Gallo the Great
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With two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth, Midland manager Rich Dauer made a call to the bullpen. Right-hander Marcus Walden left the game after two walks and a hit batsman filled the pond with RoughRiders. Out trotted southpaw Omar Duran to set up a lefty-lefty matchup with Joey Gallo. The RoughRiders had not faced Duran yet this season, and Gallo quickly poked his back into the dugout to see if there was any type of intelligence on the new hurler.
Whatever advice Gallo received was golden. Or maybe his first-pitch swing was predetermined in expectation of a fastball no matter who was on the hill. In any event, Joey’s majestic grand slam down the right field line (his pull side) on Duran’s first toss left the yard at such an astonishing rate and altitude, it is hard to comprehend a ball flying off a piece of lumber in such fashion. It left players, personnel, fans and especially Omar Duran, who walked the next batter on five pitches, in a daze. Click here to read the game recap.
Star of the Game: DH Joey Gallo – 1/3, R, GS HR, 4RBI, BB, 2SO
The grand salami was the fifth of Joey’s career and second this season (May 30 with Advanced-A Myrtle Beach). It was also his fifth home run against Midland in 11 games versus the RockHounds. The 6-foot-5 230-pounder has cracked 16 jacks with the ‘Riders, 37 on the season and 99 in his career.
In case you missed it:
-Joey Gallo is batting 4-for-22 six games into the current homestand and all four of his hits have been home runs.
-In his organizational debut, and third at the Double-A level, Rockwall native Jake Thompson allowed two runs on two hits with three walks and five strikeouts over five innings. He did not factor into the decision.
-Alex Claudio was excellent in extended relief on Tuesday. The ‘Riders had primarily used Claudio as a starter since his promotion, but the southpaw voiced his preference of relief situations. He certainly looked at ease as he conceded just one hit over four scoreless innings.
-Before Gallo stole the show, J.T. Wise renewed the ball game with a solo shot to left in the seventh inning. Wise has shown a knack for timely hitting late in the night and his third homer as a RoughRider tied the game at 2-2. The native of Apopka, Florida has hits in 12 of his 16 games with Frisco since joining the squad earlier in July.
-Midland’s Kent Matthes entered the series on a Gallo-esque tear at the plate and continued to mash on Tuesday. The outfielder belted another home run for his second of the series and fifth in the last four games. Matthes now has driven in an improbable 23 RBI in the last 12 games.
-Gallo watch: see above
-A look at the RoughRiders home run leader board (active players only):
1. Joey Gallo (16)
2. Trever Adams (11)
3. Drew Robinson (10)
4. Teodoro Martinez (3)
4. Jake Skole (3)
4. J.T. Wise (3)
7. Chris Grayson (2)
7. Odubel Herrera (2)
9. Patrick Cantwell (1)
Minor league pitching coordinator Danny Clark checks in with his analysis of Andrew Faulkner’s Double-A debut and his expectations for Jake Thompson over the rest of the season:
Thanks for tuning in,