Saturday night was First Responders' Night at The Swamp and the SwampDogs responded by routing the Morehead City Marlins 14-2. The game was called in the seventh inning due to the new CPL "Mercy Rule" that went into effect this season.
The Marlins scored in the first inning after the leadoff hitter, Colby Johnson singled, went to second on a throwing error and came around to score on a single by Hunter Shepherd. The SwampDogs scored on an RBI single by Alex Kachler, scoring Carson Bartels in the bottom of the inning to knot the game up.
The game remained tied until the third inning. Konnor Piotto doubled to start the inning (Piotto had three hits on the night) and scored on a Pearce Howard (who also had three hits and two walks) single. Kachler doubled to score Howard and then came to score himself when Nathan Dill knocked in his first RBI as a SwampDog to make it 4-1.
The SwampDogs added a run in the fourth to make it 5-1. The Marlins scored a run in the fourth inning to come within three runs. The SwampDogs answered with six in the sixth, and two in the seventh to end the game and their losing streak.
Matt Vonderschmidt started the game for the SwampDogs, going 1.2. He gave up one run (unearned) and two hits. Joe Graziano relieved him in the second inning and pitched a gem. Graziano gave up two hits, one run, one walk and struck out five. He picked up the win.
The SwampDogs wore commemorative First Responders' jerseys that were auctioned off. The proceeds went to Cape Fear Valley Health System. Fans bid online during the week for the jersey(s) of their choice and a silent auction was held during the game for everyone in attendence.
The SwampDogs are off tomorrow. They begin a three game road trip starting on Monday in Macon, Savannah and Lexington County. They return home next Thursday for a double header against the Wilmington Sharks. It's Hire a Vet Day, Dog Day, presented by North Star Vet and Thirstier Thursday. Fans can bring their dogs to watch our dogs and treat themselves to 12 ounce domestic cans for just a buck.
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.