– Hiro Nakajima posted four RBIs and Midland scored six two-out runs in an 11-3 romp over Corpus Christi Sunday at Whataburger Field before 4,748.
Dusty Coleman and Blake Forsythe contributed two-run doubles for the RockHounds, 23-14 and residents of first place in Texas League second-half play. Kent Matthes' solo home run in the ninth was his third round-tripper of the series.
The Hooks are 17-20.
Nakajima drove Jordan Jankowski's 1-0 hanging curveball out of the park for a 3-0 Midland lead in the first. Billy Burns and Max Muncy preceded Nakajima's fourth round-tripper with singles.
The Hooks answered right away. Lead-off hitter Tony Kemp deposited Drew Granier's full-count fastball onto the left-field berm 350 feet away. Telvin Nash's two-out RBI single drew Corpus Christi to within a run.
The home club almost pulled even in the second. Brandon Meredith stroked an opening double to left but was erased at the plate, Granier to backstop Forsythe on a failed safety squeeze attempt, Carlos Perdomo at bat.
Midland then extended its lead to 4-2, Nakajima again the culprit. His one-out double into the left-center field gap plated Conner Crumbliss (lead-off double).
Jankowski's 69-pitch night ended after four innings, five hits, two walks and four strikeouts. He dropped to 3-5.
Meredith's 392-foot shot to left-center – his first home run in Double-A – trimmed the RockHounds' lead to 4-3 through four.
Midland took advantage of just-arrived reliever Kyle Weiland during the fifth, Coleman's two-out, two-run, two-base hit pushing the margin to three at 6-3. Weiland found himself in trouble by sandwiching two outs with walks to Burns and Nakajima.
Burns' sacrifice fly off Kyle Smith tallied Jeremy Barfield to make it 7-3 in the sixth and Forsythe's two-out, two-run double keyed a three-score seventh.
Granier (6-4) fell in line for the victory despite walking four and allowing six hits over 5 2/3 innings and 94 pitches (53 strikes). He struck out two.