Pelicans get to Wang but Buckel suffers first loss of season

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans scored an early lead off Major League rehabber Chien-Ming Wang, but couldn’t muster enough late inning magic Saturday, falling 4-3 to the Potomac Nationals at Pfitzner Stadium.

The Pelicans struck first Saturday, using three singles in the third to push a run across against Wang, rehabbing with Potomac after injuring his hamstring in Spring Training.  Jake Skole had the biggest of the three hits, smacking a first pitch fastball down the rightfield line to score Josh Richmond for a 1-0 lead.

The advantage was short lived, however.  The Nationals scored three times off Pelicans ace Cody Buckel in the fourth inning.  The first three batters reached and scored, with the first two hitters, Michael Taylor and Justin Bloxom, reaching on infield singles.  Kevein Keyes had the big blast off the centerfield wall to score two runs and a 3-1 lead.

Myrtle Beach battled back late, scoring in the seventh on a double from Cookie Castillo and a single from Santiago Chirino, extending his hitting streak to six games.  The Chirino strike made it a 3-2 game.  The Birds had a chance for the tie in the eighth, but left Jake Skole at third after he had reached with only one out.

Down 3-2, there was still a comeback chance, but Potomac added insurance with an RBI double by Taylor in the bottom of the eighth.  It was Taylor’s league leading ninth double of the season.  Myrtle Beach scored in the top of the ninth to close the gap to 4-3, but, for the second straight inning, left a runner at third base with one out.

Trevor Holder earned the win in relief of Wang.  The Big Leaguer went four innings, allowing one run on four hits, all singles.  Buckel took the loss, allowing three runs on nine hits in six innings.

The Pelicans and Nationals wrap up their series with a rubber match Sunday at 1:05pm.

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