RiverDogs strike first, but fall to Lakewood in opener
The RiverDogs held a 2-0 lead heading into the sixth inning, but Lakewood flipped it to a BlueClaws lead as Charleston dropped the opener to Lakewood, 3-2, in front of a Tuesday night crowd of 2,898 at Riley Park.
Charleston (13-13) struck first in the third inning. Birthday boy Blake Rutherford doubled to right and advanced to third on a ground out by third baseman Angel Aguilar. Shorstop Hoy Jun Park collected his second hit of the game as he broke his bat for an infield single on the grass and reached with no one covering the bag; Rutherford came in to score to make it 1-0 RiverDogs.
Aguilar made it 2-0 in the fifth inning, cranking his first home run of the year with a no-doubt blast to left field that sailed onto Fishburne street.
That lead didn't last long as Lakewood (14-12) came back in the sixth. Second baseman Daniel Brito led off the inning with a double and catcher Henri Lartigue singled to right to make it a 2-1 ball game. Darick Hall doubled to right center and Lartigue tied things up at two apiece with a single. Hall advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored the go-ahead run for Lakewood on a bouncer that got past the catcher, Donny Sands, for a passed ball.
Charleston starter Freicer Perez threw a season-high five innings pitched, allowing two runs and four hits while striking out four with no walks. Kolton Mahoney (0-2, 0.63) took the loss after surrendering the winning unearned run.
BlueClaws southpaw Bailey Falter (1-1, 4.50) got the win, turning in five innings with seven hits allowed, no walks, and seven strikeouts.
Garrett Mundell struck out a pair in in a scoreless ninth inning for the RiverDogs to lower his ERA to a 0.73 mark.