MOOSIC, Pa. Charlotte exploded for a seven-run sixth innning Sunday to roll to a 13-9 win against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the opening game of their four-game series PNC Field.
Andy Wilkins had four hits, and Tyler Saladino added three hits and three RBIs for Charlotte (36-55). Sunday’s win was Charlotte’s second straight and third in six games during the month of July.
The game was a back-and-forth affair until Charlotte took the lead for good in the sixth.
Jordan Danks put the Knights on the scoreboard in the top of the first inning with an RBI double. Charlotte then scored twice in the second inning, once in the fourth, twice more in the fifth. The sixth-inning outburst tied Charlotte’s single-game inning high this season.
The RailRiders scored three runs in the third, three in the fifth and two in the seventh.
Overall, all nine Knights batters had at least one hit, while Wilkins’ four hits were a season-high. It was his first four-hit game since August 30, 2013 against Norfolk. He finished 4-for-6 with two doubles, two runs scored and two RBIs. Saladino, who was named to the IL All-Star Team on Wednesday, bumped his batting average up to .308 after three hits. He was 3-for-4 with two runs scored and three RBIs.
Reliever Maikel Cleto (2-0, 6.31) allowed two runs on four hits over three innings to earn the win. He struck out five batters. He came on in relief of starter Deunte Heath, who gave up seven runs on eight hits over four innings. Heath entered with a win in each of his last three starts but did not factor into the decision. Ryan Kussmaul pitched the final two innings for the Knights and did not allow a run.
The two teams continue their series Monday. RHP Daniel McCutchen (0-0, 10.80) gets the start for the Knights against his former team. The RailRiders will hand the ball to LHP Nik Turley (0-1, 4.70).
Kannapolis 12, Hagerstown 7: The visiting Intimidators set the tone with a five-run first inning and then held off a three-run ninth to secure the win. Kannapolis’ first four hitters combined for nine of its 14 hits. Christian Stringer led the way with two home runs and five RBIs.
Savannah 8, Hickory 2: The Sand Gnats pounded out 14 hits to roll past the host Crawdads. Ronald Guzman was 2-for-3 and the only Hickory player with multiple hits.
Knights 13, RailRiders 9
E — Richardson, Pirela. DP–Charlotte 1, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 1. LOB–Charlotte 12, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 9. 2B–Danks, Wilkins 2, Taylor, Sanchez, Pirela, Solarte, Romine 2. 3B–Solarte. HR—Refsnyder (5), Garcia (6), Roller (8), Joseph (3), Romine (5). SF–Saladino. SB–Richardson (19).
WP-Cleto 2, Heredia 2. HBP-Davidson (by Heredia). T-3:42. A-5,589.
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