Raptors get to cooking at home

Jul 17 2013 - 11:14pm

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OGDEN -- The Raptors didn't wait for anyone to roll out the red carpet for them.

In Ogden's homecoming from a seven-game road trip, the Raptors prepared their own welcoming party with a 20-3 victory over the Missoula Osprey on Wednesday at Lindquist Field.

Joey Curletta drove in seven runs, Jesmuel Valentin homered, doubled and drove in four runs and Pat Stover had three RBIs.

Brandon Trinkwon led off the bottom of the first inning with a homer and the Raptors never stopped slugging.

They scored six runs in the first frame, totaling their most runs in an inning this season, then went one better two innings later with seven in the third.

Ogden entered the game with the second-highest team batting average (.278) in the Pioneer League and quickly began to close the gap with Grand Junction, pounding a season-high 23 hits.

In all, the Raptors set season-highs in 20 categories on the night.

After Trinkwon's leadoff homer in the first, the Raptors put together four consecutive singles and got some help from a Missoula error to bat around for the first time.

Trinkwon had the last hit of the inning for Ogden -- ironically, a perfectly placed bunt single.

Stover smashed a two-run double in the third inning, but the Raptors weren't through. With two outs, Curletta just missed a grand slam, clearing the bases with a double that ricocheted high off the left field wall and Jesmuel Valentin followed with another double to give Ogden a two-touchdown lead, 14-0.

It's hard to pitch around even the hottest hitter in the league, Jacob Scavuzzo, who has six home runs in his last nine games and doubled twice on Wednesday, when the guy behind him is punishing Pioneer League pitching like Curletta did in the game. Batting in the eighth spot, he doubled twice, went 4 for 6 and scored two runs while tallying the highest RBI total of the year for Ogden.

"It just feels good after struggling a little bit in the past few games," said Curletta, a sixth-round pick in the 2012 MLB draft. "I'm just trying to help the team win by hitting the ball hard."

Every Raptor had a hit and scored; in fact, only one didn't have multiple hits as Ogden ripped eight doubles.

The atmosphere in the dugout is electric during a game when the team has an offensive outburst like Ogden did.

"It's a lot of energy, everyone's having fun, everyone's talking, having a good time and cheering each other on. It's a really good time when everyone's hitting the ball," Curletta said.

The Phoenix, Ariz., native had his career night against his hometown team's rookie league affiliate.

"A little bit (of extra motivation) because I was a lifelong fan of the Diamondbacks," he said. "It's a little bit fun to come out and kick their butt a little bit."

It wasn't just hitting for Curletta, either: He made a nice running grab of a long fly ball to right field in the eighth inning.

The Raptors split four games with the Osprey and went 3-4 in their recent northern road trip but shared little with Missoula on Wednesday.

Ogden right-hander Scott Barlow (1-2), Ogden's opening day starter, walked five batters in five innings but didn't allow a run as he struck out four and gave up three hits.

Missoula's first two pitchers, Bud Jeter and Eric Meyerchick, combined to allow 13 hits and 14 runs, only seven earned, over 2 2/3 innings. Former BYU pitcher Adam Miller lasted longer, 3 2/3 innings, but allowed seven hits and four runs.

Stryker Trahan finally struck a blow for the Osprey by hitting a leadoff homer to put them on the board in the sixth inning.

Colin Bray added a two-run triple in the frame but Missoula was done for the night.

Ogden (14-12) and Missoula (11-14) play the second of their three-game set tonight at 7 p.m. at Lindquist Field, with Francisco Villa scheduled to pitch for the Raptors against Felipe Perez.

 

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