Hernandez Powers, Stout Hurls Monarchs to Victory
CLEBURNE, Texas — The Kansas City Monarchs had their own Texas two-step Friday night as Jan Hernandez goes four-for-five with an RBI single leading the Kansas City offense, while Eric Stout (2-1) earns a quality start and a win over the Cleburne Railroaders.
Stout started right where he left off in his last start by dominating on the hill in Texas for the first game of this three game road series against Cleburne. The left hander struck out seven batters while only giving up three hits and one run in the contest.
Stout’s performance gave the Kansas City offense time to figure things out after struggling early on. Through the first five innings, the Monarchs only recorded one hit with Hernandez doubling in the first inning.
In the sixth inning the offense found their stride, and the bats got hot quickly. After a lead-off walk by Darnell Sweeny, Johnny Field hit an RBI double to drive in Sweeney for the first run of the game, giving the Monarchs a 1-0 lead. Kansas City immediately scored again with the next batter Hernandez hitting an RBI single to allow the Monarchs to go up 2-0.
Stout would give up a solo home run in the bottom of the sixth as the Railroaders would make it a 2-1 game. That same inning, he would record his seventh strikeout of the game to end his Friday night performance. Right hander Cody Mincey would come in to replace Stout to begin the seventh inning where he struck out one.
The Monarchs continued the offensive success in the eighth inning. After Field got on base off an error by Cleburne, Hernandez singled, putting two batters on base for Casey Gillaspie. Gillaspie then hit a triple to drive in both runners and advance the Monarchs lead, making it a 4-1 game. Immediately after Gillaspie’s big triple, Colin Willis hit a sacrifice fly RBI for Kansas City to take a 5-1 lead heading to the bottom half.
In the top of the ninth, the Railroaders pitching struggled, putting Monarchs batters on the bases with two straight walks with one out in the inning. With runners at second and third, there would be back-to-back wild pitches by Cleburne pitcher Bryan Saucedo, making it a 7-1 lead for Kansas City. The hitting machine of the night Hernandez doubled in the top of the ninth, giving him a four-for-five batting effort.
Robinson Martinez replaced Mincey on the mound in the bottom of the ninth. Mincey would finish his outing by pitching two innings, giving up one hit and striking out one batter.
Martinez went three up, three down in his pitching performance, sealing the win for the Monarchs.
The Monarchs will face the Cleburne Railroaders in game two of the three game series at 7:06 p.m. Saturday night. The game can be heard on the Monarchs Broadcast Network with the pre-game beginning at 6:40 p.m. and the video stream airing on aabaseball.tv.
Tickets to all Monarchs games can be purchased by calling 913-328-5618 or by visiting monarchsbaseball.com. For additional information or interview requests, members of the media may contact the Monarchs Media Relations Department at (817) 739-3693. Stay tuned to monarchsbaseball.com. and the Monarchs Facebook and Twitter pages for updates throughout the season.
By Dan Vaughan, Kansas City Monarchs