Fort Mill, SC April 8, 2013 – A day after getting postponed due to rain, the Charlotte Knights dropped their 2013 season opener on Friday, April 5 by a score of 5-4 to the Gwinnett Braves at Coolray Field in Lawrenceville, GA. The Knights then played a doubleheader the next day, but didn’t have much luck. The Knights lost both ends of the twin bill on Saturday, losing to Gwinnett 6-4 in game one and 2-1 in game two. Charlotte finished up the series on Sunday with a 6-2 loss to the Braves.
The Knights are now 0-4 on the year after getting swept by the Gwinnett Braves. The Knights were not swept at all last season and went 83-61 on the year. Charlotte won the International League South Division in 2012. They lost in the Governor’s Cup finals to the Pawtucket Red Sox.
The team will look to turn things around as they play a three-game series in Norfolk before Thursday’s home opener.
Early Season Storylines:
Josh Phegley has a hit in all three games he’s played in so far in 2013 and 9 of his last 10 games, dating back to last season. Phegley won the 2012 Rawlings Gold Glove Award and will be given the award during a pre-game ceremony on Friday, April 12 at Knights Stadium. He was also a 2012 International League mid-season All-Star and won the Knights Community Service Award.
Carlos Sanchez is Charlotte’s shortstop and he is ranked as the number three prospect in the organization by Baseball America. Sanchez tied for the Carolina League lead in batting average last season with an impressive .315 mark. The 20-year-old is a defensive whiz in the infield and has some great pop with the bat.
Seth Loman is currently leading the team after four games with six hits, including a home run. Loman was the Birmingham Barons Player of the Year last season after hitting 16 home runs.
Talented outfielder Jordan Danks has returned to the Knights for his fourth-straight season. Before Friday’s season opener, the Texas native last played for the club on August 20 at Durham and extended his on-base streak to 30 games. Danks also had a 16-game hit streak last year – that came to an end in that game against the Bulls. Danks, 26, hit .317 with eight home runs and 30 RBIs for the Knights in 64 games. He is now among the Knights career leaders in a number of offensive categories, including at-bats (2nd), hits (2nd), doubles (T-3rd), and triples (T-2nd).
Spartanburg, SC native Steve Tolleson homered in the first game of the season on Friday. Tolleson, the son of former Major League Wayne Tolleson, is a product of the University of South Carolina. He is one of two Knights players who have a dad that played in the Majors. Tony Pena Jr. (son of Tony Pena) is also on the Knights.
The Knights have two players who played for Clemson. Pitchers Jason Berken and Daniel Moskos both are from the school.
Baseball America Top White Sox Prospects: The Opening Day roster features nine players on the White Sox Top 30 Prospect list, as ranked by Baseball America. Two of the players are on the DL (Leesman & Tekotte). The list is as follows: Carlos Sanchez (3rd), Andre Rienzo (7th), Jared Mitchell (9th), Charlie Leesman (11th), Jhan Carlos Marinez (13th), Blake Tekotte (15th), Brian Omogrosso (17th), Josh Phegley (18th), Simon Castro (20th).
The 2013 season with be the team’s 24th and final season at Knights Stadium in Fort Mill. Single-game tickets, as well as full season and partial season ticket packages, are on-sale now and can be purchased by calling 704-357-8071 ext. 2106 or online at http://www.charlotteknights.com. Season Tickets offer such benefits as a VIP parking pass, invitations to special events, and a unique unused ticket program. They are also the best way to ensure priority selection of seats at BB&T Ballpark. Call a Knights’ representative today for more details! Knights Baseball… Tradition Never Ends.