Brady Dragmire didn’t need much run support on Sunday evening. The Bluefield Blue Jays provided their pitcher with plenty anyway.
Dragmire allowed Princeton one hit in five innings, and his teammates provided him with a 10-run fourth inning, as Bluefield took a 4-0 series lead in the Mercer Cup series with a 13-3 win over the Rays at Bowen Field in front of a crowd of 1,082.
Neither side got a runner as far as second base in the first three innings. Dragmire did his part, striking out five of the first six Princeton batters. The only base runner he had to deal with was Coty Blanchard, who singled in the third.
The Blue Jays’ offensive explosion in the fourth was aided by three quick Princeton errors, which the home team converted into a 5-0 lead before Stepan Havlicek was summoned from the bullpen to relieve starter Nolan Gannon.
Havlicek immediately gave up a two-run single to Alex Maldonado, followed by a three-run home run over the left-field fence by Nico Taylor. Bluefield had 15 at-bats before the inning ended.
Jonathan Davis and Mitch Nay smashed solo homers in the fifth and sixth innings. In the seventh, Davis was hit by a pitch from the Rays’ third pitcher of the day, Edgar Gomez, and Davis eventually scored his third run of the day on a Princeton throwing error.
The Rays scored all their runs in the final frame off a pair of relief pitchers.
Adonys Cardona walked two batters and allowed a single to load up the diamond. Phil Kish took his place and walked Hunter Lockwood to end the shutout. Kish also gave up consecutive run-scoring singles to Yoel Araujo and Elias Torres.
The Blue Jays, who remain in first place in the Appalachian League East, banged out a dozen hits, with Dawel Lugo going 3 for 4 and D.J. Davis and Nay adding two hits each.
Princeton was limited to four singles, each by a different batter.
The Appalachian League is idle today. Princeton will host Bluefield in a doubleheader on Tuesday starting at 6:05 p.m. The second game makes up a July 3 rainout.
At Bowen Field
Princeton......000 000 003 — 3 4 5
Bluefield.......000 (10)11 10x — 13 12 2
Nolan Gannon, Stepan Havlicek (4), Edgar Gomez (7), Isaac Gil (8) and Wilmer Dominguez. Brady Dragmire, Adonys Cardona (6), Phil Kish (9) and Jorge Saez, Andres Sotillo (8). WP - Dragmire (3-1). LP - Gannon (1-4). HR - Blfd, Taylor (2) 4th, 2 on; J. Davis (2), 5th, 0 on; Nay (5), 6th, 0 on. Att - 1,082.