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Cannon Baller Chronicle: Ballers Pick Up Two Wins at Home, Due for Important Matchup on Road in Columbia 

August 16, 2022

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – In a series that saw extra innings and close matchups for the majority of the six-game series against the Salem Red Sox, the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers pulled together for two more wins at Atrium Health Ballpark. With the two victories, the Ballers move to 22-20 on the

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – In a series that saw extra innings and close matchups for the majority of the six-game series against the Salem Red Sox, the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers pulled together for two more wins at Atrium Health Ballpark.

With the two victories, the Ballers move to 22-20 on the second half, placed at third place in the Carolina League South Division. Kannapolis is 3.5 games back of the division-leading Charleston RiverDogs.

WIN GOES WILD IN EXTRAS

Kannapolis got off to a good start in Wednesday’s matchup against the Salem Red Sox, tallying an early three runs on a Wilfred Veras home run. The Red Sox rallied for three runs of their own in the fifth, starting a crazy spiral of lead changes and close matchups. Wednesday’s game ended up in extra innings, where Logan Glass crossed the plate in the bottom of the tenth inning to hand Kannapolis their first win of the season.

SUPER SPLASH SUNDAYS ARE FOR DUBS

The Cannon Ballers earned their second win of the series in Sunday’s series finale in come-from-behind fashion. The 4-3 win over Salem is the sixth consecutive Super Splash Sunday victory at Atrium Health Ballpark, with RHP Jared Kelley turning in yet another fantastic outing. The true hero of the ballgame on Sunday turned out to be RHP Liam Jenkins, who entered in the eighth inning and earned a two inning save despite allowed the bases to load for the Red Sox.

FRESH FACES JOIN THE SQUAD

Two of the newest members of the Chicago White Sox joined the roster for the Ballers this past week in INF Jordan Sprinkle and OF Jacob Burke. Kannapolis receives Sprinkle and Burke after the White Sox drafted the pair in the 2022 MLB Draft. Sprinkle, a fourth round pick out of UC Santa-Barbara, appeared in two games last week, going 0-for-8. Burke, an eleventh-round pick from Miami (Fla.) played in three games in total last week, producing immediately with two RBI singles in his Kannapolis debut.

ON TO THE NEXT

The Fireflies, Low-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals, host the Cannon Ballers on the heels of a close series in Myrtle Beach against the Pelicans, taking four of the six games against the Pelicans. Columbia is one of four teams within a game-and-a-half of each other in the race for the Carolina League South Division, with just 24 games remaining in the 2022 season.

Against Kannapolis, Columbia is 3-3 in 2022, splitting their series with Kannapolis in late July at Atrium Health Ballpark. The Fireflies battled for six games with the Ballers, producing some of the best games in the 2022 Carolina League season.

Columbia holds six of the top 30 Royals prospects in LHP Frank Mozzicato (No. 4), RHP Ben Kudrna (No. 6), OF Erick Pena (No. 8), RHP Ben Hernandez (No. 14), C Carter Jensen (No. 15), and RHP Shane Panzini (No. 24).

Two-thirds of the Fireflies rotation is made up of top prospects in Kansas City’s organization, with Mozzicato leading the way. The southpaw from Connecticut tossed his best professional outing against Kannapolis in mid-July, tossing five innings and striking out seven. Kudrna earned a six-inning victory against the Ballers with six strikeouts and two walks. Pena displayed power, but still holds a cool .149 batting average on the season. Hernandez struggled against Kannapolis early but rebounded in a second start for a better outing. Jensen produced a great month of July with a .282 batting average and has begun August batting .353 to become a standout bat for the Fireflies. Finally, Panzini allowed three runs on four hits against Kannapolis in his one start in mid-July.

The Kannapolis Cannon Ballers depart for their next-to-last road trip of the season, a six-game series against the Columbia Fireflies, Low-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals, at Segra Park August 16-21. The Ballers return to Atrium Health Ballpark from August 23-28 for a six-game set with the Carolina Mudcats, Low-A affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers.

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. All Cannon Ballers home games, as well as select road games, will have a free audio broadcast on kcballers.com, with all home games also being broadcasted on MiLB.tv.