Bobby Avila

River Cats Split Double Header With Chihuahuas

The River Cats took the opening game but the Chihuahuas bit back and took the second game of the double header. Sacramento took the series three games to one.

The Sacramento River Cats and El Paso Chihuahuas split a pair of games on Sunday afternoon at Raley Field in West Sacramento, Calif.

In the first game of the double-header, the Cats got a 5-1 win as Blach pitched a complete, seven-inning, game to earn his fifth straight win.

Gorkys Hernandez led off the game with a single for Sacramento but would be taken off the base paths when rehabbing Hunter Pence hit into a 6-4-3 double play.

Andrew Susac, who finished the game 3 for 3, led off the second the same way Hernandez started the first, with a single, and first baseman Travis Ishikawa followed Susac with a home run to right center to give Sacramento the early 2-0 lead. The homer was tallied at 412 feet.

Susac, who now has four-straight multi-hit games saw his average raise from .236 to .268 over those four games. Susac is 10 for 16 in those contests.

In the third, the River Cats added another run after Hernandez singled and stole second and pence singled up the middle to send him home. Hernandez finished the game 2 for 4.

Ty Blach made it through three innings only giving up one hit, but the Chihuahuas started biting at the River Cats’ starting pitcher in the fourth.

Hunter Renfroe’s single got the inning started for El Paso and, with two outs, a pair of singles from third baseman Nick Noonan and Diego Goris would give the Chihuahuas their first run of the inning.

The Chihuahuas once again were nipping at Blach in the fifth inning but the Cats’ pitcher was able to fend them off. After giving up back-to-back singles, Blach got Renfroe to fly out and struck Austin Hedges out to end the inning.

Blach followed his 23-pitch fifth inning with a 10-pitch sixth inning (his shortest of the day) and earned his second complete game of the season with a 1-2-3 seventh. It was Blach’s second complete game of the season.

Ehire Adrianza went 1 for 3 for Sacramento, but it was his presence on the bases that caused a Chihuahua headache. After singling in the fifth, Adrianza stole second and then stole third and when the throw got past Noonan, Adrianza scored to give the Cats a 4-1 lead.

In the second of the double header, Vin Mazzaro took the mound for Sacramento and Mazzaro got into a mess of trouble in the third inning.

After giving up singles to pitcher Eric Yardley and second baseman Carlos Asuaje, El Paso’s center fielder Alexi Amarista bunted into a 2-5 putout.

Hunter Renfroe then stepped to the plate and hit an absolute moon shot to left field.

The three-run blast gave El Paso their first lead of the day.

One pitch later, former River Cat Hector Sanchez sent a line drive homer to right to make it 4-0.

Mazzaro would only last five innings for the Cats and the four runs would be all he allowed.

For El Paso, Eric Yardley made his presence felt, going five innings, allowing two hits and holding the River Cats scoreless while striking out five.

In the sixth, the River Cats tried to make things interesting. El Paso pitcher Daniel Moskos got two quick outs, then walked two batters. Miguel Olivo stepped to the plate but flied out to end the inning.

Jean Machi worked a swift 1-2-3 seventh for Sacramento.

Sacramento had runners on first and second with no outs against pitcher Brandon Morrow, but the River Cats couldn’t mount a comeback as they fell 4-0 and snapped their five-game winning streak, which was their highest this year.

Sacramento has Monday off before facing the Reno Aces in a four-game series in Reno, Nev.


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