KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) — After opening the season on the road last week, the Down East Wood Ducks were back in town for their home opener.
The Wood Ducks hosted the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers Tuesday at Grainger Stadium in their first home game of the season, dropping a 7-2 decision.
Despite the loss, 1,613 fans showed up for the first home game of the season. It’s the first of many chances not only for the fans to see the team play but for the city to enjoy the benefits the program brings, from an economic to entertainment standpoint.
It was an early pitching duel between Kohl Simas of the Cannon Ballers (4-0) and Gavin Collyer of the Wood Ducks (0-4). The Woodies scored first with Alejandro Osuna reaching base on a single, advancing to second on a balk, stealing third base and scoring on an errant throw from the catcher in the bottom of the third.
Kannapolis responded with a monster inning, where they scored six runs on four consecutive hits, paired with a couple walks to take the lead.
Down East tallied up one more run in the bottom of the fourth with a leadoff double by Maximo Acosta and a RBI double from Yenci Pena to drive Acosta in, but was shut out the rest of the game by Cannon Baller pitching.
The Wood Ducks and Cannon Ballers continue their series Wednesday with the first pitch set at 7 p.m. at Grainger Stadium.
Fans can purchase tickets on woodducksbaseball.com, by calling the Wood Ducks Team Offices at (252) 686-5164 or in the Wood Ducks Team Offices located at Grainger Stadium (Mon-Fri – 9am – 4pm). Make sure to follow your Down East Wood Ducks on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook so you don’t miss anything.
Down East dropped three games at the Carolina Mudcats in Zebulon last weekend to start the minor league baseball season.
This marks the fifth season the team has been in Kinston. After a five-year hiatus from minor league baseball, the current parent team of the Texas Rangers arrived in 2017. The program has actually been back in Kinsto for six years. However, the 2020 season was canceled due to COVID-19.
With no COVID-19 restrictions, the Wood Ducks are welcoming all fans to the park. WNCT was the sponsor and held its newscasts there. A fireworks show was also held after Tuesday’s game.