Hounds Hammer Hooks Again

 Max Muncy hit his second grand slam in as many nights and Sean Murphy ran his 2014 Texas League record to 4-0 as Midland dropped Corpus Christi 6-3 Tuesday at Whataburger Field before 5,525.

At 16-8, the RockHounds lead the South Division second-half race by three games over Frisco. The Hooks are 13-12.

Murphy, who returned to Double-A from Triple-A Sacramento a month ago, allowed two runs, seven hits and three walks in a six-inning, 92-pitch performance (58 strikes). He struck out five.

Muncy's slam created a nice third-inning lead for Murphy and his mates. Mike Hauschild (1-5) surrendered consecutive two-out singles by Billy Burns and Conner Crumbliss and walked Jefry Marte before Muncy's fifth homer, a liner to right-center.

A lead-off walk of Carlos Perdomo haunted Murphy as the Hooks quickly took a bite out of the margin, Ruben Sosa's two-out single up the middle the run-scorer.

Midland invoked more two-out thunder an inning later, Dusty Coleman belting a solo shot to left, his ninth. Corpus Christi responded, Telvin Nash's cue-shot double down the right field line - the last of three inning-opening hits - sending Jonathan Meyer homeward. Murphy righted the ship, getting Tyler Heineman to bounce into a 3-2-3 double play and striking out Brandon Meredith.

Hauschild's 11th start of 2014 saw the Dayton product book seven hits, three walks, eight strikeouts and 101 pitches (65) over five complete.

Opening back-to-back sixth-inning singles from Andrew Aplin and Nash put Corpus Christi in business, but Murphy rolled another twin killing and Heineman popped up.

Hooks reliever Richard Rodriguez, back from Triple-A Oklahoma City, faced the minimum in three innings of work. The former non-drafted free agent struck out five.

Midland added a ninth-inning insurance run off Mitchell Lambson, Hiro Nakajima's looper plating Coleman after the RockHounds shortstop reached on a two-base throwing error. Aplin picked up Crumbliss' single in right field and threw out Nakajima at home for the third out.

Aplin owns a six-game hitting streak.

Kyle Smith (3-2) works the series and homestand finale for Corpus Christi at 7:10 Wednesday against Nate Long (8-4).


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