STOCKTON, Calif. - The Stockton Ports wrapped up a successful opening homestand with a strong pitching performance versus the Modesto Nuts on Wednesday night. Stockton scored three runs in the bottom of the first and kept Modesto out of the run column from the second inning on as they beat the Nuts by a final of 5-2, securing a series win over the Nuts and a 5-2 homestand to open the 2017 season.
It was Modesto getting off to a fast start as Donnie Walton walked and Chris Mariscal was hit by a pitch to open the first inning. After Ports starter Angel Duno recorded back-to-back outs, Logan Taylor reached on an infield single to load the bases and Gianfranco Wawoe supplied a two-run single to center to give the Nuts a 2-0 lead.
The two first-inning runs were the only runs scored by Modesto. Duno would not factor into the decision, going four innings and allowing five hits while striking out three.
Stockton got the runs back plus the go-ahead run in the bottom of the first. With runners at the corners and two outs, Sean Murphy drew a walk that loaded the bases. Seth Brown came up and lined a two-run single to right. Skye Bolt followed with an RBI single to center to give the Ports a 3-2 lead.
Nuts starter Pablo Lopez (0-2) suffered the loss, going three innings and allowing three runs on three hits while walking two and striking out two.
Joey Strain took over for the Nuts in the fourth and gave up back-to-back triples to Bolt and Trent Gilbert that extended the Stockton lead to 4-2. Branden Cogswell drove Gilbert home with a sac-fly to right to make it a 5-2 ballgame. Strain would go three innings and allow two runs on three hits while striking out two.
After Carlos Navas (2-0) set the side down in order in the fifth, the Ports turned the ball over to Logan Shore (SV, 1) for the sixth. Shore would face just two over the minimum in his four innings to close out the ballgame as he allowed just two hits. Shore was dominant, striking out six without issuing a walk as he picked up his first professional save.
After taking two of three from Modesto, the Ports embark on their first road trip of the season as they begin a three-game series with the San Jose Giants on Thursday. Left-hander Evan Manarino (0-0, 2.25 ERA) makes the start for Stockton, opposed by San Jose right-hander Jake McCasland (0-0, 2.25 ERA). First pitch is set for 7 p.m. PDT.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.