07/20/2017 10:16 PM
GRAND PRAIRIE -- The Texas AirHogs completed a sweep of the Wichita Wingnuts Thursday, taking the final contest of the series 4-3. A suicide squeeze bunt by Trevor Sealey helped break a 3-3 tie in the 8th and put the AirHogs ahead for good.
Jared Mortensen got the start for Texas and dueled with Tyler Kane of Wichita. Mortensen turned in 6 frames of 3-hit, 1-run ball to put the AirHogs in position to win it. He struck out 7. Kane twirled 6 frames of his own, allowing 2 runs on 8 hits. He struck out 6. Both starters got a no-decision.
The AirHogs got out to a lead in the 3rd when Charley Thurber led off with a double and scored on a base hit by Alvaro Rondon. Thurber would pick up an RBI himself in the 4th, driving in Denis Phipps to put Texas up 2-0.
After getting a run off Mortensen in the 5th, Wichita’s top-rated offense stole the lead in the 7th, striking twice vs. relief man Jacob Morris. Richard Prigatano tripled and scored on a wild pitch before Harrison Kain scored Brennen Salgado with an RBI double to make it 3-2. Morris left 2 runners aboard to keep the margin slim.
Facing Mike Devine in the 8th, the AirHogs caught a break when Wichita 3rd baseman TJ Mittelstaedt committed an error to allow Brian Ragira to reach with 1 out. Ryan Wagner advanced Ragira to 3rd with a single before Beamer Weems delivered with an RBI double to equalize the score at 3.
Wichita skipper Pete Rose Jr. then decided to intentionally walk Thurber to get to Trevor Sealey, who had hit into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded in the 6th. This time Sealey dropped a suicide squeeze down the left side that scored Ryan Wagner and gave the AirHogs a 4-3 edge.
Luis De La Cruz picked up his 12th save of the season by leaving the potential tying run aboard in the 9th. Scott Firth picked up the W to improve to 2-4 in 2017 by pitching a scoreless 8th. Rondon and Wagner each reached 3 times in the game. Thurber reached 4 times. Rondon, Wagner, Thurber and Weems all finished with 2 hits.
The sweep was the 2nd of the season for the AirHogs. The team has now won 14 out of its last 18 and will look to stay red hot in its final series before the American Association All-Star break.
The squad welcomes Sioux Falls to town tomorrow for a 7:05 opener to a 3-game set at AirHogs Stadium. RHP TJ Bozeman (3-4, 2.54 ERA) is expected to start for Texas. The starter for Sioux Falls is TBD. A live stream of the game will be available at mixlr.com/TXAirHogs as well as American Association Baseball TV.
Tickets for the current homestand, running July 18-23rd vs. Wichita and Sioux Falls, are available. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. For the latest information on the AirHogs, follow the team on Facebook and Twitter @TXAirHogs.