Garner Cleveland: Sports

Sports Briefs

Archer makes 2013 MLB debut

Clayton native Chris Archer made his 2013 Major League Baseball debut with his Tampa Bay teammates facing difficult circumstances Saturday afternoon.

The Rays fell to Cleveland 5-0 in a game that started just 10 hours after the two teams finished their Friday night affair. Tampa had just four hits and manager Joe Maddon admitted after the game that his team was “legitimately tired.”

Archer, called up by the Rays on Friday, faced the team that drafted him seven years ago. Since then, the right-hander moved onto the Chicago Cubs organization before being traded to Tampa Bay.

He was welcomed back to the big leagues by 42-year-old Jason Giambi, who hit a two-run home run in the second inning. Archer also gave up a two-run homer to Asdrubal Cabrera in the fifth.

Archer gave up five hits on the day and seven hits in four-plus innings of work.

“My fastball command wasn't really there as consistently as I would've liked it,” Archer told after the game. “If you fall behind a good-hitting team and then leave pitches up, you're going to get banged. A good-hitting team got me on a day when I was a little off.”

Archer was 5-3 with a 3.96 ERA at Triple-A Durham before his call up on June 1. The next open –unannounced as of Monday - spot in the Tampa Bay rotation comes this Friday.

Baker, Elon bow out

Garner’s Jacob Baker pitched well for Elon University in an 11-3 loss to Virginia in the Charlottesville regional of the NCAA Division I Baseball Championships Sunday. Baker worked 2 2/3 innings, allowing a hit and an inherited runner to score.

It was the junior right-hander’s 16th appearance of the season for the Phoenix. He finished the season with an 0-2 record.

Johnston natives play in the NCAAs

Elon eliminated a UNC Wilmington squad that features two Johnston County natives – Dillon Bass and Evan Phillips – with a 6-4 win in the Charlottesville Regional on Sunday afternoon.

Bass, a junior infielder who played at South Johnston High, hit .400 in limited duty for the Seahawks (25 at bats) this season.

Phillips, a freshman right-handed pitcher from Clayton High, was 2-0 with a 4.33 ERA in 12 appearances, including five starts. He worked an inning and two-thirds in UNCW’s 9-5 win over Army on Friday, giving up two hits, walking two and striking out one.

Former South Johnston standout Logan Jernigan and former Smithfield-Selma standout Tate Parrish didn’t appear for N.C. State or North Carolina, respectively, in the first three days of their regional appearances.

Jernigan and the Wolfpack advanced to a Super Regional this coming weekend with a perfect 3-0 weekend.