Photo by Shawn Jonas
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Sacramento River Cats broke a 1-1 tie with a big three-run ninth inning and took the win 4-1 over the Salt Lake Bees. Sacramento scrapped and clawed to load the bases before Kevin Frandsen came through with a bases-clearing double to score the game’s winning runs.
Before that, the River Cats scored first for the third straight game in the series, grabbing a 1-0 lead in the third inning on a Juan Perez single. Overall, Perez was 3-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Coming into tonight’s contest, Perez had been on a tear, hitting .438 (14-for-32) with three home runs, seven RBI, and seven runs scored in his last ten games.
Salt Lake tied up the game in the fourth inning on Roger Kieshnick’s RBI-single. The score remain locked at one apiece until the River Cats finally managed to break through in the ninth.
The River Cats worked their way to a bases loaded, no outs situation. Ryan Lollis drew a walk from Salt Lake’s reliever Mike Morin before Juan Perez reached on Morin’s throwing error. Morin then hit Mac Williamson with a pitch to put three men on. After Jarrett Parker went down looking, Frandsen crushed a ball to deep center field, nearly driving it out of the park. The ball bounced off the wall and scored all three baserunners, putting Sacramento ahead 4-1 for good.
Tommy Hanson had a short outing tonight, lasting just four innings, but kept the game close. He allowed 1 run on 4 hits while walking 2 and striking out 2. The Bees made Hanson work for it in the fourth inning, as he threw 33 pitches in the frame. He exited after four with the score tied 1-1.
The bullpen picked up where Hanson left off, and combined for 5 strong innings, allowing no runs on 2 hits while walking 2 and striking out 5. Steven Okert threw 1.2 innings and picked up his fourth win while Josh Osich recorded his second save of the season with a perfect bottom of the ninth.
Elsewhere in the organization, Kelby Tomlinson had his major league debut tonight as a pinch hitter for the San Francisco Giants in their game against the Atlanta Braves. Tomlinson was in the River Cats’ lineup Sunday night before getting called up today. After blowing a 6-0 lead, the Giants found themselves tied at seven in the 12th inning. Tomlinson pinch-hit in for Yusmeiro Petit and recorded his first MLB base hit with a line drive single to center field. He ultimately scored on a Buster Posey RBI-single, but the Giants were unable to hold onto the lead, losing 8-7 in 12.
Sacramento will send Clayton Blackburn (6-3, 3.50) to the mound for the tomorrow’s series finale. Blackburn has won his last three starts and gone at least six innings with two earned runs or less in each. Salt Lake City’s starting pitcher is TBD. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. (PT).