San Antonio, TX – The Amarillo Sod Poodles earned their third straight win over San Antonio to start the season’s final regular-season series. The club’s playoff hopes remain alive for at least another game with the comeback win and a Frisco loss to Northwest Arkansas.
A pitcher’s duel transpired over the course of the first three innings on Thursday night. Right-hander Slade Cecconi started the game with a strikeout and retired the side in order. Amarillo put at least one runner on base in each of their first three innings, but none made it safely to second.
Cecconi, the Arizona Diamondbacks No. 11 rated prospect, stranded a leadoff double in the second inning and struck out the first two he faced in the bottom of the third. A two-out single helped to keep the inning alive with the second single of the inning pushing runners to the corners. Cecconi’s fifth strikeout of the night – and third in the inning kept the game scoreless through three complete.
Another 1-2-3 inning for Amarillo in the top of the fourth sent Cecconi right back to work. Two more strikeouts in the bottom of the fourth had him up to seven for the night.
Blaze Alexander drew a leadoff walk but a double play erased him from the bases. A deep fly ball to left field off the bat of A.J. Vukovich was caught as the Sod Poodles were held to two hits through the first five innings and none since the second.
A hit by pitch with one out in the fifth brought an end to a run of five straight batters retired by Cecconi. He got the next two batters to fly out to remain unscathed with only three hits surrendered.
Caleb Roberts, fresh off a three-hit night on Wednesday, collected the third Amarillo hit against Thomas Eshelman with a line drive into center field. A high-chopper over the head of Eshelman was fielded and thrown to first as Roberts moved to second . The first runner in scoring position for the Sod Poodles came around to score as Jordan Lawlar beat out an infield single. A high throw and error allowed Roberts to make his way home to put the first run of the game on the scoreboard.
A leadoff bunt single for the Missions came around to tie the game after a single and throwing error got past the Amarillo third baseman. Jorge Barrosa was unable to corral a deep fly ball to left-center field and put the Missions in front for the first time Thursday. A single and walk loaded the bases against Cecconi still with nobody…