Naturals Claim Opener with 3-2 Win over 'Hounds
MIDLAND, Texas - Northwest Arkansas picked-up its fifth win in the last six games with a 3-2 victory over the Midland RockHounds on Tuesday night at Security Bank Ballpark.
Right-hander Brady Singer (5-3, 3.87) earned his second straight winning decision despite walking a career-high five batters, working against a fairly fickle strike zone. Singer walked four hitters in the first two innings; but grinded to get through five and two-thirds.
Midland struck with a double and a single to plate two in the opening inning against Singer; but he settled in and retired seven straight batters through four innings. The 23-year old worked around a single in the fifth inning, notched the first two outs of the sixth and then walked his fifth hitter on his 101st pitch of the game to end his night.
Northwest Arkansas (52-72/21-35) came through against starter, Kyle Friedrichs (5-7, 3.70) in the third inning. The Naturals loaded the bases twice in the inning, capitalizing on four walks in the frame. Emmanuel Rivera brought in the first run with a run-scoring fielder's choice. Nate Esposito delivered with a two-out, two-run single to vault the Naturals in-front, 3-2.
The Naturals out-hit Midland, nine to six with all nine hits just single base knocks.
Left-hander, Dan Tillo, covered an inning of scoreless relief while Franco Terrero locked-down the final out of the 7th. Holden Capps began the eighth inning, allowed a pair of runners to reach with one out and Tyler Zuber entered. Zuber fanned the final two hitters of the eighth inning and went perfect in the ninth for his eighth save of the year.
Kevin Merrell and Gabriel Cancel led the offense with a pair of hits in the victory.
The Naturals look for their second straight series win in the middle game of the three-game series on Wednesday, August 21 with right-hander, Gerson Garabito (6-9, 4.09) on the mound against right-hander, Grant Holmes (5-4, 3.48) for Midland.
Join the "Voice of the Naturals," Benjamin Kelly on 92.1-FM, the Ticket and the Naturals Radio Network for a 6:10 Indigo Sky Casino Pregame Show leading up to the 6:30 p.m.
The Northwest Arkansas Naturals are the Double-A Texas League Affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. The Naturals play at state-of-the-art Arvest Ballpark in Springdale, Ark. For more information, including statistics, ticket options, and more, please visit NWANaturals.com, and follow us on Twitter @NWANaturals and Facebook.com/Naturals.
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