GREENSBORO, N.C. – Nick Hernandez finished four outs shy of a no-hitter as Lakewood rolled to their fourth straight win, 9-1 over Greensboro on Sunday afternoon.
Hernandez (3-1) was bidding for the fourth no-hitter in team history, but gave up a solo home run to Chris Wade with two outs in the eighth.
He finished off that inning and has now allowed two earned runs over 28 innings covering his last four starts.
“He pitched a great game today,” said manager Mark Parent. “He challenged hitters all day, and that’s what he’s done all year.”
Jiwan James made two over-the-shoulder catches, one in left-center field and one at the centerfield wall to aid Hernandez, and Parent called those “Willie Mays type catches.”
Offensively, Lakewood scored four runs in the second inning, including a two run single by Sebastian Valle to jump out to a 4-0 lead. Jonathan Singleton homered in the third and Leandro Castro’s two-run double keyed a three-run fourth.
Singleton’s home run was his second and came in just his fourth game with Lakewood. The 2009 eighth-round pick joined the BlueClaws on Thursday.
The BlueClaws (21-16) have now won four games in a row for the third time this year and are five games over .500 for the first time in 2010. Greensboro falls to 16-21.
Greensboro starter Bryan Evans (4-1) gave up eight runs (seven earned) over four innings to take his first loss of the season.
Notebook: Jonathan Villar extended his hitting streak to 10 with a second-inning RBI single.
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