Kacy Clemens (left) and Kevin Vicuna led the way offensively for the C’s Friday night.
It seemed only fitting that the son of Roger Clemens would pick up his first professional hit against a pitcher named Rogers. Kacy Clemens smacked an two-run, opposite-field single off the short wall in left field against Spokane reliever Jacob Rogers in the eighth inning to snap a 5-5 tie as the Vancouver Canadians downed the Indians 8-5 at Nat Bailey Stadium Friday night.
Kyle Weatherly made his home debut on the mound and his first inning was over in the blink of an eye. He got two first-pitch outs off the bat and needed just three more pitches to record his third groundout of the frame.
The C’s went to work on offence in the bottom half of the first when Kevin Vicuna led off with an infield single to third. He made it to second on a Deiferson Barreto groundout and would score on a base hit by Javier Hernandez off Spokane starter Tyler Phillips.
Spokane would come right back with a pair of runs in the top of the second as Weatherly was betrayed by his defence. He got two fly balls to center field to start the frame but just one out as Reggie Pruitt misplayed a ball off his glove that led to a two-base error. The baserunner Charles Leblanc made it to third on a grounder before scoring on an errant pickoff throw by Hernandez at the plate to tie the game. The next batter, Chad Smith, hammered a ball over the right-center field fence to put the visitors ahead.
Norberto Obeso (right) is greeted by Kevin Vicuna after his home run-saving catch at the left field porch.
It looked like Spokane was going to add to their lead when Kobie Taylor tripled to right field with one out in the third. Weatherly managed to induce a comebacker to the mound before his defence helped him out this time as Norberto Obeso had a home run-saving catch over the short wall of the left field porch.
The C’s would tie the game in the third with Vicuna again singling and scoring on a Hernandez base hit but they left more runs in the table as they left the bases loaded after walks by Obeso and Clemens sandwiched the Hernandez single.
Vancouver would regain the lead by scoring twice in the fourth. Cullen Large recorded his first pro hit with an infield single to second and Riley Adams followed by grounding a single through the left side for his first knock in the pros. Pruitt dropped down a bunt on the third base side and beat it out to load the bases. A bases-loaded walk by Vicuna and a Barreto sacrifice fly plated Large and Adams to put the C’s in front 4-2.
The Indians would answer that rally with one of their own in the fifth. A two-run double by Christian Inoa and another two-bagger by Yohel Pozo gave Spokane a 5-4 lead. Weatherly was replaced by Chris Hall after walking his final batter. Hall settled things down with a strikeout and a flyout to strand the runner.
The Canadians tried to answer back in their half of the fifth when Brock Lundquist walked and stole second but they could not bring him home. They went back at it in the sixth when Pruitt walked and Vicuna singled but Barreto’s bunt to move the runners over was not successful as the Spokane reliever Joe Barlow threw to third to cut down Pruitt. However, Barlow did what Barreto could not and advanced the runners by committing a balk. The C’s took advantage when Obeso grounded out to second to score Vicuna with the tying run.
Meantime, Hall was motoring right along as he retired all eight men he faced thanks in part to a trio of strikeouts. The C’s bats looked to reward Hall’s efforts when Clemens walked and Lundquist singled for his first Northwest League hit. Large could not bunt the runners over successfully as Clemens was forced out at third and the rally went nowhere after that.
William Ouellette took over for Hall in the eighth and got three straight flyball outs on just five pitches where the first two at-bats ended on one pitch. Vicuna again got the ball rolling by drawing a leadoff walk and reached second on a successful bunt by Barreto. Obeso and Hernandez both worked the count to ball four to load the bases to set up Clemens’ game-winning hit that scored Vicuna and Obeso. Lundquist then followed with a base hit to cash in Hernandez to increase the C’s lead to three. Large would walk to re-load the bases but that was all the home side would get.
Ouellette gave up a ground-rule double to start the ninth but he got the next three hitters in order—the last two going down swinging—to pick up his first professional victory.
Vicuna got on base all fives as the leadoff hitter as he went 3-for-3 with two walks, four runs scored and a stolen base. Hernandez had two RBI singles and a walk while Lundquist had the other two-hit night. Clemens reached base three times by adding two walks with his two-run base rap. Pruitt singled, walked and stole his third base of the year. The offence managed to get the job done despite leaving 13 men on after going 5-for-19 with runners in scoring position.
Radar Gun Rundown
Chris Hall compiled 2-2/3 perfect innings of relief against Spokane.
Kyle Weatherly threw as low as 77 miles per hour and as high as 92. His fastball was around 88-90 for most of the evening. Chris Hall had two of his strikeouts on 91 and 80 MPH offering and did reach at least 94. William Ouellette‘s fastball consistently hit 90 and he did touch 91. He threw a curveball that ranged from 74-77 and got one of his strikeouts at the slowest speed. His other offerings ranged from 80 to 84-85 and 88.
Chavez Young played all five of his games with Vancouver on the road.
Cullen Large had worn #30 upon his arrival in Vancouver but is now wearing #6. That number was worn by Chavez Young but the outfielder from Freeport, Bahamas was reassigned to Bluefield. He was 6-for-17 with a double, a triple and five runs batted in but he did strike out seven times.
The C’s continue their weekend set against Spokane at 7:05 pm Saturday and 1:05 pm Sunday at The Nat. Going by the first turn in the rotation, it appears Wilfri Aleton and Dany Jimenez will get the starts. You can catch those games at CanadiansBaseball.com. Saturday’s game is on Shaw TV in Vancouver.
Despite Friday night’s win, Vancouver could not gain any ground on the Tri-City Dust Devils as they won their eighth game in nine tries to keep them two games ahead in the Northwest League North Division. The C’s are 6-3 while Spokane and Everett have the reverse record of 3-6.
The Vancouver Canadians saluted Ian Parmley for his call-up to Toronto.
Congratulations to 2012-2013 C’s outfielder Ian Parmley for his promotion to the Toronto Blue Jays from the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons. He had a .340 on-base percentage and 35 stolen bases during his time with Vancouver. Parmley—wearing #10 for the Jays—was 0-for-3 in his major league debut in Kansas City Friday. He wore #18 and #1 with the C’s.