Richmond, VA — By the time Richmond batted in the second inning Sunday against the Akron Aeros, every Flying Squirrels batter already had a hit. That's the type of day it was for the Aeros, who dropped a 15-7 decision at The Diamond.
After falling behind 1-0, Richmond scored six times in the first inning, pounding out eight hits off starter Toru Murata (3-4) in the opening inning. They kept a foot on the gas pedal all afternoon, and went on to record 15 runs on the day, which is the most given up by the Aeros in a game all season.
After assuming a 6-1 lead, the Squirrels added to it with three more in the second inning to chase Murata. It was his shortest outing of the season, and allowed 11 hits and nine earned runs. In fact, its only the second time all season that Murata failed to make it at least five innings, and it was his first loss since May 26th.
The Aeros (43-46) tried to stay with the Squirrels, pulling to within 10-7. In the third, catcher Jake Lowery clubbed a two-run homer, his fifth of the season and second of the series. In the fourth, Jesus Aguilar drove in a run with a single, Carlos Moncrief added an RBI double, and Chris Wallace chipped in a two-run single. All seven runs the Aeros scored came off Squirrels starter Jack Snodgrass, who didn't make it out of the fourth.
Richmond reliever Drew Bowlin (1-0), however, came in and poured cold water on any thoughts the Aeros harbored about coming back all the way. He retired the next 11 hitters and worked 4 1/3 innings to earn his first Double-A win. Meanwhile, the Squirrels touched up reliever Cole Cook for five runs, three of which came on a three-run homer by Adam Duvall in the fifth, to push the Squirrels lead back to a daunting, 14-7.
It was the end of a four-game winning streak for the Aeros, who now stand at 4-3 on the road trip with the wrap-up coming on Monday afternoon. Richmond (42-46) snapped a three-game losing streak, all against Akron.
Jose Ramirez had his second consecutive three-hit game for the Aeros, raising his average to .264. He also swiped his 31st base of the season. The Aeros single-season record for stolen bases is 49, set by Jose Constanza in 2009. Tyler Holt was 1-5, to extend his hitting streak to 10 games, a personal-high for him this season.
The Aeros and Flying Squirrels will play the fifth and final game of the series on Monday afternoon at 12:05. LHP Matt Packer (6-5, 2.56) will get the ball for Akron, and LHP Carlos Teller (1-3, 4.71) will start for Richmond.