The El Paso Chihuahuas made it a nail-biter on Wednesday in their 4-3 victory over the Salt Lake Bees, but their three homers gave them just enough oomph.
The Bees struck first in the 2nd inning, scoring a couple runs by stringing four singles together before El Paso’s starter Walker Lockett settled down. Lockett kept the lid on the Bees allowing second baseman Luis Urias and shortstop Javy Guerra to blast a pair of homers in consecutive innings (5th and 6th) giving El Paso the lead, 3-2.
And then it happened, El Paso brought in reliever Kyle McGrath, who happens to be a great pitcher in his own right. But today, Salt Lake’s DH Ben Revere hit a ball to right field that might have very well landed on Santa Fe Street and tied the game (3-3). McGrath, however, settled down after that and retired four of the next five batters he faced. Allowing the Dogs’ left fielder, Shane Peterson, to smack the tie-breaking long ball in the 8th inning.
McGrath earned the win but it’s also important to remember Lockett’s performance today, Manager Rod Barajas said. “(Lockett) knew what was working for him,” said Barajas about his starter. “He had a great changeup today and he took advantage of it.”
Reliever Michael Mariot got the save.
El Paso’s key hits in the victory came from Peterson (2 for 4), Urias (3 for 5), and Guerra (1 for 3 with a walk), who seems to be coming into his own as a hitter.
“Guerra’s one of those guys who you look at him and watch him take batting practice and ground balls, and you know the potential is off the charts,” Barajas said. “The ball really jumps off his bat when squares it up. … He’s special defensively already, we know he’s able to do it at the Big League level. It’s just matter of trying to find that bat and get it consistent. He’s off to a great start this year.”
Next Game: Thursday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Salt Lake TBA vs. El Paso RHP Brett Kennedy (1-0, 1.50). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
Box Score | Team Records: Salt Lake (3-4), El Paso (5-2)
El Paso 4 Salt Lake 3 – Wednesday
WP: McGrath (1-0)
LP: Campos (1-2)
S: Mariot (1)
Author: Larry Monarrez – El Paso Herald-Post