For more than four innings, the 9,000 Utah schoolchildren attending Tuesday morning's game between the Salt Lake Bees and Round Rock Express were getting a first-class education in Baseball 101.
The Bees, owners of minor league baseball's best record and in the midst of a five-game win streak, were doing their thing winning.
The topic, however, eventually changed as Round Rock rallied for a convincing 12-5 victory in the series finale at Franklin Covey Field.
Too bad the students on hand for "Prevention Awareness Kids Day" weren't dismissed early. Other than spending the school day at the ballpark, they had very little to cheer about after a two-run Salt Lake lead disappeared. It vanished almost as quickly as the packaged lunches the students dined on.
"It's a fun day for the kids, I'm sure. It's fun to play in front of them," said Bees manager Bobby Mitchell, who noted it was a bit noisy with all the youngsters in the crowd. "It's more fun to win in front of them."
A solo homer by Adam Pavkovich and an RBI double from Adam Morrissey gave the Bees a 2-0 lead in the third inning.
Two frames later, Round Rock erased the deficit when Humberto Quintero blasted a two-run homer.
The deadlock didn't last long.
That's when Mitchell acknowledged that "all hell broke loose, pretty much."
With two outs in the sixth, the Express got rolling. After getting a double and a walk, they pulled away with five consecutive RBI singles to take a 7-2 lead.
"It seemed like all of a sudden they just started hitting balls where we weren't a lot," said Mitchell. "In the holes, up the middle, down the right-field line, but that's the way things go sometimes."
The outburst chased starter Shane Loux from the game.
An inning later, Round Rock added two more scores on a homer by Mark Saccomanno and a two-out RBI single from Quintero.
Trailing 10-2, Salt Lake scored three times in the bottom of the seventh. Pavkovich drove in two with a single and a pop-up by Coby Smith brought home another run.
It wasn't enough, however, to put the Bees back in contention.
Round Rock capped all scoring in the eighth on a Salt Lake error and a run-scoring single by David Newhan.The Bees have a rare day off before opening a four-game series at Sacramento on Thursday. Salt Lake RHP Kasey Olenberger (2-2, 5.27 ERA) and Sacramento RHP Kirk Saarloos (4-1, 3.41 ERA) are the scheduled starters.
BEELINES: Tuesday attendance was 11,849 ... Pitcher Jose Arredondo was called up by the Angels, who sent RHP Nick Adenhart back to Salt Lake. Adenhart went 1-0 with a 9.00 ERA in three starts with the big league club ... Salt Lake has now endured 48 roster transactions. The Bees had 31 at this point last season and wound up with 106 on the year.
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