Pelicans set season highs in fourth straight July 4th win

TPelihe Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs, clobbered the Carolina Mudcats 16-4 on Saturday night at Five County Stadium. Jeimer Candelario posted his second four-hit game of the week, and Jacob Rogers homered and drove in four in the club’s biggest offensive showing of the year.

Myrtle Beach (45-34, 4-6 second half) scored seven runs in the first and never looked back. The first five hitters reached against starter Max Povse, who lasted just 1/3 of an inning. Eight of the first nine Pelicans reached in the first, and Candelario, Daniel Lockhart, and Trey Martin all smacked two-run doubles in the frame. After the top of the first, Myrtle Beach led it 7-0.

Justin Jackson kept Carolina somewhat close in the first half of the contest, firing clean second and third innings, as Carolina pulled to within four runs. Pelicans starter Jonathan Martinez allowed three straight aboard to load the bases in the second, and, with two outs, second baseman Keith Curcio blooped a triple down the right field line, clearing the bases to make the score 7-3.

That’s the closest the game would get, as the Birds went on to win the game by 12 runs.

Carolina (39-40, 5-5 second half) allowed another run in the fourth, two in both the fifth and sixth innings, and four more in the seventh. Each of the first four pitchers that Carolina put into the ballgame allowed runs, and the first four relievers all allowed at least one inherited runner to score. Designated hitter Sal Giardina pitched the ninth inning, retiring the Pelicans in order in his professional pitching debut.

Candelario had a chance to hit for cycle in his final two at bats but finished a homer shy. He matched his career-high in hits, going 4-for-6 with a double, a triple, three runs scored, and three RBI. Rogers smashed his team-leading tenth homer in the seventh to put the Pelicans ahead 15-4. He is now tied for second in the league in long balls and is second in the circuit with 48 RBI.

Martinez lasted a season-low two innings, surrendering three runs, all earned, on three hits and two walks. He struck out two and hit a batter, taking no decision.

Michael Heesch (5-0) notched his fifth win out of the pen, firing four innings of one-run ball on two hits and a walk. He struck out one Mudcats hitter and also hit a batter. Povse (0-2) took his second loss in his second Carolina League outing.

The Pelicans continue their three-game set with a 6:00 p.m. ET tilt with the Mudcats on Sunday from Five County Stadium. Myrtle Beach sends Daury Torrez (5-5, 4.14 ERA) to the hill, as he will square off against Lucas Sims (2-3, 5.20) in his first start back from the disabled list.

The game can be heard live on 1450 WRNN-AM ESPN Myrtle Beach, on the TuneIn Radio App, and via the MiLB First Pitch App, beginning with the Pregame Show at 5:40 p.m. ET. The game will also air along with live streaming video from the Carolina Mudcats’ video feed on MiLB.tv (subscription required).

The 2015 season marks the 17th season for the Pelicans franchise and first as the Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. For information on tickets to see the Pelicans in 2015, please call (843) 918-6000, e-mail info@myrtlebeachpelicans.com, or visit www.MyrtleBeachPelicans.com.

Photo Credit: Larry Kave – Myrtle Beach Pelicans

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