ROUND ROCK, Texas - Round Rock Express (65-72) LF Willie Calhoun blasted the first pitch of his at-bat in the bottom of the ninth inning well over the wall in left-center field for a walkoff grand slam that gave the E-Train a thrilling 10-9 victory over the Oklahoma City Dodgers (72-68) on Sunday night at Dell Diamond. Calhoun finished the game 3-5 with a Pacific Coast League season-high eight RBI.
Calhoun's dramatic game-winner gave Express RHP R.J. Alvarez (1-2, 4.43) the victory. The righty tossed a perfect 1-2-3 ninth inning of relief. OKC RHP Yaisel Sierra (0-1, 4.22) suffered the loss after giving up four runs on three hits and a walk in the fateful ninth inning.
Neither starter figured into the decision as Round Rock RHP Clayton Blackburn allowed four runs on six hits in five innings. Meanwhile, Oklahoma City RHP David Hale permitted four runs on seven hits in six innings.
Round Rock jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning as RF Jose Cardona collected his first career Triple-A hit with a leadoff single. After stealing second base, Cardona raced home on a two-out Ryan Rua single. An inning later, 3B Brett Hayes blasted a solo home to double the Express lead to 2-0.
However, Oklahoma City responded with four runs in the fourth inning. 1B Edwin Rios opened the frame with a double, then DH Joc Pederson followed up with an RBI single that put the Dodgers on the board. CF Trayce Thompson singled, then Blackburn skipped a wild pitch past C Kevin Torres , moving both baserunners 90 feet closer to home. The inning continued as 2B Max Muncy singled to score a pair of runs. RF Henry Ramos then made it 4-0 with an RBI double that scored Muncy.
The E-Train bounced back as SS Jurickson Profar opened the fifth with a single. Calhoun then stepped to the plate and launched his 30th home run of the season, a two-run shot to right field that tied the game at 4-4.
Round Rock RHP Clayton Cook then entered in the sixth inning to make his Triple-A debut. Pederson connected on Cook's seventh pitch of the night, lining a solo home run to left field that gave the Dodgers the lead right back. An inning later, OKC C Jack Murphy doubled and LF Tim Locastro singled prior to a booming three-run homer courtesy of Rios.
Round Rock inched closer in the seventh. With RHP Walker Buehler on the mound, Torres kickstarted the frame with a walk. Buehler then skipped a wild pitch past Murphy, allowing Torres to take second base. After walking Cardona, Buehler tossed another wild pitch, pushing both runners into scoring position. Calhoun singled to score both runners, trimming the gap to 8-6.
However, with RHP Tayler Scott on in relief for the Express, Muncy opened the eighth with a line drive home run that cleared the visitor's bullpen in deep right field.
Torres and Cardona opened the dramatic ninth inning with back-to-back singles. After Profar manufactured a walk, Calhoun stepped to the plate and lined a walkoff grand slam to deep left-center field, completing a thrilling comeback to give the Express a 10-9 win.
Round Rock and Oklahoma City conclude the 2017 season on Monday afternoon. E-Train RHP Adrian Sampson (0-0, 0.00) is slated to take the mound against OKC LHP Justin Marks (4-2, 5.07). First pitch at Dell Diamond is scheduled for 12:05 p.m.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.