Redbirds 5, Zephyrs 2
Memphis got to Zephyrs starter Andrew Heaney with two-out doubles in the first and second innings in taking a 3-0 lead and held off New Orleans 5-2 on Saturday night at Zephyr Field.
The Redbirds ended the Zephyrs’ three-game winning streak and evened the three-game series at a game each.
In the first inning, Heaney (3-1) hit Scott Moore with a pinch, Stephen Piscotty singled and Xavier Scruggs doubled, scoring both. In the second, Travis Tartamella reached on an error by Zephyrs third baseman Zach Cox. Heaney then walked pitcher Zach Petrick (5-4), and Greg Garcia doubled in Tartamella.
WHAT: New Orleans Zephyrs vs. Memphis Redbirds
WHERE: Zephyr Field, Metairie
WHEN: 1 p.m.
PROBABLE PITCHERS: Zephrys RH Brad Penny (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Redbirds LH John Gast (2-2, 7.43)
BROADCASTS: WMTI-FM, 106.1; MiLB.tv
Closer Chaz Roe went on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder on July 7 and will miss the Triple-A All-Star Game.
Fortunately, reliever Arquimedes Caminero had been a closer in waiting.
Caminero stepped in for three consecutive saves Wednesday through Friday, as the Zephyrs won their third consecutive game. In that time, he did not allow a run in 3.1 innings, giving up four hits but no walks and striking out four.
Zephyrs manager Andy Haines said Caminero’s performance in Thursday’s series finale at Oklahoma City was key. He sealed a wild 10-8 Z’s victory by entering in the eighth inning and quelling a potential uprising, then closed it out in the ninth, allowing one hit and no walks in the outing.
That kept the team’s momentum going, Haines said, as it got its second consecutive victory after going through a rough stretch in which it lost nine of 10 games.
In Friday’s game, he teetered on the brink, making a mistake on his splitter that Memphis second baseman Greg Garcia hit for a double, putting runners on second and third with two out with the winning coming to the plate. However, Caminero fanned dangerous Randal Grichuk (15 homers, 16 doubles) to end the game.
Back-to-back home runs by Jake Marisnick and Jordany Valdespin in the third gave New Orleans 102 this season and put it within three of their total from last season. New Orleans is fourth in the Pacific Coast League in homers after finishing tied for second-to-last in 2013 in the 16-team league. … Kyle Jensen got an infield hit in the fourth, extending his hitting streak to 10 games. It was the third consecutive game in which he’d gotten just one hit, a single to keep his streak going. He’d led off the fifth inning Friday with a single after getting on in the fourth on Thursday at Oklahoma City. … Mark Canha was ejected from Saturday’s game in the bottom of the ninth after a third-strike call.