The Corpus Christi Hooks took Mark Appel off the hook Tuesday night.
Appel, the first overall pick in the 2013 major-league first-year player draft, was roughed up by the Northwest Arkansas Naturals in his second outing in Class AA.
He allowed 4 runs on 6 hits in 4 1/3 innings, but the Hooks scored three runs in the top of the ninth to beat the Naturals 5-4 in front of an announced crowd of 3,272 at Arvest Ballpark in Springdale.
Northwest Arkansas led 4-2 going into the top of the ninth, but reliever Andrew Triggs (4-3) couldn't hold the lead.
Leo Heras doubled, and after Rene Garcia lined out to left field, Conrad Gregor hit an RBI single to score Heras to pull the Hooks to within 4-3. Brandon Meredith followed with a two-run home run, his second of the season, to give the Hooks a 5-4 lead.
Angel Franco led off the bottom of the ninth for the Naturals with a single, but Jorge Bonifacio grounded into a double play and Cheslor Cuthbert struck out looking to end the game.
Gregor went 2 for 3 to lead the Hooks, who outhit the Naturals 10-9.
Mitchell Lambson (2-0) allowed 1 hit and struck out 3 in 3 scoreless innings to earn the victory.
Matthew Murray started for Northwest Arkansas, going 4 innings and allowing 2 runs on 4 hits. He struck out two and walked two.
Ethan Chapman and Mitch Maier had two hits each for Northwest Arkansas.
Sports on 08/06/2014
Print Headline: Hooks save Appel with 3 runs in ninth