The Texas AirHogs will leave Winnipeg with two victories from a four-game series, but they will also have nightmares of Goldeyes pitcher Mikey O’Brien.
Texas went into Thursday night’s game with an opportunity to win the series against the Fish, but O’Brien made sure that didn’t happen. It was O’Brien’s best performance of the season, as he held Texas to two hits over seven innings and didn’t surrender a run. The performance paved the way for a 3-0 victory for the home team at Shaw Park and ended the four-game series in a tie. Texas hasn’t won a series since May 24.
"I just threw strikes and let my defence work. I don’t strike out a lot of guys. I throw the ball over the plate and let my defence make plays and that’s what they did for me tonight," the 27-year old O’Brien said.
Despite being 6-20 on the year, O’Brien said the AirHogs are a much better team than people think. He said the Goldeyes might have underestimated the AirHogs coming into the series.
Reggie Abercrombie crushed a two-run home run in the third inning off AirHogs’ starter Tyler Bremer to open up the scoring. The 35-year-old centre-fielder continues to get it done at the plate, as the veteran now has four home runs and 20 RBI on the season. Wes Darvill added another run in the fourth inning on a throwing error by AirHogs’ catcher Michael Miller.
Two first-year Goldeyes pitchers closed out the game for the home team. Mitchell Lambson gave up two hits in the eighth inning, but no damage was done as Texas couldn’t capitalize. Closer Ryan Chaffee capped off the victory with two strikeouts in the ninth to earn his league-leading eighth save of the season.
The victory improves the Goldeyes’ record to 16-10. They welcome the division-leading St. Paul Saints (17-9) to Shaw Park tonight to kick off a three-game weekend series. The Saints have won seven out of their past 10 games and will be looking for revenge in the series. The Goldeyes knocked off the Saints in the playoffs last season en route to the American Association title.
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