The Sacramento River Cats, leading the Pacific Coast League in homers, scored all four of their runs via the long ball Sunday.
After a pair of solo home runs in the fourth inning, River Cats first baseman Brandon Moss broke a 2-all tie in the ninth inning with a two-run shot for a 4-2 victory over Tacoma in front of 4,981 fans at Cheney Stadium. Sacramento now has 66 home runs through 58 games.
All six runs scored between Tacoma and Sacramento came on four home runs. Prior to Moss’ go-ahead home run to left-center in the ninth, he and Eric Sogard had solo homers to right field in the fourth inning off Rainiers starter Andrew Carraway that gave Sacramento a 2-0 lead.
In the bottom half of the inning, Tacoma’s Carlos Peguero broke up Sacramento starter A.J. Griffin’s no-hitter with a two-run home run to tie it up.
It was a bit of tough luck for Griffin, who in five starts has failed to register a victory for the River Cats (36-22). Sunday was his third no-decision, but he went a season-high seven innings, giving up just two earned runs on two hits. The two teams combined for nine hits.
Carraway, meanwhile, lasted six innings, giving up five hits and two earned runs in a no-decision. He’s 2-1 with a 3.16 ERA in five starts since being brought up from Double-A Jackson on May 10.
“There wasn’t a whole lot of scoring on both sides besides homers,” Tacoma manager Daren Brown said. “I thought Carraway did a nice job. He did what he was supposed to do – give us a chance to win.”
Aside from Peguero’s fourth-inning home run, the only other hit for Tacoma (24-32) was a double by Franklin Gutierrez in the bottom of the sixth. He was stranded at third to end the inning.
Gutierrez went 1-for-2 with a walk before being lifted in the eighth inning in his second injury rehab start in Tacoma. Brown said Gutierrez will be the designated hitter for today’s game.
In two games of this four-game homestand, the Rainiers have managed just eight hits. Eight of their outs Sunday came on fly balls.
Sacramento designated hitter Manny Ramirez was not in Sunday’s lineup because of left leg tightness. Ramirez has played in 10 games with the River Cats in an attempt to return to the major leagues with the Oakland A’s.
Ramirez singled in his only at-bat Saturday in a 6-3 loss.
The two teams continue their four-game series tonight at 7:05. The Rainiers will send left-hander Anthony Vasquez (5-3, 6.22 ERA) against River Cats right-hander Tyson Ross (0-1, 4.00). The game will be broadcast on 850-AM.firstname.lastname@example.org 360-754-5473