The El Paso Chihuahuas brought the potential winning run to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning Sunday but lost to the Memphis Redbirds 3-1 in the decisive Game 5 of the Pacific Coast League Championship series.
The Redbirds won the third league title in team history and stopped the Chihuahuas from winning back-to-back PCL championships.
Trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the eighth, Hunter Renfroe and Christian Villanueva collected two-out hits, putting runners at the corners with two outs. Memphis first baseman Patrick Wisdom then made a diving play on a line drive hit by Nick Buss, ending the threat.
The Chihuahuas also rallied in the bottom of the ninth, when Diego Goris and Tony Cruz both singled with no outs. But Memphis reliever Josh Lucas then struck out two batters in a row and got a pop out to shortstop to end the series.
Redbirds’ pitching was able to leave 10 Chihuahuas runners on base Sunday. El Paso pitchers held Memphis to only six runs in the final 40 innings of the series.
Box Score | Team Records: Memphis (3-2), El Paso (2-3)
Memphis 3 El Paso 1 – Sunday
WP: Pearce (1-0)
LP: Lloyd (0-1)
S: Lucas (2)
Gallery by Andres Acosta, Chief Photographer, El Paso Herald-Post