Raul Fortunato scored for the West Virginia Power in the bottom of the second inning Monday night, barely beating the tag by Delmarva catcher Steel Russell.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A talent like West Virginia Power starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow seems destined for bigger and better things, but for the time being he's putting together one of the best seasons in the team's history and his numbers are reflecting that.Glasnow was his typical dominating self, tossing five innings and giving up two runs (one earned) on one hit and two walks while striking out six as the Power earned a 9-3 win in a series opener over Delmarva Monday night at Appalachian Power Park. A crowd of 2,004 was in attendance.The win moved West Virginia to 22-14 in the second half and back into first place in the South Atlantic League Northern Division after Hagerstown (22-15) lost to Lakewood 5-4 Monday. His six strikeouts brought Glasnow's season total to 128 and moved him ahead of Kyle McPherson into second place in Power history, six behind Will Inman's single-season record of 134 set in 2006.Glasnow's ERA of 2.24 would also rank second behind Inman's 1.71 and ahead of Yovani Gallardo's 2.74 mark in 2005.Maybe all that keeps Glasnow (8-2) in West Virginia is his age (19), as his performances would point to promotion.But Glasnow said the strikeout record would mean a lot to him and that he is in no big rush to ascend through the organization."I'm not in too much of a hurry to leave here," Glasnow said. "I feel like I have a lot of stuff to work on even though I've been doing well. I'm not thinking of going anywhere; I'm just taking it one game at a time, really."To his point, Glasnow was experimenting during Monday's game, working on a steeper release point and trying to take advantage of his 6-foot-7 frame by extending his arm further toward home plate.The result was six groundouts to go along with his punchouts, accounting for 12 of 15 total outs he recorded.
"I've been working a lot with [pitching coach Jeff Johnson] with downward angle and I've been getting really long," Glasnow said. "Before I wasn't using my height to my advantage and we've really been working on that. Today I was really stressing working on that. I've been nervous to bring it to the field because I haven't done it before and today was just a learning experience. 'Don't worry what happens,' and I went out and it felt good."Virtually the only mistake he made all night, other than the two walks, was a fastball that Delmarva leadoff hitter Lucas Herbst deposited over the right-field wall, scoring Gregory Lorenzo, who had reached on an error.That made the score 3-2 at the time after the Power had struck for three runs in the second on an RBI single from Raul Fortunato and a two-run single from Jonathan Schwind.But after Glasnow's final inning in the top of the fifth, the Power scratched across four tallies to pull away.Dilson Herrera had an RBI double followed by an RBI infield single by Walker Gourley. Eric Wood capped the outburst with a two-run single.
Six Power players drove in runs while seven scored and recorded a hit, with Schwind and Herrera each having two. Gourley also stole his 30th base of the season."That always boosts the confidence a little bit while you're in the dugout, so that was nice," Glasnow said of the run support.Luis Rennie (1-3) was tagged with the loss for the Shorebirds (12-25) after yielding seven runs (four earned) in six innings on seven hits and no walks while striking out four.The teams will continue the three-game series at 7:05 tonight. Right-hander Clay Holmes (3-5, 4.48 ERA) will get the start for West Virginia while Delmarva will counter with lefty Matthew Taylor (4-9, 2.91). Reach Ryan Pritt at 304-348-7948 or firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him at twitter.com/RPritt.