Portland can't buy a run in 6-1 loss

Portland, OR – Eighty degree weather during the day in Portland led to a perfect evening for baseball, as the Beavers played host to the Tacoma Rainiers for the second of a five game series. But perfect weather doesn't equal perfect baseball for the home team, as a struggling starting pitcher and errant plays in the field led to 6-1 loss.

Portland starting pitcher Tim Stauffer had given up 35 hits in his last 30.1 innings coming into the Thursday night's game against Tacoma. In his last start, he picked up his third loss of the season by allowing ten hits and six runs in six innings. Thursday was no different and it was evident right from the get-go, when he served up his first pitch of the game on a platter to Nick Green, who belted it off the scoreboard in left-center for a homerun.

Stauffer picked up his fourth loss, as he would give up 11 more hits and four more runs before leaving in the eighth inning, down 5-1.

His counterpart for the Rainiers, starting pitcher Horacio Ramirez, did quite the opposite. Aside from Craig Stansberry's homer to left, which tied the game at one in the first inning, Ramirez was un-hittable, as he sat the Beavers down in order in four of his six innings of work, and never faced more than four batters per inning. He walked one and gave up just the one hit to Stansberry.

A new look outfield didn't help things for Stauffer. New to the roster and making just their second start at home in left and centerfield, respectively, were Mike Baxter and Drew Macias. Mike Sansoe was also making only his second start at home as a right fielder for the Beavers.

In the second inning, Macias misplayed a ball hit by Wladimir Balentien, most likely due to being unaccustomed to the confines of PGE Park. The ball dropped on the warning track behind Macias and Balentien coasted into third safely with a triple. He would later score.

In the fourth, Sansoe had trouble playing the caroms in the right field corner on a hit by Jeff Clement, which led to another triple. He would score the first of three Rainier runs in the inning. The other two came on a homerun by Sebastien Boucher.

Steve Watkins struggled through the ninth, giving up a double and two walks that led to the sixth run for the Rainiers. The double came on a bloop hit to center by Balentien that was knocked down by Macias diving forward. The ball skipped out of his glove, allowing Adam Jones to score from first base on the play.

The Beavers put runners in scoring position in each of the final three innings against the Rainiers bullpen, but still weren't even able to plate one more run, including not being able to score on back-to-back doubles by Royce Huffman and Drew Macias in the bottom of the ninth inning. It was just one of those nights for the Beavers. The two teams face off again Friday night at 7:05 pm.

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