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Friday, June 15, 2012
GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas – Even though Nick DeBarr was not as dominant as he had been in his previous five starts, he still went seven strong innings on Friday to get his sixth straight win, as the Grand Prairie AirHogs beat the Newark Bears 8-3 at QuikTrip Park to complete a three-game sweep and a perfect seven-game homestand.
Working on three days’ rest, DeBarr (6-0) allowed three walks and three runs in a game for the first time this year, but he still struck out four and allowed only six Newark hits.
He fell behind early though, with the Bears (10-19) picking up two runs in the second on a bases-loaded double play and an RBI double by Billy Alvino.
But Grand Prairie (19-10) struck back off Brian Parker (0-2) in the fourth. After Andres Rodriguez began the inning with a double, Greg Porter knocked him in with a single off the glove of a diving Juan Martinez at second. Up came the scorching-hot Chris McMurray, and he drilled a two-run home run to left to put the AirHogs on top.
Daryle Ward became the first player to homer off DeBarr this season when he took the Grand Prairie starter deep with two outs in the top of the fifth to tie the game, but the AirHogs came right back with Brian Myrow’s fourth home run of the season – to right in the bottom of the fifth – to take the lead for good.
DeBarr got out of a first-and-third, no-out jam in the fifth and then worked a perfect seventh, striking out Ward to end the inning on his 112th pitch of the night.
McMurray picked up his third and fourth RBIs of the game on a two-run single in the seventh to finish the scoring, a batter after Greg Porter took a four-pitch walk (the second consecutive issued) by reliever Anthony Pluta.
Jakob Cunningham and Ronnie Morales each worked a perfect ninth to finish things up, as the AirHogs finished their grueling seven-game, five-day homestand in style.
Notes: The AirHogs’ longest franchise winning streak is nine, set last season…The AirHogs out-hit the Bears 27-20 in the series but out-scored them 22-7…McMurray is now hitting .452, which would be the league lead if he had seven more plate appearances... As part of Negro League Tribute Night, presented by Jim Austin Online, the AirHogs wore Texas Black Spiders replicas and the Bears were Newark Eagles replicas.
The 2011 American Association Champion Grand Prairie AirHogs now head out for their first of two 10-game road trips this season, continuing interleague play with a four-game series in Pomona, N.Y., against the Rockland Boulders of the Can-Am League. The first game is Monday, June 18, at 6:05 p.m. The next home game at QuikTrip Park is Friday, June 29, at 7:05 p.m. against the Amarillo Sox. That night is QuikTrip Night, with free ticket vouchers available at local QuikTrip stores. All games are aired live and for free on Ustream by clicking on the link on the AirHogs’ home page or visiting http://www.ustream.tv/channel/airhogs-baseball with selected contests aired on Time Warner Cable’s Texas Channel. For information on tickets, promotions, advertising, and other opportunities with the AirHogs, check out the Web site at www.airhogsbaseball.com, or call the QuikTrip Park office at (972) 504-9383.