The Sox trailed the Reno Aces 5-3 heading to the bottom of the sixth inning on a stormy night at Security Service Field, but bounce back to plate seven runs in the frame and held a 10-5 advantage heading to the late frames. Rain, thunder and lightning all surrounded the ballpark from first pitch, but didn’t make an appearance at the diamond until the eighth when it delayed and ultimately ended the game early. The win marked number 60 on the season for the Sox. SIXTY! The second team to achieve that mark in the PCL.
Taylor Jungmann took the hill for the Sox and tossed a scoreless top of the first, while getting a run of support in the bottom half, courtesy of a Nate Orf RBI triple. The Aces would strike for a run on a walk, single and fielding error by Mauricio Dubon which tied the game 1-1. Not for long though as Tyler Heineman connected on a solo homer against Frank Duncan in the bottom of the second, 2-1. The blast was his first since June 28, 2016 when he hit one for the Fresno Grizzlies against the Rainiers.
That was just the beginning for the scoring as the Aces would take the lead with a four-run fourth. The wind picked up and Jungmann began to falter as Rudy Flores picked up a leadoff walk and scored on Willians Astudillo’s two-run, wind-aided blast that juuuuust snuck over the wall in left-center, 3-2 Aces. Two more walks followed by a double off the bat of Socrates Brito and a Christian Walker sacrifice fly upped the visitors’ advantage to 5-2.
A momentum shift occurred in the fifth inning when Andrew Barbosa entered the game with a vengeance. The southpaw mowed the Aces down in order in that frame, picking up two strikeouts and saw the offense cut the deficit to 5-3 on an Orf single that scored Kyle Wren.
Barbosa went out in the sixth and retired the side in order with another two strikeouts and again saw his offense go to work in the bottom half. Chris Colabello walked, Kirk Nieuwenhuis singled, and Yadiel Rivera bounced into a force out which put runners at the corners. Heineman followed with a double that scored one run and Barbosa followed with an RBI groundout to short that tied the game 5-5. The wheels kept turning as Dubon brought in two runs with a single that was misplayed in center and made it 7-5.
Duncan’s night was over after that, but reliever Kaleb Fleck didn’t fare much better as Nate Orf hit another RBI single and Ivan De Jesus cleaned it allllll up with a two-run homer, making it 10-5.
Tyler Cravy pitched the top of the eighth, which turned out to be the final inning of play Friday night as the rains came down to delay the game and forty or so minutes after that, the game was ended early.
Hitting Notes –
The Sox banged out 10 hits in the 10-5 win and had three players notch multi-hit affairs.
Nate Orf led the way with three hits and three RBI. He had a triple and two singles and scored a run.
Tyler Heineman went 2-for-4 with a double, homer, two RBI, and two runs scored, maybe his best offensive game of the season.
Mauricio Dubon went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI and had another hit taken away from him on a great, and I mean GREAT play by Willians Astudillo at third.
Kyle Wren was on base three times with a hit and two walks, he scored three of the 10 runs.
Ivan De Jesus extended his on-base streak to 38 games with a walk and a homer.
Kirk Nieuwenhuis went 1-for-4.
Chris Colabello walked and scored a run and Yadiel Rivera scored a run, too.
Pitching Notes –
Taylor Jungmann went the first four innings and gave up five runs on five hits, walked five and struck out two on 76 pitches, 41 of which went for strikes.
Andrew Barbosa was lights out and improved to 5-1 with the win. He hurled three perfect innings and fanned six. Holy moly.
Tyler Cravy worked a perfect eighth, fanning one.
Play of the Game –
To be honest the play Astudillo made, robbing Dubon of a base hit was outstanding, but since we are a little biased, we will go with the big flies off the bats of Tyler Heineman and Ivan De Jesus!
Pregame Interview with Dan Acheson and Reno OF Jeremy Hazelbaker –
Colorado Springs Sky Sox (60-36) vs. Reno Aces (57-42) – 6:00 p.m.
Sky Sox Starter: Right-Hander Paolo Espino readies for start number twelve with the Sky Sox and first of his career against the Aces when climbs the hill tonight at Security Service Field. He enters play 4-1 with a 3.86 ERA in 11 PCL outings and has held opponents to a .264 batting average against. He’s allowed 26 runs (25 earned) on 60 hits, walked eight and fanned 53 in 58.1 innings. He’ll make his third straight start for the Sox after spending a month in the big leagues and going 0-0 with a 6.11 ERA in six games, two starts. He logged 17 2/3 innings and gave up 13 runs on 17 hits, five homers, three hit batters, eight walks and 13 strikeouts. He made his big-league debut on May 19 where he went four innings for the Brewers at Chicago, he didn’t record a decision. He went six innings against Iowa on May 1 and allowed a run on four hits and fanned six at Principal Park. He is 3-0 with a 4.35 ERA in eight home starts this season.
Espino was signed by the Brewers as a free agent in November, marking the fourth franchise he has been with. He was originally selected by the Cleveland Indians in the 10th round of the 2010 draft and spent the first seven years of his career there before joining the Cubs’ franchise late 2013. He was released by Chicago prior to the 2014 season and signed with the Nationals as a free agent where he pitched 2014-16. Last season saw the 30-year old righty go 8-11 with a 3.30 ERA in 26 Triple-A starts with Syracuse. Espino is 76-64 with a 3.73 ERA in 295 MiLB appearances, 195 of which have been starts.
Last Time Out – July 16 – No decision vs. Iowa –
Espino couldn’t make it out of the fifth inning, but limited the Cubs to three runs on six hits. He didn’t walk anyone and struck out four on 77 pitches, 50 of which went for strikes.
Aces Starting Arm: Right-hander Tyler Badamo has been called up from Hi-A Visalia and will make his Triple-A debut tonight against the Sky Sox. He was signed by Arizona on June 30 off the Bridgeport Bluefish roster from the Atlantic League. He has never pitched above High-A in his career. The righty went 4-3 with a 2.63 ERA in 11 starts with the Bluefish and 1-1 with a 5.68 ERA in three starts with the Rawhide.
Badamo was originally drafted by the Mets in the 24th round of the 2014 draft out of Dowling College in Oakdale, NY. In 40 MiLB appearances, 34 starts, Badamo is 10-11 with a 3.44 ERA.
Last Time Out – July 15 – Win at Modesto –
Badamo went six innings and limited the Nuts to two runs on six hits, walking one and striking out two on 89 pitches, 52 of which went for strikes.
Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 28th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he and I will have the call of tonight’s game from Security Service Field beginning at 6:00 p.m. Sky Sox Warmup gets fired up at 5:30 p.m. MDT on XTRA Sports 1300.
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,