Orem Owlz take advantage of Idaho Falls control problems
OREM — Perhaps Idaho Falls could have been able to overcome the 10 hits its pitching staff allowed to the Orem Owlz on Monday night but what proved fatal for the Chukars were the 10 free passes they handed out as Orem held on for an 8-4 win.
Leonardo Rivas walked to lead off the bottom of the first and to begin a strange sequence. After Brandon Sandoval flew out, Idaho Falls starting pitcher Julio Pinto lost control. He hit Ryan Vega with a pitch and then walked David MacKinnon to load the bases.
Jonah Todd walked to force in a run and the Owlz then picked up another easy run when Franklin Navarro walked. Manuel Guzman then walked to force home the fourth run of the inning and that was all for Pinto, who was lifted in favor of Randy Acevedo, who promptly got Tori Hunter Jr. to ground into a double play to end the inning.
Orem scored another run in the second when Brandon Sandoval singled and advanced to second on a balk. He scored on a single from MacKinnon. The Owlz tacked on another run in the fourth compliments of an RBI single from Vega.
The Chukars finally got on the board in the fifth. Freddy Fermin led off with a walk and after Chris Rodriguez caught Logan Gray looking at strike three, he gave up a double to Julio Gonzalez. Chris Hudgins then drove in a run on fielder’s choice.
After the Owlz added a run in the sixth, Idaho Falls rallied for three runs in the eighth thanks in large part to Robby Rinn’s 2-run homer.
Todd doubled in a run in the bottom half of the inning that put the game away for the Owlz. Todd, Vega, MacKinnon and each had two hits for Orem.
Rodriguez, a fourth round pick in 2016 by the Angels, made his third straight quality start of the season. He allowed two hits and one run in five innings of work to pick up the win. Rodriguez has given up six hits and one earned run in his last 15 innings. He’s also fanned 16.
The Owlz are off on Tuesday. They open up a seven-game road trip at Great Falls on Wednesday. Their next home game will be on July 20 against Great Falls.