Despite losing the unusual five-game series to the El Paso Chihuahuas, the Salt Lake Bees closed the series out on a positive note with two consecutive victories. The Bees followed up Sunday’s win with another strong offensive showing Monday night, winning 8-7.
The Bees chased El Paso pitcher Donn Roach from the game after only three innings. Judging by Chihuahua manager Pat Murphey’s decision to start warming up another pitcher in the first inning, there was not much confidence in the way Roach came out of the gates.
Storylines Bees end series strongThe Bees lose the series 3-2, but win the last two.
» Tony Campana contributes two RBIs and one run on the night.
Ryan Wheeler continued his hot streak at the plate — going 3 for 4 with one RBI — after being picked up by the Angels’ organization.
"I think I’ve just found new life here in Salt Lake City," he said. "I’ve always loved playing here and I think I’m just having fun again. So, I have no trouble studying film and making adjustments on the fly and just having fun with my new teammates. I think my attitude just has a lot to do with it."
After zero wins in five starts as a member of the Bees, Chris Volstad finally got his first victory, going 61⁄3 inning and giving up seven hits, five earned runs and five walks, with five strikeouts.
"I love playing behind him," Wheeler said. "I was teammates with him last year. You know he’s going to keep the ball around the plate and that guys are going to put the balls in play, so we were able to hold on there at the end and I think it, yeah, it helped to definitely jump on the other team early."
Dustin Richardson was forced into late duty again, as David Carpenter was unable to close out the game and recorded back-to-back saves. El Paso’s Jace Peterson scalded an RBI triple off the right-field wall with no outs in the ninth. One out and an error later, Tyler Greene pulled the Chihuahuas within one on a fielder’s choice. Despite the Chihuahuas’ late rally, Richardson closed the door.
"I think guys were tired of losing, so it is pretty important," Wheeler said. "I know we’re playing for pride right now, but for us as minor leaguers, pride is the most important thing you’re ever playing for."
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