Oh what a night for Will Middlebrooks! The Sky Sox corner infielder had a monster day at the plate and connected for a solo home run in the top of the 10th which gave the Sox a 7-6 lead they would not relinquish. Colorado Springs began the night hot out of the gate with a two-run first, thanks to Andy Wilkins’ 2-run homer off of Memphis’ starter righty Arturo Reyes. At that point, Wilkins was 2-for-2 with 2 homers and 6 RBI in his last two SWINGS dating back to his ninth-inning grand slam on Thursday night. Middlebrooks had a triple after Wilkins’ homer in the first, but powered up and hit a two-run homer in the third, which gave the Sox the 4-0 lead. The blast marked the third in three games for him, and through three frames he was halfway to the cycle with a double and single remaining.
Taylor Jungmann pitched three scoreless before running into a buzz saw in the fourth. It was almost a mirror image of the six-run ninth inning from a night prior, as it started with three singles, a walk, a hit by pitch to the head, and a walk, all of which brought home three runs. Kolten Wong and Charlie Tilson tied the game and gave the Redbirds the 5-4 lead. Jose Martinez greeted Drew Gagnon with a solo homer in the 5th and upped Memphis’ lead to 6-4.
Yadiel Rivera notched a pinch-hit RBI single in the 8th and Michael Reed drove in WMB with a double in the frame to tie the game and ultimately force extras. Michael Kirkman and Tim Dillard combined to throw a shutdown 10th and locked down the 7-6 win.
Hitting Notes –
The Sox plated their 7 runs on 10 hits marking the first time in the six games on the trip that they had gotten into double figures in the hit column.
Will Middlebrooks had a monster night and totaled 12 bases, going 4-for-5 with two homers, a triple, a single, and three RBI. The big night fell two total bases shy of his career record 14 from April 7, 2013 when he had three homers and a double for the Boston Red Sox at Toronto. He extended his hitting streak to 7 games, has hit safely in 13 of 15, has collected 9 multi-hit games during that stretch and has upped his average from .185 to .254. (69 points in 2 weeks!)
Manny Pina collected the other multiple-hit game, his 17th of the season, for Colorado Springs and went 2-for-5 with 2 runs scores in the win. He’s upped his average to .350, good enough for fourth in the PCL.
Andy Wilkins collected his 8th big fly of the season and got the Sox on the board with his two-run homer in the first. He went 1-for-4 with the blast, a walk, two RBI, and two runs scored.
Pitching Notes –
Taylor Jungmann made it through three innings with relative ease, but gave up five runs in the fourth inning, thus ending his night early. The righty went the four frames and allowed 5 runs on 6 hits, 3 walks, and 2 strikeouts. He threw 82 pitches, 48 of which went for strikes.
Drew Gagnon tossed an inning in the fifth and gave up the home run to Martinez which put the Redbirds up 6-4 at the time.
Following Gagnon, Manager Rick Sweet used four pitchers to get the next 15 outs and they made him look GREAT by doing it in scoreless fashion.
Sam Freeman threw two scoreless innings against his former team and struck out a pair. He threw 24 pitches, 15 of which went for strikes.
Austin Ross backed up Freeman with another two innings without allowing a run. He had to dance through danger and allowed four hits and a walk, but struck out a pair and got the game into the 10th.
Play of the Game – Will Middlebrooks’ go-ahead homer in the 10th
Pregame Interview with Dan Karcher and Redbirds Manager Mike Shildt –
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,