Mar 1, 2015; Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Colorado Rockies pitcher John Lannan poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The Albuquerque Isotopes debuted their new Friday alternate uniforms and the Reno Aces debuted Yasmany Tomas.
What appeared as a pitchers duel in Albuquerque was more like an exercise in how to get out of an inning. Both Robbie Ray of the Aces and Rockies off-season acquisition, John Lannan squared off and both had control issues.
Lannan was rolling until the 5th inning when he loaded the bases on walks but no one scored. The Isotopes had 1 run on 1 hit after Angelys Nina singles and later scored on a Tim Smalling ground out. Nina reached third from first on a two-base wild pitch.
In the sixth inning, Yasmany Tomas, $68.5M Cuban Defector, registered his first hit in the US on a hot single through the infield to right. He had been 0-2 before the hit.
All in all it was a good night for Lannan.
Glen Allen Hill was pleased with Lannan’s performance. “He has a history of making big pitches. Big league pitchers make big pitches and don’t panic.” Hill said,
Lannan attempted a swinging bunt that had the ball jump up and hit him in the eye. Hill didn’t worry about him coming out because Lannan is a tough guy and he seemingly got more focused after the ball hit him in the face. I asked if maybe it was time for the DH in all of baseball and Hill delivered an emphatic “NOOOOO! We take pride in our pitchers hitting.” Lannan was unavailable after the game for an interview.
Rex Brothers, whom the Rockies are watching closely, pitched a single inning giving up a hit and registering a strikeout. He looked very good. Scott Olberg also threw a scoreless frame.
Jairo Diaz came in for the save but made it interesting walking the first batter and had a fair ball ricochet off the umpire stopping it near 3rd base saving the tying run. Diaz then walks Jamie Romak loading the bases for Danny Dorn. Dorn walked and then Diaz finished off the side costing Lannan the win. Glen Allen Hill said Diaz was ‘a little bit erratic’ and not typical of how he preforms. Hill had no intention of removing Diaz when he got in trouble, “He is definitely good enough to pitch into trouble and good enough to pitch out of trouble.”
Simon Castro pitched the 10th, allowing a hit. Brandon Barnes made a huge catch in center field to save the game.
In the bottom of the 10th, Christhian Adames singles, Kyle Parker is intentionally walked and Matt McBride, who is 0-7 on the season, was unintentionally walked loading the bases. Hill commented that McBride is a great hitter that once he gets going it will be very loud. Andelys Nina singles in the winning run. Glen Allen Hill put it best after the game: “Yeah It was a very very close ball game.”
Albuquerque left 13 on base on 5 hits while Reno left 11 on base on 11 hits. Hill said anytime there is this many runners left on base its reflective of pitchers making the right pitches at the right time and being effective wild. He expects his staff to pitch out of trouble. Hear the entire post game interview with Skipper Glen Allen Hill below.
5942 showed up to see the Topes and Zooperstars, which were cool except Roger Clamens who ate the fully clothed bat boy and spit him out with just underwear on. I need therapy now.
The Isotopes and Aces will square off for game three of their four-game set Saturday night at 7:05 p.m. MT. Right-hander Chad Bettis will take the hill for the Topes, while the Aces will send lefty Justin Marks.