SPRINGFIELD, MO - Audry Perez belted a grand slam in the second inning Wednesday night as the Cardinals stormed to an 11-3 victory over the Hooks at Hammons Field.
The Hooks, who have lost a season-high four in a row, jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first thanks to bases-loaded walk by Jonathan Meyer. Lefty Jonathan Cornelius bounced back to retire the next two batters, stranding three. Corpus Christi had not scored in 21 innings following back-to-back shutouts by Tulsa.
Ross Seaton had retired the first four he faced before Stephen Piscotty swatted a home run to left field. Three batters later, Perez, hitting ninth in the order, crushed a 1-0 fastball from Seaton onto the berm in left-center.
Seaton (1-1) would later surrender an RBI double by Piscotty in the fifth.
Cornelius (1-2) set down eight in a row after the Meyer walk. He did run into two-out trouble in the sixth. Zach Johnson notched a single and Raoul Torrez followed with a two-run blast to left. Torrez now owns seven hits with the Hooks and two have left the yard.
The Cardinals, who snapped their losing streak at four, answered immediately in the home half, plating a pair off lefty Kenny Long. Springfield added two more in the eighth with Matt Heidenreich on the hill.
Heath Wyatt and Deryk Hooker authored three scoreless frames of relief to close out the game for the redbirds.
The two clubs meet Thursday for Game 2 of this series. Ruben Alaniz (4-7) and Seth Blair (3-6) comprise the Independence Day matchup. First pitch is 5:09.