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Offense Explodes for 12 Runs in Win 

Deyvison De Los Santos Homers, Leads all Double-A in HR
(John E. Moore III)
May 8, 2024

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (May 7, 2024) – The Amarillo Sod Poodles started their road trip in south Texas with a 12-5 win over the Corpus Christi Hooks on Tuesday night. Amarillo's offense was paced by the heart of the order in an overall balanced effort. The 2-5 hole hitters combined

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (May 7, 2024) – The Amarillo Sod Poodles started their road trip in south Texas with a 12-5 win over the Corpus Christi Hooks on Tuesday night. Amarillo's offense was paced by the heart of the order in an overall balanced effort. The 2-5 hole hitters combined to go 10-for-18 with two extra-base hits, five RBI, and seven runs scored. In total, five of the nine starters all recorded multi-hit efforts and three players chipped in with multi-RBI games.

Following a late scratch, the Sod Poodles faced Alex Santos II to start the game instead of the scheduled Aaron Brown for Corpus Christi. Amarillo drew a two-out walk in the first but was unable to do anything else in the inning. Sod Poodles starter Cole Percival surrendered a pair of singles in his first inning of work but was aided by a caught stealing and his first strikeout of the evening to leave a runner stranded in scoring position.

Ivan Melendez and A.J. Vukovich began the second with a pair of singles to put runners on the corners. A one-out walk loaded the bases; but not for long. A balk brought home the game's first run before Logan Warmoth drove home two more with a single. Percival sent his offense back to work leaving a two-out Hooks double stranded to end the second.

Amarillo exploded for six runs in the top of the third. Deyvison De Los Santos started the onslaught by hitting his Double-A-leading 11th home run of the season. Melendez picked up his second hit of the night before stealing second. Consecutive walks loaded the bases for Kristian Robinson. The D-backs no. 17-rated prospect brought home the sixth Sod Poodles run and allowed the other two base runners to move up a bag with a sacrifice fly to deep center field. Tim Tawa added to his career RBI total, picking up numbers 107 and 108 with a single. Amarillo designated hitter and two-hole hitter J.J. D'Orazio capped the six-run inning with a two-out RBI double.

The bats were cooled down over the next two-plus innings by Cesar Gomez. The Corpus Christi right-hander faced the minimum he was tasked to face after replacing Santos II following D'Orazio's RBI double. Gomez allowed Melendez to collect his third hit of the night in the top of the fourth but induced an inning-ending double play before getting all three batters he faced in the fifth to ground out.

Corpus finally broke through against Percival in the bottom of the fourth. The Amarillo right-hander allowed a leadoff double and a one-out RBI single to push the first Corpus run across the board. The eighth hit allowed by Percival came via a first-pitch leadoff home run in the fifth to make it 9-2. He struck out two of the next three, upping his strikeout total to four in his outing.

Amarillo rattled off three straight one-out hits in the top of the sixth inning. The first was the second knock of the night by D'Orazio. Caleb Roberts brought him home with a RBI triple, his second three-bagger of the season. De Los Santos then made it a three-RBI night as he collected his second hit of the game.

Corpus made it three straight innings with a run scored as they finally chased Percival from the rubber. A one-out walk worked his way around the bases with the help of the ninth hit allowed by the Sod Poodles starter before Will Mabrey was asked to take over inheriting a couple of base runners. A RBI single was how the Sod Poodles southpaw began Amarillo's relief efforts before striking out the second batter he faced to end the frame. He faced four more in the seventh, striking out a pair of Hooks to help strand a two-out walk.

Taylor Rashi pitched the eighth for the Sod Poodles and saw another couple of Hooks runners cross the plate on two hits with the help of the lone Amarillo error for the game. For his one inning, Rashi struck out two and had one walk to go with the two runs and two hits. Warmoth upped the Sod Poodles advantage to 12-5 with his third RBI of the night, driving home Melendez who led off the top of the ninth with a walk and his fourth time reaching base.

Dillon Larsen pitched the ninth for the Sod Poodles, working a 1-2-3 inning to help secure the series-opening win. The series will continue tomorrow, Wednesday, May 8 at 11:05 a.m. from Whataburger Field. RHP Yilber Diaz (1-3, 3.96 ERA) will take the mound for the Sod Poodles fresh off being named Texas League Pitcher of the Week after spinning seven scoreless innings with a career-high 11 strikeouts in his last start.


ANOTHA ONE: D-backs no. 14-rated prospect Deyvison De Los Santos made it back-to-back games with a home run after leaving the yard in the top of the third inning. It was his Double-A-leading 11th homer of the season. His 11 long balls are good for T-3rd in all Minor League Baseball in 2024. He has hit six home runs over his last eight games played since the series Finale in Frisco on Sunday, April 28th. His 32 home runs for his Amarillo career are currently the most ever by a Sod Poodle, breaking the tie he had with Tim Tawa as they continue their back-and-forth for swat supremacy throughout the year.

MIGHTY MELENDEZ: After being held hitless for the series against Midland (0-for-15, 9 K), D-backs' no. 8-rated prospect Ivan Melendez broke out on Tuesday night in Corpus. Melendez recorded his second three-hit game of the season and first multi-hit game since April 26th in Frisco - where he had his first three-hit game. He reached base four times, drawing a walk in the top of the ninth, and he crossed the plate three times. The former no. 43 overall pick in the 2022 MLB Draft also stole his first base in Double-A and his first steal since June 30, 2023, with High-A Hillsboro.

THRICE AS NICE: Caleb Roberts went 3-for-4 with a RBI triple in the sixth inning. It was his second three-bagger of the year to lead the Sod Poodles in 2024. For Roberts, it was his 11th triple as he adds another to his franchise record for career triples.

HEART OF THE ORDER: The Amarillo 2-5 hitters combined to go 10-for-18 with a triple, home run, five RBI, and seven runs scored on Tuesday night. They all had multi-hit games, led by Caleb Roberts and Ivan Melendez who each pitched in with 3-for-4 nights at the plate.

SAY THAT SIX TIMES FAST: The Sod Poodles set a season-high with a six-run inning. Their previous high was five runs, which they had done twice already this year with the most recent coming on April 18 vs. Springfield. The six runs came via five hits, matching the most hits the Sod Poodles have any in any inning this year. Amarillo used two extra-base hits (De Los Santos, 2-run HR & D'Orazio, RBI 2B) and drew two walks in the inning. They left one runner stranded on base.

SWIPER GUNNA SWIPE: The Sod Poodles stole three bases in their win on Tuesday night to set a new single-game high for team steals in a contest. They had previously had four games where they had two steals as a team. Of the three base stealers, Ivan Melendez swiped his first Double-A bag in 61 career games and just the fifth overall in 148 minor league games. Logan Warmoth stole his second of the season. The former 1st rounder set a single-season career-high with 28 steals a season ago with Double-A Arkansas. Tim Tawa swiped his team-leading fifth base of the year and has been successful on all five he has attempted. He now has 19 career steals for Amarillo and set his single-season career-high with 14 steals during the 2021 season between Low-A Visalia (13) and the Arizona Complex League.