September 8, 2017 - Texas League (TL) - San Antonio Missions
Opportunistic Missions place 'Hounds on the brink
A gutsy effort from starter Joey Lucchesi and a mammoth homer by Franmil Reyes steered San Antonio to a commanding 9-0 win over Midland in Game 3 of the Texas League Division Series Friday night at Security Bank Ballpark.
At the outset of Game 3, it appeared that Midland would get out to an early lead. Lucchesi allowed consecutive one-out singles in the first to Max Schrock and Jermaine Curtis that put runners on the corners. That brought up series star Viosergy Rosa, who had three homers and nine RBI over the first two games in San Antonio. Lucchesi escaped the big threat by getting Rosa to bang into a double play.
Lucchesi allowed a leadoff single in the second to J.P. Sportman. The southpaw quickly erased the threat when he picked off Sportman at first.
San Antonio's offense went hitless through the first two innings against righty Grant Holmes. However, in the third, the Missions would get their first scoring opportunity. Catcher Webster Rivas opened the frame with a double to left center. Auston Bousfield followed by laying down a bunt to third. Curtis fielded the ball and made an accurate throw to first. Unfortunately for Curtis there was nobody covering the base and the ball rolled into right, allowing Rivas to score the game's first run and Bousfield to advance to second. Javier Guerra made the score 2-0 when he followed with a single up the middle.
After Lucchesi worked around a couple of singles in the bottom of the inning, San Antonio added to its lead in the fourth with a Nick Schulz RBI-single to left center.
Holmes (0-1) departed with two on and one out in the fifth. His replacement, Carlos Navas, had a tough first batter to face in Texas League home run champ Franmil Reyes. The powerful outfielder gave the Missions a 6-0 lead when he belted Navas' 2-0 pitch deep over the wall in center.
San Antonio tacked on two more off Navas in the sixth courtesy of a Guerra RBI-triple and a Tatis Jr. sacrifice fly.
Lucchesi (1-0) more than settled down after his early inning struggles, giving the Missions seven strong innings of six-hit ball featuring five strikeouts against just one walk.
Bousfield capped scoring in the seventh with a sacrifice fly to left off Casey Meisner.
T.J. Weir completed the shutout with two innings of relief. The Missions now lead the best-of-five series, 2-1.
San Antonio can wrap up the TLDS with a win over Midland in Game 4 Saturday at Security Bank Ballpark. First pitch is slated for 7:00 PM. Lefty Eric Lauer (4-3, 3.93) will get the ball for the Missions, while the 'Hounds look to extend the series with right-hander Heath Fillmyer (11-5, 3.49).