Baby Cakes sweep twin bill from El Paso

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METAIRIE – The New Orleans Baby Cakes used quality starts from left-handers Mike Kickham and Justin Nicolino to sweep Sunday’s doubleheader from the El Paso Chihuahuas.

The ‘Cakes won three of the four games in the series and have wins in 11 of their last 15 contests at home.

Mike Kickham worked six strong innings in the first game, as the Baby Cakes rode a four-run first inning to a 4-2 win.

The ‘Cakes did all their damage against Kyle Lloyd (0-3) in the opening frame. Eury Perez led off the game with a double down the left field line, advanced to third on a single by Moises Sierra and scored on Cal Towey’s sacrifice fly.

Christian Colon followed with an RBI single up the middle, and Peter Mooney drove in two more runs with a double over the head of right fielder Jabari Blash.

The Baby Cakes were held without a hit the rest of the game, but it was enough offense to give Kickham his first win in a New Orleans uniform.

Kickham (1-1) allowed five baserunners over the first two innings and forced in a run in the second on a bases-loaded balk before settling in to retire 12 consecutive batters.

Ryan Schimpf snapped that streak with a home run – his third of the weekend – but Kickham and Brandon Cunniff combined to strike out three of the last four hitters. Cunniff picked up his third save of the year with a perfect inning of relief.

Justin Nicolino continued the Baby Cakes’ strong pitching in the second game by limiting the Chihuahuas to five hits in six scoreless innings in a 5-1 victory. Nicolino (5-5) struck out the side in the fourth inning en route to six in the game and improved to 4-0 with a 1.82 ERA in six starts at home this season.

New Orleans plated three runs against Zach Lee in the third inning on a pair of sacrifice flies and an RBI single by Ramon Cabrera, then mounted a two-out rally an inning later to tack on two more runs on Brian Anderson’s double.

Tayron Guerrero gave up an RBI double to Peter Van Gansen in the seventh to break up the shutout before recording the final two outs.

The ‘Cakes continue the homestand on Monday at 7 p.m. with the opener of a four-game set against the Albuquerque Isotopes.

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