Round Rock broke loose for five runs in the seventh inning and three in the eighth in stunning New Orleans on Thursday night at Zephyr Field.
The Express (44-41) won the series three games to one.
Round Rock was held to one run on two hits through 5.2 innings by Zephyrs starter Adam Conley. However, Round Rock got to the New Orleans bullpen the next inning. Former Zephyr Jake Smolinski lined a three-run double to left field, and one out later, J.P. Arencibia crushed a two-run blast to left for a 6-5 lead.
The Zephyrs (44-43) tied it in the bottom of the inning on Jordany Valdepsin’s run-scoring single.
Round Rock, though, scored three in the eighth on ex-Zephyr Bryan Petersen’s bases-loaded, two-run infield single off the glove of second baseman Josh Rodriguez and Arencibia’s RBI single.
The Zephyrs got a run back in the bottom of the eighth when Mark Angle scored on an error by shortstop Luis Sardinas. But Mark Canha struck out with two outs and the bases loaded.
WHAT: New Orleans Zephyrs at Memphis Redbirds
WHERE: AutoZone Park, Memphis, Tenn.
WHEN: 6:05 p.m.
PROBABLE PITCHERS: Zephyrs LH Brian Flynn (7-5, 3.56 ERA) vs. Redbirds LH Tim Cooney (7-5, 4.09)
BROADCASTS: WMTI-FM 106.1; MiLB.tv
When center fielder Jake Marisnick was called up to the Marlins on June 16, he’d come off a 16-game hitting streak that ended on June 3.
Although he’d cooled off, he started off in Miami by going 5-for-14 (.357) in his first three games and 6-for-19 (.316) in his first five.
With Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich out with a lower back injury, Marisnick played in 13 games.
“I was playing a lot up there,” he said. “I got up there and had a good few games. And then I started scuffling.”
After the fifth game, a 0-for-18 stretch ensued as he went 2-for-28 the rest of the way. However, for Marisnick, 23, the call-up provided a great benefit.
“It was great to be able to talk to those older guys up there,” he said. “They really helped me out with some of that, how to control your stuff when things aren’t going your way.”
After two weeks in The Show, he came back to the Z’s on June 30 as a more surly veteran.
“(The key is) not giving away any at-bats,” he said, “going in every at-bat and compete, making pitchers work and getting on base and being able to use tools.”
For the third consecutive series, New Orleans is facing an American Southern Division opponent. However, while the Zephyrs have completed their four series against the Round Rock Express and have had three against the Nashville Sounds, this will be their first against Memphis. The Z’s come back with a home series against the Redbirds on July 11-13 before the All-Star break. Since a four-game winning streak ended on May 30, Memphis has gone 11-19 and were on a seven-game losing streak heading into Thursday night’s game at Nashville, which had won three in a row against the Redbirds. … When Jordany Valdespin homered in the second inning of Wednesday’s game, it was the Zephyrs’ 29th against the Express this season, by far the most in the Pacific Coast League for one team against another. Round Rock has hit 15 against New Orleans. Valdespin’s homer was the Zephyrs’ 90th this season, which tied them with Round Rock. … Kyle Jensen’s walk-off homer in the 11th Wednesday at Zephyr Field was the second this season against Express right-handed reliever Matt West. West also gave up a walk-off shot to catcher Kyle Skipworth on June 5 at the Shrine on Airline. West has allowed just three home runs in 17 appearances spanning 20 2/3 innings this season.