Drew Hutchison served up six runs in just two frames in Salt River's 7-4 downing at Scottsdale. With the loss, the Rafters (12-12) were unable to take advantage of first-place Mesa's defeat, remaining 1 ½ back with an elimination number of six.
Hutchison (L, 1-1) yielded a tally in the first plus five more in his second and final inning of work. The runs were the result of seven hits, including a two-run bomb, and one walk. The Toronto hurler struck out two.
Lee Stoppelman, the fifth Rafters pitcher, put the first two on in the eighth before making like Houdini and escaping. The Missouri native issued a free pass and single to right but notched two swinging K's and a ground out to short that squashed the threat. A 24th round selection in the June 2012 First-Year Player Draft, Stoppelman has been scored upon only once in his seven appearances for Salt River.
James Ramsey, hitless for November, was moved out of his regular lead-off slot in the batting order to fifth but the results remained the same. The centerfielder initially reached base on a grounder to third but the play was reviewed and overturned via an instant replay challenge for the final out of the first.
Ramsey struck out swinging to end the third then fanned out via a foul tip to strand the bases loaded in the fifth. The 23-year-old finally reached on a base-on-balls that advanced a runner to second in the eighth but was eventually left just 90 feet away from home plate.
Thursday's game: vs. Scottsdale (10-14), 8:08 pm CT, Bo Schultz (2-0, 1.93) - MLB Network
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