Castro Makes his Debut Tonight…

CHARLOTTE KNIGHTS (43-33, 1st – South)
@ ROCHESTER RED WINGS (34-40, 6th – North)
Rochester, NY ~ Frontier Field ~ 7:05 PM (Game 2 of 4-game series)

RHP Simon Castro (6-3, 3.60 w/BIR) @ ROC RHP Steve Hirschfield (0-1, 6.00)

2012 SERIES INFO: The first place Knights and Rochester Red Wings continue their four-game series tonight from Frontier Field in Rochester, NY. After splitting a four-game series at Knights Stadium earlier this season, the two teams faced off in the opening game from Rochester last night. In a pitcher’s duel, it was the Red Wings coming away with a 3-0 win. Rochester held the Knights to just three hits on the evening.

Vs. Rochester: Dan Johnson is hitting .412 with four runs, one double, one home run and three RBIs over five games.

Sorry Charlie: Charlie Leesman (7-5, 2.16) was once again solid on the hill, but was the hard-luck loser on Friday in the opening game of the four-game series. The Ohio native allowed just one run over 5.2 innings pitched and lowered his ERA to 2.16 on the season – the lowest mark in the IL. He also tied a season-high with nine strikeouts.

Team Pitching: Charlotte as a team is second in the IL in ERA with a 3.20 mark. They trail Indianapolis, who holds a 2.94 mark.

Dan Dan, the On-Base Man: Dan Johnson reached base twice in Friday’s 3-0 loss to Rochester and is now first in the IL in on-base percentage with a .424 mark. Johnson has put up an impressive 2012 season – much like his MVP season of 2010. Johnson is currently second in HR (17) and second in RBIs (54). He trails Brad Eldred, who has since moved on to play in Japan.

Three-Game Hit Streak: While it wasn’t a four-hit game, or three-home run game, Conor Jackson added a hit on Friday and now has a hit in three straight games. Since returning from the DL on 6/17, Jackson has a hit in four of six games. He has nine hits over that six-game span, including the three home runs and seven RBIs. He is hitting .500 over his last five games.

Who’s Hot: Tyler Kuhn is hitting .400 (4-10) over his last three games. He has two runs scored and two RBIs over that span. Dallas McPherson is hitting .389 (7-18) with an RBI over his last five games.

Road Warriors: Hector Gimenez has been solid on the road this season. He’s hitting .321 with six home runs and 21 RBIs in 29 road games this season. He has also scored 22 runs, has ripped eight doubles on the road. Dan Johnson has hit 13 of his 17 home runs on the road this season and has 33 of his 54 RBIs on the road this year as well.

You May Be Right: Dan Johnson has enjoyed hitting against right-handers this season and will get another shot at a righty tonight. Johnson is hitting .321 with 15 home runs and 43 RBIs in 168 at-bats against righties this season. Against lefties, Johnson is hitting just .225 with two home runs and 11 RBIs. The Knights will see a lefty on Sunday in game three.

Innings Eater: RHP Charlie Shirek, who is scheduled to make his next start on Monday, is currently the International League leader in innings pitched with 91.0. He leads Rudy Owens of Indianapolis by 0.1 innings. Shirek is also tied for second in the IL in wins with seven. Last night’s starter Charlie Leesman also has seven wins.

Looking Ahead: RHP Zach Stewart will make his 2012 Charlotte Knights debut on Sunday. It will be just his second game as a Knight in his career. Last season, Stewart went 0-1 with a 4.26 ERA in one start. He was 1-2 with a 6.00 ERA with the White Sox this season when he was optioned to Charlotte.

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