All quiet as Scrappers lose again

NILES — Eastwood Field was quite calm on Sunday compared to the night before in the second game of a three-game series between the Scrappers and the Hudson Valley Renegades.

With tempers and uniforms being vibrant for nine innings in Saturday night’s game, the home team lost again to HV, this time by a 5-2 score.

Solid pitching was the key for the Renegades as starting pitcher Zack Trageton went 5 2/3 innings, giving up one earned run while striking out three Scrappers.

Mahoning Valley starting pitcher Matt Turner had a solid start as well, but took a no decision.

“I struggle with getting behind the hitters, so that kind of hurt me,” Turner said.

“He competed with everything he had,” Scrappers manager Dennis Malave said about Turner’s sixth start of the season. “It wasn’t his best outing but he gave everything he had.”

Turner exited the game at the end of the fifth inning, giving up one earned run while walking one and striking out five.

The Scrappers got behind early in the first inning as Hudson Valley’s Jacson McGowan hit a sacrifice fly to score Greg Jones who led the game off with a single.

The home team responded in the bottom of the first when Ray Delgado hit a two-out double and scored on George Valera’s double to tie the game at 1-1.

With Turner and Trageton pitching well, the score remained the same through five innings.

The sixth inning is when the Renegades took over as McGowan added another RBI on a ground rule double into the Scrappers bullpen. Beau Brundage followed with an RBI single and the road team opened a 3-1 lead.

Scrappers right hander Maiker Manzanillo was handed his first loss with a rough first inning of relief, and southpaw Steffon Moore was credited with the save.

The loss puts the Scrappers at 14-16. The team has lost eight of its last 11 games. Malave was asked about the club’s relief pitching.

“We’re probably lacking executed pitches early in the count, and that’s giving us trouble staying in the game,” he said.

The series finale tonight against Hudson Valley is marketed — as all Monday games are — as Every Monday Matters, and with Indians veteran relief pitcher Dan Otero making a scheduled rehab assignment with the Scrappers, tonight will really matter to the community. Getting to see an established major league talent like Dan Otero is always exciting for a minor league town like the Mahoning Valley, but Malave is looking at it as another learning opportunity for his young club.

“This a great opportunity for guys to take a closer look at what a major leaguer looks like and how they behave, prepare, and conduct themselves. They can see what needs to be done before you go and compete on the field,” he said.

The entire club can learn from Otero as he makes his way back from a shoulder injury suffered in early June, especially young pitchers like Turner.

“I always try to learn whatever I can whenever someone is throwing a bullpen session,” he said. “No matter who it is I take notes.”

After tonight’s game, the Scrappers head off for a six-game, seven-day road trip to Williamsport and Batavia.