The Baby Cakes bullpen held the Storm Chasers to just one hit and retired their final 14 hitters faced while center fielder Brandon Barnes and right fielder Matt de Dekker both homered in New Orleans' 4-2 series-opening victory over Omaha on Saturday afternoon at Werner Park.
The Chasers were held to just two hits, which included DH Dean Anna's RBI single that opened the game's scoring in the second. Barnes would later lead off the fourth with a longball to even the score prior to 1B Matt Juengel dropping in a run-scoring double to left to make it 2-1. Following a game-tying RBI groundout by CF Billy Burns in the fifth, den Dekker smashed a tie-breaking RBI double to right in the sixth before increasing the margin to two with a solo homer to right.
New Orleans (4-6) starter Odrisamer Despaigne (4.0 IP, H, R, ER, 2 BB, K) did not factor in the decision after yielding a lone earned run on one hit in four frames. The relief trio of Javy Guerra (2.0 IP, H, R, ER, BB, 2 K), Kelvin Marte (2.0 IP) and Brandon Cunniff (1.0 IP, 2 K) would combine for just one hit and one walk the rest of the way, with Guerra earning the win and Cunniff notching the save. Omaha (4-5) starter Luke Farrell (5.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, BB, K) suffered the defeat to drop to 1-1.
The three hits were a game-high for den Dekker (3-4, R, 2 2B, HR, 2 RBI), joined by Barnes (2-5, R, RBI), Juengel (2-4, 2B, RBI), 2B Steve Lombardozzi (2-5) and DH Moises Sierra (2-5, 2 R) in tallying multi-hit efforts. The Storm Chasers were outhit by a 13-2 margin, and saw SS Ramon Torres' 12-game hit streak, which dated back to last season, snapped.
The two teams are set to meet in the middle matchup of their three-game series at Werner Park in a Sunday matinee, with first pitch scheduled for 2:05 p.m. LHP Jonathan Dziedzic (1-1, 1.69) is slated to toe the rubber for the Storm Chasers, with the Baby Cakes expected to counter with LHP Justin Nicolino (0-0, 2.70).
Tickets are still available for that game and all remaining Storm Chasers contests, and may be purchased at www.omahastormchasers.com/tickets, as well as by calling the Werner Park Ticket Office at (402) 738-5100. To view Ticket Office hours, please click here.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.