Express Split Doubleheader with Storm Chasers
ROUND ROCK, Texas - The Round Rock Express (53-66) and Omaha Storm Chasers (55-63) split Sunday's twin-billing at Dell Diamond. Omaha took the opener, a continuation of last night's rain-suspended contest, by a final score of 4-3 while Round Rock avoided a series sweep with a 5-3 win in the seven-inning nightcap. Rehabbing Texas Rangers outfielder Nomar Mazara finished the twin-billing with four singles, two RBI and a run scored in six at-bats while suiting up in right field and DHing for the E-Train.
Storm Chasers reliever LHP Eric Stout (3-3, 4.67) took the win in game one after allowing one earned run over 4.0 innings. Stout, who replaced Saturday's starter LHP Jake Kalish once the game was restarted on Sunday, permitted four hits while striking out three and walking none. For Round Rock, reliever RHP Tayler Scott (4-5, 3.61) was issued the loss after he surrendered two runs, one of them earned, in 2.2 frames. Express RHP Adrian Sampson and RHP Deolis Guerra also saw action in the two-day affair, combining to toss 6.1 innings of one-run ball.
Omaha struck for a pair of runs in the top of the third to jump out to a 2-0 lead. 2B Nicky Lopez worked a one-out walk, advanced to second on a single by DH Paulo Orlando, and moved up to third when 1B Frank Schwindel reached on an error to load the bases. The next batter, C Cam Gallagher, punched a two-run single through the right side of the infield. Sampson would retire the next two hitters on a strikeout and a groundout to stop the bleeding.
In the bottom of the fourth, Round Rock snapped a 23-inning scoreless skid when they tied things up at 2-2. RF Nick Torres led off the side with a line-drive single to right and scored two batters later when 2B Christian Lopes doubled down the left-field line. With Lopes looming in scoring position, Mazara leveled the score when he went the other way on a hard-hit RBI single to left.
Upon the game's resumption on Sunday afternoon following a rain-induced suspension, the E-Train took their first lead of the series in the bottom of the fifth as 1B Hanser Alberto deposited a solo homer onto the berm in left to make it 3-2. However, Alberto's fifth longball of the season was matched by the Storm Chasers in the top of the seventh when Orlando connected on a solo shot of his own off Scott.
With each lineup going scoreless in the eighth, Omaha snuck out to a late 4-3 lead in the top of the ninth. LF Terrance Gore was issued a walk from Scott to lead off the side. The next batter, CF Billy Burns, laid down a bunt that Express C Tony Sanchez fielded and threw to second in an attempt to retire the lead runner. Unfortunately for Round Rock, the backstop's throw went off line and sailed into center field. Making matters worse, Express CF Scott Heineman allowed the errant toss to get by him as Gore raced home carrying the leading run.
Now trailing 4-3 in the final side, Round Rock's bats were retired in order by Storm Chasers reliever RHP Jake Newberry, sealing a win in game one and the series.
E-Train reliever RHP Reed Garrett (1-1, 3.65) tallied his first win at the Triple-A level after tossing a scoreless frame in the eighth. Starter RHP Tyler Wagner was left with the no decision after allowing three earned runs on six hits over 5.0 innings while picking up a strikeout. On the losing end, Omaha starter RHP Trevor Oaks (8-6, 2.88) was saddled with the loss after he surrendered five earned runs in 5.2 frames of work.
Round Rock's bats did their damage early, grabbing a quick 3-0 edge in the bottom of the first thanks to a stretch of four straight singles. Lopes led off the side with a walk before swiping second for his 15th stolen base of the year. Two batters later, Lopes was plated on a Mazara single to center. 3B Andy Ibanez followed Mazara's base hit with a single to right field that put runners on the corners before C Juan Centeno collected an RBI on another single to right. Alberto topped off the rally with a run-scoring single of his own, a liner to left that brought Ibanez home from second.
The visitors would pull within a run of a tie at 3-2 in the top of the third. SS Jack Lopez singled in the first at-bat of the frame, setting up a two-run homer off the bat of C Luis Villegas. The Storm Chasers would return to finish off their comeback in the fourth as Schwindel reset the score at 3-3 on a solo shot to left-center.
In the sixth, the E-Train broke the tie with a two-run surge. Ibanez was hit by a pitch to begin the side before Centeno bunted him over to second. Alberto was granted first base on an intentional walk prior to DH Carlos Perez' RBI single through the hole between short and third that drove Ibanez home, putting Round Rock ahead 4-3. With two outs and runners on first and second, LF Franklin Rollin plated an insurance run in Alberto on a double to right that pushed the gap to 5-3.
Working with a two-run advantage in the top of the seventh, Express reliever RHP R.J. Alvarez collected his PCL-leading 21st save of the year. After issuing a leadoff walk to Omaha 3B Humberto Arteaga, Alvarez proceeded to retire Jack Lopez on a lineout to third before enticing Villegas into a game-ending 4-5-3 double play. With the win, Round Rock snaps a season-long nine-game losing streak.
The E-Train will look to start a winning streak on Monday night as they hit the road for the first of four games against the Nashville Sounds (64-55) at First Tennessee Park. Round Rock RHP Chris Jensen (1-2, 6.33) is slated to start against Nashville RHP James Naile (7-10, 4.54) in the series opener. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. CDT.
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Pacific Coast League Stories from August 12, 2018
- Rainiers Rally Not Enough, Bees Win 9-7 - Tacoma Rainiers
- Grizzlies smash two homers and six doubles, take 9-4 series finale from Isotopes - Fresno Grizzlies
- Express Split Doubleheader with Storm Chasers - Round Rock Express
- Chasers Split Two in Round Rock - Omaha Storm Chasers
- Sky Sox Swept by Sounds After Falling 9-7 in Extras - Colorado Springs Sky Sox
- River Cats bested by Chihuahuas in pitching duel - Sacramento River Cats
- Sounds Stun Sky Sox, Extend Streak to 13 Games - Nashville Sounds
- Chihuahuas Open Game up Late - El Paso Chihuahuas
- Mooney's Bomb Helps 'Cakes to Series Win - New Orleans Baby Cakes
- 'Cakes Steal Sweet Victory from I-Cubs - Iowa Cubs
- Game Notes: Memphis Redbirds (74-44) at Oklahoma City Dodgers (61-54) - Memphis Redbirds
- OKC Dodgers Game Notes - August 12, 2018 - Oklahoma City Dodgers
- Nashville Sounds Game Information: Nashville Sounds (63-55) at Colorado Springs Sky Sox (60-56) - Nashville Sounds
- Grizzlies narrowly avoid being no-hit in 10-0 loss to Albuquerque - Fresno Grizzlies
- Allen Holds off Sacramento - El Paso Chihuahuas
- Belt begins rehab as River Cats comeback falls short - Sacramento River Cats
- Bees Fall to Rainiers - Salt Lake Bees
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