SONOMA, Calif.– After winning by 11 runs Tuesday, the Sonoma Stompers Professional Baseball Club, presented by Virginia Dare Winery, scored only one until the eighth inning of Wednesday’s 4-2 victory over the Vallejo Admirals.
After a rocky first couple of innings, which gave Vallejo an early 2-1 lead, Stompers starter Mike Jackson Jr. settled in to record 11 strikeouts through seven. Jackson retired eight Admirals in order before being replaced by Adam Ogbun in the eighth.
“When I settled down, my slider and splitter were working pretty good,” Jackson said. “Once (catcher Isaac Wenrich and I) sort of got that roll going together we couldn’t be stopped.”
Ogburn proceeded to record a strikeout before a loud 6-4-3 double play ended the inning. With the electrifying performances on the mound, the momentum shifted to the Stompers.
A Brennan Metzger single incited a chain reaction of opportunities for Sonoma, including two errors and a balk. With a couple of well-placed bunt singles and quick thinking, the Stompers scored two runs before they even recorded an out against Vallejo reliever Josh Evans.
“This is a game of momentum, so we just took advantage of it,” said Manager Takashi Miyoshi.
Ogburn struck out the Admirals in order in the top of the ninth, deciding the game for the Stompers.
“He’s a bulldog on the mound. Since last year, he’s always that way,” Miyoshi said. “After I sent him to the mound tonight, I didn’t worry about anything.”
With the win, Sonoma improves to 8-3 on the season and puts them two games ahead of the next-best Pittsburg Diamonds in the Pacific Association standings.
HONORING DON LYONS
In a ceremony prior to the game, the Stompers recognized longtime Sonoma Valley High varsity baseball coach Don Lyons for contributions to the Sonoma community. Family members spoke to the crowd about his love of the game, resilient personality and hardworking character.
“When I was a freshman in college at Sonoma State, one of the things they do on the first day is ask you to fill out a baseball biography, specifically what your favorite baseball memory is. At the time, I wrote down winning an NCS championship,” said Lyons’ son, Tommy Lyons. “I remember, not an hour later, I thought that was the wrong answer because my favorite baseball memories were just taking BP off my dad.”
Tommy Lyons, who was one of the first players signed by the Stompers in their expansion year of 2014, entered the game as a pinch hitter in the seventh, hit a single to right and stayed in at first base.
“That’s something we can give back to his father. His father is a legend in this community and has done so many good things for the kids in baseball,” Miyoshi said. “What an honor to give him back something special like that.”
A portion of the proceeds from the entire opening homestand will be donated to El Verano Elementary School’s after school programs in Lyons’ name. The Stompers will also be accepting donations on his behalf.
“Watching my sons grow up and play the game, it's hard to describe,” Don Lyons said. “I am so lucky to be part of Sonoma baseball. We're all part of the same family.”
Each Stompers homestand in 2017 will feature a local nonprofit or cause.
Tickets and merchandise are available now either online or at the fan shop at 234 W Napa Street in downtown Sonoma. Tickets will also be available at the box office on game days beginning 30 minutes prior to the game.
For more information, please contact the front office at 707-938-7277, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.