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Oklahoma City cruises past Aviators behind Cristian Santana’s big night

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Santana set a career-high with five hits

Chicago White Sox v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images

Oklahoma City used two big innings on offense to put Las Vegas (Athletics) away for the second straight night. Scoring six in the fourth and six in the ninth, the Dodgers kept the momentum going with a 13-4 victory to start the Final Stretch 2-0.

The Dodgers are one of six unbeaten teams among the 30 in Triple-A West for the 2021 version of the playoffs.

Unlike Thursday, the Aviators actually owned a lead before the runs came pouring in for the Dodgers. Las Vegas used three hits in the bottom of the third to take a 2-0 lead but it wouldn’t last long.

Las Vegas starter Homer Bailey (yes, that Homer Bailey that I didn’t know still pitched) was a bit wild Friday night. The right-hander walked four and hit two batters.

Zach Reks started the top of the fourth by getting hit by the pitch and moved to second on Cristian Santana’s second single of the game. After an Anthony Bemboom walk loaded the bases, outfielder Omar Estévez unloaded them with a grand slam.

The Dodgers would send eight more men to the plate in the fourth, two of which would be hit by the pitch, including the second time for Reks. Traffic on the base paths led to two more runs on RBI-singles for Steven Souza Jr and Santana. It was the third hit in as many at-bats for Santana to that point.

By the time the ninth inning rolled around, Las Vegas had cut the lead to 7-4. But that wouldn’t matter much as OKC exploded for six more runs to complete the route. The Dodgers sent 11 men to the plate in the final frame, including Santana smacking his fifth single.

Santana finished with a career-high five hits, going 5-for-6 with three RBI and scored a run. The 24-year-old infielder leads the Dodgers with 100 hits this season and 29 multi-hit games. He has hit safely in 12 of his last 13 games with an at-bat, going 24-for-56 (.429) with two homers, five doubles, 15 RBI and nine runs scored.

Friday’s boxscore

Oklahoma City 13, Las Vegas 4

Saturday’s schedule

7:05 p.m. PT: Oklahoma City (Mitch White) at Las Vegas (A.J. Puk)