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Pacheco orders up Captains' feast

April 25, 2006|by BOB PARASILITI

First, Fernando Pacheco helped Hagerstown Suns fans feed their faces.

Then, he knocked the Suns on theirs.

Lake County's first baseman bought a round of hamburgers for the patrons with his second-inning strikeout Monday before forcing the Suns to pay the price with three hits and five RBI to lead the Captains to a 6-3 victory.

"You have to give him credit," Suns manager Frank Cacciatore said. "He did the job. He got up at the right times and he did the job."

Pacheco applied for the position with a clutch-hitting resume. He started with a two-out, two-run double off starter Jeff Landing (0-3) in the fourth inning to give Lake County (11-7) a 2-1 lead after Johnny Drennan prolonged the inning by beating out an infield single to third.

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He added a two-out RBI single off reliever Josh Appell after an intentional walk to Chris Gimenez in the sixth as the Captains built a 4-1 lead and capped it off with a bases-loaded single to center off Marcelo Perez in the eighth to build a five-run lead.

All the circumstances fell before Pacheco after thrilling the crowd with coupons for a local hamburger promotion on the first of Feed-Your-Face promotion at Monday games at the stadium. He was chosen as the "strikeout batter," by providing a freebie feast when he whiffed.

"Landing was throwing a fine game, but that guy's hustle forced him to labor more, and suddenly, they had two runs," Cacciatore said. "Then we were 2-0 on (Giminez) and didn't want to give him a cripple pitch in the situation so we walked him. Pacheco worked Appell to get the count even and then hits a ball that was up for the two RBI."

While Pacheco feasted, the Suns were in a famine.

Lake County starter Albert Vargas (2-1) kept Hagerstown's hitters off balance with his work to the inside of the plate. He allowed one run - which came on Jose Castro's grounder in the third - on three hits while striking out seven.

"They know baseball is baseball," Cacciatore said. "If you are going to be effective, you have to pitch inside, not just throw. He did real well going inside."

The Suns (7-10) tried to make another last-gasp comeback in the ninth. Hector Pellot drove in Jonathan Sanchez with a grounder that bounced off third baseman Nick Petrucci's chest. Then, after loading the bases, got a second run on a wild pitch, but failed to complete the rally with the tying run at the plate as Drew Butera struck out and Rafael Arroyo, who had two hits, flew deep to right-center field to end the game.

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