The Colorado Springs Sky Sox dropped the series opener and first home game of 2018 versus the Round Rock Express 8-6. The Express improve to 2-7 on the season with the Sky Sox falling to 6-2.
Colorado Springs starter Corbin Burnes gave up a sole hit to Round Rock in the top of the first inning, before retiring the side and giving the Sky Sox their first turn at the plate. Keon Broxton got things going for Colorado Springs early with a leadoff double in the bottom of the frame, advancing to third on sacrifice bunt by Mauricio Dubon and scoring on a sacrifice fly by Ji-Man Choi to give the Sky Sox a 1-0 lead.
Round Rock answered in the top of the second with a solo shot to straight center from Destin Hood to tie it at one apiece. Tyrone Taylor responded with a one-out double in the bottom of the second, and then scored on an Andres Blanco single to make it 2-1. Broxton crushed a home run in the very next at-bat to make it 4-1 Sky Sox.
The Sky Sox three-run lead was short-lived, as the Express scored three runs in the top of the third to even the score at 4-4. The first two runs came in on a Willie Calhoun single, scoring Andy Ibanez and Jose Cardona. Catcher Cameron Rupp lined a single to center field to score the equalizer in Scott Heineman.
The Sky Sox retook a 5-4 lead in the bottom of the fifth inning, compliments of Mauricio Dubon. Dubon roped a double, stole third base, and promptly scored on a wild pitch from Austin Bibens-Dirkx. Later in the inning, Phillips lined a triple to the right-center field gap, scoring two batters later on a Taylor single to make it 6-4.
Tommy Joseph evened the score at 6-6 in the top of the seventh with a two-run homer for Round Rock that wrapped around the left field pole. In the top of the eighth inning, the Express took their first lead of the game on another Calhoun single that scored Cardona to go up 7-6. Destin Hood hit a solo homer in the top of the ninth to extend Round Rock’s lead to 8-6.
Tomorrow’s doubleheader is scheduled to start at 12:30 pm MDT and game two will follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of game one and will be played as two seven-inning contests. The double-dip Sunday afternoon games will feature 50 cent hot dogs. Gates open at 12:00 p.m. at Security Service Field.
Friday Night Postponement: Friday’s 6:40 p.m. contest between the Sky Sox and the Round Rock Express, Triple-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers, at Security Service Field was postponed due to high winds and freezing temperature. The game will be rescheduled as part of a doubleheader for Sunday, April 15. Game one will begin at 12:30 pm MDT and game two will follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of game one and will be played as two seven-inning contests.
High Winds History: On May 6th, 1988 at Spurgeon Stadium, a home game vs. Edmonton Trappers was postponed due to high winds over 70 mph. On May 7th, 1988, the day after the Edmonton game was postponed, the Sky Sox belted nine homers in a windy contest, in a 33-12 rout over the Phoenix Firebirds. Phoenix pitcher Ed Lynch took the loss and retired from baseball after this game. Lynch would later become a General Manager of the Chicago Cubs in the 1990’s. On May 8th, 1990 at Sky Sox Stadium, a home game vs. the Vancouver Canadians was postponed due to rain and high winds. On April 18th, 2000 at Sky Sox Stadium, a home game vs. the Oklahoma Redhawks was postponed due to high winds over 70 mph. On May 21st, 2004, at Sky Sox Stadium, the game vs. the Tucson Sidewinders was delayed 43 minutes so the grounds crew could tether down the center field batters eye screen, which became loose due to high winds. The Sky Sox won that game, 8-6. On April 8th, 2013 at Security Service Field, the game against the Tucson Padres was shortened to five innings, called short due to continuous high winds over 50 mph. After a 30-minute delay, Tucson won the shortened game, 14-3.
Missed Friday the 13th: With the Sky Sox missing Friday’s game, they continue to hold an 11-10 record on a Friday the 13th (6-6 at home, 5-4 on the road). Friday night would have been the first meeting against Round Rock on a Friday the 13th. The last time the Sky Sox had a game postponed on a Friday the 13th was against Omaha at home on Friday, July 13th, 2001.
Swiper No Swiping: The Sky Sox are now 13 for 14 on stolen base attempts so far this season.
Holding Down the Fort: Left-hander Mike Zagurski collected his fourth hold of the season Thursday night, which leads all Colorado Springs pitchers this season.
Versus Round Rock: The Sky Sox only won four of 12 games played against the Express last season, with an additional three games being canceled due to weather in the last month of the season. The Sky Sox were 20-24 all-time at home against Round Rock coming into this series.