South Bend, Ind. – Oscar Hernandez and Darryl George each drove in three runs to help power the Bowling Green Hot Rods (Class-A/Tampa Bay Rays) past the South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona Diamondbacks) on Tuesday night, 8-7. Bowling Green has now won 11 of 15 matchups against the playoff-bound Silver Hawks.
Hernandez helped the Hot Rods get the scoring started in the top of the third inning. After Kean Wong opened the inning with a double, Hernandez singled him home with a hit to left field.
Alexander Simon led off the fourth inning with a single, and proceeded to steal second base. Catcher Michael Perez’s throw went into center field, and Simon scampered to third base on the play. He then scored when George singled up the middle, extending the Hot Rods’ lead to 2-0.
A defensive miscue allowed South Bend to take the lead in the bottom of the fourth. With two outs, Daniel Palka and Perez were on second and third, a groundball was hit to Simon at first base by Fidel Pena. Simon was unable to handle it, and Pena reached while both runners scored on the play. Pena would later score in the inning as well on a single by D.J. Bowman, and South Bend took the lead.
Bowling Green quickly tied it in the top of the fifth on another run batted in by Hernandez. Pat Blair singled for his first hit since being activated off the disabled list earlier in the day, and he would come around to score later in the frame when Hernandez slashed another hit to left field. The Hot Rods regained the lead on a run-scoring groundout by Spencer Edwards in the sixth inning, but the game took a bizarre twist in the seventh.
It seemed as if the Hot Rods erased any doubt of their triumph as they scored four in the top of the seventh. With one out, Hernandez clubbed his seventh home run of the year over the left-field bleachers. Following a walk to Armando Araiza and another Simon single, George blooped a ball to right field. It skipped away, and George was able to leg out a triple by driving home both runs on the play. An error allowed George to cross on a ball hit by Elias Torres to cap the inning, and Bowling Green was in command, 7-3.
The Silver Hawks nearly erased the lead again in their half of the seventh. A bases-loaded walk, a catcher’s interference, and Pena’s two-run single plated four in the frame for South Bend. With runners at first and second and just one out, Blair took a hit away from Marty Herum to help preserve the lead.
Brad Schreiber entered the ninth inning to protect the one-run lead. He did just that, and collected two strikeouts while recording his first career professional save. Ben Griset (1-6) picked up his first win as a Hot Rod in relief. Isaac Gil made his first start since 2012 and was solid, working into the fourth and striking out four in the no-decision.
John Omahen (4-6) started for South Bend and took the loss. He allowed six runs on 12 hits.
The Hot Rods will look to continue their winning ways against South Bend on Wednesday night, and first pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. CT. The Pepsi Pre-Game Show will begin at 5:50 p.m. CT on the radio home of the Hot Rods, 1340 WBGN – The Ticket. The Hot Rods will return to Bowling Green on Monday, August 4, and tickets are available for the six-game homestand. Fans can logon to BGHotRods.com, call 270-901-2121, or stop by the Bowling Green Ballpark box office for more information.