With the bases loaded and two outs in the top of the seventh, Andy Yerzy sent a long rope to center field for a triple clearing the bases for the tying runs. Also, on a wild pitch by pitcher Sean Barry, Yerzy came home scoring the go ahead run and gave the visiting Hillsboro Hops the lead for good. The Eugene Emeralds could not answer and fell 6-4.
The Hops Cristofer Ogando came on after the Hops regained the lead and pitched a very impressive two innings. The right-hander from the Dominican Republic faced the minimum six batters and retired each and every one of them on strikes, two looking and four swinging. Ogando has now struck out nine batters in just over four innings in his short stay with the Hops. If not for a disastrous debut on 8/3 where he was knocked around for two runs in 1.1 innings, Cristofer has blanked any opponent to come his way.
William Gorman homered in the second inning to right center. Otherwise, Hillsboro had a difficult time getting on the board. Gorman’ score would be the Hops only one until Andy Yerzy’s three-run triple five innings later. By then, Eugene scored four runs and had the lead at 4-1. The Emerald’s DJ Artis tatered in the third with two runners on board and Fernando Kelli sent a solo shot over the left field fence in the fifth.
Hillsboro’s bats were not silent. On the night, the Hops managed ten hits spread throughout. But the runs were powered by the extra base hit. Along with Will Gorman’s homer and Andy Yerzy’s triple, Geraldo Perdomo’s double sent Dan Swain to third where he scored on a Joey Rose RBI single in the ninth.
Andy Yerzy/ Geraldo Perdomo Power Stroke
Geraldo Perdomo continued his hitting streak, hence increasing it to three games. In that short time, Perdomo has gone 6 for 16 for a .375 batting average during the stretch. Geraldo has made short work at the plate on his rise from the lower levels. At the AZL Dbacks, the switch hitter from the Dominican Republic went 27 for 86 and a .314 average. Even more impressive, the 18-year-old hit 10 for 22 at Missoula and a .455 average. That led to a quick promotion on 7/28 to the Hillsboro Hops where he is now leading the current team roster with a .326 average.
The win increased the Hillsboro Hops’ (12-7) lead atop the Southern Division to three games. In contrast the loss kept the Eugene Emeralds (9-10) in a tie with the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes (9-10) in second place behind the Hops. Both teams return to PK Park Wednesday night for another game (#2 of the series). Hillsboro leads 1-0.
Hillsboro has not named their starter yet. Eugene will send Zach Mort (0-1) to the mound. On 8/9, Mort went two innings where he allowed five runs on six hits for a no decision.
Former Hops Ariel Hernandez was released by the Los Angeles Dodgers due to the organization designating Hernandez for assignment on 7/31. The 2015 Hops pitcher was picked up a week later by the Milwaukee Brewers and assigned to their AAA Colorado Spring Sky Sox farm team. Also, more on Ariel Hernandez and other Hops in the majors, check out my previous article.