SAVANNAH, GA – The Asheville Tourists swept a doubleheader from the Savannah Sand Gnats by scores of 9-0 and 2-0 Monday at Historic Grayson Stadium. Asheville (4-1/32-41) pitching held Savannah (1-4/43-31) scoreless for the final 25.1 innings of the five-game series.
Monday began with the teams resuming Sunday's suspended game with Asheville ahead 2-0 to begin the top of the fourth inning. The Tourists added a run in the fourth and two more in the seventh to make the score 5-0 before blowing the game open with four more runs in the ninth for a 9-0 final.
Gnats' shortstop Wilfredo Tovar was 3-3 in game one, accounting for half of the team's six hits.
In game two, Savannah starter Taylor Whitenton and Asheville's Chris Balcom-Miller matched zeros through the first five innings until the Tourists broke through in the sixth. CF Delta Cleary Jr. drew a walk to leadoff the inning and scored on DH Nolan Arenado's double down the left field line. A second run scored on Alex Gregory's fielding error, giving Asheville a 2-0 lead. At that point, with the bases loaded and no outs, Savannah closer Michael Powers recovered: he struck out two, and induced a foul popup to keep the score 2-0 to give the Gnats a chance to mount a comeback.
Whitenton was a tough-luck loser for Savannah, giving up two runs on five hits in five-plus innings. On the other side, Balcom-Miller, tossed Asheville's first complete game shutout of 2010. He struck out six and walked one in the seven inning game.
The Gnats head to Greenville to begin a five-game series Tuesday at 7 pm. RHP Armando Rodriguez (5-5, 2.92) will get the nod for Savannah, taking on the Drive's RHP Ryan Pressly (2-4, 4.34). The broadcast will begin on News/Talk 630 and sandgnats.com at 7pm.