Carolina falls but Pelicans shine in All-Star Game

PEL-ALLSTARLOGO

For the second straight year, the California League collected a win over the Carolina League in a 9-2 romp of the 2015 Carolina vs. California League All-Star game on Tuesday. For the Carolina League, four Pelicans players were represented at LoanMart Field, including outfielder Mark Zagunis, third baseman Jeimer Candelario, and right-handed pitchers Duane Underwood Jr. and Jonathan Martinez. All four players saw action in the event, where Zagunis and Candelario collected multi-hit games.

The win is the second straight for the California League, and ninth overall since the contest began in 1996. Since the inception of the midsummer contest between the two leagues, the Carolina League’s record is 8-9-2. The first year of the combined All-Star Game between the two squads ended in a 2-2 tie according to the Carolina League media guide.

Zagunis, who was named the Carolina League Offensive Player of the Week on Monday, had the only RBI of the game for the Carolina League, driving in the circuit’s second run of the game with a seventh-inning RBI single. He batted in the lead-off position while manning center field and right field. Zagunis leads the Carolina League with a .320 batting average in 63 games this season, and has collected 19 multi-hit games with the Pelicans. At Tuesday’s All-Star Game, the right-handed batter went 2-for-5 at the plate with two strikeouts. In his final 32 plate appearances of the first half, the Willingboro, New Jersey, native had just one strikeout.

Candelario collected a pair of hits from the sixth spot in the lineup. The switch hitting Pelican, who played the entire game at third base, singled in the fourth inning off of San Jose Giants right-hander Chase Johnson before lining a double in the sixth off of Bakersfield Blaze left-hander Paul Fry.

Underwood Jr., who allowed just one hit, was the second pitcher for the Carolina League. The right-hander appeared in the second inning after a perfect first frame by Wilmington Blue Rocks left-hander Cody Reed. Catcher Alex Burg (High Desert Mavericks) greeted Underwood Jr. with a double to right field, and designated hitter A.J. Reed (Lancaster JetHawks) followed with a walk in the next at-bat, but ball four was a wild pitch and allowed Burg to move to third base. Right fielder Justin Patterson (Modesto Nuts) then grounded into a double play, but knocked in an earned run to tie the game at 1-1.

Martinez appeared in the eighth in relief of Winston-Salem Dash right-hander James Dykstra. The Pelicans’ righty fired one shutout frame, and the only hit he allowed was a lead-off single by A.J. Reed. With one out in the inning, Reed moved to second base on a wild pitch, but Martinez worked out of the inning with a strikeout and a fly out.

 

 

 

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