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Newsome helps Suns earn a simple victory

August 05, 2011|By BOB PARASILITI | bobp@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN — It was simple. Brett Newsome was just trying to stay out of trouble.

The Hagerstown Suns first baseman was more concerned with fundamentals than any retribution.

Newsome led off with a single in the fifth inning and scored the tying run in what became a two-run rally on Friday as the Suns notched a crisply played 2-1 victory over Greensboro in a South Atlantic League game at Municipal Stadium.

Newsome had two hits — both off left-handed reliever James Leverton — mainly by sticking to basics. It was something he worked on during his recent stay on the disabled list.

“I was able to take a week off, and other than being a little bored, it allowed me to get back to fundamentals,” Newsome said. “Now I’m trying to keep it simple. I’m going with a simple swing by letting the ball come deep and I’m trying to hit it over the shortstop’s head.

“I’m trying to keep it simple. When you try to do too much, you get yourself in trouble.”

The win kept the Suns (61-49, 21-19 second half) three games behind Hickory in the Northern Division second-half race.

The Suns manufactured their only two runs, starting with Newsome, who led off with a single.  

“They brought on a lefty and Newsome hasn’t faced a lot of lefties,” said Suns manager Brian Daubach. “He battled and hit it up the middle. It’s little things like that that win games.”

Adrian Nieto followed with a hit-and-run single to right to move Newsome to second before a Greensboro error opened the door for the Suns.

With Wade Moore at bat, Grasshoppers catcher Jacob Realmuto tried to catch Newsome napping and fired a pickoff attempt into center field.

“We had a bunt play on and they tried to get me at second when Wade was taking (a pitch),” Newsome said. “It opened things up for us.”

Moore scored Newsome with the tying run by chopping a grounder to short. Nieto scored the go-ahead run on Michael Taylor’s sacrifice fly to right for a 2-1 lead.

“Mike has been playing great,” Daubach said. “He’s been doing great since he moved to leadoff. We hope he can keep it up to the end of the season.”

The two-run inning was just enough to give Hagerstown starter Matt Swynenberg (5-1) the victory. The right-hander, who only recently has been inserted in the starting rotation, gave Hagerstown seven innings, allowing one run on seven hits while striking out three.

His only mistake came in the second inning when Mark Canha led off by lining his 19th home run to left to give the Grasshoppers a 1-0 lead.

“Swynenberg has been great since he has been in the rotation,” Daubach said. “All his starts except one have been really good. He did a great job pitching to contact and getting strikes with his change.”

Greensboro had two other scoring threats, putting runners on third with two outs in the third and fifth innings, but Swynenberg shut the Grasshoppers down.

Greg Holt pitched the final two innings to earn the save.

Leverton came on in the third after Greensboro starter Kyle Winters was lifted after two innings, allowing one hit. Leverton (0-1) went five innings, allowing the two runs on six hits while striking out five.

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