Joe Mather provided a couple of wakeup calls for the Memphis Redbirds.
Mather homered twice and drove in three runs Wednesday, powering the Redbirds to a 7-5 victory over the Oklahoma City RedHawks in Game 1 of their Pacific Coast League semifinal series.
Memphis was trailing, 1-0, in the second inning when Mather smacked a solo shot off RedHawks starter Guillermo Moscoso. Allen Craig snapped a 3-3 deadlock with a two-run shot in the fifth, Mark Hamilton walked and Mather deposited an 0-2 offering from Moscoso over the left-field fence.
"Joe has been clutch," Redbirds manager Chris Maloney said. "He did what he had to do, that's how the Cardinals play baseball. He had big hits tonight ... those home runs really woke us up."
Mather, who had 10 homers in 91 regular-season games for Memphis, became the first Redbird to homer twice in a postseason contest.
"It's awesome," he said. "There's a lot of history, a lot of good players have played here, so it's an honor to have that."
Donovan Solano drove in two runs, while former Major Leaguer Ruben Gotay was 2-for-3 with a double and a run scored for the Redbirds, who host Game 2 on Thursday.
Bruce Dickson (1-0) got the win, despite allowing five runs on eight hits with five strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings. Eduardo Sanchez pitched two hitless frames and Josh Kinney worked the ninth for the save.
Chris Davis hit a solo homer and finished a triple shy of the cycle for Oklahoma City. The big league veteran scored three times, once on Max Ramirez's blast in the sixth.
Moscoso (0-1) was charged with seven runs on nine hits, including three homers, over 4 2/3 frames. Former first-round pick Tanner Scheppers struck out one over two innings of hitless relief.
In other Pacific Coast League action:
Tacoma Rainiers 10, Sacramento River Cats 8
Brad Nelson delivered a two-run double to snap a tie in the ninth inning as the Rainiers grabbed homefield advantage in the best-of-5 series. Greg Halman hit a three-run homer and former first-round pick Justin Smoak reached base six times for Tacoma. Box score
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.