Rainiers rally, lead, then falter late to 51s

Contributing writerMay 14, 2014 

LAS VEGAS — Like so many other visitors to Las Vegas, the Tacoma Rainiers were dealt a couple of bad hands during their trip to Southern Nevada and left town on a three-game losing streak after a 5-4 loss to the 51s in 10 innings on Tuesday at Cashman Field.

The Rainiers, who rallied to tie the game with two runs in the eighth and one in the ninth, took a 4-3 lead in the 10th, when Ty Kelly delivered a leadoff double and scored on Jesus Montero’s single.

But Logan Bawcom couldn’t close it out, surrendering three straight one-out hits. After striking out Omar Quintanilla to start the 10th, he gave up a single to Josh Satin, a game-tying double to Allan Dykstra and a game-ending single to Zach Lutz on an 0-2 pitch.

“We kept fighting, got back into it and got ahead,” Tacoma manager Roy Howell said. “We just came up short.”

The Rainiers (18-18) lost three of four in their series against Pacific Coast League-leading Las Vegas (28-11) but could’ve easily won three of four. They suffered an 8-3 loss Sunday in which starter Jordan Pries threw 5 innings of no-hit ball before departing after 102 pitches.

“That’s a tribute to a good ballclub over there,” Howell said. “When you’re going good, you get the breaks and you get the big hit at the right time.

“We’re trying to play catch-up a lot. Guys are doing well. They just had a little bit more than we did today.”

Tacoma was shut out for the first seven innings by 51s starter Logan Verrett, who left after allowing consecutive one-out singles in the eighth to Abraham Almonte (3-for-4) and Chris Taylor (2-for-5).

The runners advanced to second and third on a throwing error by Quintanilla before Kelly greeted reliever Buddy Carlyle with a two-run single to make it 3-2.

The Rainiers tied it in the ninth, when Gabriel Noriega scored on a wild pitch by Vic Black on a close play at the plate.

Tacoma right-hander Matt Palmer pitched well in his season debut, allowing a solo homer to Matt den Dekker in 22/3 innings before leaving after 52 pitches, his limit. Palmer, who had three strikeouts and two walks, started the season on the disabled list with a sore shoulder.

“He makes one mistake and the guy hits a home run,” Howell said. “That’s how delicate our game is and how hard it is to play.”

ON TAP

The Rainiers are off Wednesday before beginning a four-game series in Sacramento at 7:05 p.m. Thursday.

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