The Tulsa Drillers cruised to a 7-2 win against the Frisco RoughRiders on Thursday afternoon. Strong pitching and effective offense propelled the Drillers to a bounce-back win after dropping a 2-1 pitchers' duel Wednesday night on a late home run.
The game remained scoreless until the fifth inning, when the Drillers were able to put three runs on the board. A four-run seventh inning sealed the win for Tulsa, who now bolsters a 25-21 record, giving them a 3-game lead for first place in the Texas League North, pending the results of Thursday night's games.
Jon Gray produced yet another very solid outing, picking up his third straight win and fifth on the season, tied for the Texas League lead in wins with teammate Dan Winkler and Corpus Christi's Thomas Shirley. The Oklahoma native went six innings, allowing only one earned run on five hits and one walk, striking out four. The outing lowered Gray's season ERA to 2.79. After getting off to a rough start in his first two starts, Gray has bolstered a 1.30 ERA on 41.2 IP over his last 7 starts.
Ryan Casteel scored the first run of the game when he led off the fifth inning with his fourth home run of the season. Back-to-back doubles from Brian Humphries and Joey Wong ensued Casteel's long ball, making the game 2-0. Wong would later score on Jose Rivera's double-play grounder after moving to third on a single from Tyler Massey.
Drew Robinson reciprocated the start of the top of the inning by leading off with home run that ricocheted off the top of the wall in right field. Robinson's run proved to be the only run Frisco would score on Gray.
Tulsa more than doubled their lead in the seventh inning. Jayson Langfels launched his first home run of the year into the left field seats after Joey Wong doubled, scoring two runs. Massey and Rivera followed with back-back singles. Frisco's Robinson mishandled the pick-up on Rivera's single, allowing Massey to advance to third and Rivera to second.
Christhian Adames was able to knock home Massey and Rivera on a two-out single that fell into shallow center, increasing the Drillers lead to 7-1.
The RoughRiders were able to score one in the eighth on Trever Adams's RBI double, making the final score of the game 7-2.
Leuris Gomez and Kraig Sitton worked the seventh and the eighth for the Drillers, while Nelson Gonzalez struck out the side in the ninth to close out the game.
The Drillers will wrap up their series in Frisco on Friday night. Tulsa will send 2011 first-round pick Tyler Anderson to the mound. The RoughRiders have yet to name their starter. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM.