SALT LAKE CITY â€” It's a sad night at the ballpark when the fans' loudest cheers are reserved for Whiplash, the dog-riding monkey.
Such was life for the Bees, who returned from a successful 5-3 road trip only to relapse into their home-weary ways, losing 15-7 to Colorado Springs.
Salt Lake has now dropped 17 of its last 22 games at Spring Mobile Ballpark.
"We've had some good late-game comebacks, but this one kind of took the wind out of our sails," Salt Lake manager Keith Johnson said.
The Bees took an early lead in the bottom of the third inning when Jeff Baisley launched a two-out home run well beyond the wall in left field.
That lead, though, was short-lived.
The Sky Sox struck back quickly and ruthlessly, scoring seven runs in the fourth and â€” after Salt Lake's Jeremy Moore hit a solo home run â€” another six in the fifth to take a 13-3 lead. Colorado Springs pounded out 13 hits, including a home run by Mike Jacobs and four doubles, in those two innings alone.
Matt Palmer, who had cruised through three innings, gave up the first seven runs before he was pulled. Ryan Chafee gave up four runs while Amalio Diaz also got into the action. He allowed the final three runs in 3 1/3 innings of work.
"You hate for them to put together two big innings like that, especially with the way we've been playing," Johnson said. "It's tough to get back into a game with that kind of deficit."
Jacobs went 4-for-6 with three RBIs to lead the Sky Sox at the plate. He hit a home run and a double. Catcher Jordan Pacheco went 3-for-4 and was hit in the head by a pitch in the eighth inning, while Dexter Fowler went 3-for-6 with two RBIs and three runs scored.
Every Colorado Springs batter finished with at least one hit except for first baseman Mike Paulk, who still managed to contribute with a sacrifice fly, a walk and one run scored.
Jeff Baisley paced the Bees with a solid night at the dish. The burly third baseman went 4-for-5 with a home run, a double and four RBIs. Efren Navarro had three hits while Alexi Amarista and Andrew Romine had two hits each for the Bees.
After the game, Whiplash put on a show herding sheep to the delight of the fans who made it through the four-hour game.
The Bees and Sky Sox will play again today at 2:05 p.m.