Lots of excitement last night as three Diamondback affiliates were in action in playoffs or must-win games. Two went well and one did not. Starting at the top, Trevor Bauer started Game 1 of Reno's best-of-five playoff series with Sacramento and he was...uh, Trevor Bauer. One unearned run, 3 hits, 5 walks, 6 strikeouts in 5 innings. Sound familiar? Bauer struggled to find the plate a lot but Sacramento struggled to hit him when he did as Reno won 3-1 to take a 1-0 series lead. The Reno relief corps was simply stellar as four separate relievers combined to pitch 4 shutout innings on 2 hits, no walks and 7 strikeouts. In other important action, Yakima lost the deciding Game 3 of their playoff series with Boise 3-2 and their season is officially over. Up in Missoula, the Osprey beat Billings in dramatic fashion 3-2 to set up a winner-take-all season-ending game to determine the division winner. The drama came off the bat of 1st-year outfielder Alex Glenn who hit a walk-off 2-run homer with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th for the 1-run victory. It doesn't get any more dramatic than that.
3 Stars: Alex Glenn, Missoula 1 for 4, 1 R, 3 RBI, Walk-off HR in 9th
2 Stars: Trevor Bauer, Reno 5 IP, 3 H, 5 BB, 6 K, 1 R, 0 ER, W (1-0)
1 Star: Justin Thompson, Missoula 2 IP, 1 H, 0 BB, 3 K, 0 ER, W (1-0)
0 Stars: Ryan Budde, Reno 0 for 4, 3 K
Game summaries after the jump.
Triple A: Reno 3 Sacramento 1. Trevor Bauer was his usual self last night, which isn't a bad thing. The control issues remained, but he didn't have a problem pitching with men on base and got himself out of jams on more than one occasion. He started the 1st with a flyout and a strikeout, then allowed a single and walked two to load the bases before getting a called strike three for the final out. In the 4th he started with 2 singles sandwiched around a strikeout and a Brent Clevlen error that put runners at 2nd and 3rd with one out. Bauer struck out the next batter and a Tyler Bortnick error let in a run before getting a final out ground ball. In the 5th, he got the first two batters before walking the next two, then got a swinging strikeout to end the threat and his night was finished. Reno got their first two runs on a fielding error followed by an A.J. Pollock single, a Tyler Kuhn double and Mike Jacobs sacrifice fly.
That was all Reno needed as the bullpen of Joe Patterson, Sam Demel, Jensen Lewis and Jonathan Albaladejo was just about perfect with 4 shutout innings to close out the win. Tyler Bortnick added an insurance run in the 9th with a solo home run. On a side note, Visalia's Keon Broxton was added to the Reno playoff roster and entered the game as a late-inning defensive replacement.
Short Season A: Yakima 2 Boise 3. The Bears terrific season came to an end as they lost a heart-breaker in the deciding game of their 3-game playoff series 3-2. Young Jose Martinez was given the tough assignment of starting such a crucial game, and while it wouldn't be fair to say he wilted under the pressure, he wasn't terrific either, which is probably what was needed. He pitched 4.1 innings allowing 3 runs on 4 hits and 4 walks while striking out 4. Boise starter, and fellow Dominican, Felix Pena was outstanding as he tossed 7 shutout innings on 5 hits. Once Pena left the game Yakima tried to engineer a comeback in the 8th. Josh Parr singled, Daniel Poma walked, and Yogey Perez-Ramos reached on an error that scored Parr. Poma then scored on a Kevin Medrano groundout, but Joseph Loftus struck out with Ramos on third and Jacob House grounded out to 2nd to end the inning. The Bears went down 1, 2, 3 in the 9th and their season was over. It was a tough series to lose and it's hard to imagine that one of Yakima's most consistent starters, Alexander Carreras wasn't scheduled correctly to get one of the starts in this series. Putting 18-year-old Martinez in that situation was asking a lot considering he's only been with the team less than 2 weeks.
Rookie: Missoula 3 Billings 2. It shouldn't be any other way as Missoula and Billings will square off tonight in a winner-take-all showdown game thanks to the heroics of one Alex Glenn. All Glenn did was come to the plate in the bottom of the 9th with 2 outs, a runner on second, trailing 2-1 with the season hanging in the balance, and hit a 2-run homer to left field for a wild walk-off finish. Chris Thomas started for Missoula and was very good pitching into the 5th inning allowing just 1 run on 5 hits and a walk while striking out 5. Billings added a solo home run in the 7th to lead 2-0 and Missoula got one back in the 7th on a Michael Perez double, a wild pitch and a groundout. Justin Thompson pitched 2 shutout innings in the 8th and 9th to set up Glenn's season-saving blast. It's Ross Gerdeman's turn in the rotation for the huge game tonight and that has me very nervous as he has been Missoula's least effective starter all year. They don't really have any other options as Missoula has gone with Gerdeman all year so he's in the hot seat whether he likes it or not. I imagine he'll be on a short leash.