The Cardinals offense was flowing in outscoring the Mets, 22 to 4, while the club received solid pitching performances from their bullpen.
Thursday, June 20, at Hunter Wright Stadium - Cardinals 9, Mets 3
Brett Wiley gave the Johnson City faithful something to look forward to on opening day at Hunter Wright Stadium.
A three-run blast in the top of the fourth inning by Wiley put exclamation point on the Cardinals divisional win against the Mets, 9-3.
Kingsport jumped on the board early in the contest by scratching out a run in the bottom of the first inning until the Cardinals were able to seize control in the second inning.
Kyle Greishaber made his lone hit of the contest count early in the second inning by spearheading a five-run effort with a base-clearing two RBI triple, scoring Ronnierd Garcia and Rowan Wick - who were aboard on back-to-back walks.
Lance Jeffries drew the third walk off the second inning and was able to sneak into scoring position with the first J.C. stolen base of the season.
Yoenny Gonzalez hit into a fielder's choice late in the inning, bringing across Greishaber from third base and advancing Jeffries to third.
An error at third base during Vaughn Bryan's at-bat would allow Jeffries to race across home plate while Kenneth People-Walls capped off the scoring efforts with a RBI base hit to center field.
Alex Reyes received the starting nod for the Cardinals and lasted until the third inning after allowing the three runs of the evening by the Mets.
Johnson City used three relief pitchers in the game to force a shutout in the final six innings with Anderson Gerdel picking up the first win of the season on the mound with two innings worth of work. Gerdel allowed one hit while fanning two batters after Reyes' mound appearance.
Wiley's homer padded the lead to 8-3 after the end of the fourth and the up-and-coming Cardinal would wrap up the game with his fourth RBI of night on a double in the eighth inning, scoring Gonzalez.
Friday, June 21, at Hunter Wright Stadium - Cardinals 5, Mets 0
A four-run second inning and solid pitching spearheaded Johnson City to a second straight win in Sullivan County.
Vaughn Bryan roped in a base-clearing three RBI triple in the second while Kenny Peoples-Walls tacked on the fourth run with a base hit to center field.
Brett Wiley continued a busy week with his fifth RBI in two games with a RBI double in the ninth inning to cap of the Cardinals' scoring.
Luis Perdomo scored the starting bid on the mound and picked up his first win of the regular season tossing a five-inning shutout, allowing five hits, two walks while striking out four Mets.
Saturday, June 22, at Hunter Wright Stadium - Cardinals 8, Mets 1
The same formula continued during the final game of the series. The offense saw no dip in production with eight runs coming off the bats of five different Cardinals.
Jacob Booden received the starting nod and pitched four innings for a no decision in the contest. Booden did not allow a run while striking out four batters with only one walk.
Nick Lomascolo picked up the win out of the bullpen. The Mets hit a solo home run against Lomascolo, but the Cardinals rebounded back with five strikeouts and holding back the Mets lineup.
Kyle Greishaber (2-4) led the Cardinals offense with two RBI and two runs scored. Justin Ringo and Ronnierd Garcia also tacked on two hits with an RBI each. J.J. Altobelli and Devante Lacy rounded out the scoring with an RBI each for the Cardinals.
Brett Wiley - The Cardinals second baseman has gotten off to a hot start with the team's lone home run and leader in RBI with five. Wiley also has two doubles on the season and a .500 OBP.
Nick Lomascolo - While it is early in the season, Lomascolo's battle in the second game of the season could potentially look to be a momentum booster for the relief pitcher. While having a win on the season, Lomascolo has a 3.00 ERA and leads the team in strikeouts at five.
Vaughn Bryan - A .333 average has Bryan sitting pretty solid in offensive production early in the season and the Cards' outfielder has shown his wheels with a team-leading three stolen bases. Bryan is tied with Kenny People-Walls with a team-high five hits and has three RBI.
There were no changes to the roster during the first series of the season. Be sure to stay up to date with The Cardinal Nation on any news.
Appalachian League (West)
1) Johnson City Cardinals 3-0
2) Elizabethton Twins 2-1
3) Bristol White Sox 1-2
4) Greeneville Astros 1-2
5) Kingsport Mets 0-3
Appalachian League (East)
1) Burlington Royals 3-0
2) Danville Braves 2-0
3) Bluefield Blue Jays 2-1
4) Princeton Rays 0-2
5) Pulaski Mariners 0-3
Glance at the coming week
The Cardinals will begin a key three-game home series against the Danville Braves beginning Sunday at Cardinal Park. Following that series, the Cards will stay in Johnson City to open up a stretch against Appy League West rival, the Bristol White Sox. While Wednesday and Thursday's games against the Bri-Sox will be at Howard Johnson Field, Friday's contest will be hosted at East Tennessee State University's Thomas Stadium. On Saturday, the Cards will travel to Princeton to square off against the Rays.
The East-West showdown between Danville and Johnson City will look to be an interesting clash to begin this week.
Follow Curtis Carden on Twitter: @ERecordSports
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