Gee, Express beat 51s to earn fourth straight win

Dillon Gee put any allegiances for his former team aside Wednesday night.

The 31-year-old pitcher, who spent nearly 10 years in the Mets organization, tossed six scoreless innings to help the Round Rock Express beat New York’s AAA affiliate Las Vegas 51s 3-1 Wednesday night at Dell Diamond. The win was the fourth straight for the Express.

“When you focus on winning, that’s when individual results show more often,” outfielder Drew Robinson said. “We’ve got guys that have been through it all and guys that are still trying to establish a role. It always feels good to win no matter when you’re at.”

After a slow start to the season, Gee (3-4, 3.88 ERA) has pitched extremely well in his last two starts. In his start before Wednesday’s win, he went 7.2 innings and allowed no runs on just one hit with four strikeouts.

Drew Robinson and Preston Beck led the way offensively for the Express, going 2-for-4. Beck and Cesar Puello each had one RBI and Robinson, Travis Snider, and Josh Wilson each scored a run.

Round Rock has been on an offensive hot streak over the last four games, outscoring its opponents 33-7 in that span.

“Guys are clicking right now,” Robinson said. “We’ve got the talent, we just haven’t been able to put games together. We were putting ourselves in difficult situations, especially on that last road trip with bad timing. Coming home and getting the routine has been able to get us going.”

Preston Beck opened the scoring with a fly ball to deep center field. The centerfielder misplayed the ball and Beck got all eh way to third and Travis Snider came around to score.

Ronald Guzman reached on a fielding error by the Las Vegas third baseman and Josh Wilson scored from second base. On the very next pitch, Cesar Puello singled to center to bring home Drew Robinson and give the Express a 3-0 lead.

After two straight singles off Round Rock reliever Jaye Chapman, Wesley Wright came in and gave up the third hit of the inning, a single up the middle, and Las Vegas scored its only run of the game.

Preston Claiborne pitched a perfect ninth inning thanks to three straight strikeouts to earn his fifth save of the season.

Round Rock had its best game of the season in the series-opening 14-3 win on Tuesday night. The Express had 14 runs, 18 hits, and five home runs, all season highs. The five home runs were the most in a single game since August 6, 2015.

The Express and 51s wrap up their four-games set with games on Thursday and Friday beginning at 7:05 p.m. Round Rock then going on the road for a four-game series against Omaha beginning Saturday at 7:05 p.m.

“We still need to work on finishing games,” Robinson said. “We’ve put ourselves in a good position a lot of times and something will happen later in the game. Closing games out is the biggest thing for us.”