Tom Eshelman made his first start at Bright House Field since a Cal State Fullerton v. USF game in February 2015. Eshelman and the Titans lost that season opener for both teams, 2-1. He fared better today, tossing 7.0 shutout innings against the Charlotte Stone Crabs.
Eshelman uncharacteistically walked 2 batters in the early innings, but allowed the Stone Crabs just 2 singles, an opposite field flare to shallow right in the first and a shift-defeating ground ball thru the vacated shortstop position in the sixth.
Eshelman threw 77 pitches in his 7 innings, 56 for strikes. Thirty-four of his FB were 89-90 mph and he touched 91 mph 3 other times. His movement and location of these and his off speed offerings kept Charlotte from squaring up many pitches. Charlotte batters took a lot of pitches in the first two innings. They changed tactics in the middle innings, swinging and fouling off more pitches, with little success.
Eshelman induced 5 swing and misses (2 for Ks on an 89 FB and 75 CB), 19 called strikes (2 for K on a 78 CH and 88 FB), and 14 foul balls. He also got 9 ground outs, 3 pop ups, 3 fly balls, and a line drive to third.
Eshelman’s line was – 7.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 77 pitches, 56 strikes, 89-90, T91 mph.
Victor Arano (2 innings) and Jairo Munoz (1 inning) took over and had to contend with lead off singles in each of their innings. Arano was 91-94 and recorded 3 K. He benefited from a diving catch by Carlos Tocci in center field to save a run in the ninth. Munoz was 91-95 in the tenth and almost escaped unscathed. Cord Sandberg made a layout, diving catch into the left center field gap to save a run. But Carlos Tocci couldn’t catch up to a later drive in to the gap that brought home the game’s only run.
Arano’s line – 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 27 pitches, 18 strikes, 91-94, T95 mph.
Munoz’ line – 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 23 pitches, 15 strikes, 91-95, T 98 mph.
The Threshers’ offense was stymied by the Snow Crabs’ pitching. They ran a successful hit-and-run in the first inning when Tocci hit behind Kingery. They managed to load the bases with a walk, but couldn’t push across a run.
The Threshers only managed 3 singles and a walk the rest of the way.
The box score and recap for the games are here.
Extra Innings –
- Manager Greg Legg was ejected in the second inning for arguing a balk call. He was tossed after the discussion was over and he was almost back to the top step of the dugout. The Threshers have history with this umpire. He called a strike on Dylan Cozens on a 3-1 count for stepping out of the batter’s box. This occurred late in the game, in a key situation, with no warning then or at anytime during the game when players from both sides had been guilty of the same infringement of the box.