FRESNO, Calif. – Wins have been savored by Hector Noesi this season. They haven’t come as frequently as the Tacoma starting pitcher would like.
Noesi lasted seven innings and gave up just two runs on Sunday, earning the win in Tacoma’s 10-2 victory over Fresno. It was his final start of the season.
The victory moved Noesi’s combined won-loss record up to 4-17 this season. He opened the year in the Seattle rotation and went 2-11 before being sent to Tacoma, where he was 1-6 prior to Sunday’s victory.
Making the task more difficult, Tacoma scored six of its 10 runs after Noesi had left the game. The 25-year-old right-hander did most of his pitching with a slim lead to protect.
“We took a 3-0 lead, it was 3-1, it was 3-2, and he had to keep making big pitches,” said Tacoma manager Daren Brown. “It wasn’t 10-2 while he was pitching. He had to keep making pitches, and he did that.”
Tacoma took the early lead when Guillermo Quiroz hit a two-out, two-run single in the second inning against Fresno starter Boof Bonser. Quiroz added a sacrifice fly in the fourth, making it 3-0.
Roger Kieschnick homered for Fresno in the fourth, and the Grizzlies scored another run in the sixth to make it 3-2, loading the bases with one out before Ryan Lollis bounced into an inning-ending double play.
“He was real efficient with his pitches,” Brown said. “He got in a little bit of trouble in the sixth, but he got a double-play ground ball to get out of the inning.”
Tacoma scored seven runs over the final three innings, including five in the top of the ninth to ice the game.
Carlos Triunfel went 4-for-5 with a double and three singles. Quiroz drove in four runs, and Vinnie Catricala hit a two-run triple in the ninth – his first three-base hit of the season.
Brian Moran worked two scoreless innings to end the game. He was credited with a save because he entered the game in the eighth protecting a three-run lead – although that lead expanded to an eight-run lead by the time he recorded the final out.
Infielder Luis Rodriguez (bruised shin) will miss the entire Fresno series. One of Tacoma’s most steady performers all season, Rodriguez finishes with a .296 batting average, 12 home runs, and a .389 on-base percentage. … Albuquerque clinched the PCL’s final playoff spot, locking up first place in the American-South division with a 6-5 win over Omaha.
The 2012 Tacoma Rainiers end their season with a 1:05 p.m. game today in Fresno. Danny Hultzen (1-4, 6.09 ERA) takes the mound for Tacoma against Fresno’s Brian Burres (4-6, 5.34).Mike Curto is the radio broadcaster for the Rainiers.