Asheville Tourists’ Season Ends On 5-1 Loss In Championship Series

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The Asheville Tourists hosted the Hickory Crawdads in game three of the SAL Championship Series, facing elimination after going down two games to none.

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The Asheville Tourists’ valiant underdog season came to an end on Thursday night, after the Hickory Crawdads held Asheville’s bats in check for much of the game, and pulled away at the end, winning 5-1 at Asheville’s McCormick Field.

With the win, the Crawdads are the 2015 South Atlantic League champions, winning the best-of-five Championship Series in a clean sweep, three games to none.

Tyler Chatwood started the game for Asheville as he continued his rehab stint in the South Atlantic League as he recovers from elbow surgery, and he was wild on the evening in his three innings of work. In all, he became the pitcher of record after allowing two runs (just one earned) on a hit and three walks over three innings; he struck out two batters, but only threw 22 of his 42 pitches for strikes on the evening.

Even though he left with a 2-0 deficit after three innings, the Tourists got on the board in the bottom of the third to cut that Hickory lead in half, when Shane Hoelscher scored on Josh Fuentes‘ RBI double.

Besides that, though, the Tourists got a lot of hits on the day (12), but no other runs, consistently being held down and unable to score upon putting runners on base.

Jesus Tinoco took over on the mound for Asheville after Chatwood’s three innings, and for nearly six full innings, Tinoco was dominant. But in the top of the ninth, amid two infield singles and questionable defense, Asheville bent to the tune of allowing three more runs — between Tinoco and reliever Jerry Vasto, who let two inherited runners score — and Hickory put the game out of reach.

With the loss, Asheville was unable to complete their goal of back to back South Atlantic League Championships, but the underdogs certainly impressed against a very good Hickory team.

All Colorado Rockies’ minor league affiliates are now done for the season. We’ll have full minor league recaps — plus our end-of-season minor league awards — coming up over the next several weeks.

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