GJ Rockies split doubleheader with Ogden
Hamlet Marte gives the Grand Junction Rockies a quick lift.
In the past three games, Marte has collected an RBI in the first inning, including both games of Grand Junction’s road split Thursday night in a doubleheader against Ogden.
The Rockies fell to the Raptors 4-3 in Game 1 before beating Ogden 6-3 in the nightcap.
Marte provided an offensive spark throughout the doubleheader, with an RBI double to begin the first game and a looping single to drive in a run during the second game.
That pushed the designated hitter’s season total to six RBI, tied for the best in the Pioneer League with teammate Randy Reyes. Reyes had two extra-base hits in Game 1, an RBI double and a solo home run, to lead a batting order that produced only five hits.
Reyes added a hit, a run and a stolen base in Game 2.
The Rockies (3-1) strung together eight hits in the second game, all singles, but Grand Junction beat Ogden (1-3) on the base paths.
The Rockies racked up eight stolen bases on 12 attempts and continuously put runners in scoring position to score, plating runs in four innings and stranding seven runners in scoring position.
Renaldo Jenkins, Troy Stein and Denzel Richardson each stole two bases.
Marte’s RBI single put the Rockies up 1-0 in the top of the first inning, but Ogden cleanup hitter Justin Chigbogu answered with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the first. After a scoreless second, Marte drove in another run with a groundout to shortstop.
The Rockies trailed briefly after surrendering two runs in the bottom of the third, but they answered with three runs in top of the fourth inning with the help of two throwing errors by the Raptors.
Reyes laced a single to right field. With Stein up, Reyes tried to steal second base. Ogden catcher Julian Leon airmailed the throw, and Reyes took third. Stein struck out and Luis Jean was unable to score Reyes on a grounder. Terry McClure walked, then Richardson hit a hard groundball at Ogden shortstop Cristian Gomez.
Gomez fired the ball wide of first baseman Chigbogu, who struggled to fish the ball out of the open bullpen in right field, allowing Reyes and McClure to score.
Grand Junction added an insurance run in the sixth inning after Ogden reliever Daniel Keller walked Stein with one out. Stein stole second, advanced to third on a groundout and scored on a single by McClure.
Winning pitcher Anthony Bryant allowed three runs in seven innings, striking out four batters and walking three for his first win of the season.
Alec Crawford pitched a perfect two-inning save during his first appearance with the Rockies, striking out three without allowing a base runner.
Grand Junction faces Idaho Falls (1-3) today in the Rockies’ home opener at Suplizio Field. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m., with a fireworks show after the game.