West Virginia pulled ahead for good in the 12th inning, beating Hagerstown, 7-6. The Power lost Jordan Luplow and Jeff Roy both to apparent arm injuries during the game.
Elvis Escobar went 4-for-6, and Taylor Gushue and Michael Suchy had two hits each. Kawika Emsley-Pai and Gushue cracked RBI doubles in the 12th to give the Power the final lead.
Luplow, the Pirates' 2014 third-round draft pick, had a rough night. A natural outfielder, he was playing third base due to a roster logjam, and he made three errors. The last of which was a wild throw on which he seemed to tweak his right arm, and he left the game.
Roy's injury came on a fantastic diving catch in Hagerstown's big left field. He appeared to be in quite a bit of pain at first, eventually walking off the field holding his right arm, too. A high-speed, low-power guy, Roy has gotten off to a nice start, slashing .288/.358/.305 with nine steals to just one caught stealing.
Colten Brewer made his second start of the season after missing all of 2014. He allowed a run on four hits with a strikeout and a walk.
Dovydas Neverauskas pitched the next four innings in relief, blowing two leads. He gave up a two-run home run -- and not a cheap one -- in the eighth inning. Escobar scored on a wile pitch and Tito Polo doubled home Chase Simpson to restore West Virginia's two-run lead in the top of the ninth, but it evaporated in a disastrous bottom of the inning.
Hagerstown got two hits to start the inning, Cole Tucker couldn't handle a possible double play ball, and Neverauskas threw the ball away on a sacrifice bunt attempt. The Power were charged with five errors on the night.
Sam Street held on in the bottom of the 12th, picking up the win in three innings of work.
A couple more observations:
-- Cole Tucker really fits the bill of a kid that just loves to play baseball. He has that infectious energy. He was bouncing around the field, singing along to songs playing on the PA during warmpus. It's not an act -- the dude is excited to be out there.
He's so dang lanky, his actions at short look a bit goofy sometimes, but he moves well and generally looked the part of a solid shortstop prospect in my untrained eyes.
-- Michael Suchy is a tank. He hit a couple balls hard, including an RBI double in the sixth. He has some power potential.
From the rest of the system:
-- Indianapolis lost to Norfolk, 2-1. Elias Diaz went 2-for-3 with a walk and Pedro Florimon doubled. Matt Benedict pitched five innings, allowing two runs on four hits with two strikeouts and a walk. In his first appearance back with the Indians, Bobby LaFromboise gave up two hits in two-thirds of an inning.
-- Altoona's six-game winning streak ended with a 2-1, 13-inning loss to Akron. Max Moroff's 30-game on-base streak also ended with an 0-for-5, two-strikeout night. A pet project of mine, Sebastian Valle, went 2-for-5 with an RBI double. Starter Chad Kuhl went six innings with five strikeouts, four walks and four hits.
-- Luis Heredia lasted just two-thirds of an inning in his first start of the season as Bradenton lost to Palm Beach, 8-6, in 11 innings. Heredia allowed five runs on three hits. He struck out none and walked two. Wyatt Mathisen went 3-for-4, Erich Weiss went 3-for-5 and Justin Maffei, JaCoby Jones and Jin-De Jhang had two hits each. Jones, Jose Osuna and Edwin Espinal each doubled. Clario Perez had eight strikeouts, one walk and two hits in five shutout innings and Brett McKinney had three strikeouts in three scoreless innings to settle the game down. Henry Hirsch ended up taking the loss.