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 Tulsa Drillers

Drillers Lose in Battle of Top Pitching Prospects

July 28, 2023 - Texas League (TL)
Tulsa Drillers News Release

Tulsa Drillers' Hamlet Marte in action
Tulsa Drillers' Hamlet Marte in action
(Tulsa Drillers, Credit: Rich Crimi)

TULSA, OK- The Tulsa Drillers struggles in the month of July continued Friday night in the fourth game of a six-game series against the Springfield Cardinals. Two top pitching prospects, Nick Frasso and Tink Hence, squared off on the mound in a highly anticipated matchup, and Hence and the Cardinals finished on top in a 7-2 loss for the Drillers.

The Drillers entered the game without three key members of their roster. Earlier in the day, it was announced that Nick Nastrini and Jordan Leasure had been traded by the Los Angeles Dodgers to the Chicago White Sox, and Eddys Leonard had been designated for assignment by the Dodgers.

A recent trend continued in Friday's meeting as the Drillers again fell behind early when the Cardinals scored their first run in the second inning on an RBI single from Arquimedes Gamboa.

Mike Antico hit his 12th home run of the season in the third inning to increase the Springfield lead to 3-0.

The Cardinals continued their offensive production in the fourth. Two walks resulted in two runs, as both runners scored on sacrifice flies. Victor Scott and Antico drove in two more on a single and a double to make the score 7-0. All seven runs were charged to Frasso.

The Drillers offense saw life in the bottom of the fourth when Kody Hoese hit a two-run homer. The homer snapped a 13-inning scoreless streak for Tulsa.

The two runs were all that Hence allowed as he earned the win after pitching five innings and striking out nine batters. The 20-year-old Hence is the number two prospect in the St. Louis Cardinals organization and the number 60 prospect in all of Minor League Baseball, according to MLB Pipeline.

Tulsa had a near-perfect night from its bullpen to hold the Cardinals scoreless for the remainder of the game. After Frasso departed the game in the fourth, Trevor Bettencourt entered and worked a scoreless inning and a third.

Ben Harris and Ricky Vanasco combined to not allow a hit over the final four innings, as each worked two scoreless frames to close the game.


*The Drillers have a career record of 5-5 when playing as the Noodlers.

*Hoese continued to have a strong month of July at the plate. He finished 2-3 with a home run, a single and a walk. He is now batting .318 for the month and has five home runs.

*The Drillers continued their Noodlers weekend by wearing the lime-green Noodlers jerseys. Springfield also wore its alternate identity Cashew Chickens jerseys.

*Before the game, the Drillers announced a series of roster moves. The Dodgers traded pitchers Nastrini and Leasure to the White Sox for pitchers Lance Lynn and Joe Kelly. To make room on the 40-man major league roster, the Dodgers had to designate infielder Leonard for assignment.

Filling the vacated spots on the Tulsa roster were pitcher Bettencourt, who was activated from the Development List, and outfielder Josh Stowers, who was activated from the Injured List.


The Drillers will play the Cardinals in the fifth game of their six-game series Saturday night at ONEOK Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and the starting pitchers are slated to be:

Springfield - LHP Alex Cornwell (0-0, 3.77 ERA)

Tulsa - RHP River Ryan (1-5, 3.13 ERA)

Images from this story

Tulsa Drillers' Hamlet Marte in action
Tulsa Drillers' Hamlet Marte in action

(Rich Crimi)

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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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