Well…Some may say they saved the best for last, but for Colorado Springs they had seen more than enough of Round Rock as the series ended with a 14-10, four hour affair, Thursday night at Security Service Field. Round Rock won the series with the win, three games to one.
You may not believe this, but the Sky Sox actually jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the first inning. Yes, that’s right, 6-0. The first six men reached against former Brewer Tyler Wagner and all of them scored. Garrett Cooper, Ryan Cordell, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, and Andrew Susac all had ribby knocks in the first inning and Brandon Woodruff had a 6-0 lead to work with in the second. Howevah – it was really brief.
Round Rock’s offense was lethal all series and they took off in the second inning against Woody. Peter O’Brien began the scoring with a two-run homer, while Preston Beck and Drew Robinson (of course) followed with RBI hits. A Woodruff wild pitch brought Robinson in to tie the game at 6-6.
Okay, no biggy new ballgame after two. In fact, the Sky Sox scored three runs in the third and fourth innings and held a 9-6 lead, but a run in the fifth and sixth for the Express made it 9-8. Jason Martinson connected on a solo homer on the first pitch from Tyler Cravy in the eighth to tie the game. Cravy retired the next two, but walked three in a row after that and gave up two doubles which plated five combined runs and put the Trains in front for good at 14-9. Colorado Springs notched a run in the ninth and brought the tying run to the plate, but Preston Claiborne shut it down and preserved the win.
Hitting Notes –
The Sox and Express combined for 24 runs on 31 hits in Thursday’s game and 73 runs and 114 hits in the four-game series. Holy moly. What an offensive set! Last night the Sox picked up the 10 runs on 17 hits, had a hit from eight of the nine in the starting lineup and five multi-hit games.
Garrett Cooper went 3-for-5 with a double, two RBI, and two runs scored. He also reached a third time, thanks to a walk.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis went 3-for-6 with a pair of doubles and two RBI, he also scored a run.
Andrew Susac put together the first three-hit game of his season, going 3-for-4 with a walk, two doubles, and two RBI from the nine hole.
Kyle Wren went 3-for-4 from the leadoff spot and was on base five times thanks to two walks. He scored a run and drove one in, too.
Nate Orf bumped up to the two-hole and went 2-for-5 with a walk and a run scored.
Lewis Brinson picked up a hit in his fourth straight game, walked and scored a run.
Ryan Cordell went 1-for-5 with an RBI, walk, and run scored.
Gabriel Noriega notched a hit in his four straight with a double. He scored a run, plated another and also walked.
Pitching Notes –
Brandon Woodruff was roughed up and lasted just 1 2/3 innings. He allowed six runs on six hits, walked two and struck out one. He threw 53 pitches, 32 of which went for strikes.
Tim Dillard followed and allowed two runs on four hits and a walk in 3 2/3 innings.
Wei-Chung Wang went 1 2/3 scoreless innings, giving up a hit and striking out two.
Tyler Cravy was left with the loss after allowing six runs on three hits and four walks in two-thirds of an inning.
Tristan Archer got the final four outs of the game in scoreless fashion.
Play of the Game –
For the Sox they got six hits and four RBI from Nieuwenhuis and Susac. Their two hits, Nieuwy’s double and Susac’s single in the first will be our plays of the game.
Pregame Interview with Dan Karcher and Express pitcher Eddie Gamboa –
Good RIDDANCE to the Express! That’s all that is left to say…It’s now time to welcome in the Iowa Cubs for the first of a four-game, three-day series tonight at Security Service Field. It’s a fireworks Friday so come on out! Game one features Andrew Barbosa making the spot start for the Sox, while Williams Perez gets the nod for the I-Cubs. Let’s get to the preview…
…BUT Before we do… Congrats are in order for Josh Hader! Josh Hader got the call to the ‘Crew and is in Phoenix as the Brewers get ready to open up a series against the D-backs! CONGRATS JOSH!
Colorado Springs Sky Sox (33-24) at Iowa Cubs (26-34) – 7:00 p.m.
Sky Sox Starter: Southpaw Andrew Barbosa gets the nod for Colorado Springs in the opener of the four-game series. The lefty will make his first start of the season and first since September 4, 2016 when he earned the win with eight scoreless against the Erie SeaWolves, pitching for the Binghamton Mets. He enters play 1-0 with a 3.74 ERA allowing 11 runs (9 earned) on 18 hits in 21 2/3 innings. He’s allowed one homer, walked 10 and fanned 23, while holding opponents to a .220 batting average against.
Barbosa was originally selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 36th round of the 2012 draft and has pitched for the D-backs, Mets, and Brewers systems. In 111 MiLB outings, 82 starts, Barbosa has accrued a 30-19 record with one save and a 3.30 ERA.
Last Time Out – June 5 – Relief appearance vs. Round Rock –
Barbosa went three scoreless against the Express and allowed a hit, while striking out five on 46 pitches, 32 for strikes.
Cubs Starting Arm: Right-hander Williams Perez will climb the hill for the eighth time this season and second against the Sky Sox. He has compiled an 0-6 record with a 7.79 ERA through his first seven starts. He’s allowed 31 runs (28 earned) on 50 hits in 32 1/3 innings. Perez has yielded two homers, hit one batter, walked 14 and fanned 28. Opponents are hitting .357 against him. Perez went six innings against the Sox on May 1, but didn’t factor into the decision. He allowed two runs on eight hits, walked a pair and fanned five.
Perez was signed by the Braves as a non-drafted free agent in 2009 and pitched within the Braves organization from 2009 to 2016 and was signed by the Cubs as a free agent this past offseason. In 125 career MiLB games he is 32-33 with a save and a 3.55 ERA. In 34 MLB games with the Braves he holds a 9-9 record and 5.18 ERA.
Last Time Out – June 4 – Loss vs. Nashville –
Perez worked into the sixth and took the loss despite allowing one run on three hits in 5 1/3 innings. He walked three and struck out five.
Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 28th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he will have the call of today’s game from Security Service Field beginning at 7:00 p.m. I will get Sky Sox Warmup fired up at 6:30 p.m. MDT on XTRA Sports 1300.
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,