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Drillers Set New Home Run Record in Big Win Over Amarillo

Kody Hoese led Tulsa's big offensive day Tuesday with two homers and the first four-hit game of his career. (Tim Campbell)
May 17, 2022

AMARILLO, TX– Amarillo’s HODGETOWN ballpark is known for being hitter friendly. That fact proved true on Tuesday afternoon as the Tulsa Drillers set a new regular-season, franchise home run record by hitting nine homers against the Amarillo Sod Poodles in a 15-12 victory. Ryan Ward and Kody Hoese highlighted the

AMARILLO, TX– Amarillo’s HODGETOWN ballpark is known for being hitter friendly. That fact proved true on Tuesday afternoon as the Tulsa Drillers set a new regular-season, franchise home run record by hitting nine homers against the Amarillo Sod Poodles in a 15-12 victory.

Ryan Ward and Kody Hoese highlighted the big game, with each hitting two home runs as both teams combined for 13 long balls.

BOXSCORE

The teams began the high-scoring game with two runs each in the first inning. In the top half of the first, Tulsa plated the game’s first run on Ward’s RBI single, before Hunter Feduccia followed with a sacrifice fly.

Amarillo evened the game with the first home run of day when Leandro Cedeno hit a two-run shot to tie the score at 2-2.

The game was not looking bright for the Drillers as a pair of run-scoring singles in the second inning gave Amarillo a 5-2 lead. Ti’Quan Forbes followed with a solo home run in the third to put the Drillers in a four-run hole.

Tulsa began its record-setting day in the top of the fourth with a two-run homer from Brandon Lewis.

Amarillo got the two runs back in the bottom half of the fourth on an RBI triple and a groundout to bring the score to 8-4.

The Drillers combined to score three runs in the fifth and sixth innings on the strength of three solo home runs from Andy Pages, Ward and Kody Hoese, making the score 8-7.

The Sod Poodles again padded their lead when Dominic Fletcher put two more runs on the board with his homer in the seventh inning.

Down 10-7, the Drillers finally pulled even in the eighth. After Hoese singled in one run, a double-play grounder plated a second. James Outman followed with Tulsa’s fifth homer of the day to even the game at 10-10.

Amarillo provided a quick response when Eduardo Diaz hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth to put the Sod Poodles back in front 12-10.

Alec Gamboa helped set the stage for Tulsa's comeback win with three solid relief innings. Tim Campbell

The Drillers saved their best for the last as they provided their own response by hitting four home runs in the top of the ninth, including back-to-back-to-back blasts. First, Ward began the comeback with a solo home run, his second of the game. Then, Carson Taylor hit a game-tying solo blast. Feduccia completed the trifecta with another solo home run that gave Tulsa its first lead since the first inning. Hoese then capped the big inning with his second homer of the day, a two-run shot that gave the Drillers a 15-12 lead.

Mark Washington was called to the mound in the bottom of the ninth, and tossed the only scoreless inning by a Tulsa pitcher to end the game and earn his third save of the year.

HIGHLIGHTS AND HAPPENINGS:

*Tulsa’s four homers and five runs scored in the ninth inning came in a span of just 18 pitches.

*The nine home runs are the most ever hit in a regular season game by a Tulsa professional baseball team, dating back to 1905. The Drillers did hit nine homers in a playoff game during the 2019 Texas League Playoffs. The site of that record performance was also Amarillo’s Hodgetown in an 18-9 win for Tulsa.

*Seven of the nine Tulsa hitters in the lineup hit a home run in the game. Hoese and Ward led the record-setting day with two home runs each.

*There have been a combined 23 home runs hit in the last two Drillers games.

*Tuesday was the first four-hit game of Hoese’s professional career and the third time he has had four RBI.

*Ward and Hoese’s two-homer games marked the sixth time this season that a Drillers hitter has had a multi-home run game. It was Ward’s second multi-homer game this season.

*Tulsa pitcher Alec Gamboa played a significant role in the victory as he allowed only two runs across three relief innings.

*The Drillers announced on Tuesday that Michael Busch had been promoted to Triple-A Oklahoma City, and that Los Angeles Dodgers had released pitcher Melvin Jimenez. Pitchers Gamboa and Aaron Ochsenbein were activated to fill the roster spots.

*Ochsenbein came into the game in the eighth inning and retired the first batter he faced before Amarillo’s Corbin Carroll doubled. It was the first base runner he had allowed this year after retiring the first 18 batters he had faced this season.

UP NEXT:

The Drillers and the Sod Poodles will continue their six-game series with games two on Wednesday, May 18 at 7:05 p.m. Both starting pitchers are TBA.