By: Alex Morales
Grand Prairie, TX-- The Grand Prairie Airhogs and El Paso Diablos had a back and forth affair all night long as they went toe-to-toe taking each others best shots before the Airhogs ran away from the Diablos as they won 14-7 Sunday night at QuikTrip Park.
The Airhogs (29-13) jumped out in front early as they spoiled the debut of Jose Sanchez who was making his first start for the El Paso. Sanchez lasted only two and two-thirds innings giving up five runs, all earned on five hits. He walked four batters, striking out two and hit three. He received the no decision in the game.
The Diablos (11-31) responded well after falling behind 5-0 as they rallied to make it 5-4 on a bases loaded clearing double by first baseman Kevin Smith. The Diablos trailed 6-5 before designated hitter Kyle Nichols hit an RBI double to tie the game at six.
After tying it at six, the Airhogs tacked on three in the bottom half of the sixth to take a 10-7 lead as they were able to produce runs against Rigoberto Almonte. Almonte (0-1) pitched two-thirds of an inning allowing three runs all earned on two hits. He walked two and struck out one. He received the loss.
After chasing Almonte, the Airhogs scored one run in the seventh and three more in the eighth to seal the 14-7 victory for Grand Prairie. The Airhogs managed to score in every inning except the first inning.
They scored 14 runs on 12 hits, but they received the most help from El Paso pitchers. The Diablos pitchers gave the Airhogs 21 free passes as they walked 15 of them and hit six more which tied a league record. El Paso pitchers also threw more balls than strikes in the contest.
Next up for the Diablos is a four-game series against the Wingnuts of Wichita. The Diablos last trip to Wichita resulted in a three game sweep. They will look to enact revenge as they will send out starter Reymond Cruz (0-3, 9.39 ERA) to the mound in game one. Game time is set for 7:05 pm.