Billingsley, Guzman Spark Suns Victory

The Dodgers' player and pitcher of the year, Joel Guzman and Chad Billingsley, sparkled as Jacksonville won their first series of the year. Vero Beach scored four in the ninth to beat Lakeland in a battle of division leaders and Columbus lost it's 12th one-run road trip in Charleston 4-3. Las Vegas had the day off.

LAS VEGAS, Nevada--Las Vegas returns to Cashman Field tonight to open an eight-game home stand, against Albuquerque to begin a stretch of 16 of 20 games at home from May 19-June 7.

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -–The Suns finished their first winning road trip in more than a year, holding onto an early lead, beating the Huntsville Stars, 7-4. Joel Guzman's two-run home run gave the Suns a 7-0 lead in a five-run fourth inning. Guzman and Jon Weber each drove in three runs. Weber drilled two doubles, hitting safely in his first three plate appearances. Todd Donovan, breaking out of a 3-for-31 skid, had three hits, including an RBI double. Chad Billingsley (3-2) became the first starter to earn three wins, pitching six innings and giving up two runs, both coming in the sixth. He also went 2-for-3 with two singles. The bullpen had delivered 13.2 consecutive shutout innings until Luis Gonzalez gave up a two-out, two-run triple in the ninth inning. After an off-day today, left-hander Derek Thompson (0-1, 4.04 ERA) is scheduled to face Mississippi in the first game of a three-game homestand at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. Sun Spots: The Suns went 4-2 on the swing, their first winning road trip since April 16-22, 2004. It was the best since August 8-11, 2003, when the Suns took three of four in Greenville. …Tydus Meadows, with a nine-game hitting streak, had the day off. …3B Brian Sprout broke a 1-for-30 streak with a single in the fourth inning. --Joe Block.

LAKELAND, Florida--Vero Beach battered the strong Lakeland bullpen collapse in a 5-4, in a Florida State League battle of division leaders. Trailing 3-1 in the ninth, the Dodgers rallied for four runs against the Tiger closer and became only the second team this season to take a series against Lakeland. Lakeland scored one run in the bottom of the ninth and put the tying run on third and the potential winning run on first. But Vero reliever Mark Alexander earned his team-leading 4th save with a strikeout to end the game. A passed ball on strike three actually forced Alexander to strike out four men in the inning. The Tigers starter allowed only four hits and one run in seven innings. Vero Beach scored its only run off him in the top of the first, when Cory Dunlap singled in Tony Abreu, but the Tigers took a 2-1 lead in the home half of the inning. Vero Beach returns to Holman Stadium tonight for the start of a 8-game homestand against the Tampa Yankees and the Fort Myers Miracle.

CHARLESTON, S.C.--The old one-run game syndrome struck again as Charleston beat Columbus 4-3, handing Columbus their 27th loss of the season in the 40th game and their 12th one-run loss on the road. Homers by 2B Travis Denker and C Juan Apodaca still brought the Fish up one-run short for the second straight night. RHP Javy Guerra (2-3) started and gave up two runs (one earned) in the first inning on a pair of RiverDog sacrifice flies. In the second, Denker's solo blast barely cleared the right-field wall to give the Catfish their first hit and first run. The homer broke a 0-for-16 slump for Denker and was his first HR since April 24th. He co-leads the team in HR with 6. Guerra gave up runs in the third and fifth as the Catfish trailed tonight 4-1 heading into the seventh. RF James Peterson drew a walk and came home on Apodaca's deep blast (#3) over the left-center field wall. The Catfish had the tying run on base in the seventh and the eighth but couldn't produce. The Catfish are now 1-5 on the roadtrip after the loss. The Catfish will face the RiverDogs with RHP Blake Johnson (2-1, 3.82 ERA) on the hill tonight. Johnson has allowed just one run in his last 18.2 innings over three starts, a span of 18.2 IP.

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