The Tacoma Rainiers led the Sacramento River Cats for seven innings at Cheney Stadium on Tuesday night, but the bullpen allowed nine runs late in the game and the Rainiers lost, 9-4, in front of a crowd of 5,346.
Rainiers right-hander starter Edgar Olmos pitched five scoreless innings and did not allow a hit. He struck out five, walked three and also hit two batters after throwing 75 pitches.
But the 4-0 lead wasn’t safe as the bullpen combined to give up four walks, two home runs, nine hits and nine earned runs.
Olmos was replaced by Forrest Snow at the start of the sixth inning. Snow threw a scoreless sixth inning, but then walked two batters in the seventh inning to put runners on first and second with one out.
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Former Mariners prospect and current River Cats center fielder Darren Ford then hit a three-run home run to left field. That cut the Rainiers lead to 4-3 and Snow was pulled by manager Pat Listach and replaced by Tony Zych.
Zych then allowed his first earned run since June 21 in the eighth inning when he gave up four runs.
One of those runs was driven in by River Cats second baseman Everth Cabrera, who also scored eventually. Listach said the pitch Cabrera hit for a double was supposed to be a pitchout and a throw to first. But instead it went for a double and an RBI.
“We just made too many mistakes, bottom line,” Listach said.
Zych was replaced by Jose Ramirez in the eighth inning but allowed a two-run home run to Kevin Frandsen in the ninth inning to give the River Cats a comfortable 9-4 lead.
“When you hit two batters, throw a wild pitch and walk seven guys, you’re not supposed to win that game and that’s the bottom line,” Listach said. “That’s too many walks and too many baserunners.”
Tacoma center fielder Ramon Flores hit a two-run homer in the third inning over the right field wall to score third baseman Leury Bonilla and put the Rainiers up, 2-0.
The next run for the Rainers was on a solo homer to left-center field by left fielder Justin Ruggiano to put the Rainiers up, 3-0, in the fourth inning.
The Rainiers tacked on one more run in the fifth inning. Shortstop Chris Taylor hit a double deep to right field to score Flores and give the Rainiers a 4-0 lead.
The Rainiers were shut out and managed just one hit the rest of the way.
Flores has hit safely in his first 11 games with the Rainiers and is hitting .450 after going 2 for 3 with a walk. ... Taylor has reached base safely in his past 16 games. … It was Olmos’ second start of the season and he has yet to give up a run.
The Rainiers will face the River Cats at 11:35 a.m. Wednesday. The Rainiers will start right-hander Jordan Pries (3-1, 8.03 ERA) against River Cats left-hander Ty Blach (9-10, 4.51).