ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Left-hander Marcelo Martinez tossed a career-best 6.2 innings with seven strikeouts to help the Omaha Storm Chasers top the St. Paul Saints, 4-2, on Thursday at CHS Field. Designated hitter Bobby Witt Jr., third baseman MJ Melendez, and second baseman Angelo Castellano each hit a solo
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Left-hander Marcelo Martinez tossed a career-best 6.2 innings with seven strikeouts to help the Omaha Storm Chasers top the St. Paul Saints, 4-2, on Thursday at CHS Field. Designated hitter Bobby Witt Jr., third baseman MJ Melendez, and second baseman Angelo Castellano each hit a solo home run while right-hander Dylan Coleman retired all five batters he faced to close the game.
Witt Jr. gave Omaha (62-49) the lead in the top of the first inning with a solo shot to left field against St. Paul (57-54) right-hander Beau Burrows (Loss, 2-5). It was Witt Jr.'s second straight game with a home run, his 14th at the Triple-A level, and his 30th of the season. He is the fourth player in Minor League Baseball to hit at least 30 home runs this season.
Martinez (Win, 4-6) yielded a solo home run to Gilberto Celestino in the first and gave up his only other run of the game in the third. Damek Tomscha singled, moved to third on an infield single and throwing error, and scored on a fielder's choice groundout. Following an infield single by Celestino in the third inning, Martinez retired 12 of the final 13 batters he faced. The left-hander tied a Triple-A best with seven strikeouts and did not issue a walk. His 6.2 innings was the longest start by a Chasers' pitcher this season and he recorded his team-best fourth quality start.
Melendez smacked a solo home run in the fourth to tie the game, 2-2. It was his eighth home run at the Triple-A level and 36th of the season, tying him for the most home runs in Minor League Baseball. He finished the game 1-for-2 with a home run and three walks.
Castellano gave Omaha the lead in the fifth with a line-drive blast to left. It was his fourth home run of the season, his third against St. Paul, and his second at CHS Field.
The Storm Chasers' final run came in the eighth. After Melendez walked, centerfielder Kyle Isbel pushed him to third with a bunt single and a throwing error. Shortstop Erick Mejia followed with an RBI single through the right side.
Right-hander Scott Blewett struck out two of the three batters he faced before Coleman (Save, 3) entered and recorded the final five outs of the game. He struck out the side in the ninth and has now earned saves in each of his last three appearances.
The Storm Chasers continue their six-game series against the St. Paul Saints (MIN) at CHS Field in St. Paul, Minn. on Friday, when left-hander Foster Griffin (0-0, 4.11) faces St. Paul left-hander Charlie Barnes (6-3, 3.93). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. and coverage begins at 6:45 p.m. CT with the Sarpy County Tourism Pregame Show on 1180 The Zone.
After a week-long series against the Saints, the Omaha Storm Chasers return to Werner Park for a six-game series against the Iowa Cubs (CHC) from Sept. 14-19 and a five-game series against the Indianapolis Indians (PIT) as part of the Triple-A Final Stretch from Sept. 22-26, the final home games of the 2021 season. A special ticket package for the Triple-A Final Stretch is available now. For tickets and more information, visit omahastormchasers.com or call the Werner Park Ticket Office at (402) 738-5100 and follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.