Photo Credit: Jancy Ireland Photography
SIOUX CITY, IA- The Wichita Wingnuts defeated the Sioux City Explorers 13-4 at Lewis and Clark Park on Friday night.
The Wingnuts have won seven consecutive games.
Tied at 4-4 in the top of the seventh, David Peralta slugged a two-out, three-run triple off the right-center field wall to give Wichita a 7-4 lead. Jake Kahaulelio--who finished the game with three hits and three runs scored--started the rally with a one-out, groundball double down the left field line. Two batters later, Juan Richardson was hit by a pitch. C.J. Ziegler then walked to load the bases, setting up Peralta's game-winner.
The Wingnuts proceeded to break the game open over the eighth and ninth innings. Jared McDonald led off the eighth with an opposite field home run to left. Mike Conroy followed with a single to left center, stole second base, and went to third on Ryan Khoury's line drive single to center. Kahaulelio grounded a single through the left side to score Conroy. John Rodriguez followed with a groundball single to right that plated Khoury from second. Richardson drove in Wichita's 11th run on a fielder's choice to third base.
In the ninth, Conroy tripled to right-center field to score Peralta and Taylor Freeman to give the Wingnuts a 13-4 lead.
Rookie right-hander Andrew Aizenstadt made his professional debut in the bottom of the ninth, and retired the side in order with two strikeouts.
Derek Blacksher earned the win for the Wingnuts with eight strong innings. Blacksher allowed four runs--three earned--while scattering nine base hits. Blacksher walked three and struck out six to improve to 4-1.
Kahaulelio gave Wichita an early 1-0 lead with a solo home run in the top of the first. Walks to Ziegler and Peralta in the second led to Justin Tellam's two-run double to left-center field that made it 3-0 Wichita. Conroy drove in Tellam with an RBI single later in the inning.
Sioux City chipped away with two runs in the bottom of the second on a Mike Murphy RBI single and a Brian Bistagne fielder's choice.
The Explorers briefly tied the game in the bottom of the sixth when Yusuke Inoguchi drew a two-out, bases loaded walk. Wally Backman Jr. drove in Sioux City's third run with a groundball single to center earlier in the inning.
Andrew Snowden started and took the loss for Sioux City, allowing seven earned runs on eight hits in six and two-thirds. Snowden walked three and struck out three.
The benches cleared in the bottom of the seventh with catcher Ray Serrano at the plate. Serrano led off and was ejected along with Tellam following an altercation after Blacksher's first pitch of the inning.
Aizenstadt was signed prior to Friday's game. The 6-foot-4, 195-pound right-hander finished his college career this spring at Virginia Tech University after three record-setting years at Babson College. Wichita removed Pitching Coach Luke Robertson from the active roster.
The series continues Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. Ryan Hinson faces left-hander Richard Salazar. All the action can be heard locally on Oldies 92.7 KWME and worldwide at www.pressboxbproductionsradio.com
The Wingnuts return home on Tuesday, June 26th when they host the St. Paul Saints. Individual tickets can be purchased by calling (316) 755-SEAT, or by visiting www.selectaseat.com
For season tickets, group outings, and party packages, call the Wingnuts' main office at (316) 264-NUTS, or visit the Wingnuts' official website at www.wichitawingnuts.com