The Game: Phoenix Desert Dogs were on the winning side of a high scoring shoot-out against the Peoria Saguaros 12-11 on Thursday in Peoria.
The Desert Dogs came out scoring in the first inning posting four runs on the scoreboard. Jemile Weeks singled to center to lead off the inning. Weeks then stole second and Danny Espinosa drew a walk to put runners on the corners. Brandon Snyder then delivered a two run triple to score Weeks and Espinosa. Chris Marrero followed with a sac fly that scored Snyder. Then Grant Desme hits a line drive double to left to put another runner in scoring position for Phoenix. Desme then advanced to third on a passed ball and later scored on a sacrifice by Nevin Ashley to give the Desert Dogs a 4-0 lead.
Peoria got on the scoreboard in the third inning as Mitch Canham led off the inning with a triple to center. Jose Vellejo drove Canham home with a single to second, bringing the Saguaros within three, 4-1.
Phoenix added another run in the fourth inning. Danny Espinosa was hit by a pitch to get things going. Espinosa then stole second and later scored on an RBI single by Chris Marrero to increase the lead to 5-1.
The Saguaros tied the game in the bottom of the fourth. Yonder Alonso and Brandon Hicks delivered back to back singles to lead off the inning. Jonathan Gaston then cleared the bases with a three run home run. Josh Rodriguez followed with a double and then later scored on a grounder by Tim Fedroff to tie the game 5-5.
Phoenix regained the lead in the sixth inning as Danny Espinosa singled to lead off the inning. Corey Brown later followed with an RBI single to score Espinosa and give them a 6-5 lead.
But the Desert Dogs lead did not last long as Peoria posted three more runs in the bottom of the sixth to take the lead. Josh Rodriguez and Mitch Canham delivered back to back singles with one out to get things started. Jose Vallejo then cleared the bases with a three run homer to give Peoria a 8-6 lead.
The Saguaros added an insurance run in the form of a solo home run by Matt McBride in the seventh inning. The homer increased the Peoria lead to 9-6.
Phoenix then mounted a two inning comeback that would eventually give them the win. The Desert Dogs struck for three runs in the eighth inning. Danny Espinosa lead off the inning with a double. Espinosa then scored on an RBI single by Chris Marrero. Corey Brown cleared the bases with a two run homer to tie the game.
The Desert Dogs rally continued into the ninth inning as they pushed across the go ahead runs. Nevin Ashley singles to left to get things started. Adam Loewen then drew a walk to put runners on first and second. Jemile Weeks then reached on an error to load the bases. Danny Espinosa followed with a two run single that scored Ashley and Loewen. Chris Marrero then walked to reload the bases. Weeks later scored on a passed ball and the Desert Dogs now had a 12-9 lead.
Peoria rallied in the home half of the ninth, posting two runs to the scoreboard on a an RBI single by Brandon Hicks and another by Mitch Canham. But the Desert Dogs held on for the win 12-11.
Drew Storen earned the victory, improving to 2-0 on the season. Josh Perrault picked up his first save of the season for Phoenix.
Phoenix Desert Dogs Player of the Game: Danny Espinosa; 3 for 3 with a double, 2 RBI’s, 4 runs scored and drew 2 walks, also picked up a stolen base.
Rays Organization Stats:
Nevin Ashley; 2 for 3 with an RBI and a runs scored with a walk and a strikeout at the plate, was 1 for 1 in throwing out base runners behind the plate.
A Look Ahead: The Phoenix Desert Dogs return home to Phoenix Municipal Stadium to play the Scottsdale Scorpions on Friday.