The Tijuana Toros just wrapped up their second road series of the season on Thursday and improved vastly from their first away series of the year.
The border city side was swept by Sultanes de Monterrey in its first road series of the season, but managed to defeat Bravos de Leon in this series two games to one.
Pedro Mere’s team scored 23 runs in this three-game set, but the pitching was also stellar in two of the three games. Tijuana lost an eight-run lead in this series, but one of its pitchers also flirted with a perfect game. Here is a rundown of what went down in this series at the Estadio Domingo Santana in Leon:
Game 1: Toros de Tijuana 10-16 Bravos de Leon
The Toros had an embarrassing meltdown in the first game of this series, falling 16-10 to Lon after having an eight-run lead at one point in the encounter. Tijuana’s starting pitcher, Miguel Pena, did not have the best outing as he allowed six runs through four and a third innings, but he was not responsible for the massive collapse of Pedro Mere’s team. The Border City Bulls’ bullpen allowed 10 runs in the game, continuing its disappointing form to start of the 2018 LMB season.
The two key moments in the game for the Bravos’ offense were four consecutive home runs by Dan Johnson, Quincy Latimore, Cedric Hunter, and Felix Pie in the sixth inning. Then, ironically, a grand slam by third baseman Miguel Torrero in the eighth inning. Torrero translates into bullfighter and his effort helped lead Bravos de Leon to an impressive comeback win in the first game of this series. Pedro Mere’s offense also did damage in this first game and was led by Cyle Hankerd, Carlos Rivero, Dustin Marin, and Roberto Lopez, who all managed to hit dingers in the encounter. Scoring 10 runs should ensure a win in a baseball game any day of the week ,but the bullpen yet again led to the Toros’ downfall.
Game 2: Toros de Tijuana 7-4 Bravos de Leon
Alex Sanabia was the storyline from this second game of the series as he allowed just a run on four hits through five innings. The offense also did their part and scored seven runs on the day to help the border city side recover after a heartbreaking loss on Tuesday night. The standout at the plate for Pedro Mere was Corey Brown, who hit a two-run homer.
Other standouts were Isaac Rodriguez, who went 3-for-5 with an RBI, and Jorge Cantu, who was 2-for-4 with an RBI. The bullpen for the Toros was solid in the second game of the series except for Fernando Gallegos, who allowed three runs and failed to record an out. The win was an important one and it was good to see Sanabia provide a good performance after struggling in his first start of the season in Monterrey.
Game 3: Toros de Tijuana 6-4 Bravos de Leon
Pitching was the main talking point again in the final game of the three-game set as Carlos Hernandez provided an outstanding performance on the mound for Tijuana. The California native tossed six perfect innings before a double by Amadeo Zazueta ended the feat in the seventh inning. The right-hander ended his outing with just two runs allowed on a hit through seven innings.
The bullpen then struggled a bit as Gerardo Sanchez and Jason Urquidez gave up a run each. Urquidez did pick up his second save of the 2018 LMB season, but the pen continued to be shaky on the night. The standouts offensively were Isaac Rodriguez and Corey Brown, who picked up two RBI each. Rodriguez inclusively stole a base as well. Justin Greene also managed to pick up his eighth steal of the season, but did just go 1-for-4 in the encounter. The performance was a solid one by the Border City Bulls to seal the series against Leon and improve to a 6-6 record on the year before heading to Mexico City to face Diablos Rojos del Mexico.