MEMPHIS, TENN. – Round Rock batters smacked 17 hits, including three homers, and E-Train pitchers combined to strike out 15 batters as the Express took down Memphis 4-2 and 8-5 to sweep a doubleheader in Sunday’s Pacific Coast League action at AutoZone Park. Round Rock (48-46) has won a season-high five straight games. Memphis (42-67) has lost three straight.
Justin Grimm (1-0) stole the spotlight in game one with a one-run, eight strikeout performance to pick up his first Triple-A victory. He was backed by solo home runs by Julio Borbon and Yangervis Solarte as well as an RBI double by Luis Martinez and a Borbon sacrifice fly.
Neal Cotts allowed a solo home run to Pete Kozma in the bottom of the seventh inning but retired the side to pick up his third save. Memphis’ other run came off Grimm in the sixth when Matt Adams doubled in Shane Robinson with none out.
Tyler Lyons (1-7) pitched all seven innings of game one but was still saddled with the loss. He allowed four runs on five hits and two walks and struck out 11.
In game two, Express reliever and go-to spot-starter Derek Hankins (5-7) earned the win by lasting longer than Redbirds spot-starter Nick Greenwood. Hankins tossed five innings and allowed four runs on five hits and a walk and struck out two in his eighth start of the season. Greenwood lasted three innings and allowed three runs on six hits before giving way to Adam Reifer (1-3) who was hammered for five runs in just two-thirds of an inning to get the loss.
Joey Butler hit his 14th home run of the season in that five-run fourth inning. Four batters later, Borbon doubled with the bases loaded to drive in a pair. Tommy Mendonca scored two pitches later on a wild pitch by Reifer. Borbon later scored on a Ryan Spilborghs RBI groundout.
The majority of Memphis’ game two offense was due to home runs. Lou Montanez hit a two-run homer off Hankins in the third inning and Mark Hamilton hit a solo shot in the sixth. Cedric Hunter also had an RBI groundout in the second and Montanez picked up a third RBI with a single in the fifth.
Borbon had three hits on the day with four RBI and three runs scored. Luis Hernandez combined to go 3-for-6 with a walk and scored once. Round Rock struck out 18 times between the two games but still managed the sweep.
Montanez went 3-for-5 with three RBI, a run scored and a walk between the two games. Robinson had three hits and scored twice on the day.
Round Rock continues its five-game series Monday at Memphis. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. CDT. Left-hander Ben Snyder 2-4, 4.22 ERA) takes the hill for the Express opposite Memphis right-hander Shelby Miller (5-9, 5.65 ERA).
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