For the first time in several games, the Rally Dogs fell short as the Sacramento River Cats ran away from the El Paso Chihuahuas for a 6-3 win Thursday night.
The Chihuahuas had opportunities to cut the lead earlier in the game and even tie it up, but leaving runners on base on several occasions would prove to be the difference in the loss.
“I felt like we swung the bat just as well as they did, they got one more hit, but they got the hits when it really counted with guys on base,” Manager Rod Barajas said. “We didn’t do a good job at that tonight and it’s kind of a fluke thing with us, we always seem to figure out ways to scratch runs across late, but we just couldn’t get that big hit in a big situation tonight.”
In the 3rd, the Cats jumped to a 6-0 lead, forcing the Chihuahuas to again attempt a rally, scoring three runs of their own in the fourth inning
The score would remain 6-3 until the ninth inning, setting the stage for a comeback. Getting hits was not an issue for the Chihuahuas, but they would leave two runners on base, failing to tie the ball game.
“We just left runners on base, still swung the bats, we just didn’t get them at the right time today, you go through walls,” first baseman, Alex Dickerson said. “As long as everybody’s still on the ball, you just move forward from there, it’s baseball.”
Dickerson entered the game one double shy of tying club record of 48 held by former Chihuahua, Cody Decker. It didn’t take Dickerson long to reach the mark, during his first at bat, he hit his the double he needed to tie the record.
“It’s impressive, this guy does a lot of special things. To be hitting four hundred at this point of the season in itself is something pretty amazing,” Barajas said. “He doesn’t try and do too much, he looks at the defense, he sees what the defense is giving him he can hit the ball the other way, he’s been able to combat the other team’s shifts. He was trying to do that.”
Not aware of the record, Dickerson shrugged it off, calling it just another hit.
“I just swing the bat, I do collect a lot of doubles, so it’s not particularly surprising,” Dickerson said. “This franchise has only been around for two years now, it’s just a small part of it.”
The Chihuahuas came into tonight’s game leading the Pacific Coast League with a record of 35-23.
Despite back-to-back losses, the Chihuahuas remain in first place in the PCL with a mark of 35-24 and are home for eight consecutive nights against Sacramento and Albuquerque before visiting the River Cats in Sacramento.
“We’re definitely happy with where we’re at, we’ve been playing solid baseball, pitch better, our offense has been good not great like we were for that one-month stretch,” Barajas said. “We’re swinging the bat well, I think we’re playing solid defense. If we can stay consistent on all three of those aspects, I feel like we’re going to win a lot of games. There’s no reason to hang our heads after two losses.”