COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Storm Chasers used lights-out pitching and an early offensive flurry to take their second consecutive win over the Clippers. Omaha (67-70) took game two over Columbus (78-57) 9-1. The Storm Chasers hold a 2-0 series advantage and a 9-5 season series lead.
Center fielder Dairon Blanco started the scoring in the second inning with an RBI double to score right fielder Brewer Hicklen. Catcher Jakson Reetz and first baseman Gabriel Cancel launched back-to-back home runs to open a 4-0 lead for Omaha. Reetz and Cancel are now the eighth pair of Storm Chasers to hit home runs in back-to-back plate appearances, and the first in more than a month.
Left-hander Austin Cox was cruising, but he did allow a run in the bottom of the second on an Oscar Mercado double to cut the Storm Chasers lead to 4-1.
The Storm Chasers responded in the top of the third, using a Hicklen double to score left fielder Edward Olivares. Blanco hit his second RBI double in his second trip to the plate, scoring Hicklen before Reetz earned his second hit of the game that allowed Blanco to score and put the lead at 7-1.
Designated hitter Brent Rooker added more runs in the sixth inning, using a double to allow Olivares and third baseman Nick Loftin to cross the plate and extend Omaha’s lead to 9-1. Rooker has now earned a hit in each of his first eight games in a Storm Chasers uniform, a streak that has spanned more than a month and a stint in The Show.
Cox (Win, 7-7) went 7.0 strong innings, striking out three batters with no walks while allowing one earned run. Cox needed just 86 pitches to get through seven innings, throwing 61 strikes for a 70.9 percent strike rate. The start is his fourth consecutive start of at least six innings.
Right-hander Yefri Del Rosario pitched the eighth for the Storm Chasers, allowing a couple baserunners but keeping the Clippers off the scoreboard.
Omaha looked to right-hander Wyatt Mills for the ninth inning. Mills got a trio of strikeouts to close the 9-1 win over Columbus.
The Storm Chasers and Clippers are scheduled for a 5:15 p.m. CDT first pitch on Thursday. Coverage for game three will start at 4:55 p.m. on the Sarpy County Tourism Pregame Show on 1180 The Zone. Omaha looks to send right-hander Max Castillo (1-1, 3.25) to the mound and Columbus is scheduled to start Tanner Tully.
After this road trip, the Storm Chasers return home for their final home…