In the finale of a five-game series at Joe Davis Stadium, the Huntsville Stars were shutout by the Jacksonville Suns 1-0 on Sunday evening.
The only run of the game came in the second inning, where the Suns took the lead for good without even recording a hit. To begin the frame, Stars starting pitcher Arcenio Leon hit right fielder Kyle Jensen and walked third baseman Zack Cox. After Leon struck out left fielder Jake Smolinski, the 26-year-old righty threw two wild pitches in consecutive at-bats first baseman Mark Canha and shortstop Chris Gutierrez, the second of which allowed Jensen to score the games’ only run.
While giving up the only run and taking the hard-pressed loss to fall to 0-1 on the year, Leon pitched very well on Sunday. In just his second start since 2009, the former Astros farmhand gave up just two hits over 5.1 innings pitched while striking out six batters. Leon also left the game in the sixth inning with a blister his throwing hand after walking his fourth batter of the game.
Unfortunately for Leon, the Stars offense was unable to muster up any sort of run support, despite out-hitting the Suns by a 6-4 margin. The Huntsville offense left a season-high 11 runners on base, including seven of them that were in scoring position at the time the inning ended.
Leading the way for Huntsville on offense was third basemen Jeff Bianchi, who went 2-for-2 with two singles during his second rehab appearance with the Stars in as many days. Bianchi, who has been on the Brewers disabled list since March 27th with a hip injury, is now 3-for-4 with three singles and a RBI in the last two games with Huntsville.
In addition to Bianchi, first basemen Jason Rogers, right fielder Brock Kjeldgaard, shortstop Hector Gomez and pinch-hitter Rene Tosoni each added a hit apiece.
Besides Leon, Stars relievers R.J Seidel and Eric Marzec combined to shut down the Suns through the last 3.2 innings of the game, giving up no runs and just two hits over that span.
The loss for the Stars was their fourth in a row, putting them at an even .500 record (5-5) through the first ten games of the season.
On Monday, the Stars will welcome the Tennessee Smokies into town for five more games at Joe Davis Stadium. Huntsville will try to snap their four-game skid by sending RHP Jimmy Nelson (2-0, 1.64 ERA) to the bump to square off against Smokies RHP Dallas Beeler (0-2, 7.46 ERA). First pitch is at 6:43 PM.
Courtesy: Stars Media Relations