San Antonio outlasted Arkansas 3-2 Thursday night in 10 innings before a home-opening Wolff Stadium crowd of 5,217.
It was not a surprise to see who put the Missions on the board early on Thursday night. In the bottom of the first, Josh Naylor followed a Forrestt Allday leadoff pop out, with a bullet to right field over the head of Beau Amaral. Naylor's blast caromed hard off the wall back past Amaral, allowing the Missions' first baseman to keep motoring around the bases. Skipper Phillip Wellman elected to wave Naylor home. The relay throw beat Naylor but catcher Joe DeCarlo could not field the ball cleanly, resulting in an inside-the-park homer.
San Antonio received a strong start from righty Miguel Diaz, who allowed just one hit over two and a two-thirds scoreless innings. Diaz was followed by fellow righty Colby Blueberg, who followed suit with another inning and a third scoreless frames.
Arkansas evened the score in the fifth against San Diego rehabber Matt Strahm courtesy of a Chris Mariscal sacrifice fly. The Travs took the lead on Strahm in the seventh when Mariscal doubled in Adam Law.
Still trailing 2-1 in the eighth, Naylor came up clutch again, tying the score with a deep homer to right center. For the red-hot Naylor, it was his second multi-homer game of the season already.
After neither team scored in the ninth, the contest moved to extras. San Antonio and Arkansas made history as the first Texas League game to use the newly implemented MiLB extra-inning rule, which places a runner on second to begin each extra frame. Rowan Wick (1-0) successfully kept the Travs from scoring that runner in the top of the 10th.
San Antonio did not waste its chance in the bottom half. River Stevens pinch-ran to start the frame and Darin Gillies came in to pitch for Arkansas. Gillies (1-1) promptly ran into trouble, walking Michael Gettys and then allowing both runners to move up a bag on a Peter Van Gansen sacrifice bunt. That brought up Rod Boykin, who bounced a ball to short that Mariscal appeared to have an easy throw home to get Stevens trying to score. Fortunately, for the Missions, the throw bounced in the dirt and got by catcher Joseph Odom, allowing Stevens to score the game-winning run.
San Antonio (5-2) continues its first homestand of the season against Arkansas (4-3) Friday at 7:05 PM. Lefty Logan Allen (1-0, 1.80) will get the ball for the Missions in his first home start at the Double-A level. The Travs will counter with right-hander Johendi Jiminian (1-0, 0.00). The first 1,500 fans to enter The Wolff will receive a FREE Adrian Beltre Bobblehead courtesy of Metro PCS.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.