After dropping three of four to the Las Vegas 51s, including two shutouts, the Sky Sox looked to regain their offensive mojo in the Beehive State and did they ever! Colorado Springs trailed by four heading to the fifth, but reeled off eight unanswered runs to wrap up the game and the bullpen combined for five and one-third scoreless in the 10-6 series opening victory.
The game started as a duel with righties Bubba Derby and Osmer Morales carving their ways through the lineups, until Salt Lake jumped on the board in the third. Sherman Johnson reached second on a throwing error by shortstop Yadiel Rivera, moved to third on a sac bunt and scored on Cesar Puello’s single to left, 1-0 Bees.
The fourth inning saw a whole lot of action, seven runs combined, and it began with the Sox plating a pair and taking a 2-1 lead. Brett Phillips singled, Nate Orf drew a one out walk before Tyler Heineman stepped in with two down. The backstop laced a ball to right that plated both runners which gave the Sox the lead, but he was hosed heading to third to end the inning. The lead would be short lived for the visitors as Bubba Derby was tagged for five runs in the bottom half of the frame.
Michael Hermosillo was hit by a pitch with one out, then moved to second on a wild pitch and scored to tie the game on a Rey Navarro single. Johnson doubled, the runner to third and Nolan Fontana drove in two more on a single. Cesar Puello and Jefry Marte capped off the inning and Bees’ scoring with back-to-back ribby doubles to make it 6-2.
The comeback march was once again on in the next half inning as the Sox picked up a pair on a two-out, two-run homer from Mauricio Dubon, shaving it to 6-4, and then they got FIVE more in the sixth and never looked back. Nick Noonan and Tyler Heineman greeted the rehabbing Andrew Bailey with singles to open up the frame. Tyler Bortnick reached on a very costly error to load the bases with one out, and the hits kept on comin’. Kyle Wren’s two run single tied it, Brett Phillips’ ground-rule double gave the Sox the 8-6 lead and Chris Colabello brought him in with a single to make it 9-6 Sawxxxxx. The 10th run scored on a Noonan double in the ninth.
The big story in the ballgame was the bullpen. Bubba Derby was lifted with two outs in the fourth after allowing all six Salt Lake runs. Tyler Webb was first out of the ‘pen and he recorded five outs limiting the Bees to two walks, striking out two, too. He earned the win because of the Sox offense plating those runs with him on the mound. Tristan Archer got two outs, David Goforth six, and Rob Scahill pitched the ninth in perfect order to wrap it up. Five and one-third scoreless innings from the bullpen, GREAT STUFF.
Hitting Notes –
The Sox picked up 10 runs on 13 hits and walked five times in the first game of the series. They had PLENTY of chances with runners on and went 4-for-19 with runners in scoring position and left 8 men on base. Six Sky Sox had multi-hit games and four had multi-RBI tilts. Let’s start at the top!
Kyle Wren went 2-for-5 with two singles, two runs, and two runs batted in.
Mauricio Dubon had two hits, a single and a homer, two runs batted in and a run scored.
Brett Phillips was on base three times with two hits and a walk. He had a single, double, drove in a pair and scored twice.
Tyler Heineman went 2-for-4 with a double, two RBI and a run scored. He also walked, reaching base three times.
Nick Noonan had two hits, including a double, he drove in one as well.
Chris Colabello had two singles and an RBI.
Nate Orf was on base three times with a hit and two walks, he scored two runs.
Yadiel Rivera and Tyler Bortnick didn’t get hits, but did reach on a walk and error respectively and scored a run.
Pitching Notes –
Bubba Derby pitched into the fourth inning, but couldn’t escape it. He allowed six runs, five earned, on seven hits, a walk and two strike outs on 72 pitches, 48 of which went for strikes.
Tyler Webb earned his first win with the Sox after throwing an inning and one-third of scoreless ball. He walked a pair and struck out two.
Tristan Archer came on for two outs and pitched around a hit and a walk.
David Goforth worked two scoreless and allowed three baserunners on a hit and two walks, but also struck out two.
Rob Scahill lowered his ERA with the Sox to 0.66 with a scoreless ninth.
Play of the Game –
Mauricio Dubon’s 2-run shot in the fifth!
Pregame Interview with Dan Karcher and Manager Rick Sweet –
Colorado Springs Sky Sox (65-43) at Salt Lake Bees (58-53) – 7:05 p.m.
Sky Sox Starter: Right-hander Junior Guerra returns to the Sky Sox roster as a full fledged member of the team after his demotion from Milwaukee on July 30. It will be his second start with the Sox this season as on May 20 he fulfilled a rehab assignment with the team against Albuquerque. He made the Opening Day start for the Brewers in 2017 and is 1-4 with a 4.96 ERA in 13 starts with the Crew, but is down in Triple-A searching for lost velocity.
Guerra made five starts with the Sky Sox a year ago, four to begin the year and one rehabbing appearance in August. He compiled a record of 0-2 with a 4.05 ERA in 26 2/3 innings. In 36 MLB appearances, 33 starts, he is 10-7 with a 3.60 ERA and in 79 MiLB games, 23 starts, he is 6-17 with 11 saves and a 3.91 ERA.
Last Time Out – July 28 – No decision vs. Cubs –
Guerra pitched the first three innings in scoreless fashion against the Cubs, but gave up a hit and walked four during that stretch. He struck out four too, but was taxed for 61 pitches, 31 of which went for strikes.
Bees Starting Arm: Southpaw John Lamb will work in the second game of the series tonight for the Bees. It will be his eighth start of the season, he enters 3-1 with an 8.10 ERA through the first seven. The La Palma, California native has allowed 31 runs (30 earned), on 45 hits, five homers, and two hit batters; he’s walked 14 and fanned 25 while opponents are hitting .321 against him. He began the season on the DL and then was suspended 50 games for a drug of abuse in May, thus the seven starts on the year.
Lamb was originally selected by the Royals in the fifth round of the 2008 draft out of Laguna Hills, HS and has pitched for the Royals, Reds, and Angels organizations in his career. In 138 MiLB appearances, 137 starts, Lamb has accrued a 44-42 record with a 3.95 ERA and he is 2-12 with a 6.17 ERA mark in 24 MLB starts, all with Cincinnati.
Last Time Out – July 26 – No decision at Memphis –
Lamb worked into the fifth inning of his last start on the road in Memphis and allowed five runs on six hits in the four and one-third innings. He gave up a homer, hit a batter, walked two and struck out six on 85 pitches, 48 went for strikes.
Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 28th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he will have the call of tonight’s game from Smith’s Ballpark beginning at 7:05 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,