The Reno Aces used home runs from Jamie Romak and Peter O’Brien to rally past the Albuquerque Isotopes in an 8-4 win Wednesday night at Aces Ballpark.
Albuquerque raced out to a 4-0 lead with a pair of runs in the first to go along with single runs in the third and fourth innings. Isotopes starter Jair Jurrjens tiptoed around several baserunners to keep the Aces off the scoreboard in the first three innings.
They finally busted through against Jurrjens in the fourth. Danny Dorn started the frame with a soft single to right-center and raced around to score when Peter O’Brien laced a triple to the gap in right-center. Nick Buss cut the deficit in half with a sacrifice fly before Jurrjens was able to get out of the fourth.
The runs kept coming for the Aces in the fifth. Mike Freeman started a rally with a sharp single to center. With one out, Nick Evans singled to put a pair of runners on for Romak who blasted a 1-0 pitch from Jurrjens out to deep left-field for a three-run homer. His 20th of the season gave Reno a 5-4 lead.
Two batters later, O’Brien drilled a 1-1 pitch off the batter’s eye in straightaway center-field for a solo shot. It’s the 17th home run of the year for O’Brien, and his second in as many days after not hitting once since June 23.
Reno continued to tack on runs as they plated more in the sixth and seventh. Brandon Drury’s second double of the game scored Todd Glaesmann in the sixth. An RBI single by Buss brought in Romak to make it 8-4 in the seventh.
Aces starter Caleb Clay worked the first five innings and earned his sixth win of the season. The bullpen combination of Kaleb Fleck, Keith Hessler and J.C. Ramirez shutout the Isotopes over the final four innings.
Fleck worked the sixth and seventh, Hessler fired a 1-2-3 top of the eighth, and Ramirez closed it with a scoreless ninth.
Romak finished 1-for-2 with the three-run homer, two runs scored and a pair of walks. Drury, Evans, O’Brien and Blake Lalli collected multi-hit games.
The Aces will try to win the series in the finale Thursday night at Aces Ballpark. Right-hander Jhoulys Chacin (2-3, 3.35) starts for Reno against left-hander Aaron Laffey (2-3, 4.61) for Albuquerque. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.