By Connor Newcomb
HANOVER, Md. – Coming off another tough one-run loss at Joe Cannon Stadium Wednesday night, the Dodgers head back on the road to take on the red-hot Bethesda Big Train.
The Big Train, who are 7-1 on the season with their only loss coming to first-place Alexandria, are coming off a trilling 5-4 win over the Baltimore Redbirds on Wednesday night. Outfielder Matt Green’s (St. Mary’s College) two-out RBI double in the seventh was the difference in a rematch of the last year’s league championship series.
On Thursday, Bethesda will send LHP Ty Madrigal (St. Mary’s College) to the mound for his second start of the season. In his first appearance, Madrigal allowed two runs on seven hits over five innings while striking out six batters and walking just two.
Baltimore will try to get Madrigal out of the game early, but even if they do, Bethesda has multiple weapons out of the bullpen. RHP Nash Eppard (Bryant) has posted a 2.00 ERA over three appearances while RHP Stephen Schoch (UMBC) leads the league with the 20 strikeouts he has picked up in only 10 innings.
For the Dodgers, RHP Josh Hejka (Johns Hopkins) will most likely make his second start of the season. Hejka posted a scoreless 5.2 innings in his first start of the season and pitched another 2.1 scoreless innings out of the bullpen Monday.
The submarine hurler will have to face off with a Big Train lineup that is loaded with talent. Catcher Logan Driscoll (George Mason) has started all eight games for Bethesda and is hitting .400 with 8 RBI, and he is one of three players on the team who is hitting .400 or better.
Outfielder James Outman (Sacramento State) is batting .450 on the season, and has been one of the most productive hitters in the league, driving in seven runs on just nine hits.
The Dodgers offense will have to continue to produce if they want to keep up with the Big Train. Shortstop Austin James (State College of Florida) has been Baltimore’s hottest hitter and leads the team with 9 RBI on the season.
The game between the Dodgers and Big Train starts at 7:00 p.m. at Shirley Povich Field in Bethesda. It will be the first of four consecutive road games before the Dodgers return home Monday.