The Frisco RoughRiders, Double-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers, dropped a 2-1 decision against the Northwest Arkansas Naturals Friday night. The series opener loss came from a go-ahead home run in the sixth inning, from Northwest Arkansas’ Samir Duenez. Frisco bats were mostly silent, and the team hit 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position.
The RoughRiders doubled-up on starting pitching, as Yohander Mendez tossed just two innings in his return from the disabled list. Pedro Payano would follow in relief. Mendez allowed one hit and no runs, striking out three in his first game back. He was limited to just 39 pitches, as the club eased him back into action.
Payano took the bulk of the work. He went five innings, allowing five hits and two runs (both earned). He walked two, struck out three, and gave up one home run. The losing decision was awarded to Payano, who now sits at 2-4 this year. Shane McCain was the final pitcher in the matchup. He threw one inning and allowed no hits or runs.
Luis Marte returned to the RoughRiders early in the day Friday. He launched a solo home run in his first at-bat back with Frisco. It put RoughRiders ahead 1-0 in the third inning. In the next frame, the Naturals tied up the game on a run-scoring groundout from Mauricio Ramos. Duenez was the final run for either team, with the go-ahead home run in the sixth.
News and notes from RidersBaseball.com:
- Isiah Kiner-Falefa pulled into a tie for the league lead in doubles, notching his 28th of the season in the fourth inning.
- The Riders finished the night 0-8 with runners in scoring position and are batting just .136 in such situations in the last 13 games.
- After getting swept in the first three games of the season series, Northwest Arkansas has won three of the past four head-to-head contests.
- 12 of the Riders’ past 14 games have been decided by three runs or fewer. In those games, the Riders are averaging 2.6 runs per game.
The Frisco RoughRiders will continue their three-game set against the Kansas City Royals affiliate on Saturday night. The first pitch is scheduled for 6:05 PM, from Arvest Ballpark in Springdale, Arkansas.
Frisco will send righty Richelson Pena (1-0, 1.50 ERA) to the mound. He’ll take on lefty Foster Griffin (8-4, 3.62 ERA). You can watch the action via MiLB.com, or listen to the broadcast at RidersBaseball.com.
Follow Blake Cole on Twitter (@blakeacole) for more on the Frisco RoughRiders, and other MiLB Texas League Double-A teams and players.
*Featured image courtesy of the Frisco RoughRiders.