Birmingham socks 15 hits to back strong Stephens start
Seby Zavala and Eloy Jimenez had plenty to celebrate in Wednesday's win. (Michael Wade)
By Aaron Cheris / Birmingham Barons | May 9, 2018 4:22 PM
The Birmingham Barons (17-16) earned their biggest victory of the season with a 16-3 rout of the Pensacola Blue Wahoos (13-20) on Wednesday afternoon at Regions Field. The Barons recorded at least one hit in each inning to clinch a season series victory over Pensacola, 6-2 with two games remaining.
Turning Point: The Barons wasted no time in jumping out to an early lead against Pensacola starter Jesus Reyes (L, 0-6). Ryan Brett led off with a single and Zack Collins followed with a ground-rule double. Eloy Jimenez then drove in the game's first two runs with a double to left to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. A few batters later, the Barons added on from a Jameson Fisher RBI single, Nick Basto RBI ground ball, and a sacrifice fly from Danny Mendick to give Birmingham a 5-0 lead after one inning.
Moments That Mattered: Birmingham continued the offensive assault as Seby Zavala crushed his league-leading ninth home run, a two-run shot to left in the second to make it 7-0. Mendick continued his torrid pace against Pensacola by hitting a solo home run in the third, his sixth of the season and fifth against the Blue Wahoos this year. The Barons doubled their run total with five in the seventh and three in the eighth to reach 16 runs, their highest total this season.
Facts And Figures: Ten different Barons hitters reached base in the win with eight recording a hit and seven recording multi-hit games. Mendick finished with four RBIs while Keon Barnum drove in three after entering the game as a pinch-hitter in the seventh. Jimenez and Basto each plated a pair of runs.
Quotable: "You've got to come out ready to play every day. It's definitely tough with a day game after a night game, but it's part of the job," Zavala said. "If I work with my routine and do it every day, good things will happen."
By The Numbers: On the mound, Birmingham starter Jordan Stephens (W, 4-3) was in fine form from his first pitch to his last. Over 6.0 scoreless innings, he gave up just two hits and three walks while tying a season-high with eight strikeouts to earn his fourth straight win.
He Said It: "Today we put up early runs and helped him get comfortable," Zavala said of Stephens. "He threw some good pitches to feel good and he finished strong."
Up Next: The two sides meet again on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. at Regions Field. Jordan Guerrero (1-3, 6.49) is scheduled to start for the Barons against Vladimir Gutierrez (0-5, 5.91). Curt Bloom will have the call on 960 WERC News Radio and the iHeart Radio app.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.