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Suns' victory a humbling experience for Shorebirds

July 26, 2005|by BOB PARASILITI

bobp@herald-mail.com

It wasn't the heat that got to the Delmarva Shorebirds.

It was the humility.

The Hagerstown Suns played a humble, down-to-earth game to manufacture a four-run first inning Monday and rode the advantage to steam out a 5-0 victory at Municipal sauna.

"This has been rare," said Hagerstown manager Gene Richards. "The last few games we have started out behind. This is the first time that the other team didn't lead or didn't threaten. That was big."

It was huge for the Suns, whose roster resembles an e-Bay fire sale. Hagerstown assembled the pieces to throttle Delmarva starter Luis Ramirez (7-5) and used the leather to keep it in the bag.

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"(Suns starting pitcher Orlando Rengel) threw well, but we had some great defense," Richards said. "Those young men stopped four doubles and if they didn't, we could have had a long night."

Hagerstown (53-46, 11-18) made it easy on Rengel with the four-run first. Russ Triplett started the rally with a one-out single and Mike Carp drew a two-out walk.

Jesus Flores drove in the first run with a double to left before Corey Coles blew the inning open with his two-run double to right. Coles stole third and came home on catcher Matt Houston's throwing error.

Rengel settled in in the sweltering weather and held Delmarva to five hits while walking one and striking out four. Rafael Cova and Marcelo Perez pitched the final three innings, allowing two hits, to complete the seven-hit shutout.

The Suns picked up an insurance run in the seventh when Derran Watts doubled, took third on Matt Fisher's flyout. Ryan Coultas walked and went started to steal second when Ramirez uncorked a wild pitch to bring home Watts.

Triplett finished with three hits while Flores had two doubles to pace the Suns.

"We needed someone to step up," Richards said. "We need it to happen all the time because we have lost a lot of our complimentary players and we have to scratch by to get wins."

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