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Wall’s Record-Tying Leadoff Homer Isn’t Enough in Stripers’ 10-3 Loss at Memphis


By Dave Lezotte

(@davelezotte)


Forrest Wall opened the game with a solo home run to right field – the fifth leadoff clout of his Gwinnett career – but it wasn’t nearly enough as the Stripers (20-21) fell 10-3 to the Memphis Redbirds (21-20) on Wednesday afternoon at AutoZone Park.

 

Decisive Plays:  Wall sent a 1-2 pitch from Memphis starter Zack Thompson into the picnic tables in right field for the leadoff homer (3) in the first inning. He tied Ozzie Albies, who had five leadoff homers from 2016-17, for the Gwinnett career record. Yuli Gurriel followed with an RBI triple in the first to make it 2-0. The Redbirds took a 3-2 lead on a two-run homer from Cesar Prieto in the third off Darius Vines (L, 0-1), then added five more runs in the fifth to go up 9-2. The Stripers cut a 10-2 deficit to 10-3 in the ninth on a solo homer from Phillip Evans (3).

 

Key Contributors: Evans (2-for-4, homer, RBI) and Wall (1-for-4, homer, RBI) combined to drive in two of Gwinnett’s three runs. For the Redbirds, Matt Koperniak finished a triple shy of the cycle (3-for-5, double, homer, game-high 4 RBIs), Jose Fermin had four hits (4-for-5, double, 2 RBIs), and Prieto (2-for-4, homer, 3 RBIs) also had a multi-RBI day to lead the rout.

 

Noteworthy: Vines saw a scoreless inning streak of 12.2 halted on Koperniak’s RBI single in the second inning. Wall extended his on-base streak to a team-best 11 games with the homer. Infielder David Fletcher, pitching for the second time in his professional career in the eighth, struck out the side (first strikeouts of his career).

 

Next Game (Thursday, May 16): Gwinnett at Memphis, 12:05 p.m. ET at AutoZone Park. Broadcast: 11:05 a.m. ET on MyCountry993.com. RHP Taylor Widener (1-2, 4.50 ERA) will start for Gwinnett against RHP Michael McGreevy (2-4, 6.28 ERA) for the Redbirds. 

 

Next Home Game (Tuesday, May 21): Gwinnett vs. Jacksonville, 7:05 p.m. ET at Coolray Field. Broadcast: 6:50 p.m. ET on MyCountry993.com and Bally Live. It's the return of Coolray Family Value Tuesday at Coolray Field, with $2 hot dogs and $1 desserts. 

 

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