CORPUS CHRISTI - The Hooks dropped a heartbreaker to the Midland RockHounds in 10 innings Sunday at Whataburger Field, falling 7-6 in the decisive season series tiebreaker.
Tyler Ramirez delivered a pinch-hit, two-out double in the 10th off Colin McKee to win it for the Hounds.
Bryan De La Cruz had launched a go-ahead homer (2) in the eighth to complete a comeback from a five-run deficit. But Edwin Diaz re-tied the game with two in the ninth with an RBI double against Chad Donato to send the game to extras.
Midland got out to its five-run lead against Yohan Ramirez, who walked six batters in 2.0-plus innings. The big blow came off the bat of Mikey White, a three-run shot (9) to make it 3-0 before the Hounds added on two more in the inning.
The Hooks began their comeback in the bottom of the third against Brian Howard with RBIs from Jake Adams and Ronnie Dawson.
Howard loaded the bases in the fourth to face J.J. Matijevic with two outs. With a 3-2 count, Matijevic roped a game-tying double.
Donato (L, 2-2) took the tough luck loss by virtue of beginning the 10th inning with the placed runner on second. He struck out seven while allowing three hits and two runs (1 earned) without a free pass. Willy Collado worked 3.0 scoreless frames with five punchouts in the middle innings.
Jesus Zambrano (W, 4-0) worked the final 2.0 scoreless innings for Midland. He got De La Cruz to ground into a game-ending double play with runners on first and second.
De La Cruz was 3-for-6 with two runs scored in the contest. Osvaldo Duarte went 3-for-5 with a steal and a run in the loss.
White carried the Hounds, going 3-for-5 with the crucial three-run blast.
Should the Hooks and RockHounds end the season tied for the Wild Card spot, Midland will hold the tiebreaker based on head-to-head record.
The Hooks will travel to North Little Rock to take on the first-half Texas League North-champion Arkansas Travelers beginning Tuesday. Brett Conine (0-0, 4.50) will make his first Double-A start.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.