Gonzales’ Dominant Start, Late Offensive Surge Lead Memphis To Victory
PAPILLION, Neb. – Marco Gonzales spun six shutout innings and the Memphis Redbirds added five runs in the game’s final two innings to down the Omaha Storm Chasers 5-0 on Tuesday.
The contest marked Memphis’ 12th shutout of the season, second behind only New Orlean’s 13 in the Pacific Coast League.
Both clubs’ starting pitchers dominated during their time on the hill, with the Redbirds only cracking the run column in the top of the eighth inning.
Though snapping an eight-game hitting streak, Tommy Pham delivered the first run of the game for Memphis on an RBI-fielder’s choice, scoring Dean Anna.
After eight quiet innings at the dish, the Redbirds broke things open in the ninth, plating four runs in the frame, all with two outs. Jeremy Hazelbaker got things started with a two-run, opposite field home run. Hazelbaker now has 34 RBI in as many games with the Redbirds.
After a Rafael Ortega walk and stolen base, Dean Anna was able to drive home his teammate with an RBI single to center field. Anna was then brought home on the next at bat, when Dan Johnson roped an RBI double to right field.
The extra runs were mere insurance for the Redbirds, as Memphis pitching, led by starter Marco Gonzales, was able to neutralize the Storm Chasers’ offense. Gonzales tossed 6.0 shutout innings, allowing just two hits to opposing batters, while striking out three and walking four. Despite his quality start, the 24-year-old southpaw left the game with a no-decision, having not registered a Triple-A win since August 24 of last season.
Relievers Heath Wyatt, Miguel Socolovich, and Sam Tuivailala each recorded a scoreless inning of their own, shutting the door on Omaha and adding a notch to the win column for the Redbirds.
Memphis and Omaha are back in action Wednesday evening from Werner Park. Redbirds’ right-hander Zach Petrick (7-5, 4.30) gets the start, going up against Omaha’s Miguel Almonte (2-1, 4.13). First pitch in game two of the four-game set is scheduled for 7:05pm.