A seven-run outburst in the seventh inning of Monday night’s game spurred the Lake Elsinore Storm to an 8-1 win over the San Jose Giants, setting the Eyes up for a potential series split in tomorrow’s finale.
San Jose struck for an early run in the second. Giants second baseman Brandon Bednar took Storm starter Elliot Morris (W, 4-3) deep to give the home team an early one-run advantage.
Lake Elsinore wasted no time supplying an answer to the early score. Benji Gonzalez started the third inning with a single, advancing 180 feet on consecutive groundouts. With Gonzalez at third base, a wild pitch from Giants starter Joe Biagini (L, 6-7) allowed the Storm infielder to score the tying run.
After allowing the early homer, Morris was dialed in for the remainder of his outing. The right-hander worked six innings, scattered a total of five hits, walked one and struck out four. The victory was Morris’ first with the Padres organization, having come over from the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim as part of the Huston Street trade on Friday.
The finishing blow was delivered in the seventh. Luis Domoromo and Gonzalez walked, and the former scored after Alberth Martinez singled to left. Corey Adamson followed with a bunt single to plate Gonzalez, and Mallex Smith loaded the bases with a base hit in the next at-bat. Next up was Duanel Jones, who replaced Storm newcomer Jose Rondon early in the game after an errant ground ball struck Rondon in the face. Jones proceeded to lace a single of his own into right, and Dane Phillips continued the hit parade with a two RBI knock to make it 6-1. The final two runs of the game scored on a Jeremy Baltz single and a subsequent groundout, staking the Storm to a substantial 8-1 lead.
Adam Cimber and Tyron Guerrero put up zeroes in relief, and Lake Elsinore triumphed over San Jose to maintain a place at the top of the California League South standings.
With the win, the Storm (59-42) ended an eight-game home winning streak for the Giants (53-48) and recorded their first victory against their North opponent this season.
The series concludes tonight as Bryan Rodriguez (5-5, 3.93 ERA) takes the hill for Lake Elsinore. Pat Young (7-3, 5.70 ERA) gets the ball for San Jose. First pitch is set for 12:45pm.