Alex Reyes, the top-ranked prospect in the St. Louis Cardinals organization and seventh-ranked in all of Major League Baseball, pitched four innings and struck out eight in his season and Triple-A debut, and the Memphis Redbirds split the series with the Fresno Grizzlies (Triple-A Astros) with an 8-1 win Sunday afternoon at AutoZone Park.
Reyes gave up two hits and walked three in his four innings of work in his first outing following a 50-game suspension. He allowed baserunners in each of the first three innings, including loading the bases in the second, but he struck out the final batter of the inning each time to escape without allowing a run.
His eight strikeouts matched Arturo Reyes for the most by a Redbird starter in a game this season. Reyes threw 85 pitches and 48 for strikes.
Patrick Wisdom was 3-for-3 with a double and two runs scored, and Jonathan Rodriguez hit his fourth home run of the season and was 3-for-4 with a season-high four RBI. Charlie Tilson was 2-for-4 with a bunt single and a triple and he also scored twice, as did Greg Garcia during his 2-for-4 showing.
David Washington’s 12-game hitting streak came to an end when he went 0-for-2 with a walk and a sacrifice fly. The streak was the longest by a Redbird this season and was the second-longest active streak in the Pacific Coast League enteringSunday’s games.
A crowd of 5,105 was at AutoZone Park in the finale of Memphis’ eight-game homestand, and the Redbirds averaged 6,488 fans through the turnstiles with four crowds over 7,700 during the stretch. Memphis has eclipsed the 110,000-mark in season attendance through 24 home games.
Ryan Sherriff earned the win in relief of Reyes and struck out four in two innings, and John Church and Juan Gonzalez followed Sherriff and gave up one run on three hits in three innings. Gonzalez picked up his second save of the season.
The seven-run win matched two other Redbird victories for the largest winning margin of the season.
The Redbirds hit the road for eight games to Salt Lake and Las Vegas and return to AutoZone Park for a four-game series with New Orleans May 31-June 3. The Tuesday–Friday homestand features King Cotton $1 Hot Dog Night on May 31, College Night on June 2 and Replica Cardinals 1946 World Series Ring giveaway on June 3.