Chihuahuas Set Franchise Record with 11 Consecutive Wins
Seven games into the 2019 season, the El Paso Chihuahuas were 1-6 and in last place in the Pacific Coast League's Pacific Southern Division. Their pitching was getting bombed early and the offense could not outscore their opponents. Their struggles were almost expected for so many reasons. They have a new manager in Edwin Rodriguez and a lineup featuring many new players. Adjusting to a new skipper and roster takes time. The Chihuahuas have been so good over the last four seasons, they were due for a clunker.
You can take those theories and throw them out the window. The team just set a new franchise record with their 11th consecutive win. In fact, El Paso has been victorious in 17 out of their last 18 games! Suddenly, this 1-6 team is now 18-7 and back in their familiar first place spot in the standings.
The Chihuahuas are not winning low scoring games either. They are destroying the baseball and accumulating video game offensive statistics. El Paso leads the PCL with a .321 team batting average, 20-points higher than the next team, Albuquerque. The Chihuahuas have also hit a staggering 65 home runs through their first 25 games and driven in 204 runs. That is an average of more than eight runs per game!
Individually, 10 players are hitting .300 or better, led by Ty France's .423 average. The 26-year old was recently called up to San Diego and playing third base while Fernando Tatis Jr. recovers from a hamstring injury. Manny Machado has temporarily moved to shortstop for the Padres. Luis Urias was just named PCL Player of the week for his five home run performance over the weekend and Alex Dickerson is working his way back from two injury-played seasons with a .378 batting average.
While the Chihuahuas continue to knock the cover off of the baseball, their pitching staff has been good enough to keep them in every game. Jerry Keel and Cal Quantrill have three wins each with ERAs in the mid 4's. Quantrill was just called up to San Diego to make a start for the Padres today. It remains to be seen if he will stay in the San Diego rotation. Dietrich Enns also has three wins, but his ERA is closer to 6. Top prospect Logan Allen along with Dillon Overton and Bryan Mitchell have all struggled on the mound this season, but the team's offense has picked them up every time. El Pasoan Fernie Rodriguez leads the team with three saves as he tries to get back to the Major Leagues for the first time since 2016.
Chihuahuas manager Edwin Rodriguez is a veteran with over 40 years of experience in professional baseball. It did not take long for Rodriguez to discover his team's winning formula and they are playing with an unbelievable level of confidence in the first month of the season. There is a ton of baseball left to play, including the Triple-A All Star Game at Southwest University Park in July. In the meantime, the Chihuahuas continue to win baseball games at an incredible pace.