Aviators, Bees split 6 games in Salt Lake
Updated: Jul 28, 2021
After their most recent road trip, the Las Vegas Aviators are still .500 on the road at 18-18.
This comes after splitting six games with Western Division foe, the Salt Lake Bees, despite a forced rescheduling due to inclement weather.
Las Vegas (37-35) remains to tread water at third place in the Western Division of the Triple-A West while keeping Salt Lake (35-37) two games behind in fourth place.
Yet, the Aviators are still eight games behind the first-place Reno Aces (45-27) and two games behind the second-place Tacoma Rainiers (39-33).
Las Vegas will have an opportunity to gain traction in the standings when it hosts Tacoma for a six-game series from Las Vegas Ballpark.
The series is set to begin Thursday, July 29 with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Friday, L, 12-5 (Thursday makeup)
Las Vegas led 2-0 when the game was delayed due to the weather Thursday, July 22 in the second inning.
When play resumed some 20 hours later, Salt Lake put up a three-run bottom half of the second inning to take the lead.
First baseman Francisco Peña smacked a two-run home run over the fence in the third inning to give the lead back to the Aviators.
However, the Bees added a combined nine runs between the sixth and seventh innings to take a stranglehold on the game.
Even another Las Vegas home run, this time by catcher Carlos Perez, wasn’t enough to climb back into this one.
All five of the Aviators' runs came off home runs after second baseman Nate Mondou and third baseman Vimael Machîn went back-to-back in the first inning.
Pitcher Homer Bailey got the start originally on Thursday, allowing one hit in his one inning of work.
Pitcher Brian Howard took the mound first in the restart and ended up with the no decision after allowing three runs on six hits in four innings pitched while striking out three and walking two.
Relievers Grant Holmes and Reymin Guduan were both involved in the decision despite both pitching under an inning.
Holmes was charged with his second blown save of the year allowing three runs on four hits while recording just one out.
Guduan (2-2) was tagged with the loss after allowing two runs on one hit while striking out one and walking one.
Friday, W, 10-1 (7 inn.)
Starter Miguel Romero (2-3) got his second straight win after going winless in his first five starts when the Aviators beat the Bees 10-1.
He went five full, allowing one run on three hits while striking out one and walking three.
The one run Romero allowed came in the fifth inning, his last inning of work.
Las Vegas scored three runs in three consecutive innings to allow Romero the cushion on the mound.
Eight of the 10 Aviators’ runs came via home runs with shortstop Vimael Machîn, catcher Carlos Perez, third baseman Marty Bechina and designated hitter Austin Allen adding to their season totals.
Machîn hit a two-run homer in the third inning to put Vegas up 3-0 and has hit four home runs in his last four games.
It marked homers in back-to-back games when Perez went deep in the fourth inning to extend the lead to 5-0.
Bechina went back-to-back with Perez in that same frame to jump the lead to 6-0.
He now has three home runs at the Triple-A level this year after having zero in 26 games with the Double-A Midland Rockhounds of the Oakland Athletics organization.
Lastly, Allen’s three-run home run in the fifth inning ran the team’s lead to 9-0, it’s largest of the game.
He has now hit at least one home run in the last six series.
Right fielder Greg Deichmann and second baseman Nate Mondou both recorded an RBI double apiece.
Saturday, L, 6-0
Game three of this six-game series marked the fifth time this year’s Aviators have been shutout, as the team fell 6-0 to the Bees
Moreover, three of those times have come at the hands of Salt Lake pitching.
The first three batters of the game struck out swinging, proving to be a bad omen for Las Vegas.
After recording two hits in the second inning, the team was held to just two the remainder of the game.
As a team, the Aviators struck out 13 times while going 0-for-6 six with runners in scoring position, leaving 13 men on-base.
Starter Paul Blackburn (3-5) went 5.1 innings, allowing five runs on 10 hits, issuing three walks to just one strikeout.
He is 1-3 with a 4.97 earned run average in July.
Las Vegas has not thrown a shutout all season long.
Sunday, W, 10-6
The Aviators jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead by the bottom of the second inning in the team’s 10-6 win over the Bees.
A wild pitch opened the scoring in the first inning and by the time catcher Carlos Perez hit his grand slam in the second frame, Las Vegas’ starting pitcher had a comfortable lead to work with.
Perez hit his 13th home run of the year with that grand slam, marking the second time he’s accomplished the feat this season.
He is currently tied with fellow catcher Francisco Peña for fifth on the team in runs batted in with 39.
The aforementioned starting pitcher for the Aviators was Jesus Luzardo, who improved to 2-2 on the year.
Luzardo went five full, giving up six hits, allowing three runs to score while striking out four and walking one.
The four relief pitchers all pitched an inning apiece.
Monday, L, 6-5
Salt Lake came from behind twice in order to secure the walk-off win over Las Vegas in game five of six.
A two-run home run by center fielder Jo Adell in the first inning put the Aviators in the 2-0 hole.
However, an RBI double from right fielder Greg Deichmann and an RBI sacrifice fly from third baseman Marty Bechina tied the game at two in the second inning.
The next batter, second baseman Nate Mondou, hit a two-run home run to put Las Vegas up two.
Battling back yet again, Salt Lake scored runs in the bottom of the second and third innings to tie the game at four.
Another timely home run by designated hitter Francisco Peña came in the seventh inning as he snatched the lead back for the Aviators.
However, right fielder Taylor Ward picked a good time to hit his first Triple-A home run this year in his third game in the bottom half of the seventh, tying it yet again.
First baseman Drew Butera would later score on an RBI single by designated hitter Matt Thaiss.
Pitcher Daulton Jefferies suffered his first dreadful start of the year as he was knocked around for four runs on 10 hits while striking out four.
For the second time in this series, reliever Reymin Guduan (2-3) took the loss.
This time he was charged with the loss after going just one inning, allowing one run on two hits while walking one.
Tuesday, W, 11-1
It took starting pitcher Homer Bailey until his third start to get his first win as an Aviators but it came in an 11-1 win in the series finale against the Bees.
On his third pitch of the game, Bailey was taken out of the yard by right fielder Taylor Ward.
From then on, he retired the next six consecutive batters.
That set up a seven-run third inning for Las Vegas including three home runs by left fielder Marty Bechina, first baseman Francisco Pena and designated hitter Carlos Perez.
Bechina hit a two-run shot to put the Aviators on the board while Pena’s two-run shot tied Perez for fourth on the team with his 13th of the year.
However, three batters later Perez hit his 14th of the season when he hit another two-run dinger.
Center fielder Skye Bolt also smacked an RBI double in that inning amidst his 4-for-5 night.
He recorded a double, RBI, three runs scored and a strikeout.
Bechina hit his second home run of the night when he went deep in the sixth inning, driving in three runs.
He finished the night 2-for-4 with two home runs, five RBI, two runs scored and a strikeout.
Bailey continued to settle down as he only allowed one hit and one walk the rest of his outing.
He pitched five full, allowing one run on two hits with six strikeouts and one walk.
The four relievers that took to the mound after him combined to allow just one hit over four innings while striking out four and walking three.