Matt Tenuta and Pedro Fernandez combined for a four-hitter, Mauricio Ramos drove in three runs and Frank Schwindel hit his 13th home run of the year as the Lexington Legends rolled past the Hickory Crawdads 9-2 Monday night.
The Legends took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on Ramos’ run-scoring double and Chad Johnson’s sacrifice fly. They added two more in the third, aided by two Hickory errors, and scored one in the fourth inning when Alexis Rivera doubled, moved to third on Dex Kjerstad’s long fly to center field, and scored on a wild pitch.
Schwindel hit a solo homer with one out in the fifth to give the Legends a 6-1 lead. Singles by Ramos and Johnson and a double by Fred Ford produced another fifth-inning run.
The Legends scored their last two runs in the eighth inning. Kevin Kuntz and Alfredo Escalera drew walks to open the inning. Kuntz came home on a single by Kenny Diekroeger, and Escalera later scored on Ramos’ ground out.
Hickory scored in the third inning on single by Luis Marte, a walk to Evan Van Hoosier and a single by Joe Jackson, the great-great-great nephew of the legendary “Shoeless” Joe Jackson.
The Crawdads’ second run came when Travis Demeritte hit his South Atlantic League-leading 18th home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth.
Tenuta (4-7), the Legends’ starter, allowed three hits in five and two-thirds innings and picked up the win. Fernandez earned his first save with three and one-third innings in relief. Demeritte’s homer was the only hit allowed by Fernandez, who struck out four batters and walked none.
Hickory starter Cole Wiper (5-7) was the losing pitcher.
The two teams meet again Tuesday night. Game time is 7 p.m.