Lexington, Ky. – The Savannah Sand Gnats defeated Lexington Sunday afternoon 11-6, taking three of four from the Legends. Starter Chris Flexen enjoyed his best start of the season while Savannah hitters feasted on the extra-base hit, smacking three doubles, a triple, and three home runs.
In the second inning, RF Victor Cruzado hit his fourth home run of the season to get the Gnats on the board before LF Stefan Sabol doubled and then scored on a C Jeff Glenn sac-fly. Glenn doubled home another run in the fourth to put Savannah up 3-1.
Lexington starter Luis Rico struck out a season-high eight batters, but was lifted for Crawford Simmons to start the sixth. Sabol then hit his sixth home run of the year- a two-out solo shot. Simmons also allowed another three Gnats hitters to score in the seventh.
The Gnats added four insurance runs in ninth off of reliever Andrew Edwards, including 3B Jorge Rivero’s second home run of the season. Rivero had struggled through a 1-for-16 slump, but the La Habana, Cuba, native broke out Sunday, finishing the afternoon 4-for-5 with two runs scored.
For the second time in his eight starts, Gnats pitcher Chris Flexen was able to get through six innings, working around three walks and just four hits. The righthander kept the ball down most of the afternoon, generating nine ground-ball outs.
His only earned runs came on a CF Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado home run in the third and a base-loaded sac-fly by C Chad Johnson in the fifth.
Dario Alvarez earned the three-inning save for the Gnats, allowing four earned runs and six hits. Before Sunday, Alvarez had surrendered just one earned run in his first 27 innings. The lefty also gave up his first home runs Sunday, both to SS Ramon Torres.
Savannah will head to Augusta, Ga., to start a three game set with the GreenJackets Monday. Savannah will send RHP Kevin McGowan (4-2, 2.93 ERA) to the bump. First pitch at Lake Olmstead Stadium is set for 7:00 p.m. Follow all of the action live on News/Talk 630, sandgnats.com and the MiLB First Pitch App.