Triple-A baseball returned to Tucson for a weekend
Former minor league baseball team the Tucson Padres, now the El Paso Chihuahuas, played a four-game series this weekend against the Reno Aces at their previous home, Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium.
The Chihuahuas, the San Diego Padres’ Triple-A affiliate, had to beat a former Major League Baseball All-Star to end the series in a 2-2 draw.
After starting the series off with a win on Friday 2-1, El Paso dropped the following two games to the Arizona Diamondbacks’ Triple-A affiliate on Saturday and Sunday, 11-1 and 6-4. But on Monday, behind a strong offensive third inning, the Chihuahuas won 5-3.
“I thought we played a great series,” Aces head coach Phil Nevin said. “We continue to play great defense, so that will help us win a lot of games.”
Third baseman Brooks Conrad breaks the scoreless drought with a two-run RBI double in the third inning. The El Paso Chihuahuas beat the Reno Aces, 5-3, at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium on Monday.
Just a few hours before the start of Monday night’s game, Aces pitcher Mike Bolsinger was called up to the Diamondbacks, leaving an open spot in the rotation.
Longtime MLB pitcher and 2003 MLB All-Star left-hand pitcher Randy Wolf (0-1) filled in for Bolsinger. Wolf, who was added to the roster that day, made his Aces debut that night.
In the first two innings of the game, Wolf struck out six batters before his smooth start came to a halt. In the third inning, he allowed four runs, followed up by a single and three doubles.
Chihuahua infielders Brooks Conrad and Kyle Blanks, along with outfielder Jeff Francoeur, combined for five runs batted in on Monday night. Conrad and Blanks each had two RBIs, and Francoeur had one RBI.
The Aces were able to get one run on the board when outfielder Alfredo Marte hit a solo home run in the sixth inning.
Even though Wolf had a rocky start to his Aces career and the Aces lost on Monday night, Nevin was still happy with the four-game series.
Nevin was also welcoming to Wolf as Bolsinger moved up to the majors.
“Bolsinger has pitched very well,” Nevin said, “and he deserved to be moved up to the Diamondbacks.”
Chihuahuas pitcher Juan Pablo Oramas (1-0) picked up his first win of the season.
Oramas allowed one run in five innings and struck out seven batters with no walks on Monday.
“Everyone played very well this series,” Oramas said. “We should do well against Albuquerque and Las Vegas this week.”
The Chihuahuas will continue their 24-game road trip this week playing the Albuquerque Isotopes and the Las Vegas 51s.
On April 28, the team will have its first home game at its stadium in El Paso against the Freson Grizzlies.
The Aces will also be on the road this week, playing the Las Vegas 51’s and the Fresno Grizzlies.
—Follow Daniela Vizcarra @vizcarra_dw