This Day in Indians Minor League History – April 20, 2016 – Julian Merryweather and David Speer pitch combined shutout.
April 20, 2016
The Lynchburg Hillcats entered this Wednesday morning school day affair in Woodbridge, Virginia against the Potomac (now Fredericksburg) Nationals on a roll, to say the least. Not only were they seeking a sweep of Washington’s High-A affiliate, but a sweep of the entire seven-game maiden roadtrip of the new campaign (they had taken four from the Frederick Keys [Orioles] over the weekend. Not bad for a team who had started the season with a mediocre 4-3 homestand. The fact hey racked up yet another victory was hardly surprising. The dominant manner in which they did so, however, was more so,
The boxscore was littered with solid offensive performances, including multi-hit days from DH Yu Chang and 2B Mark Mathias and a three-RBI effort from 1B Bobby Bradley, who increased his season total to only 15 in 14 games played (en route to an eventual 102 RBI season). the real stars of this game, however, were Hillcats starter Julian Merryweather and the lone reliever they needed on the day, David Speer.
Merryweather made it three individual victories in as many starts (a string he would stretch to four contests six days later in Winston-Salem) by throwing 6.2 shutout innings and striking out four while only allowing five baserunners (all on singes). Speer kept the walk column of the Lynchburg pinching boxscore clean and allowed only one more runner (on the game’s only double) while striking out three in 2.1 frames. The P-Nats managed a measly .394 OPS on the day against the Cats’ pitching buzzsaw and the game ended in 2:32 despite Lynchburg scoring seven times on ten hits and six walks. Heck, with the game ending at 1:09 PM, the school groups among the 4,027 in attendance may have gotten to see the whole game.