WICHITA, Kansas – Ryder Jones pushed across the first two runs of the game - and in Riverfront Stadium history - with his two-RBI single in the top of the fourth inning as the Sod Poodles struck first and scored late to take game one of the six game series
WICHITA, Kansas – Ryder Jones pushed across the first two runs of the game - and in Riverfront Stadium history - with his two-RBI single in the top of the fourth inning as the Sod Poodles struck first and scored late to take game one of the six game series in Wichita by a score of 3-2.
Lefty Tommy Henry took the hill for the Soddies in his second career Double-A outing after spending the 2019 season with Hillsboro. Henry was held to a strict inning limit in his first professional season, never appearing in more than one inning in any of his three starts. That easily made his 4.1 innings of work on Tuesday night the best outing of his young career. Henry allowed two runs on four hits while fanning four Wichita batters
The fans in attendance had to wait until the the third inning to see a ball put in play for a hit when Alek Thomas snuck one through the hole between the first and second baseman for the first hit of the game.
Wichita's starter, Cole Sands, cruised through his first three innings, allowing just one hit before Amarillo finally got to him in the fourth. A single and back-to-back walks loaded the bases for Jones who jumped on the first pitch of the at-bat and pushed the ball into left field, easily scoring two.
Wichita answered with a pair of two-out singles in the home half of the fourth, tying the game at two runs a piece. The game would remain tied until the top of the seventh when the top-two D-backs' prospects on the Sod Poodles roster gave Amarillo the lead.
With two outs Thomas sliced a ball down the left field line for a stand up double before Geraldo Perdomo beat the Wind Surge's defensive shift for the go-ahead run. Hitting from the left-side of the plate, Perdomo grounded a ball right where the shortstop would have been standing into left field, allowing Thomas to score from second and give the Sod Poodles the one run advantage.
The Sod Poodles bullpen continued their excellent start to the 2021 season. Edgar Arredondo made his third appearance after coming in to relieve Henry in the fifth. The Mexico born right-hander pitched 2.1 IP, allowing zero runs on just one hit but did issue three walks. Chester Pimentel followed Arredondo, coming in with two outs in the bottom of the seventh and runners on first and second. A walk loaded the bases and brought life into the 7,908 fans in Riverfront Stadium who saw the go-ahead runner standing on second base. A hard-hit line drive fell right into the glove of Soddies centerfielder Dominic Fletcher to end the Wind Surge threat in the 7th.
The Sod Poodles hitters went down in order on strikes in the top of the eighth before Wichita once again made a late push with a pair of runners aboard and just one out.
Sod Poodles manger Shawn Roof made the call to his closer, Junior Garcia. He entered Tuesday night leading all of minor league baseball in saves, capitalizing on all three of his save opportunities thus far. Perdomo made his second leaping play of the inning, this time robbing a surefire single and potential tying run from scoring and instead turning it into a double play to escape yet another late Wind Surge push.
Garcia took the mound in the bottom of the ninth just to see the Wind Surge once again put the tying run on second base. With two outs, Garcia struck out his second batter of the night, buckling him on a curve ball on the outer half of the plate to secure the Soddies third win in a row.
Game two of the series between these two clubs continues tomorrow night with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM from Riverfront Stadium. Pre-game coverage with Sam Levitt will begin on NewsTalk 940 AM and along the Sod Poodles Radio Network at 6:45 PM.
Trivial: Alek Thomas' name will now forever be linked in Wichita baseball history. The Chicago native recorded the very first hit in Riverfront Stadium history with his third inning single into right field. The Sod Poodles leadoff man reached on an error in the first inning while the first Wind Surge baserunner reached on a walk.
Young Bulls: The Amarillo bullpen once again dominated, allowing zero runs in 4.2 IP. The pen is now 5-0 with a 4.50 ERA through seven games in 36.0 innings of work with a 3.13:1 K:BB ratio.
Secure The Win: With the late run, Amarillo improved to 3-0 when leading after the 7th inning. The Sod Poodles have now escaped three straight late inning rallies by opponents en route to this three-game win streak.
I'm The Captain Now: Junior Garcia is now 4/4 in save opportunities without allowing a run in 4.1 IP. His four saves leads all of minor league baseball. Edgar Arredondo currently leads all minor leaguers in wins at 3-0. He has not allowed a run in 6.2 IP and holds a 3:1 K:BB ratio.
Turning Point: The D-backs' No. 3 ranked prospect Geraldo Perdomo used all his 6'2" frame to leap up and rob a base hit - and the potential tying run - with runners on first and second and only one out in the 8th. He was able to turn an inning-ending double-play to stall any momentum Wichita had gained.
Don't Kick Yourself: The Sod Poodles improved to 5-1 on the season when they do not commit an error. The only error of the year came in the second game of the season on 5/5 @ TUL on a throwing error in the first inning. The Soddies have gone 44 consecutive innings without an error.
You Validate?: D-backs' No. 12 ranked prospect, LHP Tommy Henry tossed his best outing as a pro, going 4.1 IP while allowing two runs on four hits while adding four strikeouts. It was the longest outing of his professional career so far after being limited to just 1.0 IP in all three of his starts with Hillsboro in 2019.
Immaculate: Yennier Cano, the big right-hander out of Cuba threw an immaculate inning against the Soddies in the top of the eighth. He struck out Amarillo's 4-5-6 hitters in 9 pitches.
Tomorrow's Preview: The Sod Poodles and Wind Surge will continue their six game series with game two tomorrow night at Riverfront Stadium in Wichita, KS. The Sod Poodles win tonight pulls them one game clear of Frisco who had their game cancelled due to weather. Amarillo (5-2) is now tied with Wichita for the best record in the Double-A Central League.
Upcoming Series: Following this week's series with Wichita, the Soddies will head back to Amarillo for their home opener on May 18 at HODGETOWN against Midland.