ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico – The Oklahoma City Redhawks notched its second straight win over the first place Albuquerque Isotopes Thursday with an 8-6 victory.
The Redhawks (32-43) held off a late rally by the Isotopes (42-32) thanks to a big eighth inning where OKC scored five runs.
Although the Isotopes got on the board first in the second inning when Corey Smith blasted a two-run home run into left, the Redhawks answered with a pair of runs to tie it in the third.
In the fifth, the Isotopes regained the lead when J.D. Closser singled home Ivan DeJesus, Jr. for a 3-2 score.
Then the rally began.
Brian Bogusevic and Robinson Cancel delivered singles before Tommy Manzella doubled to scored Bogusevic for a 3-3 tie. Anderson Hernandez next doubled in Cancel and Manzella for a 5-3 lead. Brandon Barnes later delivered a sacrifice fly to score Hernandez for a 6-3 advantage. Wladimir Sutil scored from third when Drew Locke was caught in a rundown between first and second base for a 7-3 lead.
OKC added an insurance run in the ninth as Cancel doubled to bring in Bogusevic to make it 8-3.
In the ninth, Albuquerque mounted a rally against reliever Jose Valdez. Jay Gibbons led off with a home run for an 8-4 score. Eugenio Velez reached on a strike three wild pitch, moved to second on another wild pitch and scored on a Jerry Sands single, cutting the score to 8-5. After a Closser single, David Carpenter entered from the RedHawks bullpen and walked Robinson to load the bases with one out. Jamie Hoffmann next hit a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Sands for an 8-6 score. Corey Smith next struck out for the final out of the game.
Oklahoma City reliever Ross Wolf (1-2) took the winning decision, while Isotopes reliever Travis Schlichting (3-2) picked up the loss. David Carpenter saved the game by recording the final two outs of the ninth inning. Carpenter is now 3-for-8 in save opportunities and has dealt 18 scoreless innings in Triple-A relief.
The Redhawks try for the series victory Friday at 8:05 p.m. If OKC picks up the series win, it will give Albuquerque its first home series loss of the season.