by Jordan Lank
The offense was abundant at J.P. Riddle Stadium Thursday night as the Fayetteville SwampDogs defeated the Holly Springs Salamanders 10-4, notching their first victory against the Salamanders this season.
Newcomer Jose Rodriguez starred for the SwampDogs. The righty from St. John's allowed just two runs, which both came in the first. Rodriguez, however, found his groove, cruising through five innings and striking out seven Salamanders along the way.
Austin Bost carried his hot hitting into the victory, coming a triple shy of the cycle. Bost collected five RBIs, capped off with a two-run homer in the third and a two-run single in the fourth.
Brandon Talley drove home three with a home run to straightaway right field to conclude the scoring in a six-run fourth, in which the SwampDogs sent 10 hitters to the plate. Nine reached safely.
All but one SwampDogs starter tallied a hit in the ballgame. Brett Brown notched his first as a SwampDog with a line-drive double off the left field wall.
Max Steele provided two shut-out innings in relief of Rodriguez, striking out three of the eight Holly Springs hitters he faced. Steele now leads the team in strikeouts with 19.
Price Adams locked the door with two-thirds of an inning in the ninth, upping his scoreless outings streak to seven games.
The SwampDogs will take a quick break from the Salamanders with a matchup against the Marlins in Morehead CIty on Friday. Then, they will return to Fayetteville for the first of a back-to-back against Holly Springs on Saturday for the team's annual StriKing Out Cancer Night. The SwampDogs will wear commemorative, one-of-a-kind pink jerseys that are being auctioned off to benefit Friends of the Cancer Center. You can bid on your favorite SwampDogs' jersey on goswampdogs.com.
The Fayetteville SwampDogs are members of the The Coastal Plain League and are in their 19th Summer of fun. The Coastal Plain League is the nation's premier summer collegiate baseball league. Heading into its 23rd season in 2019, the CPL features 16 franchises playing in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. To date, the CPL has had over 1,450 alumni drafted and 122 alums – including 2017 ALCS MVP, 2017 World Series champion, 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander, as well as 2017 NLCS MVP Chris Taylor – make their Major League debut. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat @CPLBaseball.