One early run was enough for the Bluefield Blue Jays on a hot Monday evening at Bowen Field — but three more provided icing on the cake in a 4-0 Appy League win over the Burlington Royals.
Rolando Segovia recorded the Blue Jays’ first run in the initial inning. After hitting a single past shortstop, he got to second on an infield groundout and made it home on a fielding error with two outs.
Bluefield (8-10) starting pitcher Joey Aquino, a 35th-round draft pick in June who played high school ball in Hawaii, gave up a lone single in four innings of work. In relief, Alberto Guzman retired six of eight Royals he faced and was awarded the pitching win.
Conor Fisk survived a rocky top of the seventh inning on the mound, getting three straight outs after loading the bases.
Michael Kraft picked up his first professional save with the help of a double play that ended the top of the eighth.
Corey Ray, a 6-foot-4 Texan chosen in the fifth round of last month’s draft, lasted three innings for Burlington (8-10), but his replacement, Estarlin Cordero, threw four innings of scoreless ball and struck out five Blue Jays.
Bluefield teed off with three extra-base hits off reliever Enmanuel Carmacho in the eighth. Josh Almonte and Trent Miller hit back-to-back doubles, and Gabriel Cenas followed with his second home run of the year, a two-run shot to left that ended the scoring.
Kraft and the Bluefield defense sat down the Royals in order in the top of the ninth, and the Blue Jays picked up their second straight win.
The Blue Jays’ six-game homestand continues with tonight’s finale of the Burlington series. The Bristol Pirates visit Bluefield Wednesday through Friday. Three more Mercer Cup Series games in Princeton are scheduled for Saturday through next Monday.
At Bowen Field
Burlington...........000 000 000 — 0 5 1
Bluefield..............100 000 03x — 4 11 2
Corey Ray, Estarlin Cordero (4), Enmanuel Carmacho (8) and Xavier Fernandez. Joey Aquino, Alberto Guzman (5), Conor Fisk (7), Michael Kraft (8) and Andres Sotillo, Dan Jansen (8). WP - Guzman (1-2). LP - Ray (0-2). Sv - Kraft (1). Att - 776.