The Omaha Storm Chasers (48-56) bashed the Fresno Grizzlies (61-44) 15-4 Friday night from Chukchansi Park. Behind a 23-hit outburst, the Omaha offense tallied a run in seven of the nine innings. Every batter recorded at least one hit for the Storm Chasers. With the loss, Fresno fell to 19-8 in the first game of a series and 13-5 versus the American conference. The Grizzlies also saw their four-game winning streak come crashing down.
In the visitor's half of the first, Omaha drew first blood when Billy Burns (3-for-5) raced home on a fielder's choice.
Derek Fisher quickly erased the deficit in the bottom of the first when he crushed a solo shot to right field. It was his 10th homer of the season.
Burns gave the Storm Chasers a 2-1 advantage in the top of the second when he skied a sacrifice fly to center.
Jack Mayfield knotted the score at two in the bottom of the second when he launched a dinger to left field. It was his 11th big fly of the year.
Omaha regained a 4-2 lead in the top of the third. Ramon Torres (2-for-6) sharply singled to right, plating Ryan O' Hearn (2-for-6). Then, Jack Lopez (3-for-5) mustered a sacrifice fly to center. The Storm Chasers made it 6-2 in the visitor's half of the fourth when O' Hearn nailed a two-run double to right.
That would end the night for Fresno starter Brock Dykxhoorn (5-2, loss). He lasted three and two-thirds frames, allowing six runs (earned), on 12 hits, one walk and three strikeouts.
Nick Tanielu cut the deficit to 6-3 in the home half of the fourth after he doubled down the right field line, netting Yordan Alvarez.
After an eight-batter fifth inning, Omaha bumped the advantage to 8-3. Frank Schwindel (3-for-7) and Elier Hernandez (3-for-4) each rocked RBI singles to left.
Tyler White cut the deficit to 8-4 in the bottom of the fifth when he lined a single to left, knocking in Jake Marisnick. That extended White's current team-high hit streak to 13 games. In that span, he is 17-for-47 (.362), with seven extra-base knocks, 17 RBI, 13 runs and eight free passes. The 13 games mark the third longest hit streak by a Grizzly in 2018.
A four-run top of the sixth lengthened the Storm Chasers lead to 12-4. Burns blooped a single to right to start the carousel. It continued with a Nicky Lopez (5-for-6) RBI single to right. Then, a groundout and wild pitch finished the scoring.
Omaha grabbed a 15-4 advantage in the visitor's half of the eighth. Schwindel clobbered a double to center, adding Lopez. Then, Torres notched his second RBI of the evening with an infield single. Finally, Donnie Dewees smoked a double to right, forcing in Hernandez.
That would be enough for Richard Lovelady (two frames) to fan the side in the ninth and secure the 15-4 victory. He relieved both Eric Stout (two shutout innings) and Arnaldo Hernandez (2-0) who enjoyed the win. He was booked for four runs (earned), on six hits, two walks and a pair of whiffs in five frames.
Both squads continue the set with game two of four Saturday night from Chukchansi Park. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PT. Omaha RHP Zach Lovvorn (1-4, 9.25) and Fresno righty Brady Rodgers (0-1, 10.57) are the probable arms. Rodgers will make his first start at home since April 19, 2017.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.