Austin Dean snapped an eighth-inning tie with a two-out, two-run homer to power the New Orleans Baby Cakes to a 5-3 win over the Omaha Storm Chasers on Wednesday night.
After the 'Cakes blew a lead of at least three runs for the second night in a row, Dean rescued them by driving his 17th home run of the year over the wall in left-center field. It gave Dean a new career high in home runs, surpassing the 16 he hit last year between Jacksonville, New Orleans and Miami.
Kyle Keller worked around a two-out double by Jecksson Flores in the ninth to nail down his team-leading 10th save.
The Baby Cakes stormed out to a 3-0 lead in the opening frame, with Dean driving in the game's first run on a double into the left field corner. A passed ball allowed Chad Wallach to trot in from third, and Yadiel Rivera followed with an RBI single.
Pablo Lopez, making his fifth start on a rehab assignment from the Marlins and second with New Orleans, retired the first seven batters before encountering trouble. He saw at least two batters reach base in each of his next four innings, and Omaha plated a pair of runs in the fourth on singles by Jorge Bonifacio and Erich Weiss.
Though the 'Cakes committed three errors in the game, the defense came through when Lopez needed the help, turning inning-ending double plays to snuff out Storm Chasers rallies in the fifth and sixth. Lopez finished by scattering eight hits in six innings, yielding two runs - one earned - with five strikeouts and no walks.
Omaha finally capitalized on a scoring chance in the top of the eighth, when Chase d'Arnaud drew a one-out walk from Parker Bugg (3-4), stole second base, and scored on a single up the middle by Weiss. The Storm Chasers finished 3-for-14 with runners in scoring position.
New Orleans snapped its season-high four-game losing skid and faces Omaha in the finale of the four-game set on Thursday at 7 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.