The Colorado Springs Sky Sox used a five-run inning to come from behind and the bullpen tossed 5 1/3 scoreless innings to help pull out a 10-6 win over the Salt Lake Bees in front of 7,415 at Smith's Ballpark Thursday night.
The Sky Sox (65-43) responded to a pair of scoring innings to tie and then take the lead after being shut out twice in Las Vegas the series before. After the hosts took a 1-0 lead in the third inning, Tyler Heineman gave the Sox their first lead with a two-run double into the right field corner, scoring Brett Phillips and Nate Orf and making the score 2-1 in the fourth inning.
Salt Lake (58-53) put up a five-spot in the bottom of the fourth inning, but Mauricio Dubon helped the visitors cut into the lead with a two-run home run to left field on the first pitch from Bees starter Osmer Morales. The infielder's long ball was his fifth since his promotion to Colorado Springs on June 26.
The Sox offense re-took the lead during a five-run sixth inning to match the Bees' earlier outburst. Kyle Wren tied the game with a two-run single on a curveball from Salt Lake reliever Andrew Bailey to score Heineman and Yadiel Rivera. With two outs, Phillips crushed a first-pitch ground-rule double to right-center field to score Tyler Bortnick and Wren for a two-run lead. Chris Colabello extended the lead to 9-6 one batter later, grounding a single off third baseman Rey Navarro.
Colorado Springs tacked on the 10th run of the night in the ninth inning. A few pitches after just missing a two-run home run, Nick Noonan lined a RBI double down the right field line, scoring Orf and giving the Sox double-figure runs for the 23rd time in 2017. With the win and an Oklahoma City loss in Las Vegas, the Sox increased their divisional lead to 7.5 games.
Meanwhile, the bullpen combination of Tyler Webb (1-1, 7.04 ERA), Tristan Archer, David Goforth and Rob Scahill held the Bees scoreless over the final 5 1/3 innings, scattering two hits and striking out four batters to close out the series-opening win. Salt Lake loaded the bases and brought the go-ahead run to the plate in the sixth inning, but Archer forced Dustin Ackley to ground into a 4-6-3 double play. The tying run then came to the plate in the eighth inning, but Goforth struck out Ackley on a 3-2 inside fastball to end the threat.
The two Rocky Mountain clubs return to the field Friday night for a 7:05 p.m. MT start in the Utah capital. RHP Junior Guerra (0-1, 4.26 ERA) makes his second start of the season for the Sox against Salt Lake LHP John Lamb (3-1, 8.10 ERA).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.