LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. — The Storm ran into a buzzsaw as Visalia’s Connor Grey took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, at one point retiring seven straight batters by strikeout, in Lake Elsinore’s 11-0 loss on Thursday night.
“I turn the page after a loss like this,” said Storm manager Edwin Rodriguez. “The most important thing to me is that they didn’t quit in the game even though the score didn’t show it.
“It’s a long season. Yesterday we scored eleven runs and today we couldn’t score any.”
Right-hander Ronald Bolanos took the loss for Lake Elsinore giving up nine earned runs in five innings, including three home runs. Tonight his fastball was sitting around 91 and occasionally touching 95 as he struggled with his command. Bolaños also threw a curve, slider, and changeup with varying degrees of success.
On the year the 21-year old Cuban has a 5.23 ERA in 105 innings with 103 strikeouts, but also 41 walks. All of those numbers have trended in a positive direction over the second half of the season as he’s cut his walk rate almost in half while also holding opponents to a much lower batting average.
Shortstop Chris Baker had the lone hit of the night for the home team with a two-out opposite field double off of the right-field wall. Baker is hitting .272 in the second half after hitting .189 in the first.
“I’ve always thought Chris is a good player,” said Rodrguez on Baker’s progress this season. “He was playing well in Spring Training but got hurt [Baker was beaned and wasn’t able to play until April 29] which put him behind.”
Travis Radke made his first appearance in Lake Elsinore since 2015, allowing a pair of runs in two innings. The 25-year-old lefty posted a 1.74 ERA over 57 innings for the TinCaps in his first full season back from Tommy John surgery. Relievers Trevor Megill and David Bednar pitched scoreless frames for the Storm in the eighth and ninth innings.
Storm Notes: Lake Elsinore will be on the road tomorrow at Inland Empire.