(Billings Mustangs release)
BILLINGS – The Billings Mustangs (11-2, 26-25) won their fourth straight game, and their 2,999th in team history, on Friday with a 4-3 victory over the Ogden Raptors (8-6, 34-18) in front of 2,694 at Dehler Park.
Pitching dominated the game early as both starting pitchers would not allow a run in their time on the hill. For the Raptors, it was Caleb Sampen throwing three shutout innings before he reached the end of his short inning limit for the game.
James Marinan (2-1) made his first start against his former teammates and did not disappoint. The righty was acquired by the Cincinnati Reds in a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers earlier this season and made his first outing against a Dodgers affliate on Friday. Marinan threw six shutout innings to set a new career-high in innings of work. He struck out two and allowed just four hits in his second straight win.
The Mustangs snagged three of their four hits and all four of their runs in an odd fifth inning. Jay Schuyler and Juan Martinez would single before Carlos Rivero was walked to load the bases. Zeek White then came to the plate with the bases loaded and one out in a 0-0 game. White hit a sharp grounder to shortstop Ronny Brito before it went ricocheting off his ankle into left field. That would score two runs before two errors were committed on the play to bring in four runs on a two-RBI double. That would be the end of the Mustangs scoring and the last hit they had in the game as well.
Ogden finally crossed the plate in the eighth after consecutive hits to start the inning. Kenneth Betancourt singled and Jeremy Arocho doubled before a grounder and a sacrifice scored two to cut the Mustangs lead in half.
The Raptors made a late push with another run in the ninth and had the tying run at third base. Two hits and two hit batters got the bases loaded for the Raptors before Daniel Robinson popped a shallow fly into left that White would catch on a slide to end the game.
The Mustangs have now won 13 of their last 15 contests and are one win away from 3,000 victories in team history dating back to 1948.
The Mustangs and Raptors will face off in game three of their four-game series Saturday at Dehler Park. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m.