Missions can't overcome early deficit

San Antonio, TX: On Monday, the San Antonio Missions took the field against the Frisco Rough Riders. This was the first game of a crucial series for the Missions. This series not only shapes the outlook of their season, but will also hopefully bring the Missions out of their mid-season slump.

The Rough Riders started right-hander Tanner Roark who came into the game with a 4.58 ERA. The Missions came out with right-hander Matt Buschmann on a warm and windy day in San Antonio.

Buschmann got into an early jam in the top of the second. After retiring the first two batters, Johnny Whittleman slammed a line drive into left center field which scored the man on second. The next batter, Andy Jenkins, hit a hard ground ball into center which scored Whittleman and made the score 2-0 Rough Riders.

Then in the fourth, the Riders started to roll. With one man on, Joey Butler hit a hard line drive into right field which scored one run. With men at the corners after a hard hit line drive by Whittleman; Jenkins hit a fly ball into right field, which was caught on an amazing dive from Sawyer Carroll but scored another run for the Riders. The Rough Riders scored two runs with three hits in the inning and made the score 4-0.

The Rough Rider's offense started right back up in the fifth. Engel Beltre slammed a pitch into center field which was misplayed by the center fielder, but was counted as a stand up triple for Beltre. Then Taylor Teagarden hit a line drive right past the shortstop's glove to score Beltre from third and extended the Riders lead to 5-0.

After a couple of scoreless innings, the Missions were able to put men into scoring position in the bottom of the eighth with Matt Clark up to bat. Clark sent a pitch to shallow center field which was overran by the center fielder and allowed two runs to score. The Missions rally was soon put to an end and the game went into the ninth inning with a score of 5-2 Rough Riders. The Missions would lose the first of a four-game series with the Rough Riders.

"We had some opportunities to rally in the game, especially in the eighth," said Missions manager Doug Dascenzo. "We need to have better pitching, play better defense, and just play better baseball. We always have to mentally prepare ourselves especially coming off a long road trip, but we just need to carry our focus over and win."

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