August 21, 2007 - Pacific Coast League (PCL) - Albuquerque Isotopes
Scott Seabol launched a first-inning grand slam and Albuquerque (67-62) managed to hold off a late Omaha surge, as the Isotopes completed a four-game sweep of the Royals (65-66), 8-6, in the second half of a doubleheader Tuesday at Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium.
Coupled with a victory in game one on Tuesday, the 'Topes have now won a season-best seven-straight games, and will come home on Wednesday with sole possession of first place in the Pacific Coast League's American Southern Division with less than two weeks remaining in the regular season.
Seabol's blast put an exclamation point on an impressive display of power for the Isotopes in the four-game set with the O-Royals. The grand slam put the 'Topes on top 4-0, and also marked Seabol's 30th home run and 100th RBI of the 2007 season.
In the home half of the inning, the O-Royals fired back, using a pair of solo home runs-shots by Angel Berroa and Craig Brazell-to carve into the Albuquerque lead at 4-2. In the next inning, though, the 'Topes would get those two runs back in a hurry. Joe Borchard knocked home a run with a single through the hole on the right side, then Reggie Abercrombie came around to score one batter later on a Valentino Pascucci ground ball.
Now ahead 6-2, Albuquerque widened the gap in the fourth. Abercrombie chased home a run with a single to left, then Pascucci knocked in a run of his own with an RBI double to push the lead to 8-2.
The O-Royals would threaten, though, in the fifth. Shane Costa drew a bases-loaded walk to make the score 8-3, Berroa knocked a two-run double to pull Omaha to within three, and Costa came around to score on a Justin Huber groundout, as the O-Royals drew to within two at 8-6.
In the seventh and final frame, the O-Royals made another serious threat. Reliever Logan Kensing surrendered a single and two walks, loading the bases with Omaha down to its final out. Erasmo Ramirez would come out of the pen, inducing a Mike Aviles fly out to end the ball game and complete the Albuquerque sweep of the doubleheader and the four-game series.
Albuquerque starter Wes Obermueller worked four-plus innings, allowing six runs on three hits. He walked three and struck out two. Mauro Zarate (2-0) earned the victory, working two scoreless innings. Kensing picked up a hold and Ramirez collected his third save.
The loss fell on Omaha starter John Thomson (0-1), who surrendered eight runs on nine hits over 3.1 innings. Thomson struck out two and didn't walk a batter.
Abercrombie finished the day 3-for-4 with three runs scored and one driven in. Robert Andino collected two hits and two runs scored.
Earlier in the day, the Isotopes rolled to a 5-1 victory over the O-Royals in the make-up of Monday night's postponement.
On Wednesday, the Isotopes return home for a pivotal five-game set with the Memphis Redbirds. Kenny Baugh (6-7, 7.08) takes the ball for the 'Topes in the opener. He'll face Memphis righty Blake Hawksworth (3-13, 5.27). First pitch is set for 6:35 PM at Isotopes Park.
The upcoming homestand includes fireworks, a Breast Cancer Awareness Weekend Pink Jersey Auction, and several giveaways. Tickets can be purchased at Isotopes Park or any Ticketmaster outlet, www.ticketmaster.com, or Ticketmaster by phone 505-883-7800. For more information, visit www.albuquerquebaseball.com or call 505-924-2255.