Jacksonville Takes Opener 12-6 Over The Blue Wahoos

June 30, 2014

On Sunday at the Pensacola Blue Wahoos baseball game, fans had lots of fun for the first five innings.

Ryan Wright hit his first Double-A home run, which cleared the left field fence and put Pensacola ahead, 6-5, in the bottom of the fifth inning. It was also the second baseman’s first hit at home, after going hitless during his first five-game homestand at Pensacola. However, he’s hitting .300 (6-20) since then.

However, in Jacksonville’s very next at bat the Suns scored six runs off three Blue Wahoos pitchers to go ahead, 11-6, on their way to a 12-6 victory in the opener of a five-game series at Pensacola Bayfront Stadium. Alfredo Silverio led off the big inning for the Suns with a home run.

The big hitter Sunday, though, for Pensacola was first baseman Marquez Smith. Smith hit a two-run home run, doubled in another run and walked in four at bats. It was Smith’s first home run this season, too, in a Blue Wahoos uniform after getting called up from High-A Bakersfield.

Smith said the homer to deep right center felt good after starting his stint with two hits in his first 18 at bats.

“It’s definitely good to get on the right track,” Smith said. “I was glad today to get some hits.”

Delino DeShields said that he would like to get the same production from Smith that Bakersfield got in the first half of the season. There Smith hit .298 with 15 homers and 67 RBI in 68 games.

“I’m hoping he will produce for us while he’s here,” DeShields said. “He is an older player. It gets tougher when you get older.”

The 29-year-old Smith was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 2007 out of Clemson University and has played 737 games in the minors, including 2,615 at bats. He also has played 14 games in the Major Leagues, including 13 with the Cubs in 2011.

“I’ve been doing it for a long time and been lucky enough to still have a jersey on my back,” said Smith, who was born in Panama City down the coast from Pensacola. “I’m still having fun playing the game, so you can’t beat that.”

The second game of the five-game series with Miami Marlins Double-A affiliate the Jacksonville Suns gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Monday. RHP Jon Moscot (4-6, 2.83) takes the mound for the Wahoos and is scheduled to be opposed by the Suns RHP Jay Rogers (2-2, 4.81).

by Tommy Thrall

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