Reed, Poodles knot Texas League Finals

Padres No. 25 prospect homers to force Game 5 with Drillers

Buddy Reed is batting .308 with two homers and three RBIs in the Texas League Championship Series. (John Moore/Amarillo Sod Poodles)

By Duane Cross / | September 15, 2019 1:15 AM

There will be a winner-take-all Game 5 for the Texas League banner.

No. 25 San Diego prospect Buddy Reed went yard as Double-A Amarillo blanked Tulsa, 3-0, on Saturday night at ONEOK Field in Game 4 of the Championship Series.

Video: Amarillo's Castillo goes deep

Ivan Castillo put the Sod Poodles on the board in the first inning with a one-out laser over the right-field wall off Parker Curry (0-1). It was déjà vu in the second frame as Reed launched another one-out solo shot for a 2-0 lead.

The Drillers' 25-year-old right-hander yielded two runs on five hits and a walk across four innings. He struck out five.

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"I noticed he was throwing off-speed to lefties," Reed noted of Curry. "He started me off with a curveball, then a changeup. In the back of my mind, from the pitch sequence, he was pitching backwards.

"He left a changeup over the plate and I was able to square up the ball. Scoring early, in a game like that, you knew it would be big."

Video: Amarillo's Reed touches 'em all

Meanwhile, Sod Poodles starter Jesse Scholtens (1-0) stymied Tulsa through five frames. He scattered five hits and three walks while whiffing one.

The righty stranded seven Drillers runners -- five in scoring position. He worked out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the fourth by fanning Jared Walker and inducing sixth-ranked Dodgers prospect Jeter Downs to fly out to center.

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"A lot of times when the pitcher is in the zone, no one talks to them," Reed said. "It's usually just the pitcher, the catcher. But Jesse was loose. There wasn't a lot of talking, but we kept the vibe positive.

"We didn't have a lot of hits [six], but we squared up balls at people. We knew our bats were OK and our defense was on lockdown."

Amarillo upped its lead to 3-0 in the sixth without a knock. Tenth-ranked Padres prospect Owen Miller reached on a leadoff fielding error by shortstop Downs and Luis Torrens worked a walk off righty Jordan Sheffield. With one out, Peter Van Gansen grounded to second baseman Omar Estevez, who threw wide of second to allow Miller to scamper across the plate.

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Travis Radke earned the save, allowing a hit while striking out two over 2 1/3 innings.

"One more," Reed said. "It's been a long season. We took both playoff series to five games. It's been a fun ride and we have a lot of momentum. It's an early game tomorrow, but we just have to stick to the gameplan. After that, the rest will take care of itself."

Game 5 will be at 2:05 p.m. ET on Sunday at Tulsa.

Duane Cross is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @DuaneCrossMiLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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