ASTROS CALL UP KRAUSS
When former RedHawks outfielder Robbie Grossman suffered a strained oblique muscle in Houston's extra-inning game Tuesday night, the Astros called Marc Krauss to inform him he needed to get to Houston.
Krauss not only made it to Minute Maid Ballpark for an afternoon game, he hit sixth and went 1-for-3 with an RBI in the Astros' 6-5 win over Minnesota.
In Oklahoma City, the RedHawks had to fill Krauss' No. 5 hole spot for Game 1 of a Pacific Coast League semifinal series with Omaha. First baseman Jon Singleton moved up to fifth.
Chris Epps, promoted Wednesday from Class A Lancaster, played left field and hit ninth in his Triple-A debut. Epps hit .275 with 16 home runs, 75 RBIs and a team-high 32 doubles with the JetHawks.
The RedHawks lost three runners on the bases in the opener of a five-game series.
Catcher Carlos Perez was thrown out at home plate attempting to score on a fly ball to end the seventh. Jimmy Paredes was thrown out trying to steal second following a leadoff single in the sixth. Epps was picked off first in the third.
“In the playoffs, you don't want to waste any outs,” said RedHawks manager Tony DeFrancesco. “(Epps) getting picked off was a young guy here for the first time, maybe a little nervous. Jimmy has been a base stealer all year. The play at the plate was bang-bang. We had a chance to tie it. They made a great throw.”
SEEKING FIRST PCL TITLE
The RedHawks, formed in 1998, have never won a PCL title. This is their seventh playoff appearance. The RedHawks twice won first-round series when they were the Texas Rangers' Triple-A affiliate but both times lost in the PCL finals in 1999 and 2008. The RedHawks are 12-22 overall all time in the playoffs.
GAME 2 STARTERS
In Game 2 Thursday night at 7:05 at the Brick, Oklahoma City will start 26-year-old right-hander David Martinez, who was 14-2 with a 2.02 ERA in Double-A but it 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in three starts with the RedHawks. Omaha will start 28-year-old Clay Mortensen, a right-hander the Royals obtained in a late-season trade. Mortensen is 4-0 with a 2.72 ERA in 50 minor league innings this season but spent half the season in Boston, posting a 5.34 ERA in 24 bullpen appearances with the Red Sox.
BY MIKE BALDWIN