SPRINGDALE, AR - Three Tulsa Drillers pitchers combined to surrender just three hits and register 13 strikeouts over the final eight innings to lead the Drillers to a 5-1 victory at Northwest Arkansas Saturday night. The win gives the Drillers two victories in the first three games of the four-game series.
The Naturals scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning to take the initial lead. Two singles put runners on first and second and set up a run-scoring hit from Emmaunel Rivera for the first run of the game. This would be the only lead of the night for the Naturals.
Edwin Uceta recovered from the first inning to deliver another good start for the Drillers. After surrendering a run and three hits in the first inning, Uceta allowed only two base hits in his remaining five innings. The Dodgers 20th ranked prospect struck out nine in his six innings and picked up his first victory in a Drillers uniform.
In the top of the second, Cody Thomas quickly tied the game with his 15th homer of the year, a line drive shot down the right field line.
An inning later, Jared Walker was hit by a pitch and Errol Robinson doubled to put runners on second and third. Cristian Santana followed with a double, knocking in a pair and giving Tulsa a 3-1 lead.
Tulsa added a run in each of the sixth and seventh innings. In the top of the sixth, Carlos Rincon doubled to knock in a run, and in the seventh, Walker crushed a ball deep to right centerfield onto the berm beyond the wall to give Tulsa a 5-1 lead.
After Uceta departed, the Tulsa bullpen took it the rest of the way. Nolan Long allowed only one hit and struck out three in his two innings, while Andre Scrubb punched out two Naturals in a scoreless bottom of the ninth to seal the win for Tulsa.
WHAT YOU MISSED
*After allowing four runs in 1.1 innings to Amarillo on June 15, Uceta has pitched very well in his five starts since. He has allowed only six runs in 28.2 innings since, while lowering his ERA from 17.18 to 5.00.
*Angelo Mora had three hits on the night, one from the left side of the plate and two from the right.
*Walker had his first multi-hit game since May 15.
*Rincon has hit safely in eight of his last nine games and is hitting .313 during that stretch.
UP NEXT: Tulsa at Northwest Arkansas, Sunday, July 14, 2:05 PM at Arvest Ballpark in Springdale, Arkansas. Tulsa starter TBA vs. RHP Ofreidy Gomez (6-6, 3.36 ERA).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.