MEMPHIS, Tenn–Four home runs powered the Memphis Redbirds to a 8-0 shutout win over the visiting Fresno Grizzlies on Sunday night at AutoZone Park.
Memphis and Nashville remained tied for first in the PCL American Southern Division with eight games remaining to play.
Shortstop Pete Kozma (3-for-4) finished a triple short of the cycle, driving in three and scoring two runs. First baseman Xavier Scruggs (2-for-5) and catcher Ed Easley (3-for-3) hit back-to-back jacks in the seventh inning. Scruggs homered for the second straight night while Easley extended his hitting streak to nine games (.594, 19-for-32).
Redbirds starter Marco Gonzales (4-1) struck out six over six shutout innings of three-hit ball. Sixty-three of his 103 pitches were thrown for strikes. Relievers Heath Wyatt (2.0 IP) and Jorge Rondon (1.0 IP) secured Memphis’ 12th shutout of the year, one fewer than Iowa’s league-leading 13.
The four home runs were one shy of a season-high and gave the Redbirds the league-lead with 33 bombs in August. The club’s previous high this season was 28 in May.
Outfielder Tommy Pham’s 10thhomer of the season gave Memphis a 1-0 lead in bottom of the third inning. The solo job landed on top of the Redbirds’ bullpen and bounced back onto to the field of play.
In the next frame with Scruggs and Easley aboard after singling, Kozma blasted his eighth homer of the season, a three-run shot halfway onto the TruGreen Bluff in left.
Scruggs and Easley became of third duo to homer in back-to-back at-bats in the seventh inning. Both were two-out, solo homers off Fresno reliever Mike Broadway.
The final two runs of the evening were RBI singles by second baseman Luis Mateoand outfielder Stephen Piscotty.