The Aeros coaching staff held a half-hour hitters meeting before Friday’s weekend series against visiting Richmond kicked off. The result was so impressive – a season high in runs and hits - it’s probably worth having more meetings more often.
After warming up with a run in the first inning and two more in the third, the Aeros chased Richmond starter and LHP Michael Kickham (2-3, 2.81 ERA) from the game with a five-run fourth inning en route to a 16-3 victory.
But the rout was just getting started, as the Richmond bullpen struggled to quiet the hosts’ bats. After blowing through three relievers, Richmond’s coaching staff threw up the white flag in turning the game over to infielder Jose Flores with the bases loaded.
It wasn’t a very good idea. The first pitch that Aeros third baseman Kyle Bellows saw from Flores was promptly deposited beyond the left center field fence for the Aeros first grand slam of the season.
Five Aeros batters finished the game with at least two hits with Bellows (4-for-5 with four RBI) and first baseman Chun Chen (4-for-5 two doubles and five RBI) leading the way.
Overshadowed in the big offensive night was the solid outing by Aeros starter T.J. House. The left-hander improved to 2-1 with the win following delivering six innings of two-hit ball while limiting the Squirrels to one run and striking out five.
The three-game weekend series continues Saturday at 6:05 p.m. at Canal Park. Akron LHP Giovanni Soto (3-2, 4.46 ERA) is slated to face Flying Squirrels RHP Justin Fitzgerald (3-1, 3.18 ERA) on the mound.
* Aeros LF Jared Goedert, who led the Eastern League in hitting (.395) and on-base percentage (.475) was promoted to Triple-A Columbus before Friday's game...OF Ben Copeland was transferred to Akron from Columbus. With the Clippers, Copeland batted .242 with two home runs and three RBI.
* Aeros LF Nick Weglarz cleared waivers and was outrighted back to Akron. Weglarz was designated for assignment last week to make room on the Indians 40-man roster for INF Jose Lopez.