Corbin Osburn has been with the Wichita Wingnuts less than 24 hours, but he has already made quite an impression. Making his first professional start, the lefty allowed just one run in 5-innings as the Wingnuts downed the Texas AirHogs, 4-2. John Nester scored 2-runs and Isaiah Aluko drove in two to help pace the Wichita offense.
The Wichita Wingnuts looked like they would take the lead in the bottom of the first against Gan Quan. The home team loaded the bases on two walks and an error, but the Texas starter got out of it by inducing a double-play to keep it scoreless.
In the second, Wichita would take the lead. John Nester led off the inning with a flare down the right field line that landed just fair and just beyond the reach of the first baseman. It rolled into foul territory, allowing Nester to race into third with a standup triple. Two batters later, Isaiah Aluko grounded out to second, bringing home Nester and it was 1-0 Wichita.
Corbin Osburn had cruised through the first two innings, but the free pass would come back to haunt him in the third. The lefty walked Greg Golson and Casio Grider to start the frame before hitting Dillon Thomas for the second time in the contest. That loaded the bases for Meng Weiqiang, who grounded into a double-play, scoring Golson to tie the score. Osburn then struck out Stewart Ijames to end the threat.
The Wingnuts responded right away in the bottom half of the frame. Gan retired the first two batters of the inning, but gave up a shot to Abel Nieves that cleared the wall in left-center for a home run to make it 2-0. The homer was the second of the season for Nieves.
In the fourth, Wichita extended their lead to tw0. Zach Nehrir started the frame with a sharp single to left. Two batters later Nick Kaye walked before Aluko reached on an error. With the bases loaded, Leo Vargas grounded a single the other way into right, scoring Nehrir to make it 3-0.
Corbin Osburn (1-0) came out after five. The lefty allowed 3-hits, 2-walks, and a run. He struck out 3.
James Campbell came on in the sixth and tossed a scoreless frame. In the seventh Evan Sanders, who had been signed by the team moments before the contest tossed a perfect inning.
Wichita would extend their lead to three in the sixth. Nester walked to start the inning and moved to second on a passed ball. With one down, Aluko drilled a shot down the line in right that rattled around in the corner. He raced into the third with Nester scoring easily to make it 4-1.
Brady Bowen came on for Wichita in the eighth and he found himself in trouble. After striking out the first batter of the frame, he gave up a walk and two singles to load the bases with two down. A hit by pitch of Chu Fujia scored Dillon Thomas to make it 4-2 and the bases were still loaded.
The Wingnuts turned to Daniel Tillman, who struck out Chen Chen to end the threat. Tillman remained in the game, retiring all three batters in the ninth for his second save of the season.
Isaiah Aluko was 1-3 with a triple and 2-RBI. John Nester finished 1-3 with 2-runs and a walk. Ryan Wagner had 2-his for the Texas AirHogs.
Following the sweep of Texas, the Wingnuts now welcome the Cleburne Railroaders to town for a four-game set starting Monday. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05.
Featured Image by Ed Bailey
By Robert Pannier