Karns Spins Gem as Senators Cruise Past Aeros, 12-3
Harrisburg, PA—Harrisburg pitcher Nate Karns and 12 runs is a lethal combination for Eastern League opponents of the Senators. That was certainly the case Thursday night as the Senators dealt the Aeros a 12-3 loss in the opener of a four game series at Metro Bank Park.
Karns (7-3) beat Akron for the second time this year as he worked a season-high eight innings. He allowed just three hits and two runs, with three walks and seven strikeouts. At one point, he retired 16 consecutive Aeros hitters.
The Aeros (47-51) have lost all four games they have played at Metro Bank Park this season, and are now 2-5 against the first-place Senators (55-44). The loss pushed the Aeros to 7 ½ games off the pace in the EL West. Second-place Bowie lost at Richmond, so the Aeros remain only 3 ½ games from the wild card spot.
Harrisburg came out swinging against Aeros starter Paolo Espino, scoring three times in the first inning, and only pouring it on from there. They recorded a season-high 17 hits in the game, 14 of which came off Espino (2-3). Already holding a 6-2 lead, the Senators scored five times in the fourth, highlighted by back-to-back home runs by Justin Bloxom and Jimmy Van Ostrand, to knock Espino from the game.
It was an atypical night for Espino, the winningest pitcher in Aeros history. He allowed 14 hits and 11 earned runs in just three innings. He faced five batters in the fourth without recording an out. It was the most runs and hits against any Aeros starting pitcher this season.
Steven Souza, Jr. was 4-5 in the game with two doubles, a triple, and a homer. Needing a single for the cycle, he struck out looking against Jose Flores in the seventh.
Cedric Hunter drove in Akron’s first two runs with a fielder’s choice grounder in the first and a sacrifice fly in the third. Carlos Moncrief slugged a solo hom run in the ninth inning, his 12th of the season. Francisco Lindor was 1-2, with a single, two walks and two stolen bases.
The Aeros will try and even the series on Friday night at 7:00. RHP Toru Murata (3-4, 4.21) will start for Akron, while Harrisburg is expected to counter with RHP Rob Gilliam (3-3, 4.41). The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1350 AM, and online at www.sportsradio1350.com. For more information, please call the Aeros at 330-253-5151. Follow the team on Twitter @akronaeros or on Facebook at facebook.com/theakronaeros.