For the third consecutive game, Omaha pitchers were effective, holding New Orleans to six hits in taking a series-clinching win at Zephyr Field on Sunday.
The loss was the fifth in a row for the Zephyrs (3-8). The Storm Chasers (8-3) won their fifth in a row.
Omaha pitchers had shut out the Zephyrs in Friday’s series opener and allowed one run Saturday. Sunday was an all-bullpen day with relievers pitching instead of scheduled starter Miguel Almonte.
Omaha took a 1-0 lead against Justin Nicolino (2-1), the seventh consecutive game it scored in the first inning. Then, third baseman Cheslor Cuthbert homered leading off the sixth, and designated hitter Cody Decker singled in Jorge Bonaficio giving the Chasers a 3-1 lead.
Cuthbert’s home run kept him on a tear this season.
He entered Sunday’s game 10-for-24 (.417) with 10 RBIs. He has a hit in all nine of the Chasers’ games against New Orleans, and both of his home runs have come against the Z’s.
Cuthbert, a 22-year-old third baseman, also has played solidly in the field in the series. He played 19 games with the parent World Series Champion Royals last season.
The Miami Marlins called up reliever Kyle Barraclough from the Z’s and designated Dustin McGowan for assignment. In three outings covering six innings, Barraclough struck out nine, second most among Pacific Coast League relievers. Miami promoted Dylan Axelrod from Low-A Batavia to the Zephyrs. Axelrod, however, has played in the Major Leagues parts of five seasons and was in Low-A baseball because of roster space, a source said. … When the Storm Chasers executed a double steal in the first inning, it meant the Zephyrs catchers were 0-for-9 in trying to throw out base-stealers this season. … Sunday was Bark in the Park day. Patrons were able to have their dogs in the stands on the first-base side, the playground area and on the levee behind center field. …. . . . The Zephyrs wore their blue “NOLA” jerseys at home for the first time this season. That meant infielder Austin Nola had his name twice on his No. 10 jersey. “I hear that all the time on the road,” he said. “‘Hey, dude. Do you know your name is on the front and back of your jersey?”