Before the Taylor Jungmann and the Sky Sox could blink they found themselves in a 6-0 hole to the 51s before an out was recorded in the first. Jungmann walked the first two men he faced before T.J. Rivera opened up his big night with an RBI single to left and made it 1-0 visitors. Journeyman catcher Johnny Monell followed with an RBI single before the power show made an appearance. Travis Taijeron connected for a mammoth three-run homer off the video board in left-center and Ty Kelly, the league’s best hitter, backed him up with a solo shot over the wall in right to cap off the scoring in the first. Jungmann recorded one out before Brent Suter took over and settled things down.
The Sky Sox hopped on the comeback trail with a pair of runs in the second thanks to an Andy Wilkins sac-fly and a Manny Pina double. Garin Cecchini tallied an RBI single in the third which cut the deficit to 6-3. Wilkins hit a homer in the 5th to pull the Sox within two heading to the final three innings. Jake Elmore led off the 7th with a walk and scored on Yadiel Rivera’s RBI triple to right and Michael Reed tied the game 6-6 with a sac-fly to right.
Things looked good for Colorado Springs, but would quickly turn as Vegas got an RBI single from T.J. Rivera in the next half inning which put the 51s in front for good at 7-6.
The Sky Sox and 51s each tallied 11 hits in the opener of the four-game series. Three Sky Sox tallied multiple hit games: Yadiel Rivera, Orlando Arcia, and Garin Cecchini.
Yadiel Rivera set the table for the Sky Sox and reached base four times with three hits and a walk at the dish. He had an RBI triple in the 7th and scored the tying run in frame. It’s the first time Rivera tallied a multiple-hit game in a Sky Sox uniform in 2016 and has now picked up at least one hit in each of the first three games with Colorado Springs since being optioned from Milwaukee on May 14.
Orlando Arcia extended his hitting streak to a season-high 10 games with a 2-for-4 night at the plate. He scored two runs and hit a double, his second of the season. Arcia is now hitting .305/.338/.411 with 43 hits in 34 games. He’s scored a team-high 20 runs and driven in a team-high 19 runs. Over the 10 games, Arcia is hitting 14-for-42 (.333) with a double, triple, and 8 runs scored. He’s reached safely in 29 of 34 games and has a hit in 27 of the 34 he’s played in this season.
Garin Cecchini had two hits and an RBI in the first game against his brother Gavin’s team. Unfortunately, Gavin landed on the disabled list on May 10, but hopefully he can bounce back before the only series between the two teams comes to an end on Sunday.
Andy Wilkins extended his hitting streak to six games with a majestic solo home run over the wall in right in the 5th inning. Wilkins is up to .239 with 5 homers and 14 RBI. He’s picked up 7 RBI in his last 4 games with Colorado Springs.
Nate Orf led off the 9th with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt before Yadiel Rivera connected on a single. Orf hit third and headed home, but Rodger Bernadina fired a strike to home and nabbed Orf, the game’s tying run, for the second out of the 9th.
Taylor Jungmann did not fare well in his fourth start with the Sky Sox and recorded just one out while giving up 6 runs on 4 hits, 2 homers, a hit batter, and 3 walks. The lone out was a fly ball to left field. After his four outings, the righty sits at 1-2 with a 14.85 ERA in 13 1/3 innings.
Brent Suter did it again…The southpaw came on in the first inning and stopped the bleeding immediately by retiring the first seven men he faced. The southpaw went 3 2/3 innings and allowed no runs on 2 hits while striking out 5. His last outing came in the 18-inning tilt last Saturday. He went four scoreless innings and struck out 6 in that outing.
Sam Freeman made his Sky Sox debut a good one with two shutout frames on the bump. He gave up a couple of base hits, a walk, and notched a strikeout. His fastball looked good in the low-to-mid 90s.
Ariel Pena tossed a scoreless 7th, but walked the leadoff hitter to begin the 8th before getting the hook from Rick Sweet. He would be tagged with the loss as his runner would come around to score later in the frame.
Play of the Game:
Andy Wilkins stepped in with nobody on and two out in the 6th inning and crushed the first pitch he saw from Rafael Montero deep into the night over the wall in right-center for a solo shot that cut the Sky Sox deficit to 6-4 at the time. It was the 5th homer of his season and 4th in his last 10 games.
Pregame Interview with Dan Karcher and Andy Wilkins (From 5/16):
Another edition of “Sweet 16” with Dan Karcher and Manager Rick Sweet:
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,