Alexander snaps Suns' opening skid

June 23, 2002|by BOB PARASILITI

Kevin Alexander says he gets lucky. He just happens to be in the right place at the right time when the Hagerstown Suns need him the most.

Saturday was one of those times. Alexander stroked a one-out single to left off reliever Wes Cooksey to score Branden Florence with the game-winning run in the 11th inning as the Suns salvaged a 5-4 win over the Greensboro Bats.

Alexander, who came the to Suns in late April, has created a role for himself in Hagerstown's lineup because of his ability to make things happen.


"I'm just lucky to get in the spots to make things happen," Alexander said recently. "If you start to hit the ball hard, it will eventually fall in and things will start happening. I'm just happy to get the job done."

Alexander's hit kept the Suns from squandering a 3-0 lead and losing. Greensboro tied the game with single runs in the sixth, seventh and ninth innings and took the lead when Shelly Duncan's hit-and-run single to right off Ryan Meaux allowed Kaazim Summerville to score from first base.

Faced with fumbling one away, Alexander drew a walk to open the 10th off Carlos Artiles, took second on a balk and went to third on a Robbie Meyer single. After a pair of strikeouts, Artiles uncorked a wild pitch to bring home the tying run.

James Gregg (4-0) retired the Bats (2-1) in order in the 11th, to give the Suns (1-2, 35-38) a chance.

Branden Florence, who had four hits in the game, drew a leadoff walk and stole second before Julian Benavidez drew a one-out walk. Alexander made Cooksey's walks hurt.

Anthony Pannone had a quality start for the Suns, allowing the two late runs on six hits in seven innings while striking out eight. Catcher Keith Anderson had three hits in the Suns' 16-hit attack.

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