the barrel, but kept traveling in the Jetstream over the wall in left field for a 3-0 lead. Wetzel would add to the total one inning later with a moonshot to right center field into the SRP Park Kids’ Zone, as Polo allowed four runs in five innings to take his sixth loss of the year.

Erian Rodriguez worked behind Wiggins and was equally impressive through three innings of his own. Augusta got on the board in the bottom of the fifth with three singles, the last of which was a slow roller that subsequently spun under the glove of shortstop Christian Olivo and allowed Noah Williams to score.

The Pelicans got some insurance in the seventh off of Will Silva, with Hernandez’s two-out single bringing home Reggie Preciado after he reached via a hit by pitch and stole second. Augusta threatened against the back-end combination of Sam Thoreson and Nico Zeglin, scoring one late run on a sacrifice fly from Williams, but could not string together enough offense to incite a comeback.

The weekend begins Friday night with Adam Maier on the mound for Augusta, looking to right the ship after a pair of difficult outings. Myrtle Beach will start 19-year-old righty Nazier Mulé, making his fifth professional appearance after missing all of last year recovering from Tommy John Surgery. First pitch will be at 7:05 p.m. at SRP Park.

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