2018/19 ABL R2 – Adelaide v Melbourne
23 Nov 2018 20:00 AEST
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Melbourne will aim to maintain its red-hot start to the season when it faces fierce rivals Adelaide at West Beach starting Thursday night.
The Aces (4-0) swept Canberra on Opening Weekend, restricting the Cavs to five runs in the process, to record their best start to a Brut Australian Baseball League season.
Melbourne’s pitching – which ranked fifth in the league for runs against last season – was impressive against Canberra.
Three Aces starters – Hayato Takagi, Dushan Ruzic and Jack Enciondo – picked up wins.
Takagi tossed a complete game in Saturday’s seven-inning outing, Ruzic took a perfect game into the sixth and Enciondo worked six scoreless frames on Sunday.
Melbourne’s offence came up with timely hits and was led by Luke Hughes (two homers, five RBI), Garrison Schwartz (five hits, three RBI) and Jake Romanski (five hits including walk-off single in game one).
Adelaide (1-3) averaged 2.5 runs per game in a 3-1 series defeat to Brisbane at One Hub Stadium powered by Optus.
The Bite showed improvement from 12 months ago but struggled on the mound in a crucial doubleheader on Saturday.
Adelaide dropped a pair of 7-1 ballgames with Greg Mosel and Michael Gahan having tough outings.
The Bite were working from behind early and could not muster enough offence to get back into either contest.
Adelaide will be hoping to stem the flow of early runs against Melbourne this weekend, especially if the Aces’ starters are as stingy as Opening Weekend.