05/09/06 — Mudcats fall at Jacksonville

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Mudcats fall at Jacksonville

Published in Sports on May 9, 2006 2:12 PM

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Matt Kemp hit a grand slam while Justin Ruggiano belted two solo homers as Jacksonville crushed Carolina 9-1 at the Baseball Grounds on Monday night.

Kemp's slam occurred against Anibal Sanchez (2-3) in the third inning to crack a 0-0 game. Ruggiano hit his two homers to left field -- one against Sanchez in the fourth, and the other off reliever Scott Tyler in the seventh.

The Suns (18-14) were picked up by reliever Carlos Alvarez (3-0), who entered due to an injury to Jacksonville starter Justin Orenduff, who was forced out of the game two batters into the second inning with elbow soreness.

Alvarez extinguished the trouble in that inning, then worked six frames, allowing only an Edgar Gonzalez home run in the seventh inning. Alvarez struck out eight hitters for the win.

The Mudcats (14-18) saw their season-tying three game winning streak snapped. The game was delayed an hour and 27 minutes from the original start time due to rain, which recurred in the third and fourth innings, but not hard enough to halt play.

One day after knocking out a season-high 17 hits, the Mudcats were checked on just five.

Sanchez suffered the loss allowing five runs over four innings, permitting four hits and two walks, striking out two.

Matt Blank made his Mudcats debut, allowing a run on two hits in the sixth inning, followed by Tyler, who yielded three runs over two innings. Matt Yourkin pitched a shutout eighth.

James Russ (2-1, 2.55) starts today at 7:05 p.m. against Heath Totten (2-1, 3.57) at the Baseball Grounds.