The Reno Aces got past the El Paso Chihuahuas 3-1 Tuesday in a quick-moving game at Greater Nevada Field. The Aces won three of the four games in the series.
El Paso’s lone run came on a solo home run by Brett Nicholas in the top of the eighth inning, his 11th home run of the season. The longball stopped El Paso from being shut out for the first time this season.
Nicholas had multiple hits and at least one RBI in both of the final two games of the series.
The Chihuahuas had strong starting pitching in the series, as none of the four starters allowed more than two earned runs. Neither team scored more than six runs in any of the four games at Greater Nevada Field, which is usually known as a hitters’ ballpark.
Tuesday’s contest finished three minutes longer than the shortest nine-inning game in Chihuahuas’ history, set April 30, 2016 at Fresno.
The El Paso Chihuahuas dropped the series finale against the Tacoma Rainiers 8-3 on Friday making it the fourth consecutive series lost by the beleaguered Dogs.
At first glance, it would be easy to lay their misfortune on the pitching staff which has a team ERA of 5.03 but the fact is that three of the four teams they have recently lost a series to have higher team ERAs — all except for Tacoma (4.94 team ERA).
Which then leaves the hitting stats to observe and, on paper, the Chihuahuas look pretty good. The Chihuahuas are amongst the top teams in the Pacific Coast League so far this year in home runs, RBIs, and hits.
So then what?
Well on Friday, it was timely hitting and strong pitching by their opponents. Tacoma just made El Paso starter Chris Huffman work in the 2nd inning scoring a couple of runs and never looked back. They added another three runs to Huffman’s night in the 4th before he was replaced by reliever T.J. Weir — who finished the inning without further harm but gave up three more runs in the 6th inning.
A home run by infielder Taylor Motter (.207 BA) and a two-run homer by second baseman Gordon Beckham (.302 BA).
The Dogs only response were a couple of RBIs by shortstop Javy Guerra in the 2nd and 4th innings, and a RBI by third baseman Cory Spangenberg in the 7th. The Chihuahuas’ offense finished the night quietly after that with five strikeouts and a groundout.
The winning pitcher was Christian Bergman (3-3). The losing pitcher was Huffman (2-3).
Box Score | Team Records: Tacoma (17-18), El Paso (19-17)
Next Game: Saturday, 7:35 pm at Greater Nevada Field. El Paso RHP Jesse Scholtens (0-0, -.–) vs. Reno RHP Taylor Clarke (2-5, 5.91). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
The Albuquerque Isotopes beat the El Paso Chihuahuas 11-7 Monday and took three of the four games in the series.
The Isotopes started the bottom of the second inning with an inside-the-park home run by Derrik Gibson, the eighth inside-the-park home run against the Chihuahuas in their team history.
Franmil Reyes went 2-for-4 with two singles, a walk and an RBI. Reyes now has an eight-game hitting streak, seven consecutive games with multiple hits and 15 RBIs in seven games this month.
Dusty Coleman went 2-for-4 with a double and a home run and played center field for the first time in his career.
Infielder Matthew Batten reached base three times on a single and two walks in his second start at second base since being transferred from Padres Extended Spring Training. There were 18 combined home runs in the four-game series.
Box Score | Team Records: El Paso (18-14), Albuquerque (15-17)
Next Game: Tuesday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Tacoma LHP Angel Miranda (2-0, 5.03) vs. El Paso RHP Brett Kennedy (3-0, 2.45). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
Luis Perdomo pitched a complete game three-hitter in Friday’s 7-1 win for the El Paso Chihuahuas over the Albuquerque Isotopes.
It was only the second nine-inning complete game in Chihuahuas’ history, and the first since Bryan Rodriguez pitched a shutout in Round Rock on August 1, 2017.
Perdomo also had two sacrifice bunts and has accumulated six sacrifice bunts in his first three starts with El Paso.
Franmil Reyes went 3-for-4 with two home runs and three RBIs, his third consecutive multi-home run game. He is the first player in Chihuahuas’ history with three consecutive multi-homer games.
At the time of this report, Reyes leads the Pacific Coast League in home runs with 11.
Cory Spangenberg went 3-for-5 with a two-run home run, his first Triple-A homer of the season. Dusty Coleman reached base four times in the win and played left field for just the seventh time in his professional career.
Allen Craig hit his third home run of the season for El Paso.
The Chihuahuas’ 12-1 road record is the best in the PCL. Friday was El Paso’s first game of the season against a team other than Las Vegas, Reno or Salt Lake.
Box Score | Team Records: El Paso (18-11), Albuquerque (12-17)
Next Game: Saturday, 6:35 pm at Isotopes Park. El Paso RHP Chris Huffman (2-1, 3.90) vs. Albuquerque LHP Sam Howard (1-3, 5.87). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
It was a long night for Chihuahuas pitching on Monday as they lost the series opener to the Reno Aces (8-6).
El Paso starter Chris Huffman went five innings giving up a combined six runs in the first three. The barrage started with a triple in the 1st inning by Aces leadoff man Ildemaro Vargas. Then back-to-back homers and a run scored on single in the 2nd inning. Followed by another Aces bomb in the 3rd, this one a two-run knock.
A run-laden beginning of the game made it look like it was going to be an early night, but the Dogs weren’t ready. Huffman settled down and retired the next seven batters with three strikeouts and only one walk in the 4th and 5th innings.
The Dogs seemed inspired in the 5th and began to leave their own mark on the scoreboard facing Aces reliever Anthony Vasquez (LHP). It was Vasquez’s first AAA game this season and the Chihuahuas Cory Spangenberg welcomed him with a triple into the gap.
Infielder Luis Urias walked and lefty Brett Nicholas smacked a long ball to right field and got the crowd of 5,566 back into the game.
Franmil Reyes hit a double to right center and catcher Raffy Lopez took the Aces deep. The Dogs trailed by a run when third baseman Diego Goris tripled and was later driven in by shortstop Javy Guerra.
And what an inning it was for the Chihuahuas and the Aces pitcher, Vasquez. Vasquez (16.20 ERA) was tagged with the six earned runs and a walk, but settled down in the next couple of innings and became the winning pitcher after the Aces capitalized on a couple of El Paso pitching miscues.
Dogs reliever Trey Wingenter (8.10 ERA) struck out the side in the 6th, but also allowed two hits and and hit two batters — including Aces infielder Marcus Littlewood with the bases loaded. That run ultimately made Aces’ pitcher Vasquez the unlikely winner.
Reno tacked on another run in the 8th with a couple of doubles. The Chihuahuas had a couple of chances to rally in 8th and 9th but Reno’s reliever Jimmie Sherfy got all 6 of the remaining outs with strikeouts.
El Paso catcher Raffy Lopez tied the team record on Monday with four consecutive games in which he hit a homer. It was last accomplished by Jabari Blash in 2017.
Box Score | Team Records: Reno (8-17), El Paso (16-9)
Next Game: Tuesday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Reno RHP Braden Shipley (2-2, 6.26) vs. El Paso RHP Kyle Lloyd (2-1, 7.52). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
The El Paso Chihuahuas overcame an early deficit and beat the Salt Lake Bees 6-4 in Wednesday night’s homestand opener at Southwest University Park.
It was El Paso’s eighth consecutive win, tying the team record, matched twice previously.
Travis Jankowski went 3-for-4 with a walk and has now reached base in nine of his last 10 plate appearances. Dusty Coleman went 2-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI, becoming the first El Paso player this season with two doubles in a game.
Both Diego Goris and Franmil Reyes had two-out, bases loaded, two-run hits during El Paso’s early comeback effort.
The bottom four hitters in the Chihuahuas’ lineup had two hits each. Starter Chris Huffman rebounded after Salt Lake’s three-run first inning by setting down 15 batters in a row for a stretch starting in the second inning.
Box Score | Team Records: Salt Lake (12-8), El Paso (14-5)
Next Game: Thursday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Salt Lake LHP John Lamb (1-0, 2.87) vs. El Paso RHP Kyle Lloyd (2-0, 6.60). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
The El Paso Chihuahuas are giving fans the opportunity to become an extension of the brand, becoming the first Minor League Baseball team to launch their own emoji keyboard.
The keyboard includes a number of Chico emoticons for any emotion including a Cool Chico , a Laughing Chico , Love Chico and more!
The keyboard debuts the new logo created to mark the Chihuahuas fifth season. The Chihuahuas open their fifth season celebration in 2018 at Las Vegas on Thursday, April 5, 2018.
The emoji stickers also include a series of Chihuahuas logos , Diablos logos , the iconic Chihuahuas nachos dog bowl and emoji that are relevant to the El Paso area.
“We want to be innovative and current and are proud to become what is believed to be the first team in MiLB to have its own branded emoji keyboard,” said Vice President and General Manager Brad Taylor. “This is yet another fun connectivity piece for our great fans.”
The 42 emoji were created by Brandiose partners Jason Klein and Casey White, who were also creators of the Chihuahuas brand and various Chihuahuas logos seen throughout Southwest University Park.
“The Chihuahuas are always on the cutting edge, as they’re the first Minor League Baseball team with their own hometown emoji,” said Klein. “We’re thrilled to bring fans emoji never seen before like elote , and menudo !”
The Chihuahuas keyboard is available for IOS compatible phones for $0.99 per download. Droid compatibility is coming soon. To download the emoji keyboard, fans can do a search in the Apple App Store for “Chihuahuas Emoji.”
Chase d’Arnaud’s RBI single through Fresno’s drawn-in infield in the bottom of the 14th inning gave the El Paso Chihuahuas a 9-8 win over the Grizzlies Wednesday night.
It was the longest game in Southwest University Park history and tied the mark for longest game in Chihuahuas’ history. The club also played 14 innings on June 24, 2017 at Albuquerque.
El Paso trailed by four runs in the eighth inning Wednesday when Diego Goris hit a two-run home run off James Hoyt, the first runs allowed by Hoyt in 10 Triple-A games this season.
Down by two runs in the bottom of the ninth, Hunter Renfroe drilled a line drive, two-run homer, his third of the homestand, to tie the game.
Neither team scored in the 10th through 13th innings before El Paso’s three-hit rally in the bottom of the 14th. It was the fourth walk-off win of the season and second in the last four nights.
The Chihuahuas are now 7-5 in extra-inning games this season.
The Chihuahuas have won five games in a row and six of their last seven. The Salt Lake Bees have also won six of seven, including Wednesday at Tacoma, keeping El Paso in second place, one game back with five regular season games remaining.
Next Game: Thursday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Fresno RHP David Martinez (6-2, 4.43) vs. El Paso RHP Chris Huffman (2-1, 3.71). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
Box Score | Team Records: Fresno (74-63), El Paso (70-67)
The El Paso Chihuahuas beat the Tacoma Rainiers 9-4 Wednesday on their first Diablos Days game wearing throwback El Paso Diablos uniforms.
El Paso has won the first two games of the series and now has a 5-2 home record this season.
Wednesday’s game was tied as late as the seventh inning before the Chihuahuas burst ahead with a run in the seventh and five more in the in the eighth. Carlos Asuaje, Cory Spangenberg and Diego Goris had two hits and three RBIs each.
Franchy Cordero went 3-for-4 with a triple and a walk atop the El Paso order.
Tyrell Jenkins picked off two runners at first base in the second, becoming the first Chihuahuas hurler with multiple pickoffs in one inning. Keith Hessler pitched a perfect 1.2 innings of relief, entering the game when it was tied in the seventh with two Rainiers on base.
Asuaje briefly had the first grand slam of the Chihuahuas season in the eighth inning before the umpires gathered and reversed the call, ruling the ball was foul.
Box Score | Team Records: Tacoma (7-6), El Paso (7-7)
Next Game:Thursday, 6:35 pm at Southwest University Park. Tacoma LHP Dillon Overton (1-0, 0.00) vs. El Paso RHP Dinelson Lamet (1-0, 0.00). The game will air on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com.
El Paso 9 Tacoma 4 – Wednesday
WP: Hessler (1-1)
LP: Hagadone (0-1)
Photos by Andres Acosta, El Paso Herald-Post Chief Photographer