In the first week of the season for the Arkansas Travelers, the team accomplished a number of firsts: Win, loss, rainout and doubleheader.
The Travs opened the season with the Corpus Christi Hooks and then after the three-game stand, faced the San Antonio Missions.
The Hooks are the Double-A team for Houston, while San Antonio is, for now, affiliated with the San Diego Padres.
The Travs are in the first season of affiliation with the Seattle Mariners.
Hooks 2, Travs 1
The Arkansas Travelers fell to the Corpus Christi Hooks, 2-1 on Thursday night at Dickey-Stephens Park in the 2017 season opener for both teams. The winning rally for the Hooks came in the 8th as they scored both their runs on a 2 out 2-run single from Drew Ferguson.
It spoiled an excellent night for Travs’ starter Andrew Moore, one of the top pitching prospects in the Mariners minor league system. The right-hander did not allow a hit until there were two outs in the sixth inning. All told, Moore struck out seven.
Cy Sneed (1-0) earned the win for Corpus Christi with three scoreless innings of relief while Ryan Thompson got the save. Blake Perry (0-1) was charged with the loss out of the Travs’ bullpen.
Travs 6, Hooks 1
The Travs picked up the first victory of the season behind another impressive pitching performance, beating the Corpus Christi Hooks 6-1 on Friday night at Dickey-Stephens Park.
Right-hander Max Povse, making his first start as a Mariners’ farmhand after being acquired in a trade with the Braves last off-season, dominated the Hooks lineup. Povse retired the first 12 hitters of the game before a walk leading off the fifth and did not allow a hit until there were two out in the sixth. For the night the 6-foot-8 hurler worked seven shutout innings with only two hits and a walk against him while striking out five for the victory.
Hooks 6, Travs 1
The Travelers were stymied by Corpus Christi pitching on Saturday night falling 6-1 to the Hooks and dropping the season’s opening series in front of a crowd of 8,887 at Dickey-Stephens Park.
The night started well for the Travs as they scored in the 1st inning for the third time in as many nights. Ian Miller walked, Jay Baum singled, Miller then stole third and came in to score on Kyle Waldrop’s sacrifice fly. The lead would be short-lived as Corpus Christi responded to tie it in the 2nd inning on Trent Woodward’s two out RBI single.
Hooks starter Dean Deetz (1-0) struck out eight Travs over five innings to pick up the win in his season debut. Tyler Herb (0-1) was solid for four innings before the Hooks got to him in the fifth and was tagged with the loss.
Bright spots for the Travs included Jay Baum who went 2-4 and has now had multiple hits in every game. Out of the bullpen, Darin Gillies worked 1.2 innings of scoreless, hitless baseball while Peter Tago did the same for an inning and a third including three strikeouts.
Travs 8, Missions 2
It was a beautiful day for baseball as the Travs evened the season record at 2-2 with a complete performance in an 8-2 win against the San Antonio Missions on Sunday in front of 5,157 at Dickey-Stephens Park.
The Traveler offense put up season highs with eight runs and 12 hits in the victory. Ironically, it was the first game this season in which the Travs failed to score in the first inning. But they made up for it with three multi-run innings. After San Antonio had scored on a two-run homer in the 1st from Noah Perio, the Travstied it in the 3rd on Ryan Casteel’s two-run double.
For the day, four Travs had multi-hit games with Casteel, Tyler Marlette, Wong and Jay Baum all registering two knocks.
Meanwhile on the mound, two Trav pitchers would stymie the Missions’ offense following the early homer. Starter Kyle Hunter retired 12 of the last 14 hitters he face pitching four innings with four strikeouts. Brett Ash (1-0) then came in from the ‘pen and carried it to the finish line working five shutout innings to earn the victory. Justin Hancock (0-1) took the loss after surrendering the three-run sixth inning.
Doubleheader scheduled against the Missions with first pitch at 11 a.m.