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September 13, 2017 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Dalbec, Espinal lift Greenville in wild Game 1 victory

9/13 Cup of Coffee: It took 13 innings, but a 17-hit attack and some clutch hitting from Bobby Dalbec (pictured) gave the Greenville Drive a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five South Atlantic League Championship Series.


In a wild, back-and-forth affair, Bobby Dalbec twice provided go-head hits for the Drive in the eighth and 13th innings. An error by Kannapolis provided the crucial insurance run as a wild Joan Martinez was able to survive a pair of wild pitches in the bottom of the 13th to secure the save.
Santiago Espinal went off in the series opener, going an impressive 5 for 7 at the plate with a double, an RBI and three runs scored. Brett Netzer drove in three in a 2-for-4 night with a double and a pair of walks.

Darwinzon Hernandez could not escape the fourth in his game-one start, giving up four runs on five hits while walking two and striking out six. Algenis Martinez provided three key innings of relief in extras to keep the game tied, throwing three one-hit innings. He struck out three and walked none.

Game two of the best-of-five series returns to Kannapolis on Wednesday with Jhonathan Diaz taking the mound for Greenville.

Player of the Night: With a five-hit night, Santiago Espinal is the clear choice for Player of the Night. Espinal had finished the regular season red hot, closing out the campaign on a 12-game hitting streak. The 22-year-old Espinal hit an incredible .404 in August and September.