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Three-homer first inning leads Omaha to win over Louisville

Junis strikes out five in three scoreless innings
June 17, 2021

PAPILLION, NEB. -- The Omaha Storm Chasers hit three first-inning home runs, and five total home runs, to edge the Louisville Bats, 6-5, on Thursday at Werner Park. After right-hander Jakob Junis tossed a perfect first inning for Omaha (27-11), Louisville (13-25) right-hander Hunter Greene (Loss, 0-1) took the mound

PAPILLION, NEB. -- The Omaha Storm Chasers hit three first-inning home runs, and five total home runs, to edge the Louisville Bats, 6-5, on Thursday at Werner Park.

After right-hander Jakob Junis tossed a perfect first inning for Omaha (27-11), Louisville (13-25) right-hander Hunter Greene (Loss, 0-1) took the mound in the bottom of the first for his Triple-A debut. Greene struck out three in the inning, but right-fielder Kyle Isbel, first baseman Ryan O'Hearn, and designated hitter Ryan McBroom all hit solo home runs, with O'Hearn and McBroom going back to back.

It was Isbel's fourth home run of the season, O'Hearn's 12th, and McBroom's 13th, which leads the league.

Junis threw 3.0 scoreless innings in his second start with Omaha, striking out five while allowing just two hits and no walks.

The Chasers added another run on another home run in the third, when third baseman Emmanuel Rivera smacked a solo shot with two outs. It was Rivera's 11th home run of the season and his third straight game with a homer.

Omaha's Emmanuel Rivera has 11 home runs in 2021. Minda Haas Kuhlmann

The Bats scratched a run across on an RBI double by Beau Taylor in the fourth inning against right-hander Jace Vines (Win, 4-2) before the Chasers notched another home run in the fifth. Facing a new pitcher in right-hander Jose De Leon, left-fielder Anderson Miller led off the fifth inning with a solo home run to straightaway centerfield.

It was Omaha's fifth home run of the game, marking the third time in the last four games that the Chasers have hit at least five home runs. Omaha hit a modern franchise record seven home runs on Sunday, five on Tuesday, two on Wednesday, and five on Thursday for a total of 19 home runs in four games. The Chasers lead all of Minor League Baseball with 78 home runs this season.

Louisville scored twice more in the sixth when a hit batter and a double put runners on second and third with nobody out. Next, Alfredo Rodriguez and Beau Taylor hit back-to-back sacrifice flies to cut Omaha's lead to two.

The Chasers extended the lead to three with a run in the seventh. Second baseman Gabriel Cancel singled, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a sacrifice fly by shortstop Alcides Escobar.

The Bats capped the scoring in the ninth, scoring two runs on a homer by Mark Payton against right-hander Jake Newberry (Save, 2) before Newberry got the final out.

The Storm Chasers continue their six-game series with Louisville on Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and coverage begins with the Sarpy County Tourism Pregame Show at 6:45 p.m. on 1180 The Zone.

For tickets and more information, please visit omahastormchasers.com, call the Werner Park Ticket Office at (402) 738-5100 and follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.