The Harrisonburg Turks came into the week with their backs against the wall and had to fight for their playoff lives. The Turks started the week on a four game winning streak storming back into the playoff picture and then dropped their last two of the week against Charlottesville and Strasburg. Now heading into their last three games they are a game and a half behind the Staunton Braves for fourth and the last playoff spot in the south division.
A huge spark plug this week was Austin Embler, a senior from UNC-Greensboro. Embler has had a season to remember this summer, yet this is his first player of the week honor. Coming into this week Embler was on a slight slump having his batting average dip below .300 for the first time on the season, however this week he came roaring back.
Embler batted .538 on the week and had a on base percentage just under .600, it was .588. In his 13 at bats he struck out only twice and was walked three times. On the week he had one double and a solo shot home run at Charlottesville putting his season total at three. Embler finished the week with two RBIs and three runs. Embler this week was almost a guarantee to get on base and time and time again came up when the team needed it providing a big time spark to start a rally.
The Turks as a team though had a great week on the offensive side. In their six games where they went 4-2, they scored a total of 44 runs, due in large part to a 18 spot they hung up on the Covington Lumberjacks.
Honorable mentions this week go to Paul Castillo, Zach Little and Elian Merejo. Castillo had a huge came at Covington where he had a two home run game and batted six runs in. On the week he had seven RBIs and four walks. Little’s bat came alive this week after a slight slump. Little batted .438 with five RBIs, three stolen bases and one triple. Merejo was a consistent bat in the lineup this week he also had a great batting average at .350 he also had six runs one double and a homerun.
This past week the Turks offense came alive and showed signs of their early season success. They had big time wins over Covington and Winchester that have kept them alive in the playoff push.
The Turks finish their season with one away game and two more home games. The Turks really put their season on the line on Tuesday when they travel to Staunton and take on the Braves who are currently have a game and a half on Harrisonburg. The Braves are in action tonight against the Covington Lumberjacks and if the Braves lose that game, the matchup on Tuesday would be for the four seed and a playoff spot.
The Turks wrap up the season with two home games on Wednesday and Thursday, the 25 and 26 of July, versus the TomSox and Lumberjacks. At this point in the season every game is as important as the last and the team has to win out to have a chance.
A big congratulations to Embler on being named player of the week and being the go-to bat in the is Turks lineup and providing a much needed spark.