El Paso, TX -Nick Martini drilled a three-run homer in the top of the eighth inning to lead the Nashville Sounds to a come-from-behind 7-5 win over the El Paso Chihuahuas Thursday night at Southwest University Park.
Things looked bleak for the Sounds who trailed 5-1 entering the seventh inning. Two-out magic was the theme of the night as Nashville used four straight baserunners in the seventh to draw within a pair of runs at 5-3. Jorge Mateo and BJ Boyd collected infield singles and Martini drew a walk before Ramon Laureano doubled down the left field line to make it a two-run game.
Ryan Dull faced the minimum in the bottom of the seventh to keep the game at 5-3. The comeback continued when Franklin Barreto started the eighth inning with a walk. After Bruce Maxwell flied out for the first out, Sheldon Neuse singled and Steve Lombardozzi walked to load the bases.
Jorge Mateo hit a sacrifice fly to right-center to make it a 5-4 game. El Paso turned to left-hander Tyler Webb to face Martini who hit the first pitch he saw down the right field line for a three-run homer and 7-5 lead for the Sounds.
Martini’s 2-for-4 night extended both his hitting and on-base streak. When he singled in the fifth, he extended his hitting streak to 16 games and the on-base streak to 47 games.
Dean Kiekhefer and Josh Lucas combined to strike out the side in the eighth, and Lucas worked the ninth to pick up his third save of the season. Jeremy Bleich and Ryan Dull combined for three shutout innings out of the bullpen with Dull picking up his first win of the season.
One night after combining to go 7-for-10 with 5 runs and 3 RBI, Martini and Laureano combined to go 4-for-8 with 5 RBI, 2 runs and 2 walks.
The third and final game of the series is scheduled for Friday night in El Paso. Left-hander Eric Jokisch (1-7, 4.95) starts for the Sounds against left-hander Dillon Overton (3-2, 2.50) for the Chihuahuas. First pitch is scheduled for 8:05pm.
With tonight’s 7-5 win, the Sounds improved to 31-33 on the season.
Fran Riordan earned his 900th career managerial win tonight.
Nick Martini extended his consecutive on-base streak to 47 games when he singled in the fifth inning. Martini’s streak is the longest by a Nashville player in the Pacific Coast League era and is the longest active streak in Minor League Baseball. Since April 14, Martini has reached safely in every game he has played in. The single extended his hitting streak to a career-long 16 games.
The 2018 season is the Sounds’ 41st in franchise history and fourth as the Oakland Athletics’ top affiliate. Single-game tickets are available now by calling 615.690.4487 or by visiting www.nashvillesounds.com