Aces Extend Division Lead with Comeback Victory
The Aces (72-56) extended their division lead to two games over the Fresno Grizzlies (70-58) with an 11-8 victory Sunday afternoon sparked by a late six-run rally, which sent 10 Aces batters to the plate. Christian Walker and Ronnie Freeman highlighted the eighteen-hit day after they collected three RBIs each.
The Aces (72-56) extended their division lead to two games over the Fresno Grizzlies (70-58) with an 11-8 victory Sunday afternoon sparked by a late six-run rally, which sent 10 Aces batters to the plate. Christian Walker and Ronnie Freeman highlighted the eighteen-hit day after they collected three RBIs each. Walker slugged his 32nd home run in the eigh?th inning rally (three-run) to put himself into a MiLB tie for the lead in home runs. Freeman finished with a three-hit performance, including two doubles. Five Aces arms combined in the nine-inning contest – Aaron Laffey, David Carpenter, Jake Barrett, Louis Coleman (W, 1-1), and Jared Miller.
Fresno started the offense early on, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning. Tony Kemp led off for the Grizzlies with a single up the middle on the first pitch of the ballgame. After Colin Walsh drew a walk, Tyler White came up with a single to plate their first run. A wild pitch would send Walsh to third to bring runners on the corners, and he added Grizzlies second run when Preston Tucker grounded into a double play, extending their lead to 2-0.
In the home half of the first, Reno brought the game right back to even at two apiece on three two-out hits. After two base running blunders by Ildemaro Vargas and Rey Fuentes to record the first two outs, Oswaldo Arcia restarted the momentum with an infield base hit. After Christian Walker drew a walk, Jack Reinheimer and Socrates Brito knocked consecutive singles to plate Reno's two runs.
Fresno came firing back in the third inning to break the tie with a three-run bout. Kemp started the inning with a one-out single and was brought around on Walsh's double to right field. White added the next two runs on his 22nd home run to left field to bring their lead to 5-2.
Reno got back within one in the bottom of the fourth after Brito and Kristopher Negron smacked back-to-back triples. Evan Marzilli then recorded the first of the game with a groundout to shortstop to bring in Negron to bring the score to 5-4. Ronnie Freeman restarted the inning with a two-out double to right field and was put into scoring position on Vargas walk, but they would be left stranded after Arcia sent a missile line drive into the glove of first baseman White to end the frame.
Fresno stretched their lead to 7-4 in the top of the fifth when White sent his second home run of the game over the left-field wall after Kemp started the inning off with his third single of the contest.
In the sixth, Reno got back within two after a leadoff base hit by Marzilli and Freeman's second double to bring him around. Then, in the eighth, the Aces offense exploded with six runs to take their first lead of the contest on eight hits. Brito, Negron, Marzilli, Freeman, Vargas, and Fuentes recorded consecutive singles to start the bottom half to combine for three runs. After Arcia grounded into a double play, Walker slugged his 32nd home run to left field, plating the final three to make it a score of 11-7.
The Grizzlies would tack on one more run in the ninth inning after back-to-back doubles from Alejandro Garcia and Kemp, but they could not rally all the way back as reliever Miller shut down the final three batters on groundouts, making it a final 11-8 Aces victory.
Reno continues the four-game set tomorrow against the Fresno Grizzlies, Triple-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, with game three scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at Greater Nevada Field.
Reno Aces Press Release