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Cannon Baller Chronicle: Week 17

August 31, 2021

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. –The Kannapolis Cannon Ballers have completed week 17 of the 2021 season, rebounding from a difficult start to the 12-game homestand to split a six-game set with the Lynchburg Hillcats. The Ballers saw offensive highs and lows all week, exploding for a 10-run inning in Friday’s win before

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. –The Kannapolis Cannon Ballers have completed week 17 of the 2021 season, rebounding from a difficult start to the 12-game homestand to split a six-game set with the Lynchburg Hillcats. The Ballers saw offensive highs and lows all week, exploding for a 10-run inning in Friday’s win before falling 15-0 Sunday. Here are some of the highs from the week against the Hillcats:

(All stats are reflective of games from 8/24 to 8/29)

RHP Drew Dalquist:

0-0, 1.93 ERA, 4.2 IP, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

Dalquist had quite possibly the easiest night of any Cannon Baller starter in 2021. Kannapolis put up 10 runs in the first inning, allowing the Californian righty to relax through his outing. Dalquist’s five punchouts and allowance of just five hits proved to be effective in helping the Ballers hold onto their largest lead of the season at home.

RHP Zach Cable:

0-0, 3.00 ERA, 3.0 IP, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K

Cable joined the Ballers bullpen on August 23 after being signed shortly following the 2021 MLB First-Year Player Draft. The righty from Oklahoma State uses his high-90s fastball and devasting splitter to fool hitters. In his first two outings in Kannapolis, Cable fired six punchouts, notching the save on Thursday night and allowing just the one run to a heavy-hitting Lynchburg offense on Sunday.

C Adam Hackenberg:

9-20, .450, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R, 1 BB

Making it in the Cannon Baller Chronicle for the second week in a row is a rare feat. Finding Hackenberg on-base this past week against Lynchburg was not a rare feat as the former Clemson backstop tallied nine hits in five games. Hackenberg continued his early success at the plate all week, holding an active four-game hit streak and accumulating a 4-5 day at the plate on Friday.

INF Bryan Ramos:

8-24, .333, 2 2B, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 5 R, 2 BB

After not tallying a hit in 10 games, Ramos flipped a switch and gathered eight hits in his next four games, including two-straight games with three hits. The Cuban infielder’s biggest night came to fruition on Friday night, going 3-5 with nine total bases, two home runs, and four RBIs.

LOOKING AHEAD:

*08/31-09/05 *

Down East Wood Ducks (2nd Low-A East Central Division, 60-42)

The Wood Ducks, Low-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers, host Kannapolis just two weeks after visiting Atrium Health Ballpark, where the Woodies are 11-1 overall. At Grainger Stadium in Kinston, Down East is 26-22, well below their 34-20 ledger on the road. Most recently, the Wood Ducks split a series at home against the Fayetteville Woodpeckers, losing Sunday’s game to fall one game behind the Carolina Mudcats, who currently are in first place in the Low-A East Central division.

After the mid-season update to the MLB Pipeline prospect lists, the Wood Ducks now hold four of the top 30 prospects in the Rangers organization on their roster in IF Luisangel Acuna (No.8), OF Evan Carter (No.9), RHP Tekoah Roby (No.25), and RHP Owen White (No.29).

Acuna’s .182 batting line last week against Fayetteville is saved by a homer and 2 RBIs on Saturday night. The brother of Atlanta Braves all-star OF Ronald Acuna Jr. has shown a decent amount of talent in 2021, batting .262 with team-high tallies of nine HRs and 57 RBIs. Both Carter and Roby are currently listed on the injured list, with Carter not playing since June 13 and Roby since June 11. White suffered a broken hand during the first week of the season, returning to make four starts in the month of August. The China Grove, N.C. native went 0-1 with a 4.91 ERA in 12.0 innings for the Wood Ducks, accumulating 17 punchouts along the way.

Acuna is currently the main leader on offense for Down East, with most of the roster being shaken up from promotions to High-A Hickory. INF Thomas Saggese is tied for the lead in home runs with Acuna at nine, however the 2020 5th round pick is currently at just 33 RBIs in 62 games. INFs Keyber Rodriguez and Cristian Inoa have stepped up with 54 and 42 RBIs respectively, OF Daniel Mateo is first on the team in batting average at .341. Speedy OF Jayce Easley is first in all of Low-A East with 62 stolen bases.

On the mound, RHP Nick Krauth powered through nine innings against the Woodpeckers on Saturday, allowing one hit and striking out nine in the victory. The former UConn Husky delivered 102 pitches and walked two in only the second nine inning complete game in all of Low-A East in 2021. RHP Mason Englert leads the team in wins with 6, boasting a 4.46 ERA in 16 starts as well as a statistical complete game. RHP Gavin Collyer has silently had a fantastic year for Down East, notching a 2-0 record with a 3.63 ERA. In four starts against Kannapolis, Collyer has 13 punchouts. Out of the bullpen, RHP Eudrys Manon and RHP Marc Church are currently tied for the lead in saves with three, though Church is listed on the injured list currently. RHP Teodoro Ortega has one save in 17 games, tallying a 3-1 record with a 2.91 ERA.

The Kannapolis Cannon Ballers face off against the Down East Wood Ducks, Low-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers in Kinston, N.C. from August 31-September 5. The Ballers return home for the final homestand of the year September 7-12 against the Fayetteville Woodpeckers, Low-A affiliate of the Houston Astros.

Tickets can be purchased for any upcoming home games at kcballers.com or at the F&M Bank Box Office located at Atrium Health Ballpark. Fans can also keep up with the action on the team’s social media outlets, with live in-game updates being provided on Twitter at @kcannonballers.