A record crowd filled ONEOK Field Thursday night as the Tulsa Drillers opened the home portion of their 2016 schedule. But, on a near perfect night for baseball, the game was anything but perfect for the Drillers. The Corpus Christi Hooks scored three first-inning runs and never trailed in posting a 10-5 victory.
The loss took place in front of a paid crowd of 8,762, the largest ever for a Drillers game at ONEOK Field.
Tulsa fell behind early and never led in the contest. Starting pitcher Chris Anderson, who picked up a win in last year's opener at ONEOK Field, struggled with his command from the beginning.
The first three batters of the game reached safely off Anderson on a pair of walks and a hit by pitch. After a strikeout, another walk forced in the game's first run for the Hooks.
Later in the inning, an error by shortstop Erisbel Arruebarrena gave Corpus Christi its second run before Alfredo Gonzalez produced the first hit of the game to drive in another to make it 3-0.
A two-run homer by Jack Mayfield in the third increased the lead to 5-0.
A pair of walks to open the top of the fourth ended Anderson's night. Reliever Grant Dayton was greeted by a run-scoring single from Derek Fisher that brought in the sixth run.
Four straight hits from the Hooks against Rob Rogers led to three more runs in the sixth that made it 9-0.
Corpus Christi starting pitcher Joe Musgrove, who was the Houston Astros Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2015, silenced the Drillers' bats through the first four innings.
Reliever Edgardo Gonzalez worked a scoreless fifth before Tulsa's bats showed signs of life in the bottom of the sixth. Tyler Ogle and Yadir Drake both singled before Arruebarrena blasted his third home run of the season to get the Drillers on the scoreboard.
After the homer, three straight hits from Adam Law, Devan Ahart, and Willie Calhoun produced another run before Kyle Farmer capped the big inning with an RBI groundout that cut Tulsa's deficit to 9-5.
Tulsa's comeback hopes would end there as the Hooks closed out the scoring with a run against reliever Dale Thayer in the top of the ninth.
Every Tulsa starter but Brandon Trinkwon recorded at least one hit in the game as the Drillers out-hit the Hooks 11-10. Corpus Christi took advantage of eight walks issued by Tulsa pitchers, including six by Anderson.
The first three hitters in the Tulsa order, Ahart, Calhoun and Farmer, had two hits each. For Farmer, his 2-5 night extended his hitting streak to six straight games.
The two teams will be back in action Friday night in game two of their three-game series. Felipe Gonzalez (0-1, 11.25 ERA) will pitch for the Drillers against David Paulino (0-0, 0.00 ERA) of the Hooks. Starting time is scheduled for 7:05PM in downtown Tulsa with a large Fireworks Spectacular slated for after the game.