FILE: Allen Craig hit a two-run double over right fielder Kyle Tucker in the first inning to bring in the only two runs of the game.
It was only two pitches: Two pitches that made the difference in the El Paso Chihuahuas 9-7 loss against the Fresno Grizzlies on Thursday.
El Paso’s pitchers struggled on Thursday. Each of the four pitchers allowed runs to the hot-hitting Grizzlies. Fresno third baseman J.D. Davis (.425 BA) led the way by hitting for the cycle and alone accounted for five of the their runs.
El Paso starter Chris Huffman (5.80 ERA) went three innings and gave up four earned runs. Relievers T.J. Weir (6.23 ERA) and Kyle McGrath (5.87 ERA) each allowed two earned runs. And Colten Brewer (5.51 ERA) allowed one.
El Paso hitters struggled through the first five innings against Fresno starter Josh James who was throwing in the mid-90s and struck out 10 of the 16 batters he faced, allowing only three hits and two earned runs. The Dogs, however, found their swing in the 6th with back-to-back doubles and a two-run home run by designated hitter Allen Craig (.241 BA) that smacked into the center field scoreboard.
The score was tied 6-6 in the 6th inning, anyone’s game. Fresno scored once more in the 7th and finished it off with back-to-back long balls in the 9th. The Chihuahuas showed some spark in their half of that inning but only managed to score one run on a Brett Nicholas (.301 BA) single to right field.
So again, just two pitches. You can choose any one of those pitches that scored a run and the result would have been the same: El Paso’s pitching is struggling.
The winning pitcher was Matt Ramsey (2-1). The losing pitcher was Brewer (0-3) and the save went to Brendan McCurry.
Next Game: Friday, 7:05 pm at Southwest University Park. Fresno RHP David Paulino (0-0, 4.85) vs. El Paso RHP Jesse Scholtens (0-1, 2.70). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com
Stats by El Paso Chihuahuas:
Fresno 9 – El Paso 7 – Thursday WP: Ramsey (2-1) | LP: Brewer (0-3) | S: McCurry (7) | Time: 3:04 | Attn: 6,341
Box Score: Box Score | Team Records: Fresno (25-16), El Paso (20-21)
Author: Larry Monarrez – El Paso Herald-Post