Des Moines, Iowa - An action-packed afternoon closed out the Oklahoma City Dodgers' road trip as they opened the record books and defeated the Iowa Cubs, 18-5, in the series finale between the teams Thursday afternoon at Principal Park.
The Dodgers led, 9-5, entering the ninth inning when they went on to score nine runs with two outs in the top of the final inning. Oklahoma City tallied seven hits in the ninth, including three homers in a span of four batters.
The Dodgers hit a season-high eight home runs in Thursday's game - the third-most home runs hit by a PCL team this season and OKC's highest single-game home run total since at least 2005. Reno tied the modern PCL record earlier this season by hitting 10 home runs in a May 20 game against Tacoma and hit nine homers June 29 at Las Vegas.
Top Dodgers prospect Gavin Lux continued his offensive barrage in Triple-A, finishing Thursday's game 5-for-6 with a career-high five hits, two doubles, a home run, three RBI and three runs scored.
Lux has now homered in a career-best five straight games and has hit safely in each of his first 15 Triple-A games. Since his promotion to OKC June 27, Lux is batting .531 (34-for-64) with a .577 OBP, 1.063 SLG and 1.640 OPS.
Dodgers outfielder Kyle Garlick hit three home runs Thursday for his second three-homer game of the season with Oklahoma City, previously accomplished May 5 at New Orleans. Garlick homered in the third, seventh and ninth innings at Principal Park Thursday and followed DJ Peters with back-to-back homers in both the third and ninth innings.
Garlick's three-homer outing was just the eighth in Oklahoma City's modern PCL history and he is the first Oklahoma City player since the team rejoined the PCL in 1998 to put together two three-homer games.
The Dodgers quickly took the lead in Des Moines.
Lux led off with a double for Oklahoma City on the first pitch of the game and Edwin Ríos later ripped a two-run homer out to right field with one out for a 2-0 Dodgers advantage in the first inning. The home run was the 17th of the season with OKC for Ríos.
The Dodgers (43-54) boosted their lead to four runs in the second inning. Ben Moore singled with two outs and came around to score when starting pitcher Brock Stewart lined a RBI double to the wall in right field. Lux followed and grounded a single into center field, which slowed when it deflected off Iowa second baseman Trent Giambrone's glove and allowed Stewart to score for a 4-0 OKC lead.
Iowa (55-43) picked up two runs in the bottom of the inning. Ian Happ led off the inning and reached base on a fielding error by Lux. Phillip Evans followed with a two-run homer out to left-center field, cutting OKC's lead to 4-2.
The Dodgers scored three more runs in the top of the third inning. Ríos led off with a single. Peters then hit a fly ball to left-center field for his fifth Triple-A homer with OKC and a 6-2 Dodgers lead.
Garlick went back-to-back with Peters, following and lining a solo homer out to left field for a 7-2 OKC edge.
Iowa answered with three runs of its own in the bottom of the inning. Jim Aducci led off and drew a walk before Happ homered. Phillip Evans followed with a double and then scored on a RBI groundout by P.J. Higgins, trimming Oklahoma City's lead to two runs.
The Dodgers loaded the bases in the fourth inning with one out, but Iowa starting pitcher Tyson Miller got Peters to pop out and Garlick to strike out to escape the jam as both teams were held scoreless over the fourth and fifth innings.
Lux then smacked a homer out to right-center field to lead off the sixth inning for an 8-5 Dodgers lead. He now has seven home runs with OKC, including six in the last five games.
Garlick connected on his second homer of the day down the left field line to lead off the seventh inning for a 9-5 Dodgers advantage.
OKC then racked up nine more runs in the ninth inning with two outs.
Moore hit a bloop RBI single on a pop-up to shallow right field that allowed Peters to score after he led off the inning with a walk. Jon Kemmer entered the game as a pinch-hitter and lined a RBI single into right field for an 11-5 lead.
Lux collected his fifth hit of the day with an infield RBI single for a 12-5 Dodgers advantage.
The five hits for Lux Thursday were the most by a Dodgers player since Henry Ramos collected five hits in a Sept. 2, 2018 game at Colorado Springs. Lux is just the fourth player in Oklahoma City's affiliation with the Dodgers (since 2015) to tally five hits in a game, joining Ramos, Bobby Wilson (2017) and Austin Barnes (2015).
The shortstop now has 18 extra-base hits, 22 RBI and 25 runs scored so far with Oklahoma City and went an incredible 12-for-18 in the four-game series at Iowa with five home runs, 11 RBI and nine runs scored.
After the hit by Lux, Iowa catcher Taylor Davis entered the game to pitch for the Cubs and Connor Joe hit a three-run homer to left-center field for his 11th homer of the season. Ríos followed with a single before Peters and Garlick went back-to-back again with home runs to extend OKC to an 18-5 advantage.
The back-to-back homers by Peters and Garlick were the second of the game, third of the series in Iowa and seventh of the season for the Dodgers. Garlick now has 15 homers with OKC this season and Peters has hit six home runs with OKC.
The Dodgers have now homered in 11 straight games (25 HR) to tie their season-high streak from May 29-June 9.
Stewart (4-7) pitched a season-high 6.0 innings for Oklahoma City, allowing five runs (four earned) and four hits with two homers, four walks and four strikeouts. All five runs he allowed scored in the second and third innings.
OKC pitchers then allowed just two hits and held Iowa scoreless over the final six innings. Chris Nunn pitched two shutout innings and Shea Spitzbarth closed out the game with a scoreless ninth inning for the Dodgers.
Iowa starting pitcher Miller (1-1) was charged with the loss, allowing seven runs, 10 hits, two walks, three homers and four strikeouts over 5.0 innings.
The Dodgers scored double-digit runs for the second time in three games. Their 18 total runs Thursday were a season high and marked just the 11th time since 1998 an OKC team scored 18 or more runs in a game, last accomplished April 11, 2018 when the Dodgers defeated Round Rock, 19-1, at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Oklahoma City's 20 hits Thursday tied the team's season-high June 30 at Nashville.
With the win, the Dodgers earned a series split with Iowa and finished their road trip, 5-3.
The Dodgers return home for the second ¡Celebración Cielo Azul! of the season at 7:05 p.m. Friday, 6:05 p.m. Saturday and at 6:05 p.m. Sunday at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.
The Dodgers will take the field as Cielo Azul de Oklahoma City as part of Minor League Baseball's "Es Divertido Ser Un Fan®" ("It's Fun to Be a Fan®") initiative when they host the Flying Chanclas de San Antonio for the three-game series.
Latin-American singer and songwriter RC Manor from El Paso, Texas, is scheduled to perform a free pregame concert at the Bricktown Beach, located west of the ballpark along South Mickey Mantle Drive from 5:30 - 6:15 p.m. Friday. Manor won five awards at the 2019 Indie Music Channel Awards, including "Best Male Pop Artist" and "Song of the Year" for the song "Sun City Lovin."
Manor will also sing the national anthem at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark prior to the OKC Dodgers playing San Antonio Friday. Midwest City's Yumare Mexican Folkloric Dancers Inc., are scheduled to perform and fireworks, presented by Oklahoma Highway Safety Office, are slated to follow the game.
OKC Dodgers and Cielo Azul game tickets are available through the OKC Dodgers ticket office located on South Mickey Mantle Drive, by phone at (405) 218-2182, or by visiting okcdodgers.com.
Live radio coverage begins 15 minutes before first pitch on AM 1340 "The Game," 1340thegame.com and through the free iHeartRadio or MiLB First Pitch apps.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.