Omaha starting pitcher Foster Griffin tossed a quality outing, however the Memphis Redbirds scored four runs in the ninth inning in a 6-4 comeback victory over the Storm Chasers on Thursday evening at Werner Park.
Thursday marked the first of six contests in which Omaha will play as the Omaha Sizzle, which display specialty jerseys and hats with the state of Nebraska outlined on a steak. The next Sizzle Night presented by Gates Bar-B-Q Sauces is scheduled for Thursday, May 23.
Griffin (6.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, BB, 3 K) tossed his first quality start at the Triple-A level, scattering six hits while yielding two runs over six frames. He was in line for his second victory in as many outings prior to Memphis’ comeback effort, and ultimately did not factor in the decision. Redbirds southpaw Hunter Cervenka (2.0 IP, H, 2 K) earned the win, while Storm Chasers lefty Jake Kalish (2.1 IP, 3 H, 4 R, ER, BB, 2 K) suffered the defeat.
The two teams swapped single tallies in the opening frame, before Omaha grabbed a 3-1 advantage in the third. With the bases loaded, DH Cheslor Cuthbert was hit by a pitch and 1B Frank Schwindel immediately followed with a free pass to force in another score. One inning later, that margin extended to three.
Memphis 2B Tommy Edman cut into that advantage with a solo homer in the sixth before the Redbirds’ ninth-inning heroics. CF Adolis Garcia narrowed the Omaha lead to one with an RBI triple, and then scored the tying run on C Andrew Knizner ‘s bloop single to right. Edman then struck again with a line drive single to center before Memphis added an insurance tally.
Edman (3-5, 2 R, 2B, HR, 2 RBI) and SS Drew Robinson (3-4, BB) each posted a game-high three hits in the victory, with 3B Ramon Urias (2-4) adding a multi-hit game as well. Omaha SS Humberto Arteaga (2-5, R) and RF Jorge Bonifacio (2-4) each tallied two knocks in the defeat.
The Storm Chasers and Redbirds are scheduled to square off again on Friday evening, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05pm CT. RHP Glenn Sparkman (0-0, 0.00) is set to toe the rubber for Omaha, while LHP Austin Gomber (2-0, 3.22) is anticipated to get the nod for Memphis.