Triple-A Omaha won their series finale over New Orleans with a 5-3 victory Monday afternoon. The Storm Chasers now head to Round Rock and New Orleans for eight games.
With the score tied at 3-3, Omaha scored single runs in the seventh and eighth innings. With two outs in the seventh, Peter O’Brien hit his first home run of the season. In the 8th inning, Garin Cecchini singled in a run (he went 3-for-4).
After starter Eric Skoglund struggled through 4.2 innings, the Omaha bullpen was great. Mark Peterson stranded a runner in the fifth (1.1IP, H, 0R, BB, K). Al Alburquerque picked up the victory, allowing a hit over two scoreless innings. He struck out two. Malcom Culver earned his second save with a scoreless ninth.
The Storm Chasers collected 13 hits, but went just 2-for-12 with runners in scoring position. The top three in the order had seven of the hits. Leadoff hitter Billy Burns went 3-for-5 with a double and a run scored. Ramon Torres and Ryan O’Hearn each had two hits, as Torres scored two runs and O’Hearn drove in a run.
Double-A NW Arkansas won their first game in Corpus Christi, 9-7 in 13 innings.
With the bases loaded and one out in the top of the 13th inning, Zane Evans struck out (he was the only starter without a hit). That brought up Logan Moon, who cleared the bases with a triple.
It was needed, as the Hooks scored a run in the bottom of the inning. Lefty Luis Rico won his first game in Double-A, with both of his outings coming in extra innings (he lost his first game).
Zach Lovvorn got the start for the Naturals and allowed two runs on seven hits and a walk over 5.2 innings. He struck out three. Lovvorn left with a runner on base in the sixth and Reid Redman allowed it to score, along with one of his own. Redman allowed three more in the seventh, though Sam Selman allowed one of those runs to score to tie the game at 7-7. Jake Newberry then pitched three scoreless innings of relief with two strikeouts (29 pitches, 20 for strikes).
Of the Naturals 14 hits, five went for extra bases. Both Samir Duenez and Mauricio Ramos hit their first home runs of the season. Duenez went 3-for-6 with four RBIs, while Ramos had two hits. Alfredo Escalera, Frank Schwindel, and Jack Lopez each had two hits in the win. Escalera hit his first triple and Lopez doubled and stole a base.
High-A Wilmington lost their series opener in Salem, 11-2, ending their three-game winning streak. The Red Sox scored nine runs in the 2nd inning.
Blue Rocks starter Foster Griffin had been stellar in two starts to begin the season, but he was not on Monday night. He looked more like he did in 2016.
After escaping a two on, two out jam in the first, Griffin could not escape in the second. He recorded just one out in the inning, which came on a strikeout, though a run scored on a stolen base and a throwing error by catcher Chase Vallot (his fifth of the season). Griffin allowed three doubles, walked two, and allowed a two-run home run. Over 11 innings prior to tonight, he had not walked a batter (he walked three tonight).
In came lefty Colin Rodgers with two runners on base. He allowed both to score and one of his own on three hits and a walk. From there, Rodgers allowed two more hits and a walk over the next three innings. Richard Lovelady allowed two runs on three hits and a walk over the final three innings.
The Blue Rocks offense was held to six hits, two by third baseman Wander Franco, who tripled for the third time this season.
Low-A Lexington ended their three-game losing streak with a 5-3 victory over Greenville.
The Legends scored all five of their runs via the long ball. Amalani Fukofuka hit a solo shot to lead off the third and Chris DeVito hit a two out grand slam in the fifth. Both players hit their first home runs of the season. Fukofuka went 3-for-4 with two runs scored.
That made a winner of starter Garrett Davila, who allowed three runs on four hits and five walks over six innings. He struck out four. Davila allowed a solo homer in the sixth. Jace Vines earned his first save of the season with three scoreless innings. He allowed a hit and struck out two. Vines also induced four ground outs, throwing 26 of his 38 pitches for strikes.