Courtesy of SA Missions
In their Texas League series opener, the San Antonio Missions welcomed the first home crowd of the season. The Missions beat the Tulsa Drillers, 7-1, on both April 4 and 6 and lost 2-1, in 13 innings on April 5 to the Drillers. It was Missions’ starters Donn Roach (1-0), Jose De Paula (0-0) and Burch Smith (1-0) who led the charge with a combined 16 scoreless innings over the weekend series.
The Missions new manager, Rich Dauer, collected his first ever Texas League victory on April 4, in his debut after being hired by the San Diego Padres. Dauer was pleased to get the victories, but he’s still getting to know his team.
“I’m really getting to see these guys pretty much for the first time under the lights in a game that counts,” Dauer said. “We got stuff, we got a lot of stuff. If you let them pitch and catch the ball, it’s going to be fun to watch.”
On Thursday April 4, Missions pitcher, Roach, pitched five innings and allowed one hit along with four strikeouts and a a flurry of groundouts.
“It’s really cool to be the first guy they want to go out there and throw and be the opening day starter, it’s an honor and privilege,” Roach said after the game.
Game two of the series was a different story: the Missions struggled at the plate scoring once in 13-innings.
Missions outfielder Reymond Fuentes was the only effective hitter during the loss with three hits and he drove in the only run of the game. He finished the series 5-for-14 with three stolen bases.
In the rubber game, San Antonio regained their timely hitting and aggressive base running style that eluded them during the previous game. Making his Double-A pitching debut, Smith controlled the game with a three-hit, five-inning outing. He had five strikeouts and one walk.
Tommy Medica, who finished the series 4-for-12, started the offense for San Antonio with a solo home run in the second inning and then added an RBI double in the third.
The games with the Drillers marked the beginning of San Antonio’s 20th season at Wolff Stadium.