FRISCO, TEXAS (June 30, 2014) - The Frisco RoughRiders scored early and often Monday afternoon as they took down the Northwest Arkansas Naturals 9-2 at Dr Pepper Ballpark.
The 'Riders (5-6, 45-35) took the series 2-1 thanks to their recently revitalized offense. Frisco brought home five runs for the fourth consecutive game and inched one win away from getting back to .500 in the second half.
The Naturals (6-6, 31-51) fell back down to .500 after going only 2-for-12 with runners in scoring position. Naturals starter Jason Adam (2-8) never seemed comfortable from the start and only lasted four innings. The righty allowed seven earned runs on 10 hits while striking out five and walking one. Adam is tied for the second most losses in the Texas League.
It didn't take long for Trever Adams to get the 'Riders on the board in the 2nd. Adam left one hanging over the plate and the 'Riders first baseman let it fly out to the Diamond Deck to give Frisco the early lead. Adams is now tied with Joey Gallo for the most Frisco homers (8) on the season.
After Jake Skole singled and stole second, Edwin Garcia hit a double down the right-field line to bring home Skole and extend the lead to 2-0. Garcia was in a groove at the plate, finishing 3-for-4 with an RBI.
Ryan Strausborger gave the 'Riders another great start to a frame with a lead-off triple in the third. The Osceola, Indiana native also tripled Friday night against the Arkansas Travelers. Tomas Telis flied one to shallow left field that fell between three Naturals and allowed Strausborger to trot home. Adams picked up his second and third RBI of the day on a single to left-center field that put the 'Riders up 5-0.
Through the first three innings, Jerad Eickhoff (6-5) did an effective job using his curveball to leave runners stranded but couldn't hold them in the fourth. Mark Threlkeld smacked an RBI triple into the outfield over the outstretched arm of centerfielder Strausborger to give the Naturals their first run. Micah Gibbs tacked on one more thanks to a double down the right-field line.
The 'Riders scored in their third consecutive inning in the fourth when Joey Gallo doubled for the second time of the game and fifth time on the season, giving Frisco a commanding 7-2 lead.
Eickhoff looked to be in some trouble in the top of the fifth after throwing four straight balls to Angel Franco. The next batter hit a rocket right at Gallo that both runners thought the third baseman had a handle on. Gallo, though, dropped the ball, picked it back up and quickly pulled off the 5-4-3 double play with two Naturals still by first base. Manager Vance Wilson argued the call and was ejected because of it.
The 'Riders starter would pitch one more inning before his day came to a close. Through six innings, Eickhoff allowed two earned runs on six hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
Telis and Odubel Herrera each picked up an RBI single in the eighth, providing Frisco with a few insurance runs and a 9-2 lead.
Francisco Mendoza took the mound in the seventh and showcased some of his best pitching to finish out the game. He had great command on his fastball and struck out five over three innings in picking up his fifth save. With the victory, the 'Riders won their first series since June 6.
The RoughRiders will go on the road and face the Arkansas Travelers Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. at Dickey-Stephens Park. Frisco right-hander Alex Gonzalez (1-3, 4.50) will face fellow righty Orangel Arenas (5-4, 3.19 ERA). For tickets to see the 'Riders in 2014, call 972-731-9200, e-mail Info@RidersBaseball.com or visit www.ridersbaseball.com.