Royals win on walk off homer in tenth
Calvin Pickering smashed a two-run walk off homer in the bottom of the tenth inning Monday night, lifting Omaha to a 10-8 win in ten innings over Tucson at Rosenblatt Stadium. The homer was Pickering's second of the game and dropped Tucson back to .500 (58-58) after losing just the second extra inning game (7-2) of the season.
Russ Ortiz made his third minor league rehab start, throwing six innings allowing seven hits and seven runs, six earned in a no-decision.
Omaha scored first when the Royals plated an unearned run without a hit in the bottom of the first.
Tucson claimed a brief 2-1 lead in the top of the third when Brian Barden douled in Carlos Quentin and Jesus Cota.
Ortiz had not allowed a hit until the third. With two outs, Adrian Brown walked. Aaron Guiel singled for the first Royals hit. Matt Diaz followed with a three-run homer to put Omaha ahead 4-2. Pickering went back-to-back with a solo homer and a 5-2 lead.
Barden cut into the deficit in the fifth inning when he smashed a two-run homer. The homer was his 11th of the year and cut the Royals lead to 5-4.
The Sidewinders briefly claimed a 6-5 lead scoring twice in the sixth. Andy Green tripled in Juan Brito to tie the game. Keoni DeRenne's single chased home Green.
Ortiz retired seven straight batters including the first two in the sixth inning before Justin Huber singled. Chris Truby ripped a two-run homer to left field putting the Royals back in front 7-6.
Omaha added a single run in the seventh to push the lead to 8-6. However Tucson rallied to tie again. DeRenne doubled in Brito and Green to even the game at 8.
Pickering's game-winning home run came off Brandon Medders who suffered the loss.
Tucson had numerous opportunities late but left 12 men on base and have stranded 20 in their last 14 innings.
Tucson dropped to 58-58. Tucson and Omaha will meet in the second game of the series Tuesday night. Mark Freed (7-4 4.86) will start for the Sidewinders against Dennis Tankersley (7-6 4.80). The game will begin at 5:05 p.m. (Tucson time) and will air on a TAPE DELAYED BASIS at 6:00 p.m. on Cool 1450 AM.
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