Chasers Come Back for 8-7 Win over Grizzlies
Storm Chasers first baseman Ryan O'Hearn smashed three hits, including two doubles, designated hitter Samir Duenez homered and the bullpen duo of Ben Lively and Gabe Speier combined for five-plus scoreless innings in Omaha's 8-7 comeback victory over the Fresno Grizzlies on Saturday night at at Chukchansi Park.
Both teams traded a pair of tallies in the second frame, with the Storm Chasers striking first courtesy of Duenez's two-run shot. Fresno two innings later, however, would plate five runs to grab a 7-2 advantage, highlighted by Taylor Gushue's two-run homer. Omaha would immediately answer, though, via a four-run fifth inning that included O'Hearn's two-run double to right, cutting the deficit to one. The Storm Chasers would then take advantage of two Grizzlies miscues to take the lead for good, with Elier Hernandez scoring on a passed ball and O'Hearn coming across on an error.
O'Hearn (3-5, R, 2 2B, 2 RBI) and SS Erick Mejia (3-5, R, RBI) each posted a game-high three hits, with Fresno CF Andrew Stevenson (2-5) and RF Brandon Snyder (2-4, 2 R) adding multi-hit efforts. O'Hearn's big game came after being activated to Omaha's roster prior to the contest after being optioned to the Storm Chasers from Kansas City.
Neither team's starting pitcher, Omaha's Foster Griffin (3.2 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 2 BB, 2 K) nor Fresno's Kevin McGowan (5.0 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, 3 K) factored in the final decisions. Lively (4.1 IP, 3 H, 3 K) and Speier (1.0 IP, H, K) joined forces for 5.1 excellent frames of support, with the former earning his fourth win and the latter notching his first Triple-A save. Grizzlies reliever Scott Copeland (2.0 IP, H, R, 3 K) suffered the defeat.
The two teams are set to meet again on Sunday evening, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05pm CT. RHP Scott Blewett (5-5, 6.03) is anticipated to get the nod for the Storm Chasers, while RHP Paolo Espino (6-2, 5.30) is slated to start for the Grizzlies.
Following their seven-game road trip, Omaha returns to Werner Park to begin a four-game homestand versus the San Antonio Missions on Thursday, June 20. First pitch of the series opener is scheduled for 7:05pm CT.
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