Playoff Perspective – Game 2
Before we get into the analysis from Game 2 of the Southern Division Championship Series, check out my interview with Dash shortstop Marcus Semien following Winston’s thrilling 5-3 win.
Now, without further ado, here is Game 2′s analysis.
- When Vinny DiFazio hit a solo homer in the top of the seventh, Myrtle Beach not only withstood a Dash charge, but the Pelicans regained the lead at 3-2. The crowd was deflated, and Myrtle was nine outs away from a huge upset and a series sweep. Then, Winston’s whackers woke up in the bottom of the seventh.
- Courtney Hawkins began the frame with a solo shot that barely cleared the wall in left-center field. The 18-year-old has had a fantastic series so far, with a pair of homers and some good defense in left. He put together a veteran at-bat and muscled a bomb out of BB&T Ballpark.
- Then, the Dash took advantage of a rare rough outing for Myrtle reliever Zach Osborne. With two on and two out, Marcus Semien laced a sinker down the left-field line to push Winston-Salem on top for good. Semien looked great all night long, and he came up with the club’s biggest hit of the season.
- Give Dash hitting coach Gary Ward a ton of credit. With Tommy Thompson unavailable due to an ejection, Ward sent Daniel Wagner to the plate on the back end of Semien’s two-run double. A good throw would have meant an out, but the aggressiveness paid off because the Pelicans could not come up with that throw.
- Semien alluded to it in the interview above, but this Dash team did not seem rattled in the middle innings despite trailing in a game that could have ended the season. The Dash sported a calm confidence, and you saw it in a few key moments. After a bad call robbed the Dash of a run, the Dash did not flinch. When Cyle Hankerd singled home a run in the bottom of the sixth to knot the score at two apiece, all he did was clap his hands once and then settled in for the next play. This team embodies the “cool, calm, collected” saying.
- The Dash still have not suffered a sweep this season, and they have not been swept here at BB&T Ballpark since this beautiful facility opened. Tomorrow night, Winston-Salem hosts its biggest baseball game in years.
- What a stressful, yet fun, game. I can’t wait until Game 3.