Baseballs have been looking like beach balls to Jan Hernandez and Matt Adams. In the past six games, Hernandez has hit eight home runs while Adams has hit six. Their performances helped the Kansas City Monarchs (14-6) defeat the Lake Country DockHounds (10-9) 11-4 Friday night and extend their winning streak to seven games.
Since last Friday, the Monarchs offense has been scorching hot. They have hit 25 home runs and scored 96 runs in 63 innings of baseball.
The Monarchs offense picked up right where they left off from Wednesday night. Darnell Sweeney followed up Willie Abreu’s single with one of his own. Gaby Guerrero then worked a walk to load the bases for Matt Adams. After fouling off four pitches during the seven-pitch at bat, Adams belted the eighth pitch over the right field fence for a grand slam. Initially, the first base umpire ruled the ball foul but after a crew meeting the ball was ruled fair. One batter later, Jan Hernandez followed with a solo home run to right field, giving the Monarchs an early 5-0 lead.
Despite the early deficit, the DockHounds responded right away. Lamar Briggs and Aaron Takacs both walked to start off the inning. With two outs, Gio Brusa singled to score Briggs and cut the deficit to four runs off Monarchs starter Matt Hall (3-1).
It didn’t take long for the Monarchs to respond. In his second at bat of the day, Jan Hernandez hammered a solo home run to center field. After four innings of play, the Monarchs led 6-0.
The fifth inning is when things started getting fun for the Monarchs. Matt Adams led off the inning with another home run, collecting his second of the night. After David Thompson singled, Jan Hernandez stepped up to the plate and drove a deep fly ball over the center field fence to gather his third home run and give the Monarchs a commanding 9-1 lead.
Matt Hall started on the rubber for the Monarchs. He gave the team five solid innings of production, allowing one run on three hits while collecting seven strikeouts.
In the seventh inning, the DockHounds started to chip away. T.J. Bennett hit a three-run home run off Brock Gilliam to shorten the Monarchs lead, 9-4. Jacob Lindgren entered the game to minimize the damage and retired Gio Brusa to end the inning.
The Monarchs added two more insurance runs in the ninth inning as David Thompson and Pete Kozma drove in runs, giving the Monarchs a 11-4 lead heading into the bottom half.
Matt Blackham entered the game in the ninth inning to shut the door on the DockHounds. He struck out T.J. Bennett, ending the game and stretching the Monarchs winning streak to seven games.
The three home run night for Hernandez was the fifth time in franchise history that a batter had hit three in a game and the first time since Ray Fox did it on August 4, 2010 against Joliet.
The Monarchs will face the DockHounds for game two of the three game set tomorrow evening at 6:05 p.m. The game can be heard on the Monarchs Broadcast Network with the pre-game beginning at 5:35 p.m. and the video stream airing on aabaseball.tv.
Tickets to all Monarchs games can be purchased by calling 913-328-5618 or by visiting monarchsbaseball.com. For additional information or interview requests, members of the media may contact the Monarchs Media Relations Department at (817) 739-3693. Stay tuned to monarchsbaseball.com. and the Monarchs Facebook and Twitter pages for updates throughout the season.
WP: Matt Hall (3-1)
LP: Taylor Bloye (1-2)