It’s August, which means that Vince Moore is making moves and the Roadrunners are making a run.
The latest deal from the Edinburg Roadrunner skipper brought local product Jose Pablo Oyervides up from the Mexican League and Tuesday the right-hander came through with six shutout innings. The result: a huge 3-0 victory over the visiting Amarillo Dillas that stretched the team’s lead to 3.5 games in the ULB.
Oyervides, a 2000 graduate of McAllen Rowe High, toiled in the minors for seven seasons, reaching the AA level before hurling this season for Laredo and then Torreon. After the Mex season concluded, he joined the ‘Runners for the second time, after a brief appearance at season’s end in 2009.
Against the hard-hitting Dillas, who came into the series batting a league-best .316 as a team, the Valley man was on, hitting as high as 91 on the radar gun and keeping the ball down. He allowed just two hits before yielding to relief.
“I knew he would come in here and attack the hitters and that’s what he did,” said Moore, whose club had seen a 9-game lead dwindle to a half-game before the cross-Valley WhiteWings defeated Amarillo twice before the Dillas came to Edinburg. “He knows how to pitch and he did a good job for us in a big game tonight.”
The Roadrunners (38-23) began the series with Amarillo with a nail-biter, with A.C. Concepcion’s two-run single in the eighth giving some breathing room, after catcher Ossie Flores had scored on a wild pitch for the game’s only run through seven, back in the fifth. The two teams have taken turns bombarding each other with runs this season; Amarillo’s pitching is fifth in the league and its fielding sixth. Edinburg has scored 10 or more runs off the Dillas five times in 2010.
This was one was a pitcher’s duel. The home side had runners on in the early going but failed to score, leaving men in scoring position twice in the first four frames. The lineup managed seven hits with Flores going 2 for 3.
After Oyervides ran his pitch count to 78 through six, Moore went to Ricardo Serrano, who retired the side in the seventh. On came Rey Silva, who got through the eighth thanks to a controversial call on former Edinburg infielder Daryl Jones, who was caught stealing at third. Jones banged his helmet high into the air and was ejected, while Amarillo manager Brady Bogart was also tossed after uprooting first and third base in protest. The manager tossed one of the bases into the stands and put up a monumental tantrum in the face of the umpire.
Moore admitted that he thought it was a quirky decision.
“But we’ll take it, hey, this time it was the other team getting a bad call,” he chuckled.
Closer Julio Castro earned his 14th save with an inning of relief, getting a double-play ball to end the game.
Oyervides noted that he was a little tired after the sixth, as he had not pitched in a few weeks since his action south of the border finished. He fanned seven in front of a handful of family and friends among a crowd of 2,500 at the Stadium
NOTES: Edinburg had three more set against the Dillas with Coastal Bend coming to town for a 4-game series lasting through Tuesday. Then it’s off to Harlingen for four with the Wings followed by a trip to San Angelo.
The ULB season officially winds down Aug. 29 but the ‘Runners, who have suffered through a franchise-record seven rainouts, will have to make up several of those missed outings with doubleheaders down the road.