GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas — The Chicago Dogs pitching staff delivered a historic night, and the offense packed a punch en route to a 13-3 blowout win over the AirHogs on Saturday night at AirHogs Stadium.
Austin Wright (W, 2-5) was lethal, striking out a franchise-record 13 AirHogs and allowing just three hits over his six innings of work, at one point retiring eight straight batters via the strikeout. His strikeout effort bested Luke Westphal’s total of 12, set on May 24 against Milwaukee.
Every Dog in the lineup had at least one hit. Trey Vavra collected three and Victor Roache hit a grand slam to back Wright as Chicago cruised by Texas.
The two teams managed just three hits between them until the top of the fourth inning when the Dogs broke the scoreless deadlock. Vavra singled his way aboard, and after a Mitchell Kranson base knock, was able to score from third on a wild pitch out of the hand of AirHogs starter Zech Lemond (L, 0-6) to make it 1-0 Dogs.
Chicago added one more in the following inning on a Jordan Dean RBI single that drove in Harrison Smith.
The AirHogs scratched across a run in unconventional fashion in the bottom of the sixth inning after Stewart Ijames reached on a single, was bunted over to second by Luo Jinjun, took third on a balk and scored on a wild pitch.
The first barrage came in the top of the seventh for the Dogs. They exploded for five runs on five hits while sending ten men to the plate, knocking Lemond out of the game in the process. Harrison Smith and Vavra (3-for-4, 2 RBI) each drove in two runs to highlight the offensive output in the inning.
But the Dogs were far from done, dropping six more in the eighth to extend their lead. Three walks loaded up the bases for Roache, who launched his ninth home run of the year off AirHogs reliever Wang Shuo, a grand slam to put the Dogs ahead 13-1.
Casey Crosby and Kyle Halbohn tag-teamed the relief effort, surrendering two inconsequential runs in the eighth while striking out seven more AirHogs to set a new team record for the Dogs at 20 strikeouts.
The game also tied the American Association record for combined strikeouts in a game, with 34.
LHP D.J. Snelten (3-2) will get the call for the series finale on Sunday night against RHP Kevin Hilton (2-4). First pitch is set for 6:05 PM.
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