Wilmington, N.C.—The Wilson Tobs tried to brave the storm tonight against the Wilmington Sharks, but lost their bearing in the middle innings, eventually losing the game 8-1.
Julio Valdez went four innings for the Tobs, allowing a run in the first inning without the benefit of a hit. He walked the first two batters and was able to strikeout Michael Montville, but on the third strike to Montville, a beautiful changeup, Steven Linkous and Nate Moorhouse pulled off the double steal, putting guys at second and third with the one out. Jake Kusz took advantage of the situation, hitting a sacrifice fly to left field to open up the score.
Thanks to dominant pitching on the mound from Matthew Vogel, the score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the third inning when Montville changed the score with one swing of his bat. After Valdez retired the first two batters with relative ease, his first pitch to Montville was uncorked over the wall in left field for a solo home run, putting the Sharks up 2-0.
The Sharks would add two more in the fifth inning off of T.J. Viracola thanks to five singles. They would tack three more on in their next trip to the plate in the sixth as their first four men reached. Moorhouse doubled home Linkous before Montville was hit by a pitch from Viracola, ending his night. John Allen tried to calm things down, but was unable to, hitting the first batter he faced before inducing a popout to right with the bases loaded. He walked the next batter though ending his night and walking home a run. Head Coach of the Tobs, Justin Hay, turned to Ragan Pope who performed well, getting the next two men out, but one on a sacrifice, ending the inning with a Sharks’ 8-0 lead.
The Tobs scored their lone run of the night on a bases loaded walk by Doug Teegarden in the top of the ninth inning.
Pope did well keeping the Sharks off the board, pitching 1.2 innings while picking up three strikeouts. Carson Jones had one of his best outings of the season, retiring the side in order in the top of the ninth and punching out two Sharks. Julio Valdez (1-3) pitched four innings in the loss, giving up two runs on three hits, but he walked five and struck out two. Matthew Vogel picked up his first win, improving to 1-3. He tore through the Tobs’ lineup in seven shutout innings, relinquishing three hits and three walks and spinning ten strikeouts.
The Tobs drop back down to .500 at 25-25 and 10-12 in the second half of the summer while the Wilmington Sharks improve to 22-29 and 8-14 in the second half.
The Tobs return home tomorrow night for games one and two of a three game in two-night homestand. Tomorrow’s doubleheader is against the Peninsula Pilots on Thirsty Thursday Pink Night at the Park presented by Greenlight, the Pink Ladies of Wilson, Wilson Ortho and Coastal Beverage.
If you haven’t purchased tickets for the game, please call the Tobs office at (252) 291-8627 or visit wilsontobs.com. If you want to see more pictures of the Tobs or for any Tobs related updates be sure to follow us @wilsontobs and like us on facebook www.facebook.com/wilsontobs.
The Coastal Plain League is the nation’s hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 18th season in 2014, the CPL features 14 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. The CPL has had over 1,200 alumni drafted and 72 of those – including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander – make their Major League debut; while another notable alum - Russell Wilson - won Super Bowl XLVIII. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at