Ricky Oropesa strikes again: Richmond bombs RubberDucks, 12-2

richmond-squirrelsRicky Oropesa is unstoppable. The Squirrels first baseman collected his second consecutive multi-homer game in a 12-2 drubbing of Akron on Sunday afternoon at Canal Park. The Squirrels (67-65) tied the franchise record for runs in an inning with nine, as Oropesa hit two home runs in the frame. Oropesa homered five times with pair of grand slams and 13 RBIs in the four game series. The Squirrels have won the season series against Akron 9-1 and could be as few as two games out of a playoff spot if Altoona loses tonight. There are eight games remaining in the 2015 season (four home games).

Richmond jumped out to an early lead for the fourth consecutive night against Akron and starting pitcher Duke von Schamann. Devin Harris, Engel Beltre and Eliezer Zambrano all singled in the second inning to produce the first run of the game. Rando Moreno then doubled into right center field to score Beltre for a 2-0 lead. Moreno’s double would have also scored the trail runner Jesus Galindo but the ball bounced off the track and over the wall, resulting in a ground-rule double. The RubberDucks countered with a solo home run form Bryson Myles in the third to cut the deficit to 2-1. Akron would load the bases in the fifth against Biagini and threatened to tie the game but Alex Lavisky struck out end the inning.

Richmond then turned the game on its side with a record-tying nine-run sixth inning. Oropesa led off the inning with a home run to right centerfield off von Schamann. The next six hitters managed to reach base before reliever Josh Martin recorded the first out of the inning. Rando Moreno connected on a two run triple down the right field line and Myles Schroder and Juan Ciriaco reached on walks and a hit by pitch to load the bases for Oropesa. The Squirrels slugger promptly drove the ball over the left centerfield wall for a grand slam and an 11-1 lead. It was the second consecutive game with a grand slam for Oropesa and his 17th home run of the year.

Joe Biagini (10-6) earned the win by hurling six innings of one-run baseball. Biagini scattered eight hits and struck out four on 94 pitches in the win.  Matt Gage tossed two innings of relief and Tyler Mizenko finished out the game.  Devin Harris homered in the top of the ninth to extended the lead to 12-2.

Duke von Schamann (1-2) was hit with the loss. He allowed five runs on nine hits over five innings of work. The Squirrels improved to 9-1 against Akron on the season and have won three consecutive games for the second time in August.

The Squirrels eight game road trip continues Monday with game one of four in Harrisburg. Squirrels LHP Kelvin Marte (10-5, 2.38) will make the start against Senators RHP Colin Bates (5-5, 4.00). First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 with the Pregame Warmup beginning at 6:40 PM on Fox Sports 910 and FoxSportsRichmond.com. The Remaining Squirrels promotional schedule is as follows: (9/4) Free Shirt Fridays, Happy Hour & Ladies Night. (9/5) Superblast Saturday and 20th Anniversary of Billy Madison. (9/6) Kids Club Metal Lunchbox Giveaway. (9/7) Bark In the Park #3 – Labor Day.

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