ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Albuquerque Isotopes and Los Angeles Dodgers are a team and will continue to be one for at least two more years. Time will tell if that relationship helps either one win a pennant.
Toward that end, Albuquerque took a big step on Thursday night, defeating host Omaha 5-3 in Game 2 to even their best-of-5 Pacific Coast League playoff series at 1.
The two teams now come to Isotopes Park for the rest of the series beginning tonight.
“Omaha plays really, really well in this ballpark and to get a win here is huge,” said Isotopes manager Lorenzo Bundy. “But we play really, really well in our ballpark, and it’ll be great to get home in front of our tremendous fans this weekend.”
Veteran catcher Josh Bard went 3-for-4 and scored twice for Albuquerque, which rallied from a 3-0 deficit. The Isotopes outhit their hosts 12-8, but also capitalized on two errors to score three unearned runs.
Earlier on Thursday, the Isotopes and parent Los Angeles Dodgers announced a renewal of their Player Development Contract. The Isotopes will be the Dodgers’ affiliate through the 2014 season.It came as little surprise, given the glowing reviews each have given the other. Isotopes general manager John Traub called it an “incredibly successful partnership” in a statement released by the club.
Added De Jon Watson, Dodgers assistant GM for player development, “These two franchises have a storied history together, and we’re happy to continue our relationship with the city of Albuquerque with its top-notch facilities and passionate fan base.”
From 2003 through 2008, the Isotopes were affiliated with the Florida Marlins. They’ve been with the Dodgers since 2009.