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Diaz Strikes Out 10, Allows One Hit in Loss

Diaz Works Second Straight Quality Start
(John E. Moore III)
May 9, 2024

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (May 8, 2024) – Playing a morning matinee in Corpus Christi, the Amarillo Sod Poodles dropped their Wednesday contest 1-0 to the Hooks. Yilber Diaz backed up his Texas League Pitcher of the Week start by working six innings and allowed just one hit with 10 strikeouts

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (May 8, 2024) – Playing a morning matinee in Corpus Christi, the Amarillo Sod Poodles dropped their Wednesday contest 1-0 to the Hooks. Yilber Diaz backed up his Texas League Pitcher of the Week start by working six innings and allowed just one hit with 10 strikeouts on the mound for the Sod Poodles in the loss.

Diaz allowed just one baserunner through his first two innings of work. The D-backs no. 16-rated prospect worked around a one-out walk in the first before striking out two of the three he faced in his second inning of work. The Sod Poodles got a runner into scoring position in each of the first two innings but were unable to push a run across as the game remained scoreless.

Back-to-back one-out walks issued by Diaz in the third helped to put the first Hook into scoring position. A groundout allowed both runners to advance a base with the lead runner coming in to score as Diaz balked in the first and only run of the game. The right-hander then struck out his fifth batter of the game to end the third. It was the beginning of eight straight Corpus batters Diaz would help to retire, racking up five more strikeouts for his outing to give him double-digit strikeouts in consecutive outings.

The Sod Poodles once again looked poised to plate a run in the top of the fourth with Ivan Melendez and Kevin Graham collecting one-out singles. An inning-ending double play thwarted the scoring chance.

After beginning the bottom of the sixth with his 10th strikeout, Diaz surrendered his first hit of the day in the form of a one-out single. He then induced a double play ball of his own to leave the sixth with the lone hit against him and one run on three walks.

Left-hander Jake Rice took over on the mound in the seventh and worked one inning while allowing the second Corpus hit of the game. He struck out two of the four batters he faced for the day to help keep the Hooks advantage to just one run. Tim Tawa made it a two-hit day at the plate with another single in the top of the eighth. He was left stranded in scoring position after advancing a base on a ground out.

Mitchell Stumpo took over pitching duties in the eighth and worked a three-up, three-down frame, ending his inning of work with the 13th and final strikeout by an Amarillo arm on Wednesday.

Deyvison De Los Santos drew a leadoff walk to start the top of the ninth but three straight strikeouts kept the Sod Poodles from being able to push the tying run - or more - across the plate.

Even at a game a piece, the Sod Poodles and Hooks will continue their series on Thursday night from Whataburger Field. RHP Dylan File (1-2, 4.74 ERA) will take the ball for the Sod Poodles. First pitch on Thursday night is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.


DIAZ X DIEZ: Making his first start since being named Texas League Pitcher of the Week last week, RHP Yilber Diaz made a case to win it back-to-back weeks on Wednesday. The D-backs no. 16-rated prospect worked 6.0 IP allowing just one hit with 10 strikeouts. Diaz surpassed 300 career strikeouts in his outing on Wednesday in what was his 69th professional game since being signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks in February of 2021. Diaz is now up to 52 strikeouts through his first six starts of the 2024 season, good for the second most in minor league baseball at the time he left the mound. He has now tossed back-to-back quality starts for the second time in his professional career and Wednesday was his seventh overall quality start of his 49 pro starts. He is now 3-2 in his quality starts after also taking a loss on July 2, 2023 at Tri-City (A+) when he was a Hillsboro Hop.

TIMMY TWO PIECE: Tim Tawa ended the game 2-for-3 with a walk and stolen base. The Sod Poodles' all-time hits leader collected half of the team's four hits on Wednesday and extended his hitting streak to five games, the longest active streak on the team currently.

RICE IS NICE: After pitching another scoreless inning, LHP Jake Rice is up to nine consecutive games without allowing an earned run dating back to April 12th in Midland. His streak spans 14.0 IP where he has allowed just nine hits and has 12 strikeouts to four walks. His nine straight games without an earned run is tied for the second-longest active streak in the Texas League.

STUMPED: RHP Mitchell Stumpo also extended his current streak without allowing an earned run to seven games after pitching the eighth inning for Amarillo on Wednesday. Through seven appearances with Amarillo in 2024, Stumpo has yet to yield a run over 8.2 IP while allowing just five hits and has nine strikeouts.

HARD TO COME BY: Amarillo and Corpus Christi combined for just six hits on Wednesday, with Amarillo having four of them. The two hits surrendered by Amarillo pitchers are tied for the fewest allowed in any game so far this year. They matched the two hits allowed last Thursday in Diaz's last start when Diaz allowed both hits against Midland over his seven scoreless. Wednesday was the second time this year that both Amarillo and their opponent had five or fewer hits in the same game and just the first time when both teams had four or fewer hits. The Sod Poodles are now 0-10 on the year when scoring 3 or fewer runs and 4-4 when limiting their opponent to 3 or less.