Gordon Beckham’s walk-off double in the bottom of the 10th inning gave the Tacoma Rainiers a memorable 3-2 win to go along with the beginning of Robinson Cano’s return from his 80-game suspension.
Colorado Springs took a 2-1 lead on a sacrifice fly in its half of the 10th, and Tacoma’s first two batters of the bottom of the frame struck out to back the Rainiers up against the wall. The Sky Sox walked Ben Gamel intentionally, bringing Beckham up with the game on his bat.
Beckham didn’t wait around, slicing the first pitch he saw to the wall in right.
“I was ready to hit,” Beckham said after the game. “He threw a curveball over the middle of the plate, and I got it.”
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Seth Mejias-Brean scored easily, and with a two-out jump, Gamel was right behind him.
Beckham finished 2-for-5 with all three of Tacoma’s RBIs Monday night. Earlier in the evening, he tied the game up at 1-1 in the bottom of the third inning, knocking in Gamel with a single. Gamel went 2-for-4 with a walk and a pair of runs scored.
Cano went 1-for-3 with a walk in his return, lining a ball into left field for a single in his first at-bat. After a pair of groundouts, he walked in the bottom of the eighth before being pulled for a pinch runner.
Ross Detwiler went into the seventh inning for the first time in over a month, going 6 ⅓ and allowing one run on seven hits. Tyler Higgins got the Rainiers through the eighth, striking out one batter. Ryan Cook struck out two in an easy ninth.
Shawn Armstrong didn’t allow a hit in the 10th, but a critical wild pitch let Berry get to third, allowing him to score the go-ahead run later in the frame. Despite the unearned run, though, Armstrong earned his second win of the season.
Tacoma had a chance to win it in the bottom of the ninth, when David Freitas led off with a double, but a batter later, Mejias-Brean’s soft liner to center was snagged by Keon Broxton, who got up and doubled off pinch runner John Andreoli to end the threat.
The Rainiers’ second-to-last homestand of the season will conclude Tuesday at 11:30 a.m., with Rob Whalen set to toe the rubber for Tacoma. With their win today, Tacoma retakes the lead in its all-time series against Colorado Springs, 174-173. Tomorrow will be the last matchup between the two teams before the Sky Sox move to San Antonio next year.