Gateway Grizzlies catcher Landon Hernandez blasted three home runs and drove in eight runs as the Grizzlies pounded the River City Rascals 14-4 Saturday night at GCS Ballpark.
A crowd of 5,027 watched Hernandez tie a Frontier League record in home runs and set a new Grizzlies record in runs batted in.
Hernandez became the fourth Grizzlies player to hit three home runs in a game. The last player to do so was Rogelio Noris in August, 2012.
The previous Grizzlies record for runs batted in for a single-game was seven.
Hernandez hit a grand slam in the first inning, a three-run home run in the third inning and a solo home run in the fourth inning. The Palm Desert, CA native grounded out in his last two at-bats and finished 3-for-5. He finished one RBI shy of tying the league-record.
Gateway (41-27) scored four runs in first inning, seven in the third inning and single runs in fourth, fifth and seventh to jump out to a 14-0 lead.
River City (32-35) finally got on the scoreboard in the eighth inning, scoring four runs on two home runs.
All of the Rascals runs were charged to Grizzlies starting pitcher Jake Stephens (3-2), who allowed four runs on six hits in seven and two thirds innings.
Hernandez wasn’t the only Gateway player to have a big game offensively.
Jonathan Johnson went 2-for-3 with his fifth home run of the season and Vladimir Frias enjoyed a 3-for-4 night with two doubles, two runs driven in and three runs scored.
Gateway’s victory coupled with a Schaumburg Boomers loss gave the Grizzlies a two and a half game lead in the West Division.
The Grizzlies and Rascals continue their series Sunday night at GCS Ballpark. Right-hander Tucker Jensen (6-4) gets the start for the series. First pitch is set for 6:05.