Diablos Strike Early, but Can't Contain the Captains
El Paso started well, but couldn't finish what they started as they fell to the Shreveport-Bossier Captains 9-5 at Cohen Stadium on Thursday night. Their streak of eight straight series opening wins came to an end as the Captains were also able to even up the season series at five wins each.
El Paso would start their scoring in the first inning by scoring two runs on two hits. Rico Santana had a RBI double and Arnoldo Ponce had a RBI single. After the Captains scored a run in the second the Diablos made it 3-1 in the bottom of the inning on a Hector Bernal RBI triple. The Captains would take a brief lead by scoring three runs in the fourth, but the Diablos would immediately respond when J.D. Reininger had a two RBI single to put El Paso back out in front 5-4. The Captains claimed the lead for good in the seventh inning by scoring two runs on two hits and an error. They would then put the game out of reach with three runs in the ninth.
Amad Stephens (3-5) made the start and pitched into the seventh inning allowing six runs on ten hits to suffer the loss. His counterpart Richard Salazar didn't fair too well either. In his fourth start this season against the Diablos, he would allow five runs on seven hits in six innings. The Shreveport bull pen was able to lock down the Diablos down the stretch tossing three scoreless innings and allowing only one hit.
Hector Bernal was the big hitting star on the night. Hector was able to reach base every time going 3-3 with a triple and an RBI. He was also hit by a pitch, walked once and scored two runs. The rest of the offense was able to contribute only five hits.
El Paso will try to even up the series on Friday night. They will send D.J. Mattox (5-4, 4.88) to the mound against Shreveport's Osvaldo Rodriguez (8-0, 3.07). First pitch is slated for 7:05 and fireworks will follow the game.