MIDLAND, TX – The Tulsa Drillers season high six-game winning streak came to an end Wednesday night with a shutout loss in Midland, Texas. Tulsa batters were limited to just six hits in the game, all singles, while striking out a season high 15 times in the 4-0 loss to
MIDLAND, TX – The Tulsa Drillers season high six-game winning streak came to an end Wednesday night with a shutout loss in Midland, Texas. Tulsa batters were limited to just six hits in the game, all singles, while striking out a season high 15 times in the 4-0 loss to the RockHounds.
The Drillers entered the game with a magic number of two to clinch the Texas League’s North Division first-half title, and at the end of the night, it remained at two. While the Drillers lost, Wichita’s game with San Antonio was suspended by rain in the fourth inning with the Wind Surge leading 2-1. The game will be resumed on Thursday.
Arkansas was eliminated from the race on Wednesday with a 3-2 loss to Frisco.
The Drillers need a combination of wins and Wichita losses totaling two to clinch the first-half title.
Lefthander Hogan Harris made just his second Double-A start on the mound for Midland in Wednesday’s matchup, and the Drillers missed a pair of early scoring opportunities against the newcomer. Harris walked a pair in the top of the first inning, but both runners were stranded.
Harris also walked the first two batters in the third inning, but a double play and a strikeout ended that threat.
The RockHounds did not miss on their early scoring opportunity, scoring twice in the bottom of the first off Tulsa starter Bobby Miller. The right-hander gave up a two-out, two-run double to Jeremy Eierman and needed 29 pitches to get through the initial inning.
After the two-run first, Miller settled in and worked four scoreless frames before departing.
The RockHounds doubled their lead with two more runs in the seventh against reliever Jose Hernandez. Marty Bechina tripled on the first pitch of the inning, and one-out later, Sahid Valenzuela belted a two-run homer to put Tulsa in a 4-0 hole. Valenzuela was making his Double-A debut in the game after being promoted by the Oakland A’s.
The Drillers had one final opportunity to avoid the shutout in the ninth inning. A pair of hits had runners at second and third with two outs, but Midland reliever Austin Briggs got a ground out from Justin Yurchak to end the game.
It was the first shutout loss in Midland for Tulsa since April 22, 2019 when the RockHounds blanked Dustin May and the Drillers 4-0.
HIGHLIGHTS AND HAPPENINGS:
*Miller allowed four hits and a walk in his five innings while striking out eight. The loss dropped his record to 3-2.
*Yurchak and Leonel Valera each had two hits in the game for Tulsa.
*Reliever Cameron Gibbens made his 2022 Drillers debut and worked a scoreless eighth inning.
*The Drillers streak of having hit at least one home run in 11 straight games ended with the shutout loss.
*The Great Lakes Loons, the High-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers, clinched a first-half title in the Midwest League on Wednesday night with a 4-2 win over Ft. Wayne. Just over two weeks ago, the Loons trailed Dayton by 8.5 games, but they proceeded to win 12 of their next 13 games to overtake the Dragons and clinch the title.
The Drillers and RockHounds will meet again on Thursday night in the third game of their six-game series. Starting time is slated for 7:00 p.m. at Midland’s Momentum Bank Ballpark. The pitching matchup is expected to be:
Tulsa – RHP Clatyon Beeter (0-2, 4.59 ERA)
Midland – RHP Colin Peluse (5-2, 6.10 ERA)