Closeups of the 2019 San Antonio Missions

San Antonio Missions catcher/first baseman David Freitas won the Pacific Coast League batting title. - photo by Joe Alexander
San Antonio Missions catcher/first baseman David Freitas won the Pacific Coast League batting title. – photo by Joe Alexander
Even front row seats are a long way from some positions on a baseball field.

During the course of the 2019 San Antonio Missions season, I occasionally got closer a look at some of the players.

That seemed like a good way to wrap up my summer from Wolff Stadium.

Missions beat OKC to stay close in playoff chase

The San Antonio Missions' Tyler Austin (right) and Tyrone Taylor celebrate after Austin's two-run homer in the third inning on Friday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
The Missions’ Tyler Austin (right) and Tyrone Taylor celebrate after Austin’s two-run homer in the third inning on Friday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
The San Antonio Missions got key hits and shutout pitching through eight innings to beat the Oklahoma City Dodgers 4-2 on Friday at Wolff Stadium.

The Missions remain 1 1/2 games behind the Round Rock Express in the Pacific Coast League American Southern Standings. Round Rock beat New Orleans 3-2 on Friday.

Tyler Austin hit a two-run homer in the third inning, his second home run and fourth extra-base hit since joining the Missions on Aug. 16.

Nate Orf drove in the Missions’ first run with an RBI single in the second inning.

Troy Stokes Jr. added an RBI single in the sixth inning to bring in the Missions’ final run.

Missions starting pitcher Aaron Wilkerson (8-2) pitched five scoreless innings, allowing two hits with five strikeouts and two walks. He lowered his season ERA to 3.34.

Angel Perdomo and Miguel Sanchez combined to pitch a scoreless sixth inning. Freddy Peralta kept the Dodgers scoreless in the seventh and eighth innings.

The Dodgers scored both of their runs in the top of the ninth off of Missions reliever Ray Black.

Bubba Derby helps Missions overpower Baby Cakes

Bubba Derby was the San Antonio Missions' starting pitcher and also drove in a run on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Bubba Derby was the San Antonio Missions’ starting pitcher and also drove in a run on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
Bubba Derby had a run-scoring double and also started off a combined shutout as the San Antonio Missions beat the New Orleans Baby Cakes 8-0 Sunday at Wolff Stadium.

Derby (6-7) pitched five scoresless innings to earn the win. He allowed three hits with six strikeouts and two walks.

Miguel Sanchez followed with 1 2/3 innings, allowing two hits with one strikeout. Angel Perdomo pitched the last 2 1/3 innings, allowing one hit with four strikeouts and one walk.

Tyler Austin, playing first base and starting for the second time with the Missions, had two hits including a fourth-inning home run. Troy Stokes Jr. and Corey Ray also had two hits each.

Miguel Sanchez was the first pitcher out of the San Antonio Missions' bullpen on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Miguel Sanchez was the first pitcher out of the San Antonio Missions’ bullpen on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
Angel Perdomo entered in the seventh inning and finished the game on the mound for the San Antonio Missions on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Angel Perdomo entered in the seventh inning and finished the game on the mound for the San Antonio Missions on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander

Missions outfielder and Brewers prospect Troy Stokes Jr.

Missions outfielder Troy Stokes Jr. hits a fifth-inning home run against Fresno on Monday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Missions outfielder Troy Stokes Jr. hits a fifth-inning home run against Fresno on Monday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
This has been a tough season for the San Antonio Missions’ opening day outfielders.

Troy Stokes Jr., Corey Ray and Tyrone Taylor have all missed time with injuries.

Stokes has not been in the lineup in 41 Missions games this season.

The good news for the Missions is that the three outfielders are back together and Stokes is building momentum offensively.

Stokes, who plays mostly left field, was batting .174 on June 8. His average is now up to .238. He is hitting .419 in his last 10 games with 7 RBIs in that stretch. He hit his eighth home run of the season in Monday’s 9-8 victory over the Fresno Grizzlies.

The 23-year-old from Baltimore was picked in the fourth round of the 2014 draft by the Milwaukee Brewers. In 2017 he hit 20 home runs in 135 games between Class A and Double-A.

Last year Stokes hit 19 home runs in 129 games in Double-A Biloxi, where he also won a Gold Glove.

Tyler Saladino returns, Missions homer their way past Grizzlies

Tyler Saladino singled and eventually scored the winning run in the eighth inning Monday afternoon at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
Tyler Saladino singled and eventually scored the winning run in the eighth inning Monday afternoon at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
The San Antonio Missions hit four home runs including three in one inning to beat the Fresno Grizzlies 9-8 on Monday afternoon at Wolff Stadium.

The Missions trailed 6-0 early in the game but narrowed the gap when Tyrone Taylor hit a three-run shot in the third inning, his eighth homer of the season.

The Missions took an 8-6 lead with four runs in the fifth inning. Troy Stokes Jr. hit a solo home run, his eighth of the season. Jacob Nottingham hit a two-run homer, his fourth of the season. Jake Hager hit a solo home run, his eighth of the season.

The Grizzlies scored single runs in the top of the seventh and eighth innings to tie it 8-8.

The Missions took the lead for good in the bottom of the eighth. Tyler Saladino led off with a single and went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Taylor. Saladino scored the winning run when David Freitas singled to right and Grizzlies right fielder Jose Marmolejos mis-handled the ball, allowing Saladino to advance two bases.

Missions reliever Angel Perdomo (3-0) pitched the seventh and eighth innings to earn the win. Ray Black pitched the ninth inning to earn his second save withthe Missions.

NOTES

  • Monday’s game was Saladino’s first action in a Missions uniform since being called up by the Milwaukee Brewers on June 28.
  • Missions pitcher Jimmy Nelson had his second strong appearance in a row in relief. He threw 1 2/3 innings with no runs, one hit, one walk and four strikeouts
  • Black, who came to the Brewers organization from the San Francisco Giants in a deal at the MLB trade deadline, hit 101 MPH on the stadium radar.

  • Missions break out offense but fall to Grizzlies

    The Missions' David Freitas hits a first-inning home run on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
    The Missions’ David Freitas hits a first-inning home run on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
    After going scoreless in the first nine innings of their last two games, the San Antonio Missions’ bats came alive Sunday night.

    The Missions came up a run short despite 16 hits including a home run by David Freitas.

    The Fresno Grizzlies lashed out 14 hits including four home runs to beat the Missions 11-10 at Wolff Stadium.

    Freitas hit his ninth home run of the season in the first inning. He finished with three hits, including a double, and scored three times.

    Troy Stokes Jr. had three hits and Tyrone Taylor, Cory Spangenberg, Lucas Erceg and Jake Hager had two hits each for the Missions.

    Missions rally in 9th to beat Cubs

    The Missions celebrate after Jacob Nottinham scored the winning run on a ground ball by Trent Grisham on Tuesday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
    The Missions celebrate after Jacob Nottinham scored the winning run on a ground ball by Trent Grisham on Tuesday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
    The San Antonio Missions scratched out three runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to beat the Iowa Cubs 4-3 on Tuesday at Wolff Stadium.

    The Missions got the job done in the final inning without a longball or extra-base hit. They put together two singles, a walk, a sacrifice fly and a run-scoring ground ball.

    (Cubs lead 3-1 going into bottom of the 9th)

    – Nate Orf singles.

    – Troy Stokes Jr. walks. Orf goes to second.

    – Jacob Nottingham singles. Orf scores. Stokes goes to second. (Cubs lead 3-2)

    – Lucas Erceg pinch-hits.

    – Wild pitch. Stokes goes to third. Nottingham goes to second.

    – Erceg sacrifice flies to right field. Stokes scores. Nottingham goes to third. (score tied 3-3)

    – Trent Grisham chops a grounder to first. Nottingham slides and beats the throw at the plate for the winning run (Missions win 4-3).

    The Missions’ other run scored on a solo home run by Hernan Perez in the fourth inning.

    Brewers’ Corbin Burnes pitches two innings for Missions in loss to Express

    Corbin Burns started for the Missions and pitched two scoreless innings on Wednesday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
    Corbin Burns started for the Missions and pitched two scoreless innings on Wednesday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
    Right-handed pitcher Corbin Burns started for the Missions on Wednesday in his first game since being sent down from the Milwaukee Brewers.

    Burns had been used mostly as a reliever by the Brewers. Media reports from Milwaukee before the game indicated he would still throw limited innings in San Antonio.

    Burns pitched two strong scoreless innings and struck out two batters‌ in a 4-2 loss to the Round Rock Express at Wolff Stadium. He did not allow any hits or walks. He threw 24 pitches, 17 for strikes.

    The Missions’ only runs came on a two-run homer by Troy Stokes Jr. in the fourth inning.

    Troy Stokes Jr. and Nate Orf celebrate after both players scored on Stokes' fourth-inning home run. - photo by Joe Alexander
    Troy Stokes Jr. and Nate Orf celebrate after both players scored on Stokes’ fourth-inning home run. – photo by Joe Alexander

    David Freitas helps Missions belt Aces

    David Freitas drove in three runs for the Missions with a fifth-inning double on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
    David Freitas drove in three runs for the Missions with a fifth-inning double on Sunday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
    David Freita had a three-RBI double and a solo home run as the San Antonio Missions beat the Reno Aces 8-3 Sunday at Wolff Stadium.

    Nate Orf drove in the Missions’ first run of the game in the bottom of the fifth. Orf was one of three Missions to score when Freitas doubled with the bases loaded later in the inning to give the Missions a 4-2 lead.

    Michael O’Neill had an RBI double and scored on a single by Mauricio Dubon as the Missions added two more runs in the sixth to make it 6-2.

    Freitas hit his fourth home run of the season to lead off the bottom of the seventh and make it 7-2.

    Orf doubled in O’Neill in the bottom of the eighth for the Missions’ final run.

    The Aces scored the first two runs of the game on solo home runs by Abraham Almonte in the third and fifth innings.

    Missions starting pitcher Aaron Wilkerson (6-1) went five innings and got the win. He gave up the two home runs to Almonte – the only runs Wilkerson has allowed in home games at Wolff this season.

    Nate Orf caps Missions’ 12th-inning rally

    Nate Orf celebrates with Missions teammates after his walk-off sacrifice fly in the 12th inning on Saturday at Wolff Stadium. - photo by Joe Alexander
    Nate Orf celebrates with Missions teammates after his walk-off sacrifice fly in the 12th inning on Saturday at Wolff Stadium. – photo by Joe Alexander
    Nate Orf’s sacrifice fly ended the San Antonio Missions’ four-hour, 12-inning 5-4 victory over the Reno Aces on Saturday night at Wolff stadium.

    The Aces scored a run in the top of the 12th to take a 4-3 lead.

    The Missions’ Mauricio Dubon delivered an RBI single to score Troy Stokes Jr. with the tieing run in the bottom of the 12th.

    Orf lofted a fly ball to left field to bring home Jake Hager from third with the winning run.

    Dubon finished the game with three hits including a double. David Freitas, who is batting .363, had a hit and two RBIs.

    Missions reliever Alex Wilson (3-0) pitched the top of the 12th inning and got the win.