METAIRIE – Nolan Fontana’s three-run homer capped a five-run fifth-inning outburst for the Salt Lake Bees, who defeated the New Orleans Baby Cakes, 6-4, on Monday night.
Tied 1-1 in the fifth, Adam Conley issued a one-out walk to Sherman Johnson, who raced all the way around the bases to score on a double into the left field corner by Eric Young, Jr. That ended Conley’s outing, and Shane Robinson greeted reliever Kelvin Marte with an RBI double.
Following a walk to Kaleb Cowart, Fontana belted his fifth home run of the year over the right field wall to give the Bees a 6-1 cushion.
That was enough to overcome four solo home runs by the Baby Cakes, including two by Destin Hood, who hit leadoff homers in the second and seventh innings for his first multi-homer effort since August 2015. Hood has six home runs on the season, all coming at the Shrine on Airline, where he is hitting .350.
Steve Lombardozzi and Brandon Barnes connected for back-to-back home runs in the eighth inning to bring New Orleans within two. It marked the second time in five days the ‘Cakes hit consecutive homers and went deep four times in a game.
Making his first start since being optioned from Miami last week, Conley (0-1) was charged with three runs on three hits in 4 1/3 innings. He struck out four and walked four.
Justin Miller worked around a leadoff single in the ninth by Matt Juengel to record his fourth save in five opportunities.
Troy Scribner, activated from the disabled list earlier in the day, improved to 5-0 by limiting the Baby Cakes to two hits in six innings.
New Orleans lost the first game of a series for only the third time in 10 tries to fall to 13-24 overall and slip a season-high 11½ games behind first-place Memphis.
The series resumes on Tuesday at 7 p.m.