In his first full Triple-A season, the four-year professional has enjoyed a career year to pace a Chihuahuas offense that has scored the second-most runs the league.
The Sacramento River Cats beat the El Paso Chihuahuas 5-1 in Game 1 of Sunday’s doubleheader, handing El Paso its third loss in a row. It sealed the Chihuahuas’ second series loss out of the last three, after dropping only two series in the previous two months.
Travis Ishikawa hit a two-run home run and rehabbing San Francisco Giants’ outfielder Hunter Pence hit an RBI single to highlight the River Cats’ scoring. El Paso’s lone run came on an RBI single by Diego Goris in the top of the fourth.
Game 1 was the second consecutive contest that the Chihuahuas did not produce an extra-base hit, after 95 straight games previously with at least one extra-base hit. Ty Blach pitched a seven-inning complete game in the River Cats win, the second time he’s gone the distance this season.
Carlos Asuaje had two hits in the loss for El Paso.
In game two, the Chihuahuas held the River Cats to only three hits in a 4-0 win, El Paso’s sixth shutout of the season.
All four runs came on back-to-back swings, when Hector Sanchez hit a solo home run one pitch after Hunter Renfroe’s three-run home run in the fourth inning. Renfroe’s longball was his league-leading 25th of the season and his 87 RBIs also lead the Pacific Coast League.
The last time the Chihuahuas hit back-to-back home runs, it was also in Sacramento, when Austin Hedges, Jabari Blash and Casey McElroy hit three straight homers on June 19 at Raley Field.
Eric Yardley tossed five scoreless innings on only 53 pitches in a spot start. Daniel Moskos and Brandon Morrow threw a scoreless inning each to complete the shutout. El Paso is now 3-3 in doubleheader games this season.
The Chihuahuas do not play on Monday.
Team Records: El Paso (58-44), Sacramento (46-57)
Next Game: Tuesday at 8:05 pm vs. Tacoma at Cheney Stadium. RHP Carlos Pimentel (9-5, 6.04) vs. Tacoma TBA. Game coverage begins at 8:00 p.m. on 600 ESPN El Paso and www.epchihuahuas.com
Sacramento 5 El Paso 1 – Sunday – Game 1
WP: Blach (11-5)
LP: Northcraft (4-1)
El Paso 4 Sacramento 0 – Sunday – Game 2
WP: Yardley (3-0)
LP: Mazzaro (2-2)