Missions Win with Walk-Off Home Run in Ten

SAN ANTONIO, TX - On a rare night when the wind was blowing out in Nelson Wolff Stadium the Missions and Frisco Roughriders combined for 16 runs, the highest scoring output for the Missions at home this season.

SS Brian Bixler, who came into the game one for his first 15 plate appearances after being signed as a free agent on April 25, hit a hanging slider for the game winner over the left field wall with one on and with two strikes.

"I've just been working on getting my at-bats in and just trying to take each day as it comes," said Bixler, 31, a veteran of 11 minor league and parts of four major league seasons, on working through his initial struggles in San Antonio.

"It's just how the game is, sometimes you are up and other times you are down. It won't be the first time or the last."

Missions' starter Devin Jones, who was scratched from last night's start, gamely threw three innings despite not having eaten in a few days other than saltine crackers and flat soda.

The flu bug also struck San Antonio manager Rich Dauer, who went home and let hitting coach Francisco Morales run the squad tonight.

"It was an exciting game and the guys made some adjustments against a pitcher that had success against them in the past," Morales said on his managing debut.

Once again the Missions got solid pitching from their bullpen. After Jones gave up six earned runs, Matt Branham, John Hussey, Dennis O'Grady and Johnny Barbato only gave up one earned run. The fourteen strikeouts recorded by San Antonio's pitchers were tied for the most this season.

CF Rymer Liriano had a big day with four RBI on a three-run triple and a game-tying home run in the seventh inning that was last seen heading north to Oklahoma.

"He's starting to figure it out and is really putting in the work in the cage right now," Morales said on Liriano who missed last year with Tommy John surgery.

"We made some adjustments that are starting to show up in the game."

Mission Notes: If the Padres' brass was watching the game you could probably hear the collective sigh as far north as San Francisco when catcher Austin Hedges appeared at first to seriously injure his ankle while beating out a ground ball to first base. Hedges stepped on the first baseman's foot and after a brief consultation with the trainer was able to stay in the game.

In addition to a good day at the plate Liriano also made some nice plays in center flashing surprising speed for a man that is six-foot 230 lbs.

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