Central Islip, NY – Tonight the Somerset Patriots (0-0, 89-50) battle the Long Island Ducks (0-0, 80-59) in Game One of the Liberty Division Best-of-Five Series. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. from Bethpage Ballpark. Download today’s comprehensive game notes. The Patriots repeated as Half Title Winners while the Ducks snuck in as a Wild Card. This is just the second time ever these two have squared off in the postseason. The only time prior was the 2013 Championship Series where the Flock outlasted the Patriots 3-2 in the best-of-five set.
Starting Pitching Matchup
Lefty Roy Merritt (8-6, 3.04 ERA) toes the rubber for Somerset while righty hurler John Brownell (12-6, 3.38 ERA) will toss for Long Island. Both are established playoff pitchers. This will be Merritt’s 4th career postseason start for the Patriots. Brownell was the 2013 Atlantic League Championship Series MVP.
History On Horizon?
The Patriots and Ducks have met 305 times with the Patriots leading the all-time series 153-152. This year Somerset was 9-11 against Long Island. 16 of the 20 meetings were decided by three runs or fewer. 10 of the 20 meetings were decided by exactly one run.
Greg Hopkins has hit safely in 16 of his last 18 games where over that span he has 4 HRs, 16 RBI and is hitting .318
The Patriots established an Atlantic League record for most wins in a single half with 50 (1st Half). The previous high was 48 done once by the 2005 Atlantic City Surf and once by the 2013 Sugar Land Skeeters. The Patriots amassed 89 wins on the year good for third most all-time in Atlantic League history.
Thomas Neal hits .201 at home but .358 on the road
Rising To The Occasion
Against Long Island this year reliever Daniel Sattler dominated. 6 innings, 2 hits, 1 run, 9 Ks, 0 BBs.
Same Old Storey
Game 2 starting Pitcher Mickey Storey has been dealing. He is 7-0 with a 1.93 ERA in his last 7 starts and only given up one run in his last 18 innings of work
Eggs Sunny Side Up
Aharon Eggleston had a great bounce back 2015 campaign. After hitting .251 a year ago and not being in this year’s Opening Day lineup, the All-Star hit .289 (7th best in league), 13 HBP (1st), 57 BBs (6th) and .390 OBP (2nd). The elder statesman on the squad hits .452 with RISP and two outs.
Be sure to follow the Patriots on twitter @SOMPatriots for immediate updates. Listen the Patriots play-by-play voice Justin Antweil broadcast the game starting at 6:35 p.m. eastern on 1450 AM WCTC or www.wctcam.com.