Making his first Triple-A start since August 31, 2012, Shelby Miller (@ShelbyMiller19) struck out 10 and carried a no-hit bid into the sixth inning, and homers from Mitch Haniger (@M_Hanny19) and Kyle Jensen (@TheKJensen42) led the Reno Aces to a 9-6 victory over the Colorado Springs Sky Sox on Tuesday night at Greater Nevada Field.
Optioned from the Arizona Diamondbacks over the weekend, Miller stifled the opposition over the first five frames. The 25-year-old issued a pair of walks to Sky Sox leadoff man Kyle Wren in the first and third but sandwiched five strikeouts in between.
A two-out error in the top of the fourth extended the inning momentarily, but Miller struck out Michael Reed with a heater over the outside corner for his seventh punchout. The 2015 National League All-Star maintained his momentum by striking out the side in the fifth, giving him 10 strikeouts in his Aces debut.
While Miller dealt, the Aces (51-45) grabbed an early lead, thanks to a Carlos Rivero (@Carlos_Rivero3) run-scoring single, a liner that drilled first base umpire Sean Ryan.
Two innings later, Haniger’s 13th homer since joining the Aces on June 10 made it 3-0. Following a strikeout, Jensen then left the yard for a solo shot, pushing the lead to four. The blast gave Jensen 20-plus dingers for a sixth consecutive season.
In the fourth, Reno tallied three more runs on a run-scoring single by Chris Owings (@cowings5) and a pair of RBI doubles from Ildemaro Vargas (@ildemaro_tigre) and Haniger.
Colorado Springs (44-49) notched its first hit in the sixth against Miller when Nate Orf lined a one-out double to the wall in left. An infield single by Manny Piña followed, setting up a towering three-run shot off the bat of Josmil Pinto.
Miller settled in afterwards and departed in the seventh after a two-out single dumped into shallow left. Matt Capps (@MattCapps55) kept the Sky Sox in check, however, inducing a foulout to end the inning.
Owings extended Reno’s advantage back to six with a two-out, two-run single in the seventh to make it 9-3. The hit was Owings’ fourth of the game and eighth in 11 at-bats through three rehab contests with Reno.
Brandon Macias belted a three-run homer in the ninth to cut Colorado Springs’ deficit in half.
Miller (1-0) fired 6 2/3 innings of three-run ball, scattering four hits and two walks. He joined Archie Bradley as the only Aces pitchers to ring up 10-plus batters in a game this season. Hiram Burgos (5-7) took the loss after yielding seven earned runs on 10 hits over 3 2/3 innings.
The victory moved Reno to 5-1 on its current eight-game homestand. The Aces are six over .500 for the first time since June 24 when they were 40-34.
The Aces and Sky Sox continue their four-game series with game three on Wednesday. First pitch from Greater Nevada Field is set for 7:05 p.m. PT. Reno will send left-hander Edwin Escobar (5-2, 5.08) to the mound, while righty Wily Peralta (0-3, 8.18) gets the nod for Colorado Springs.