Geoff Safford, Media Relations Assistant
One moment can completely change the feeling of a baseball game. In Wednesday’s game at People’s Home Equity Ballpark at Arnold Field, the game ultimately came down to one swing of the bat.
In the top of the seventh inning, Jordan Yallen approached the plate with two outs and the bases loaded. Sean Conroy was on the mound making his second appearance of the season out of the bullpen and inherited a tough situation with Sonoma trailing 2-1. With the count even at two and two, Yallen launched a grand slam down the left field line to blow the game open, giving the Diamonds a lead they wouldn't relinquish as they handed Sonoma a 6-2 loss.
Coming into the game, Yallen was hitting only .141 on the year with a .411 OPS, and his only extra base hit was a double. Yet in a crucial moment against a pitcher who had seen his share of success in the Pacific Association, Yallen took a hanging slider and had his biggest hit of the year, sinking Sonoma's hopes of a two-game sweep in the process.
Pittsburg starter Dylan Brammer (7-3) did his job on the mound, allowing only one run on four hits while striking out seven in seven innings pitched for the Diamonds. Brammer has pitched well against the Stompers this season overall, as he is 3-1 with a 3.06 ERA on the season in 6 starts. Gregory Paulino (3-4) took the loss for the Stompers, as he allowed 3 runs in 6 1/3 innings.
Offensively, the Stompers had a quiet night after their offensive explosion on Tuesday night, where they rolled to a 13-1 victory. Wednesday night, they had only four hits, as both Daniel Baptista and Mark Hurley finished 2 for 4 in the game. Hurley hit his home run of the season, an opposite field shot that tied the game at 1-1. The Stompers had a few opportunities to put more runs on the board, in the middle innings, but could not get clutch hits and stranded nine runners on base. The top of the order was a strength in Tuesday’s game, but the top three hitters in the order finished 0 for 12 with a walk in Wednesday’s game.
The Stompers (30-26, 7-10 second half) now will head to Pittsburg (26-30, 7-10 second half) for the last time this season for a four game series at City Park Field. Mike Jackson Jr. will get the ball in the first game of the series and can with his fourth game in a row. Jackson Jr. is 3-0 with a 1.56 ERA in his last 3 outings for Sonoma. Thursday’s game will be quiet the spectacle with former Major League star Jose Conseco making his Diamonds season debut Thursday night.
Tickets for upcoming Stompers home games are available on StompersBaseball.com. Fan gear, and tickets are also available for purchase inside The Fan Shop located at 234 West Napa Street in downtown Sonoma. For more information about the team, contact the Stompers at firstname.lastname@example.org.