Ornelas rallies Storm in extra-inning thriller

Padres No. 12 prospect delivers California League comeback

Tirso Ornelas rapped out five triples during the regular season, third-most for Lake Elsinore. (Jerry Espinoza/MiLB.com)

By Duane Cross / MiLB.com | September 6, 2019 3:18 AM

The Quakes and Storm weathered punch after punch and, ultimately, it took 10 innings to settle Game 2 of the best-of-5 California League South Division playoff series.

No. 12 Padres prospect Tirso Ornelas lofted a sacrifice fly to score Jalen Washington with the game-winner as Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore rallied for a 7-6 win over Rancho Cucamonga on Thursday at The Diamond. The victory put the Storm a win away from the Finals.

Gameday box score

Rancho Cucamonga's John Rooney, the 30th-ranked Dodgers prospect who won 10 games across two levels this season, gave up back-to-back base hits to open the first and second innings. Both times he worked out of the jam.

Lake Elsinore broke through against the left-hander in the third. Another lead-off hit -- a single to right field by fifth-ranked Padres prospect Xavier Edwards -- set the table for No. 8 prospect Luis Campusano's run-scoring triple to left.

The Quakes answered quickly. Dillon Paulson's two-run double to center off right-hander Reiss Knehr plated Jeisson Rosario and Jacob Amaya, the Dodgers' No. 13 prospect, for a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning. Two frames later, Tre Todd belted a 2-1 offering from lefty reliever Cody Tyler over the right-center field wall for three of the four runs Rancho Cucamonga scored in the inning.

Complete playoff coverage

Ornelas had two hits, including a two-run triple to right in the Storm's three-run seventh. Campusano and 14th-ranked prospect Gabriel Arias added RBI singles as the Storm rallied to tie the game, 6-6, in the eighth.

In the 10th, Washington -- who entered the game in the ninth inning as a pinch-runner for Campusano -- singled off Max Gamboa (0-1). He advanced to second on a wild pitch, then stole third base. Two batters later, the 2017 29th-rounder raced home on Ornelas' fly ball to center.

Lake Elsinore's Eguy Rosario added three hits, an RBI and a run scored.

Fred Schlichtholz (1-0), the fifth hurler for the Storm, hit a batter and struck out one across 1 2/3 innings.

Amaya went 3-for-4, scored twice and swiped two bases. He is 5-for-8 with three steals in the series.

Game 3 is Friday at Rancho Cucamonga.

2019 MiLB include

In other California League playoff action

Rawhide 5, Giants 3

Visalia took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-5 North Division series. Bryan Valdez (1-0) was backed by three runs across the first two innings and held the Giants at bay, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk in five frames. Eduardo Diaz hit a solo homer in the sixth that proved to be the game-winning run. Top-ranked D-backs prospect Alek Thomas, who was promoted to Visalia from Class A Kane County on Aug. 3 and tabbed the 2019 Midwest League Most Valuable Player, doubled, singled, scored and stole a base. Matt Frisbee (0-1), who finished third in the California League with a 3.17 ERA, gave up four runs -- two earned -- and struck out seven in six innings. Game 3 is Friday at Visalia. Gameday box score

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

View More