Keston Hiura leads Missions’ longball barrage

Keston Hiura celebrates with his teammates at the plate after hitting a grand slam in the second inning on Thursday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Keston Hiura (18) celebrates with his teammates at the plate after hitting a grand slam in the second inning on Thursday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
Keston Hiura continued to pile up big at-bats since returning to the San Antonio Missions.

In the eight games since being optioned down from the Milwaukee Brewers, Hiura has added four home runs, 11 RBIs and hit 11-of-34 (.324).

That includes two home runs and five RBIs Thursday night as the Missions pounded the Tacoma Rainiers 15-1 at Wolff Stadium.

Both of Hiura’s homers came off Rainiers starting pitcher Justus Sheffield. Hiura hit a solo shot in the first inning in his first at-bat. He added a grand slam in the second inning. That boosted his team-leading home run total to 15 for the season.

Hiura had plenty of help in the hitting department as the Missions spent a big part of their night celebrating at the plate.

Tyler Saladino hit his 13th home run of the season, a leadoff shot in the second inning.

Mauricio Dubon hit a two-run homer in the third inning.

Lucas Erceg added a three-run homer in the seventh inning.

The Missions finished with 15 hits including doubles by Dubon and Troy Stokes Jr.

Missions starting pitcher Burch Smith (4-3) went five innings to get the win. He allowed one run on two hits and struck out 10 batters with two walks.