The Sioux Falls Pheasants bats went quiet in a 5-2 loss to the El Paso Diablos, who took advantage of a quality start from Reymond Cruz on Tuesday night at Sioux Falls Stadium.
Cruz (2-3) threw six innings, holding the Pheasants (19-17) to only four hits while striking out seven batters.
The Diablos (9-27) scored one run in each of the first three innings after the leadoff man reached with a single. Maikol Gonzales scored in the first inning on a double-play ball, Brian Joynt plated on a RBI single by Patrick Arlis in the second and Gonzales scored again on a sacrifice fly in the third for an early 3-0 lead.
Pheasants starter Alan DeRatt (2-2) showed good command all game, despite giving up five runs. He pitched eight innings allowing five runs on eight hits while fanning four and walking one.
“For the first six innings he gave us an opportunity to win the game,” said Pheasants manager Steve Shirley. “For the most part, he gave us an opportunity to do something, we just didn’t do anything.”
After managing only one hit through four innings, the Pheasants threatened by putting two runners on base in the fifth and sixth innings, but couldn’t bring any runners home.
Jonathon Cisneros smacked a two-run home run in the top of the seventh to give the Diablos a 5-0 lead.
The Pheasants inched their way back into the game in the eighth inning when the El Paso bullpen walked the bases loaded. Jared Bolden tallied the first Pheasants run with a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Joe Anthonsen. Cesar Nicolas followed with an infield single, extending his hitting streak to a career-high 17 games. Reid Fronk made an error attempting to throw out Nicolas that allowed Jonny Kaplan to score.
The Pheasants then had the tying run at the plate, but Cristian Guerrero popped out in foul territory, and Mark Shorey grounded out to end the inning.
El Paso closer Marcel Prado earned his fourth save of the year with a scoreless ninth, allowing only Anthonsen to reach via base on balls.
El Paso notched just their second road victory of the season.
Game two of the three-game series with El Paso is at 7:05 p.m. Wednesday, June 27. It’s Ladies Night; ladies of all ages can purchase a grandstand ticket for just $5. Kids FREE in June also continues. Two children 12-and-under can get in free with the purchase of every regular adult-priced ticket, courtesy of Sanford Children’s.
Notes: Nicolas’ 17-game hitting streak matches Jonny Kaplan’s season-high…The Pheasants struck out a season-high 11 times…DeRatt pitched a season-high eight innings…The Diablos tallied eight hits, all singles except for a home run.
Courtesy: Scott Beatty, Pheasants