TACOMA, Wash. – The Tacoma Rainiers (76-60) dropped their series opener with the Fresno Grizzlies (70-66) by a score of 5-1 on Monday night at Cheney Stadium.
With Reno’s 6-1 victory over Sacramento, the Rainiers lead in the Pacific Northern Division is now 2.5 games with seven contests remaining. Tacoma’s magic number holds steady at five.
Third baseman finished the night 3-for-4 with a double and one run, while catcher Rob Brantly contributed a 2-for-4 performance that included a double.
Fresno jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning via four hits, including an RBI double from Danny Worth and an RBI single off the bat of Colin Moran.
The Grizzlies extended their lead with another two-spot in the top of the second inning. Jon Kemmer’s RBI single with the bases loaded plated one run, while a sacrifice fly from Danny Worth moved the Fresno advantage out to 4-0.
Back-to-back hits to open the top of the fourth inning, capped by an RBI double from Derek Fisher, gave the Grizzlies their largest lead of the night at 5-0.
A double from Shank and a single by left fielder Norichika Aoki put runners on the corners with one out for center fielder Daniel Robertson, who legged out a potential double play ball for a run-scoring fielder’s choice, cutting the Grizzlies lead to 5-1.
Rainiers starting pitcher Zach Lee (0-8) worked 6.0 innings and allowed five runs on 10 hits – he issued on walk and struck out three while taking the loss.
Paul Fry and Al Alburquerque combined to work 3.0 scoreless innings out of the Rainiers bullpen. The two combined for three strikeouts while allowing just one hit.
Tacoma and Fresno continue their series tomorrow, August 30 with Rainiers right-hander Sam Gaviglio (3-2, 3.93) and Grizzlies righty Cesar Valdez (12-1, 3.08) on the mound. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. PT.
All tickets, group outings and suites packages for the 2016 season are available for purchase in-person at the Cheney Stadium Box Office, online at www.tacomarainiers.com, or over the phone at (253) 752-7707. The most up-to-date news and notes about the Rainiers throughout the season can be found by following the Rainiers on Twitter (@RainiersLand) or liking the team on Facebook.