Anatomy of a Blowout
After dropping four straight games at the hands of the Generals, the Blue Wahoos desperately needed a pick-me-up. The Fish sprinted out of the gate to start the second half, spending every game before the Jackson set at .500 or better, but soon found themselves in the red.
Looking back at the final bout with Montgomery, it’s clear that the Biscuits were that pick-me-up.
Press releases provide the basic information: thirty-one runs on fifty-two hits, a .308 batting average in five games, and a franchise record for runs. But consider these stats:
- All three marks (runs, hits, and average) were season highs across a series for the Wahoos.
- Pensacola managed only forty knocks in the first eight games of July before the Montgomery bout.
- The road trip marked the first time this month that the Wahoos smacked ten hits or more. And the second…and third…and fourth.
- In eighty-nine games, the Fish batted above .300 in just eleven games. The four-game series victory — the first of the 2013 campaign — added another quartet’s worth.
- The team average jumped five points between July 8 to 14, from .221 to .226. The bounce was the biggest of the Southern League, beating Tennessee by three points. On the flip side, the Generals dropped six points after falling in a major sweep to the Smokies.
As much of a team effort as it takes to mount a five-game comeback, the Biscuits were boosters to a handful of players as well. Here’s how a few Fish improved after the series victory:
Corey Wimberly: .215 to .279
One advantage the Wahoos possessed at Riverwalk Stadium was the use of the designated hitter; Tampa Bay is an American League team, and those rules trump all others when an A.L. squad comes to town. Delino DeShields made the right choice with Wimberly, who slashed ten hits on the back of four multi-hit games.
Travis Mattair: .212 to .232
The Moose broke loose without a single long ball. After recording a 3-for-18 line in his last six games, Mattair tied a season high with three hits on July 11 and stretched his hitting streak to six games. He was the only player to dash Victor Mateo’s gem on the back half of Saturday’s twin bill.
Tucker Barnhart: .257 to .271
The backstop was all-or-nothing against the Biscuits, slapping eight hits against a lacking staff. In addition to extending his hitting streak to seven games, Barnhart racked up a .421/.474/.632 line during his four games behind the plate.
Brodie Greene: .218 to .229
If any player needed a breath of fresh air, Greene was the one. The second baseman was just 3-for-25 in ten games entering Montgomery, but batted .438 with three nights of two-hit ball to turbo-charge his average.
Donald Lutz: .219 to .230
The German product had slowed after his hot return to Pensacola, batting 1-for-19 in six games before hitting the road. A trio of two-hit games, punctuated by three doubles, brought the slugger out of the funk.
Ryan LaMarre: .220 to .226
As if the Hitter of the Week title wasn’t enough, consider this final tidbit. The center fielder entered Montgomery with five home runs and twenty-one runs batted in. He left with a career-high eight dingers (a 60% increase) and twenty-nine RBI (28%).
The Blue Wahoos go back to work tomorrow as they take on the struggling Huntsville Stars. However, a few players will take the field tonight with the Southern League All-Star Game live from the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. Follow all of the action on Twitter tonight as we cover the action from @wahoosblog.