The Pump Jacks rounded out the first half of the 2011 season in dominating fashion with strong starting pitching, sound defense and timely hitting.
The Jacks got a dose of their own medicine Wednesday night, running into solid starting pitching that cooled the red-hot bats of the Pump Jacks, resulting in a 4-1 loss to Brazos Valley to open the second half.
James Guillen took the mound for the Pump Jacks in his fifth start of the season. He went 5.1 innings allowing only two earned runs on nine hits. The University of Southern California hurler struck out three while walking only one as he took his second loss of the season. Despite the loss, Guillen still maintains a sub-two ERA in over 30 innings of work this season. Jaron Long came on in relief in the sixth, tossing 2.2 innings and allowing one run on three hits.
Colton Bickerstaff picked up his 21st RBI of the season, which leads the Pump Jacks squad and trails the TCL lead by only two. Bickerstaff also had one of the five Jacks hits. Jace Statum extended his hit streak to eight games, one for each of the games he as spent as a Pump Jack. Current TCL Player of the Week Hunter Dozier picked up another hit. Kirby Pellant and Beau Maggi each added hits as well.
Ty Marlow reached base in the top of the first on an error from Bomber third baseman Casey Dykes. Marlow navigated the bases on two wild pitches from Brazos Valley starter Alec Mills and scored on an RBI groundout from Bickerstaff to give the Jacks the early 1-0 lead.
The wild pitches would prove to be the last thing that Mills would give the Pump Jacks for the rest of the contest.
Dykes made up for his error in the bottom half of the inning, belting a two-run double just out of the reach of a diving Seth Granger.
Mills then shutdown the Jacks bats, striking out 10 and carrying a no-hitter into the sixth inning before a hard hit single from Pellant broke up the bid. Statum led off the eighth with a single but the Bombers squeezed out a double play from a Granger groud out. Dozier then roped a ball to right field but Mills quickly ended the threat with a strike out.
Marlow got hit by a pitch and Bickerstaff followed with a single in the ninth to give the Jacks two on with one out. Maggi belted a grounder in the gap on the first base side but the ball bounced up and hit an advancing Bickerstaff to end the game.
The Jacks square off again with the Bombers tomorrow to complete the two-game series. The Pump Jacks return home to face the Coppell Copperheads Friday and Saturday.
Friday’s marks the third Fireworks Friday of the season, presented by Jim Tachias of Wells Fargo Financial Advisors and KLTV News. The Jacks will cap off the week with a spectacular post-game fireworks show set to its own unique soundtrack.
On Saturday, the Jacks will hold an Autographed Memorabilia Giveaway. Merchandise signed by past and present Pump Jacks – including some players who have already turned pro – will be given away throughout the evening, all through a free drawing.
To follow all the news and to watch every pitch of the 2011 season, visit the Pump Jacks official web site at www.pumpjacksbaseball.com. Interact with other Pump Jacks fans and enjoy special promotions and polls by visiting the Pump Jacks on Facebook and Twitter.