Colorado Springs, COLORADO - The Rocky Mountain Vibes concluded their penultimate homestand with a three-games-to-one series win over the Orem Owlz, winning Saturday night's contest 5-2. Vibes starter Carlos Luna shined in his quality start, striking out 10 batters and earning his third win of the season.
The Vibes scored in the first inning the last two nights, but tonight it was Orem's turn. Rocky Mountain starter Luna struck out the first two batters of the game, but then Caleb Scires hit a solo shot to make it 1-0.
The Vibes responded immediately, scoring in the bottom of the first for the third night in a row. Nick Egnatuk led off with a walk, followed by a Carlos Rodriguez single. A wild pitch let both runners move up 90 feet, Joe Gray Jr. drew a walk to load the bases, and Bryan Torres hit an RBI single to score Egnatuk for the Vibes' first run of the night. A second wild pitch moved everyone up another 90 feet, scoring Rodriguez to give the Vibes their first lead of the contest. Nick Kahle then hit a sacrifice fly to score Gray Jr. from third to make it 3-1.
In the fourth frame, the Vibes scored again. Cam Devanney led off with a four-pitch walk, advancing to second on yet another Orem wild pitch. José Sibrian then hit an RBI double to bring Devanney home and extend the Vibes' lead to three runs.
In the bottom of the fifth, Rocky Mountain tacked on another. Egnatuk led off with a single for his first hit of the night, then stole second to move into scoring position, advancing to third on a groundout. Torres then collected his second RBI of the evening with a sacrifice fly to plate Egantuk and make it a 5-1 ballgame.
Rocky Mountain starter Luna came out of the game after the sixth inning, finishing the second quality start for the Vibes in as many nights. Last night, Vibes starter Michele Vassalotti threw six innings, giving up two runs (both earned) on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts, which was enough to earn him the win. Luna, not to be outdone, also threw six innings, allowing just one run on four hits with no free passes while striking out an impressive 10 Orem batters in one of his best starts to date.
In the top of the eighth inning, the Owlz scored their second run of the night. Jose Verrier reached on the Vibes' second error of the contest, advancing to second on a groundout, and coming home on an Anthony Mulrine RBI single to make it a three-run game at 5-2.
No more runs would cross the plate, as the Vibes closed it out to win the game 5-2, and the series three games to one.
The team heads out on their final road trip of the year on 8/26, beginning with a two-game series in Ogden against the Raptors. For all information on the Vibes, follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @vibesbaseball and visit the team's website at www.vibesbaseball.com.
Tomorrow's Preview: The Vibes head out on the road tomorrow, beginning their last road trip of the year on 8/26 in Ogden against the Raptors. First pitch of that first game is set for 6:30 p.m. MT. The game will be available on MiLB.TV as well as the MiLB TuneIn app.
Quality Matters: Rocky Mountain Vibes starter Carlos Luna came out of the game against the Orem Owlz after the sixth inning on Saturday evening, finishing the second quality start for the Vibes in as many nights. On Friday night Vibes starter Michele Vassalotti threw six innings, giving up two runs (both earned) on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts, which was enough to earn him the win. Luna, not to be outdone, also threw six innings, allowing just one run on four hits with no free passes while striking out an incredible 10 Orem batters in one of his best starts to date.
6-Spot: The Vibes scored six runs in the first inning on Friday night against the Orem Owlz, marking only the second time this season the Vibes have scored six runs in an inning. The only other time came on 7/31, also against Orem here in the Springs, in the seventh inning of that game. The Vibes went on to win that July contest 10-2. The only time this season the Vibes have scored more than six runs in an inning came on 6/25 against the Ogden Raptors in the Springs, when the Vibes posted nine runs in the sixth inning.
Crossing the Plate: Nick Kahle was not only catching behind the plate on Friday night against Orem, but he also crossed the plate four times on offense, making him the first Vibes player in history to score four runs in a game. The last Colorado Springs player to score four runs in a game was Nate Orf, who accomplished the feat with the Sky Sox back on 8/18/16 against the El Paso Chihuahuas in the Springs.
Double-Double-Double: Cam Devanney hit three doubles on Friday night against the Orem Owlz, with a bases-clearing three-RBI double in the first inning, and doubles in the fifth and sixth innings with no one on. Devanney is the first Vibes player to accomplish the feat since Antonio Pinero did so on 6/16, also against the Owlz, in Orem.
Kick Things Off Right: In the very first Vibes at-bat against the Orem Owlz on Friday night, Nick Egnatuk belted not just his first homer of 2019, but also the first leadoff home run in Vibes history. The leadoff homer by Nick Egnatuk in the first inning was the first instance a Vibes player hit a leadoff homer, in either top of the first on the road, or bottom of the first at home. The last Triple-A Colorado Springs (Sky Sox) player to hit a leadoff homer was Dylan Moore on August 3rd, 2018 in the top of the first inning at Greater Nevada Field in Reno, off Reno's Matt Koch. The last Triple-A Sky Sox player to hit a leadoff homer in the bottom of the first at Security Service Field (now UCHealth Park) was Nate Orf, on June 15th, 2018, off Las Vegas' P.J. Conlon.
TGINT (Thank God It's Not Thursday): With the Orem Owlz coming from behind in the ninth inning on Thursday night to upset the Vibes, Rocky Mountain fell to a truly dismal 1-6 in Thursday contests this season.
It's Not Over 'til it's Over: With the 3-2 loss to the Ogden Raptors in 10 innings last Monday night, the Vibes fell to 0-3 in extra-inning games this season. On top of that, the Vibes blew a 2-0 lead in the ninth inning against the Orem Owlz Thursday night to lose that game 5-2. Prior to that, the Vibes were 21-1 this season when leading after eight frames, falling to 21-2 with that loss.
Rodriguez' Dozen: Since joining the Vibes on 7/25, Carlos Rodriguez has become an offensive mainstay for the team, posting not just one but two four-hit games (8/8 @ BIL & 8/14 @ GTF), becoming the first and only Vibes player with two four-hit games. Coming into this most recent homestand, Rodriguez had an active eight-game hitting streak which tied the longest for any Vibes hitter this season. He extended that to a Vibes-best nine games last Saturday night with a single, to 10 games on Sunday afternoon with a single in the bottom of the eighth inning, to 11 games on Monday night with a single in the seventh, and to twelve games on Wednesday night with a single in the fourth. That streak ended at 12 games when Carlos went 0-for-3 on Thursday night against the Owlz. In those 12 games, Rodriguez had multiple hits in three of them for 19 total hits including a triple, two walks, a stolen base, and six runs. Through his first 20 games, Rodriguez had hits in all but two of them, starting his tenure with the Vibes with a four-game hitting streak, then going 0-for-4 on 7/30, then having a three-game hitting streak before going 0-for-4 on 8/3, before launching into his 12-game hitting streak.
This Week's Preview: The final road trip is set to begin on 8/26 in Ogden with a two-game set against the Raptors, followed by a three-game series in Orem against the Owlz, and concluding on 9/2 in Grand Junction after a three-game series against the Rockies. The final homestand will run from 9/3-9/7, with all five of those final games being played against the Grand Junction Rockies with the 2019 regular season ending on 9/7.
NEXT GAME: Monday, August 26 @ 6:30 p.m. MT vs. Ogden Raptors @ Lindquist Field
TBD vs. TBD - Broadcast: MiLB TuneIn app
RMV TOP PERFORMERS
Bryan Torres (2-for-2, 1 SB, 2 RBI, 1 BB)
Carlos Luna (W, 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 10 SO)
Nick Egnatuk (1-for-3, 1 SB, 2 R, 1 BB)
ORM TOP PERFORMERS
Caleb Scires (2-for-4, HR, 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI)
Ryan Smith (1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO)
Zac Kristofak (1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 SO)