Cocos Locos holds on with an 11-8 win against St. Paul

    Rochester Red Wings

June 1, 2024 – International League (IL)
Rochester Red Wings news story

Cocos Locos De Rochester scored 10 unanswered points after falling 4-0 in the first inning, securing their third straight victory, 11-8. The win marks their third straight win in the series, the first time a Rochester team has done so since 2019. SS Jack Dunn paced the offense with a home run and a triple, and 2B Jackson Cluff extended his hitting streak to seven matches. RHP Rico Garcia closed the door in the ninth and secured his seventh save of the season.

St. Paul took an early lead in the top of the first inning, opening on back-to-back walks from CF Austin Martin and RF Matt Wallner. The next batter, LF Michael Helman, doubled down the left field line to score Martin, leaving two runners in scoring position with no outs. 2B Tony Kemp reached on an infield single, scoring Wallner to make it 2-0. After a stolen base by Kemp, C Chris Williams scored both Helman and Kemp on a single to right field, making it 4-0.

Rochester struck back in the bottom of the first inning when 2B Jackson Cluff hit a triple to right field. RF Travis Blankenhorn then walked and advanced to second base on a wild pitch. 1B Juan Yepez advanced Blankenhorn to third base and scored Cluff on a single to left field. After a walk to CF Alex Call, that resulted in two outs for DH Carter Kieboom. A single by the Georgia native scored both Blankenhorn and Yepez, cutting the Saints’ lead to one run, 4-3.

After no answer from St. Paul, Rochester tied the game in the bottom of the second. SS Jack Dunn crushed a line drive triple through right field and scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of LF Darren Baker. The Saints’ pitching managed to escape the remainder of the inning without further damage, entering the third inning tied at 4-4.

Rochester took the lead in the bottom of the fourth. With two outs, Jack Dunn crushed a 400-foot solo home run to the visitors’ bullpen to make it 5-4. This is his fifth home run of the season, one shy of his career-high set in 2023.

Rochester extended their lead in the bottom of the fifth, kicked off by three walks by Travis Blankenhorn, Alex Call and Carter Kieboom to load the bases. C Brady Lindsly scored Blankenhorn and Call with a line drive single to left field. Jack Dunn walked to load the bases again, followed by a single to left field off the bat of Darren Baker that cleared the bases and made it 10-4.

The top of the seventh inning opened with a walk by Alex Call, who then stole second base. Two batters later, Brady Lindsly singled to left field to score Call and increase the lead to 11-4 entering the top of the eighth.

The Saints began to close the seven-run deficit in the top of the eighth inning. DH Yoyner Fajardo singled to left field to start the innings, followed by a walk from 3B Anthony Prato. A single to center field off Austin Martin’s bat scored Fajardo and moved Prato to third base. With runners on the corners, Matt Wallner hit a 400-foot, two-run home run to center field to cut Rochester’s lead to 11-8.

RHP Thaddeus Ward took the mound first for Rochester, marking his 11th start of the season. The Fort Myers native pitched 5.0 innings, allowing four earned hits on seven hits, four walks and seven strikeouts. RHP Nash Walters came in relief in the top of the sixth inning and worked 2.0 scoreless innings on two hits. RHP Robert Gsellman recorded the first two outs of the eighth inning, allowing four earned hits on three hits, and handed the ball to LHP Tim Cate for the final out of the inning. RHP Rico Garcia struck out the batter in the ninth to secure his career-high seventh save of the season.

The Diamond Pro Player for Saturday night’s match is SS Jack Dunn. The Georgia native went 2-for-3 with a home run, triple, an RBI, a walk and three runs scored. This is the first time in his professional career that he has hit a triple and a home run in the same game.

Rochester looks to reach a season high with their fourth straight win on Sunday afternoon. RHP Joan Adon is in the rubber for Rochester against St. Paul’s RHP Randy Dobnak. The first pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m

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