Category Archives: Sacramento River Cats

Rough Day at The Office for Sacramento River Cats

Photo by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. – While 7,000-plus took the day off from their office jobs, the Sacramento River Cats found themselves having one of those days as they dropped their matinee contest with the Chihuahuas 15-2 Wednesday afternoon. Right-hander Chris Stratton struggled out of the gate and the Sacramento bullpen was unable to back up their starter as El Paso piled on the hits.

Stratton (0-3, 3.25) struggled early, unable to locate with most of his pitches. The right-hander left a lot of pitches up, and in 4.1 innings of work surrendered 6 runs on 8 hits and 3 walks while striking out 2. The 4.1 inning outing was his second shortest of the season and the 6 runs are a season-high.

Sacramento’s lefty Steven Okert (2-3, 4.69) inherited Stratton’s tight spot with two runners on and one out and was unable to stop the bleeding, issuing three consecutive walks. Okert’s appearance was brief as he was unable to get the second out, allowing 4 runs on 2 hits to give the Chihuahuas a commanding 10-1 lead.

El Paso added five more in the last three innings, scoring off both Cody Hall and Curtis Partch, eventually going up 15-2 in the eighth inning. Outfielder Alex Dickerson led the way for the Chihuahuas, going 5-for-5 with a double, a walk, and 3 RBIs. Overall, the Chihuahuas collected 17 hits, 15 runs, and 8 walks – all season highs for Sacramento pitching.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom for Sacramento, though. River Cats outfielder Juan Perez went 1-for-3 with a triple, his second of the season, and drove in a run. Adam Duvall also picked up an RBI in the contest, his 67th, moving him into fourth in the PCL.

Hard-throwing righty Mike Broadway pitched a perfect ninth inning for the River Cats, lowering his already impressive ERA even further. Broadway has an even 1.00 ERA in 36.0 innings pitched and has compiled a 48:8 K:BB ratio in that time.

San Francisco’s Nori Aoki made what is expected to be his final rehab start with the River Cats, playing seven innings in left field while going 0-for-3 at the plate. The left-handed hitter hit the ball hard in all three at bats, but came up empty in the hit column.

“I’m ready to get back,” he said after the game. “I’m ready for San Francisco and my leg feels as good as it could. I’m excited to play with the Giants again.”

Aoki is expected to join the Giants this Friday for their series against the visiting Oakland A’s.

Before that, the River Cats will close out their four-game series against El Paso tomorrow night at 7:05 p.m at Raley Field. Right-handed pitcher Tommy Hanson (0-2, 7.11) will take the mound against the Chihuahuas’ Daniel McCutchen (4-5, 4.52). The River Cats have faced McCutchen twice this season, and are hitting .265 with 5 runs against him in 8.1 innings.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Aoki Makes River Cats Debut, Sacramento River Cats Fall to El Paso Chihuahuas 6-3

Photo by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif.Mac Williamson hit the Sacramento River Cats’ third inside-the-park home run and San Francisco outfielder Nori Aoki made his River Cats debut on a perfect night at Raley Field. Despite taking a lead in the middle innings, Sacramento was unable to hold on as they dropped game two 6-3 to the El Paso Chihuahuas.

Williamson put the River Cats ahead in the fourth on his second home run and first inside the parker. With Adam Duvall on first, the powerful right-hander crushed one to straight away center that hit high off the wall.

“I thought he was going to catch it, off the bat, just because I hit it too high,” Williamson said. “But I was running hard because I know the wind here can do funny things.”

The ball ricocheted away from El Paso’s center fielder as Williamson chased Duvall around the bases, but even as the 6’4″, 240 outfielder rounded second, he still didn’t think he was going to score. “I looked out and didn’t see him too far from the ball so I thought I’d stop at third. But Maz (Coach Mariano) was waving more emphatically as I came to third so I figured I had a chance.”

The throw came in high and Williamson slid in safe under the tag, giving the River Cats a 2-0 lead. Williamson joins fellow outfielders Jarrett Parker (4/26 vs. Tacoma) and Darren Ford (5/16 at Albuquerque) as the only River Cats players to hit an inside-the-park home run this season.

Also joining the River Cats tonight was San Francisco Giants outfielder Nori Aoki. The left-handed hitter played five innings in left field in the first of his rehab starts with Sacramento, playing in his first game since June 21. After being hit by a pitch on the ankle, Aoki was placed on the disabled list with a broken right fibula on June 26.

“It’s been a month since I played,” Aoki said through his translator after his five innings. “So it was good to gauge where my leg and ankle are at.” The outfielder was all smiles as he told reporters, “I felt good, it feels ready.”

The outfielder was 1-for-3 in his first start, with his hit an infield single to the hole on the right side.

The River Cats and Chihuahuas will resume things early tomorrow behind right-hander Chris Stratton (0-2, 2.42). Stratton is still looking for his first win, despite pitching eight innings in three of his last four starts and allowing just four runs in those three starts. For El Paso, it will be righty Chris Smith (1-5, 4.06). First pitch is set for 12:05 p.m.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Big Third Inning Gives Sacramento River Cats Just Enough in 5-4 Win

WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif.Nik Turley tossed six no-hit innings, striking out a season-high tying eight batters as the Sacramento River Cats took game one of their series against the visiting El Paso Chihuahuas. The River Cats jumped out to a 5-0 lead, which proved to be just enough as they held on to beat the Chihuahuas 5-4.

Turley came out dealing, striking out a season-high tying eight batters in just three innings of work. The lefty had excellent command of his fastball tonight, painting the corners with 93 and keeping the Chihuahuas off balance with his changeup. He retired the first 16 batters he faced before issuing a one-out walk to El Paso’s Mike McCoy in the top of the sixth. Turley concluded his night throwing 6 no-hit innings with 2 walks and 8 strikeouts on 99 pitches (66 strikes).

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In his last four home starts, Turley has allowed just 5 runs (3 earned) in 24.1 innings, good for a 1.10 ERA. He has struck out 26 and walked 6 during that time while only allowing 13 hits. This marks the third shutout start for the lefty this season (10 starts). Overall, Turley is now 4-4 with a 4.89 ERA for the season.

The River Cats struck first with four runs in the bottom of the third. With the bases loaded, Kelby Tomlinson poked a seeing-eye single just past the reach of El Paso’s diving middle infielders, scoring two. Adam Duvall followed with a sacrifice fly and Jarrett Parker capped the inning with an RBI-single.

Sacramento picked up their fifth run in the fifth inning. With one out, Juan Perez hit a hard groundball just inside the first base bag that slowly rolled into shallow right field, allowing Perez to take second on the play. Chihuahuas’ manager Jamie Quirk came out to argue that the ball was fair, ultimately getting ejected by first base umpire Alex Ortiz. Two batters later Perez scored what proved to be the deciding run on Parker’s sacrifice fly.

The River Cats took their 5-0 lead into the eighth, but the Chihuahuas staged a late-game rally, scoring four times off Sacramento relievers Steven Okert and Erik Cordier. Two hits plus a River Cats error and wild pitch loaded the bases for El Paso before a sacrifice fly, RBI-single, and two-run double made it a 5-4 game. All four of El Paso’s runs in the inning were unearned.

Sacramento will send lefty Ty Blach (8-8, 4.23) to the mound for tomorrow night’s contest. The southpaw is currently second in the PCL in innings pitched, with 110.2, trailing only Nahville’s Barry Zito (116 IP). Opposite Blach will be El Paso’s left-hander Jason Lane (7-6, 5.28). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Sacramento River Cats Take One From Tacoma Rainiers 7-6

All photos by Shawn Jonas

TACOMA, Wash. – The Sacramento River Cats locked down a victory in the first series back from the All-Star Break with a 7-6 win over the Tacoma Rainiers Sunday afternoon. Despite a season-high four errors, Sacramento was successful due in large part to a red hot Adam Duvall and his recent home run tear.

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Duvall continues to pile on home runs to his league-leading total, which has now reached 23. In his first at bat, Duvall launched one off Rainier’s starter James Gillheeney, bringing Lollis home with him for an early 2-0 lead. He added another in the fifth inning with a solo blast to tie the game after a big fourth inning from Tacoma. Duvall finished his day going 2-for-5 with two home runs and three RBI.

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Sandwiched between Duvall’s homers, Kelby Tomlinson knocked one out in the third inning for his second Triple-A home run. Ryan Lollis’ sixth-inning RBI-single gave Sacramento their first run of the day that did not come via the long ball. A wild pitch allowed Carlos Triunfel to add another run for a two-run lead over Tacoma.

In the eighth inning, Darren Ford stole both second and third base after drawing a walk, setting the scene for Triunfel’s sacrifice fly to send him home. Ford now has a team-leading 21 stolen bases on the year. Tacoma cut the deficit to just one run in their half of the eighth, but Sacramento hung on for the win.

Errors plagued the River Cats once again with a season-high of four in today’s game. Two of the errors came from Triunfel in back-to-back plays. River Cats pitchers did well to pitch around the miscues, however, as only one unearned run ran across. The River Cats are now 8-20 overall in games where two or more errors are committed.

Clayton Blackburn (4-3, 4.25) was hit around a bit today, allowing 5 runs (4 earned) on 11 hits while walking none and striking out 2 in 6 innings of work. Curtis Partch and Mike Broadway pitched in relief and fared better on the mound than Blackburn. They allowed just one run while striking out four. Blackburn still picked up a win, while Broadway recorded his eighth save of the season.

The River Cats return home to Raley Field to start a four-game set with the El Paso Chihuahuas tomorrow. Sacramento’s starting pitcher will be lefty Nik Turley (3-4, 5.56), while El Paso will send out Bryan Rodriguez (0-0, 0.00) for his first career Triple-A game. Turley took a no decision in his last start, giving up 3 runs (1 earned) in 6 innings at home against the Fresno Grizzlies. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Sacramento River Cats Lose To Rival Fresno Grizzlies 3-5

All photos by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA. – The Sacramento River Cats closed out the first half of the season this afternoon with a 5-3 loss to the rival Fresno Grizzlies at Raley Field. Adam Duvall ended his first half on a high note as he prepares to head to the 2015 Triple-A All-Star Game in Omaha this week.

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Duvall followed up on his record-tying three-homer night with a solid 2-for-4 afternoon. The first baseman hit his 21st double of the season, which is tops on the River Cats and tied for 13th in the PCL. Overall, Duvall has 43 extra-base hits, third most in the league.

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The 2015 All-Star closed out the first half hitting .467 (7-for-15) in his last four games with 4 home runs and 7 RBIs. Since the start of July, Duvall is hitting .353 (18-for-51) with 4 homers, 4 doubles, 11 RBIs, and 10 runs scored.

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Kelby Tomlinson, Kevin Frandsen, and Guillermo Quiroz each drove in a run for the River Cats. Frandsen is also taking a hot streak into the break. The infielder is hitting .500 (6-for-12) with a double, triple, and 5 RBIs in his last five games.

On the opposite side of the ball, River Cats’ starter Tommy Hanson never quite had it Sunday afternoon. The right-hander lasted just 3.2 innings while throwing 103 pitches (59 strikes). He did keep the River Cats in the game, though, giving up 3 runs on 5 hits and 4 walks while striking out 6.

Cody Hall, Mike Broadway, and Erik Cordier combined for 5.1 innings of relief out of the River Cats’ bullpen. The trio, who have an average fastball velocity of 96 mph, allowed 2 runs (1 earned) while scattering 5 hits and 4 walks with 6 strikeouts. Broadway lowered his already excellent ERA to 1.10 and struck out 3, increasing his K:BB ratio to an impressive 43:8 in 32.2 innings.

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The River Cats are off until Thursday, July 16, when they’ll head north to take on the Tacoma Rainiers. The River Cats are 4-4 against Tacoma this season and will face the Rainiers for the first time this season at Cheney Stadium in the Evergreen State. First pitch Thursday is set for 7:05 p.m.

Before then, the Triple-A All Star Break kicks off tomorrow, Monday, July 13 with the Home Run Derby. An off-day on Tuesday will be followed by Wednesday’s All-Star Game. The derby starts at 5:35 p.m. (PT) and the All-Star Game gets underway Wednesday at 5:05 p.m. (PT).

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Sacramento River Cats Fall to Fresno Grizzlies 7-3

All photos by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA. – It was all Adam Duvall for the Sacramento River Cats Saturday night at Raley Field. The 2015 All-Star was 3-for-4 with three home runs in his first three at bats. It was the first three-homer game of Duvall’s professional career and the first such game for the River Cats this season.

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“I felt like I was picking it up early tonight, so when I got one I wanted to hit I was able to get the barrel on it,” Duvall said after the game. “I’ve been working lately on getting my hips square to the plate so I can drive the ball, pull the bat through the zone instead of whipping it.”

The corner infielder entered the night tied for first in the PCL with 17 home runs before launching his second inning shot to left field on a 1-2 pitch. His second home run was a mammoth shot to left, landing halfway back atop the River Cats clubhouse. His third homer led off the seventh inning, just clearing the left field wall.

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“I had to kind of take a step back to move forward,” explained Duvall, whose batting average had dropped rapidly in June before slowly climbing in recent weeks. “I was landing open a lot and I think I overcompensated recently, and was landing super closed. But tonight it felt right, like I was getting back to square.”

The All-Star is now hitting .267 with 20 home runs and 60 RBIs this season.

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Duvall is the first River Cats hitter to homer three times in a game this season and tied the franchise-high for a single game. The feat was last achieved almost exactly a year ago by outfielder Shane Peterson, who hit three home runs in a 10-7 River Cats win on July 17, 2014.

The River Cats were unable to get much else going, getting only two other hits to go with Duvall’s homers. Jarrett Parker doubled over the head of the centerfielder and Trevor Brown singled in the fifth as the River Cats dropped their second straight to the Fresno Grizzlies, 7-3. River Cats pitchers walked a season-high eight and allowed the Grizzlies to steal eight bases. The eight stolen bases allowed are a franchise-high for Sacramento.

The two teams will meet one more time at Raley Field in tomorrow afternoon’s finale. Tommy Hanson (0-1, 4.50) will make his first home start for Sacramento as he takes on Fresno’s righty Mike Hauschild (2-2, 4.05). First pitch is set for 1:05 p.m. and gates will open at 11:00 a.m. for Fin Fest.

Sacramento River Cats Fall Short to Fresno Grizzlies 8-5

Photos by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA. – The Sacramento River Cats put together the beginnings of a comeback in the bottom of the ninth inning, loading the bases with no outs, but were unable to push through on Star Wars night at Raley Field as they fell 8-5 to the Fresno Grizzlies. Kevin Frandsen continued to stay hot at the plate, driving in three for the River Cats in the loss.

Frandsen was the hero of last night’s 15-inning game, delivering a walk-off RBI-double to send the River Cats home with the win. He did what he could to propel the team again tonight, going 2-for-2 with a walk, a sacrifice fly, a triple, and 3 RBIs. The triple was Frandsen’s first of the season and gave him two extra-base hits and four RBIs in his last four at bats.

Frandsen’s triple drove in two as a part of a four-run eighth inning and was also the first extra-base hit of the night. Prior to the three-bagger, the River Cats and Grizzlies had combined for 18 hits – all singles.

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One of those singles belonged to Kelby Tomlinson. With a first-inning base knock to center, the second baseman extended his hit streak to nine. Tomlinson was 2-for-5 overall and has now reached base safely in 13 straight games. He is hitting .338 since joining Sacramento on June 26.

The Grizzlies scored 5 of their 8 runs in the seventh inning, jumping out to an 8-1 lead over the River Cats. 5 singles, a walk, and a River Cats error contributed to Fresno’s big inning.

Nik Turley (3-4, 5.56) took his fourth loss of the season, giving up 3 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits and a walk with 4 strikeouts in 6.0 innings of work. Turley’s ERA over his last five starts has been a spectacular 2.66 and he has posted a 23:8 K:BB ratio. Since rejoining the River Cats rotation on June 2, Turley is 3-3 with a 4.76 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 39.2 innings.

Left-hander Luis Cruz (5-4, 4.52) picked up the win, throwing 6 innings and allowing 1 run on 5 hits and 2 walks with 3 strikeouts. Kevin Chapman recorded the save, his seventh of the season.
Jack Snodgrass (1-1, 3.24) will make his second start for the River Cats tomorrow night. Snodgrass has made six relief appearances since joining Sacramento, including 3 innings of 1-run ball against the Grizzlies. Opposite him will be right-hander Brady Rodgers (7-4, 4.39) for Fresno. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Prior to tomorrow’s River Cats first game, the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team will play against the Sacramento All-Stars. Game time is set for 3:30 p.m. and gates will open at 3:00 p.m.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Sacramento River Cats Blow Early Lead, Come Back to Win In Extras 5-4

All Photos by Shawn Jonas

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA. – It was a roller coaster kind of night for the Sacramento River Cats as they defeated the Fresno Grizzlies 5-4 with a walk-off in extra innings. After blowing an early lead, Sacramento came back to force extra frames before walking things off in the bottom of the 13th on a Kevin Frandsen RBI-double.

With two outs in the 13th, the River Cats finally broke through on Frandsen’s walk-off double to left-center. Two batters earlier, Kelby Tomlinson picked up his second hit of the night, a two-out single to center, before stealing second. With first base open, the Grizzlies elected to intentionally walk Ryan Lollis and face Frandsen. Frandsen, who entered the game in the seventh inning in place of the ejected Adam Duvall, sent a double into the gap to score Tomlinson and send the River Cats home with their sixth extra-inning win of the season.

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Sacramento staked themselves to an early lead as Duvall mashed a three-run home run in the bottom of the first. The homer was Duvall’s 17th of the season, making him the active home run leader in the PCL.

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The Grizzlies got two back in the next inning on a two-run homer from Tyler White. The two runs were the only two that River Cats’ starter Clayton Blackburn (3-3, 4.07) would allow. The right-hander threw 5.2 innings, giving up the 2 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks. He struck out 7.

Things took a turn for the worse in the seventh, as the Grizzlies scored twice to take a 4-3 lead. Duvall was also ejected in the inning after arguing with first base umpire Adam Schwarz. Receiving a throw at first, Duvall was ruled to have missed the bag and Fresno’s Robbie Grossman was called safe.

The River Cats countered again, getting a run in the eighth to tie the game at four. After Carlos Triunfel roped a triple off the top of the wall in left-center, he scored on a sacrifice fly by Ronny Cedeno.

The bullpen was excellent for Sacramento in the win as five different pitchers put together 7.1 innings of two-run ball. Mike Broadway and Brett Bochy allowed just two baserunners in four innings of work from the 10th through 13th innings.

Left-hander Nik Turley (3-3, 6.21) gets the nod for Sacramento tomorrow night. The southpaw beat Fresno in their first meeting, throwing 6 shutout innings at Chukchansi Park. For the Grizzlies, it’ll be fellow southpaw Luis Cruz (4-4, 4.87). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Game Recap Courtesy of the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Sacramento River Cats Splits Doubleheader Against Reno Aces

RENO, Nev. – After a surprise rain storm postponed last night’s scheduled game, the Sacramento River Cats and Reno Aces competed in a doubleheader Tuesday night. After a two and a half hour rain delay set back first pitch of game one, the River Cats finally got things under way, splitting the two games with Reno (L, 1-2; W, 6-2).

Game One

Newly acquired Tommy Hanson (0-1, 4.50) made his River Cats debut in the opening game. Hanson struggled out of the gate, allowing three two-out walks in the first before escaping the bases-loaded jam. He finished his first Sacramento start going 4 innings, allowing 2 runs on 7 hits, walking 5 and striking out 2.

Sacramento had chances to strike, loading the bases with two gone in the third, but a groundout to shortstop ended the threat. Finally, in the seventh and final inning of game one, the River Cats converted on a rally as with runners on the corners and nobody out, Carlos Triunfel grounded out to drive in Sacramento’s first and only run of the night.

Game Two

The River Cats finally got some offense going, as they struck for their first run in the fourth. With the bases loaded, Ty Blach helped his cause by hitting a sacrifice fly. Sacramento again loaded the bases in the fifth, and after a walk to Brett Jackson and a hit by pitch by Trevor Brown, the River Cats held a comfortable 3-0 lead. They added another run on an Adam Duvall sacrifice fly in the sixth, and two more in the seventh on a Trevor Brown RBI-double and a Darren Ford RBI-single.

Blach (7-8, 4.21) kept to his winning ways on Tuesday, recording his second consecutive win. He allowed just 2 runs on 6 hits, walking 1 and striking out 5 over 5.1 innings of work. The late start had no effect on Blach, as the second game of the double header began at after 10:30 p.m. and ended early Wednesday morning at 12:55 a.m.
This was the first doubleheader the River Cats have played in the 2015 season. Last season, the River Cats competed in three, winning two and splitting one.

The River Cats now head home to the warm weather of Sacramento to begin a five game series with the rival Fresno Grizzlies. The series will lead into the 2015 All Star Break, which occurs July 13-15. Pitching for the River Cats tomorrow will be right-hander Chris Stratton. Stratton is coming off of back-to-back 8 inning starts in which he allowed no runs and received no decisions in both. Opposing him will be Mark Appel (0-1, 10.38). First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

Recap Courtesy to the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations

Raley Field Welcomes Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team

Unique Doubleheader Saturday July 11 Includes Both WWAST and River Cats Games

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento River Cats are honored to welcome the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team (WWAST) to Raley Field this Saturday, July 11. The WWAST will take on the Sacramento All-Stars at 3:30 p.m. in game one of a Raley Field doubleheader. The River Cats will then host their division rivals, the Fresno Grizzlies, at 7:05 p.m.

The WWAST is made up of brave men and women, both veterans and active duty soldiers, from four of the five service branches, who have sustained injuries resulting in amputation. Through extensive rehabilitation, they have become competitive athletes again, playing against able-bodied teams in competitive, celebrity, and exhibition games across the country.

In what is their first ever visit to Raley Field, the WWAST will take on the Sacramento All-Stars, a team composed of local personalities and celebrities, including retired Sacramento Kings Bobby Jackson, former NFL player Adrian Ross, Sacramento Kings Announcer Scott Moak, KCRA Sports Anchor Lisa Gonzales, Carmichael Dave of CBS Radio, and more. The two teams are set to take the field at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 11 following a special Missing Man Formation flyover.

Following the WWAST/Sacramento All-Stars game, the “best rivalry in baseball” will continue as the River Cats will host the division-leading Fresno Grizzlies in game four of a five-game set. This will be the final weekend of the 2015 season in which Sacramento will host the Highway 99 Series, as the two teams will square off for a final time in August at Chukchansi Park in Fresno. First pitch for part two of the doubleheader is set for 7:05 p.m.
In addition to functioning as an outlet for veterans and active duty soldiers to compete athletically, the WWAST uses these cross-country games to raise funds for the WWAST Kids Camp, medical research, and rehabilitation equipment. In its third year, the WWAST Kids Camp seeks to empower young boys and girls with amputations. The camps are led by WWAST players, who work as coaches and mentors, helping teach not just softball skills, but more importantly life skills as well.

Tickets for the doubleheader are still available and can be purchased by visiting www.rivercats.com/gamelink, selecting “Wounded Warriors Amputee Softball Game” and entering the promo code WWAST.

Courtesy to the Sacramento River Cats Media Relations