LANCASTER, Calif. - Top prospect MacKenzie Gore won seven games for the Padres' affiliate before a promotion to Double-A Amarillo, but it's fellow southpaw Aaron Leasher who leads the Storm with eight victories, including a perfect 5-0 record since the All-Star break. On Wednesday night in Lancaster, the Mount Pleasant,
LANCASTER, Calif. - Top prospect MacKenzie Gore won seven games for the Padres' affiliate before a promotion to Double-A Amarillo, but it's fellow southpaw Aaron Leasher who leads the Storm with eight victories, including a perfect 5-0 record since the All-Star break. On Wednesday night in Lancaster, the Mount Pleasant, Michigan native faced the top hitting team in the California League and, despite out hitting the Jethawks for the second consecutive game, the Storm lost their second straight, falling 4-3 to the Rockies' affiliate.
Leasher had been dominant in the second half, allowing only two earned runs in 32 innings, striking out 36 and walking three. The former Morehead State standout entered the game on a 21-inning scoreless streak but surrendered a two-run home run in the bottom of the first to former UCLA Bruin, Sean Bouchard, as the Jethawks took the early lead.
The Storm bounced back on an Olivier Basabe RBI double in the second inning, and later tying the game 2-2 in the top of the fifth as catcher Luis Campusano drives in Xavier Edwards with a two-out RBI single to left field against the eventual winner, Garrett Schilling.
The Jethawks responded by scoring two runs in the bottom of the fifth against Leasher, who allowed a one-out walk to Bouchard, a single to clean-up hitter Casey Golden and a triple to shortstop Taylor Snyder, giving the hosts a 4-2 lead.
Storm All-Star catcher Luis Campusano, the league's top hitter (.328), cut the deficit to one when he belted his team-leading 10th home run with two outs in the seventh, but Lake Elsinore finished 0-7 against Lancaster's bullpen and Jethawks closer Tommy Doyle worked a scoreless ninth for his league-leading 17th save in 18 opportunities.
Lake Elsinore is 52-50 overall and three games behind Rancho Cucamonga in the second half with a 17-17 record. There are 36 games remaining, including 16 at The Diamond.
RHP Hansel Rodriguez: Two scoreless innings, zero hits, one walk, three strikeouts
RHP Javy Guerra: One scoreless inning, eight pitches/six strikes, one strikeout
C Luis Campusano: 3-4, one double (25), one HR (10), two RBI (59)
RF Jack Suwinski: 2-4, four-game hitting streak
1B Olivier Basabe: 1-4, one double (15), one RBI (41), six-game hitting streak
SS Gabriel Arias: Nine-game hitting streak ends, still batting .395 (17-43) in his last 10 games
WP: Garrett Schilling (8-5)
LP: Aaron Leasher (8-6)
Save: Tommy Doyle (17)
HR: LE: Campusano (10th, solo, T7) | LAN: Bouchard (12th, two-run, B1)
After winning four consecutive series against North Division teams, the Storm tonight will try to avoid getting swept at The Hangar as RHP Seth Blair is opposed by Lancaster LHP Ryan Rolison at 6:35pm. The Storm return home on Friday, July 26 for a three-game series against the Angels' affiliate, Inland Empire 66ers. For the best available seats buy online at stormbaseball.com or call 951-245-4487.