05/18/2017 11:14 PM
GRAND PRAIRIE -- The Texas AirHogs dropped their regular season opener to the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks 5-3 Thursday at AirHogs Stadium. The Redhawks used a 2-run triple by Josh Mazzola in the 8th to douse an AirHogs’ comeback effort and steal the 1st contest of 2017.
James Russell got the start for Texas and the 7-year MLB veteran held Fargo hitless through 2 innings. In the 3rd though, the Redhawks got to him for 4 hits, including a 2-run home run by Mitch Delfino, to take a 3-0 lead.
It wasn’t long before the AirHogs got back in it. Shortstop Beamer Weems went deep in the bottom half of the 3rd to score himself and 2B Trevor Sealey and cut the deficit to 3-2. Russell faced the minimum over his last 3 innings, inducing 2 double plays to face just 9.
In the bottom of the 7th, Sealey tied the game with a clutch 2-out base hit to score Brian Ragira. The tie game would not last long however, as the Redhawks boarded 2 against AirHogs reliever Mark Pope in the 8th before Josh Blanco allowed a 2-RBI double to Mazzola later in the frame. Pope would go on to take the loss, his 1st of the season.
Richie Tate, who fired a scoreless 8th inning after starter Tyler Alexander surrendered the tying run in the 7th, picked up the win, while Casey Weathers earned the save in a scoreless 9th.
The AirHogs (0-1) and the Redhawks (1-0) meet again tomorrow at AirHogs Stadium. 1st pitch is slated for 7:05 pm. LHP Tyler Bremer is expected to start for the AirHogs, while RHP Jose Almarante is expected to start for Fargo.
Single-game tickets for the 2017 season are available for purchase online now. For the latest information on the Texas AirHogs follow them on Facebook and visit airhogsbaseball.com.