The 21-year-old left-hander Josh Smoker did well for Hagerstown on Wednesday, pitching five scoreless innings and allowing only four hits while striking out three and walking three.
Smoker induced eight flyouts of the 19 Lakewood batters he faced. The Blue Claws won the game 5-3 over the Suns, but it was a step in the right direction for Smoker.
Hagerstown manager Matt LeCroy says Josh has been working toward consistency all season long.
“He has had some control issues that has got him into trouble. He is a guy that has to mix it up. Josh has to throw his changeup and his curveball and throw them for strikes. That will keep the hitters off balance. As long as he keeps the ball down, he (will be) okay.”
Unfortunately, the Suns bullpen could not hold the 3-0 lead after seven innings. Taylor Jordan and Wanel Vasquez allowed five earned runs in the final two frames to lose the game.