Lugbauer’s big day can’t end losing streak on Sunday
PEARL, MS – The Biloxi Shuckers finished off a six-game sweep of the Mississippi Braves on Sunday afternoon at Trustmark Park, coming from behind to win 4-3 in the series finale. Alexander Palma slapped a two-out, two-run single to center in the top of the eighth inning to put the Shuckers on top for good.
The M-Braves partnered with William Carey University on Sunday with the team wearing special puzzle piece jerseys that were auctioned off during the game to raise funds for TEAAM Autism. Each player signed the jerseys. TEAAM is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of Mississippians with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Intellectual Disabilities, Developmental Disabilities, or Specific Learning Disabilities by cultivating and enhancing family and community supports.
Sunday’s loss sends the M-Braves’ losing streak to a season-high eight games, which matches the longest skid during the 2019 season, one shy of the club record.
M-Braves starter Hayden Deal was outstanding in his league-leading 14th start of the season. The left-hander from Maiden, NC, worked 6.0 quality innings, allowing two runs on five hits with one walk and six strikeouts.
The Shuckers scored their two runs against Deal in the top of the first inning when Mitch Longo hit a two-run home run onto the Farm Burea Grill down the right-field line.
The M-Braves answered right back in the bottom of the first inning against Biloxi starter Noah Zavolas. Braden Shewmake collected the first of his three hits with a double after a Trey Harris walk. Then, Drew Lugbauer hit his team-best 12th double to right-center with two outs, scoring Harris and Shewmake to tie the game.
Lugbauer broke the 2-2 tie with his ninth home run of the season to right-center in the bottom of the third inning, again with two outs. Lugbauer finished the day 2-for-4, his second multi-hit game of the series.
Deal finished off his quality start, pushing his total inning in 2021 to 69.0 on the year. Game one starter Odalvi Javier (L, 5-4) took over in the seventh inning and worked a 1-2-3 frame with two strikeouts. With two on and two outs in the eighth inning, Brooks Wilson was summoned from the bullpen. Palma plated Garrett Mitchell and David Fry to put Biloxi up 4-3, his second game-winning hit of the series.
Robbie Hitt (W, 3-2) and Peter Strzelecki combined for a scoreless seventh and eighth inning, and Matt Hardy (S, 5) had a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his third save of the series to seal the Shuckers’ win.
Justin Dean swiped two bases in the loss and pushed his league-leading total to 21 for the season.
The M-Braves will hit the road for a 12-game road trip to Pensacola and Birmingham, beginning Tuesday night at Blue Wahoos Stadium. RHP Victor Vodnik (0-3, 5.49) is scheduled to start for the M-Braves, opposite a to-be-determined starter for the Blue Wahoos. The first pitch is set for 6:35 pm, with coverage on 103.9 WYAB, mississippibraves.com, and MiLB.tv.
The M-Braves will return to Trustmark Park and host the Biloxi Shuckers again, August 10-15. The series will be highlighted by Clunker Car Night and a Cristian Pache bobblehead giveaway. Tickets may be purchased HERE or by calling 888-BRAVES4 or stopping by the Trustmark Park box office Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm.
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