By Jerry Del Priore
Fireflies’ righty pitcher Merandy Gonzalez performed his Houdini act against the Augusta GreenJackets (14-34) Wednesday night at Spirit Communications Park.
Gonzalez worked his way out of bases loaded jams in the first inning and stranded two runners on base in the fourth frame en route to a Columbia (27-23) 4-3 win and his seventh victory of the campaign.
The 21-year-old Cotui, Dominican Republic, native surrendered nine hits and two earned runs while whiffing a career-best 10 batters. Gonzalez tossed 98 pitches in six innings of work in the process.
Gonzalez, a former Brooklyn Cyclone, sports an impressive 1.73 ERA with 56 strikeouts in 57.1 frames.
While with the Cyclones in 2016, Gonzalez posted a 6-3 record with a 2.87 ERA and 71 K’s in 69.0 innings in 14 games.