FRISCO, TEXAS (MAY 6, 2014) - The Frisco RoughRiders tied a single-game season high with 17 hits and defeated the Midland RockHounds 12-7 in a homer-heavy afternoon at Dr Pepper Ballpark on Tuesday.
With the wind blowing out to left field at approximately 11 mph, the two teams combined for eight home runs and 26 base hits.
The 'Riders stormed out to a 9-1 lead after two innings and kept the Hounds at arm's length the rest of the way. Midland never crept closer than within three runs of Frisco after the second.
Ryan Rodebaugh (1-0) pitched one inning in relief and notched his first win of the season with the 'Riders. He allowed one run on two hits with one strikeout after taking the place of Frisco starter Joe Saunders on the bump.
Saunders made his first career appearance with the 'Riders. The Texas Rangers left-handed pitcher became the second big leaguer to play at Dr Pepper Ballpark this season (Matt Harrison).
In his first start since an ankle injury against the Tampa Bay Rays, Saunders pitched four innings and gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits with one walk and four strikeouts. He threw 67 pitches-44 for strikes-and gave up a pair of consecutive solo home runs in the fourth inning with Frisco already out to a substantial lead.
Luke Jackson earned his first save of the season and tossed the final four innings. Saunders bumped Jackson from his scheduled start in the rotation, but Jackson worked the arm regardless and surrendered three runs on three hits with four strikeouts.
All three of the runs charged to Jackson crossed on solo home runs, including two in the eighth inning to make the score 10-7 Frisco.
The 'Riders put the final nail in Midland's coffin in the bottom of the eighth when Rougned Odor doubled home a pair of runs to reestablish a five-run advantage.
The RoughRiders set the tone in the first inning. Frisco sent ten men to the plate in the frame against Midland starter Shawn Haviland (1-2). The righty took the defeat and did not escape the first inning.
Haviland threw 42 pitches and registered two outs as the 'Riders poured six runs and eight hits on the board after one inning.
Nine consecutive batters reached for Frisco (eight hits, one walk) in a first-inning punctuated by a three-run home run by Tomás Telis. The 'Riders trailed 1-0 before their first collective trip to the plate, and three outs later, led 6-1. They would not trail the rest of the game.
Patrick Urlaub entered the game in the first inning for Haviland, but could not keep the red-hot 'Riders offense scoreless in the second.
The RoughRiders racked up three more runs on four hits and ordered a pair of back-to-back jacks off Urlaub. Odor homered for the second straight game to tie Ryan Rua for the team lead with six long balls on the season.
The next batter, Jake Smolinski, aped Odor with a solo blast of his own and Frisco led 9-1 after the second.
Midland hung around on its ability to find the jet stream out of the ballpark in left. The RockHounds cracked five home runs of their own-all of them solo-and hit multiple ringers in two separate innings.
Every time the Hounds tried to reenter the conversation, the horsemen answered to keep the opposition at bay. Eight different batters recorded a hit and eight different men scored for Frisco.
Odor had a stellar day at the plate, in particular, and finished 3-for-5 with two runs, four RBI and three extra-base hits. The second baseman lacked only a single in his quest for the cycle.
In addition, Drew Robinson carried the momentum gleaned from his walk-off win on Monday into the day bill. Robinson finished a perfect 4-for-4 at the dish with two triples, two runs and an RBI. The lefty snapped an 0-for-25 streak at the plate with his game-winning hit on Monday, and has since gone 5-for-5.
With the win, Frisco (20-12) becomes the first team in the Texas League to reach the 20-win plateau and regains control of the south division from Midland. The 'Riders won the series three games to one for their third straight series win at Dr Pepper Ballpark. Frisco is 11-7 at home this season.
Midland (19-12) fell to 9-9 on the road and has lost three of its last four games. The RockHounds entered the series having one seven of the previous eight.
The RoughRiders enjoy their first day off since April 16 on Wednesday. The break marks the midway point in a nine-day homestand that continues on Thursday against the Corpus Christi Hooks. Coverage begins live on www.ridersbaseball.com at 6:40 p.m. with the Frisco RoughRiders Pregame Show and first pitch follows at 7:05 p.m.
For tickets to see the 'Riders in 2014, call 972-731-9200, e-mail Info@RidersBaseball.com or visit www.ridersbaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.