MISSOULA, MONT. - The Missoula Osprey (5-11 | 24-30) skidded to their third straight loss on Friday night, dropping the opener of a four-game tilt against the Billings Mustangs (25-28-1 | 7-10) by a final score of 9-2 at Dehler Park.
In his second start since rejoining the Osprey, right-hander Edgar Martinez endured a first-inning barrage highlighted by a pair of Mustang homers. Outfielder Satchel McElroy led off the bottom of the first with a homer to left field. After Miles Gordon was retired, Jeter Downs and Hendrik Clementina added a pair of singles for Billings to put two men on base with one out. Delivering the major blow of the inning was third baseman Alejo Lopez, who lofted a three-run homer to right to push Missoula to a 4-0 deficit.
Two innings later in the home half of the third, Clementina added a solo homer of his own, completing the scoring against Martinez. The 20-year-old right-hander added scoreless fourth and fifth innings for Missoula before exiting the ballgame. While he eventually was saddled with the loss, Martinez pitched five solid innings, allowing only the five runs accounted for by Billings' three homers. He struck out a season-high four while walking one and allowing nine base hits.
Following Martinez's exit, reliever Yeison Santana was tagged for at least one run in two of the three innings he pitched. Billings posted one in the sixth, one in the seventh, and two in the eighth. Santana was charged with four runs (all earned) on three hits and one walk in his three innings, while striking out a season-high five.
At the plate, the Osprey added their only resistance in the seventh and ninth innings when Eduardo Diaz scored on a wild pitch and Joey Rose singled home a run respectively. While the O's scored only twice, they were confronted by a collection of scoring opportunities, leaving 11 men on base and going just 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position. In addition to their six hits, the Osprey worked seven walks as a unit.
In the losing effort, Rose went 2-for-5 with an RBI, Andy Yerzy reached base three times, including once on a single to extend his hitting streak to 18 games. Keshawn Lynch singled and drew a pair of walks, while Jose Caballero and Eduardo Diaz each added hits.
The Osprey return to action on Saturday night for the second installment of a four-game road series at the Billings Mustangs. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at Dehler Park with coverage beginning on 102.9 ESPN Missoula at 6:45 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.