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Dodgers Drop Home Finale, 3-2
Oklahoma City sets PCL modern-era strikeout record for second straight season
Oklahoma City – The New Orleans Baby Cakes scored two runs in the top of the ninth inning to grab a 3-2 comeback win against the Oklahoma City Dodgers Thursday night at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.
The Dodgers, wearing throwback Oklahoma City 89ers jerseys and hats, took a 2-1 lead into the ninth inning of their home season finale in front of a crowd of 10,369.
In the top of the ninth inning, the Baby Cakes loaded the bases and Brian Anderson drew a walk to tie the game, 2-2. Cal Towey came up to bat next and lined a RBI single into left field to give New Orleans a one-run advantage.
New Orleans pitcher Clayton Mortensen then retired the Dodgers in order in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Baby Cakes earned a split in the four-game series.
The loss was the Dodgers’ fifth of the season when leading after eight innings.
The Dodgers pitching staff recorded 12 strikeouts on the night to boost their PCL-leading season total to 1,250 and break the PCL modern-era record they set last season (1,245).
New Orleans (55-79) took the game’s first lead in the second inning.
Towey led off the inning with a double and moved to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Christian Colon. He then scored when Grant Green knocked a RBI single into left field to put the Baby Cakes in front, 1-0. New Orleans loaded the bases later in inning with two outs, but Dodgers starting pitcher Justin Masterson got Peter Mooney to ground out to end the inning.
The Dodgers (71-66) had a chance to tie the game in the bottom of the second inning. Edwin Rios was hit by a pitch to lead off and advanced to second base on a groundout by Jack Murphy. After Drew Maggi drew a walk, Henry Ramos lined a single into center field. Rios tried to score from second base, but a throw from New Orleans’ center fielder Eury Perez got to catcher Austin Nola in time for Nola to tag out Rios at the plate and preserve the Baby Cakes’ 1-0 lead.
The Dodgers scored their lone runs of the night and took the lead in the seventh inning. Maggi drew a two-out walk. Ramos then followed with a two-run homer down the left-field line to put the Dodgers ahead, 2-1. The home run was Ramos’ third of the season with Oklahoma City. Max Muncy and Tim Locastro followed with back-to-back two-out singles before Joc Pederson grounded out to end the inning.
Locastro went 3-for-4 to lead the Dodgers with three hits on the night, including a double. Since coming off the disabled list Monday, Locastro has gone 7-for-13 with two doubles and has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games.
Muncy’s pinch-hit single in the seventh inning extended his career-best hitting streak to 12 games.
Masterson had a strong start, holding New Orleans to one run and five hits over 6.0 innings, but did not factor into the decision. He recorded eight strikeouts, including the PCL modern-era record-breaking 1,246th strikeout of the season in the fourth inning.
Yaisel Sierra followed and pitched a scoreless seventh inning. Jeremy Bleich (5-2) allowed the winning runs in the ninth innings and was charged with the loss. He allowed two runs and four hits over two innings with two walks and two strikeouts.
New Orleans pitcher Tayron Guerrero (3-2) got the win, pitching a scoreless eighth inning. Mortensen picked up his first save with the Baby Cakes, tossing a perfect ninth inning, as New Orleans won the season series against the Dodgers, 9-6.
The Dodgers finished with a 37-33 home record at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark, clinching a winning home record for the sixth consecutive season, as well as for the 15th time in 20 seasons since joining the PCL in 1998.
The Dodgers next travel to Round Rock to play a four-game series against the Express to close out the 2017 season starting at 7:05 p.m. Friday at Dell Diamond.
Live game coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. on AM 1340 “The Game,” 1340thegame.com, or through the free iHeartRadio mobile app.
Video highlights of today’s game are available at the PCL FTP site, pacificcoastleague.exavault.com, in the Oklahoma City folder. The proper files will reflect today’s date, and are accompanied by a text file containing a brief description of the content available.
New Orleans Baby Cakes (55-79) 3, Oklahoma City Dodgers (71-66) 2
August 31, 2017