Brock Lundquist (#31) is mobbed by his teammates after hitting a home run Monday night.
The Vancouver Canadians are just one win away from clinching the Northwest League championship as they held off the Eugene Emeralds 2-1 at Nat Bailey Stadium Monday night. The win gives the C’s a 2-1 series lead in the best-of-five championship final and their third straight 2-1 victory at home in the postseason.
Nate Pearson got the start in this one but encountered an early problem when Eugene leadoff hitter Zach Davis lined a 2-2 pitch into left field. After Prince George, BC native Jared Young flied out to right, Davis managed to steal second easily when catcher Matt Morgan was unable to grip the ball. He then took advantage of a Pearson curveball to steal third. Pearson struck out Austin Filiere swinging for the second out but he threw a wild pitch that allowed Davis to race home with the game’s first run. Morgan was visibly frustrated as he slammed his hand into the ground as he tried in vain to block the pitch. Though Michael Cruz would later double to right, Pearson fielded a comebacker off the bat of Will Remillard to limit the damage.
Pearson settled down with a 1-2-3 second inning that saw him ring up Jhonny Bethencourt on strikes before getting Gustavo Polanco swinging. The C’s got their first hit off Cory Abbott when Kacy Clemens found a hole on the right side of the infield for a single but that was all they would managed as Abbott struck out Brock Lundquist and Norberto Obeso before Samad Taylor lined out to third.
Nate Pearson limited Eugene to one run over four innings in Game 3.
Pearson induced a flyball from Chris Singleton to start the third but Davis got a hustle double after lining one to left field and turning on the jets rounding first and beating the throw from Obeso. Davis moved up to third when Young grounded out to second. Pearson had trouble closing things out as eight of his next nine pitches were outside the strike zone, resulting in walks to Filiere and Cruz to load up the bases. A visit to the mound from pitching coach Jim Czajkowski followed and whatever he told Pearson did the trick as Pearson’s next pitch led to a ground ball to third from Remillard with Mattingly Romanin racing to the bag to force out Filiere to escape the jam.
Romanin began the third with a leadoff walk but he was thrown out trying to steal second as Remillard was able to block a pitch in the dirt and quickly pounced on the ball to nail Romanin. Morgan would draw the second walk of the inning but he would be forced out on a Reggie Pruitt fielder’s choice to short. Pruitt tried to get into scoring position by stealing second but he was nailed by Remillard. C’s manager Rich Miller came out to argue the call but the inning was over.
Chavez Young reached on an error and was awarded third base before coming in to score the C’s first run.
Pearson enjoyed his second clean inning of the night in the fourth in which he struck out Bethencourt. Eugene brought in a new pitcher in the bottom of the frame in Rollie Lacy. Lacy got Chavez Young in an early hole at 0-2 but Young was able to reach on a Bethencourt error at short as Bethencourt’s throw pulled Cruz off the first base bag. Logan Warmoth then lined out to third but the C’s caught a break when Filiere tried to double off Young at first. Instead, the throw sailed wide of first and then allowed Young to advance all the way to third base. Clemens was able to bring Young home on a ground ball to the mound as Young was going on contact, allowing him to cross the plate with the tying run. Lundquist then followed with a home run to right that cleared the tall fence to give the C’s their first lead of the night. Obeso would double but Taylor grounded out to end the threat.
Brock Lundquist—with Deiferson Barreto during pre-game warmups—belted a home run in the fourth inning Monday.
— Vancouver Canadians (@vancanadians) September 12, 2017
Graham Spraker took over for Pearson in the fifth and he enjoyed a perfect frame, needing just nine pitches. He got Davis looking at strike three in between a pair of groundouts.
Graham Spraker made quick work of the Emeralds in the fifth inning.
Travis Bergen took over in the sixth and he overcame a Cruz single by striking out Filiere and Remillard. Clemens drew a two-out walk against Lacy in the home half of the sixth but Ricky Tyler Thomas induced a tapper back to the mound from Lundquist for the final out.
Travis Bergen pitched 2-2/3 shutout innings against the Emeralds in Game 3.
Bergen picked up two more K’s by getting Polanco and Singleton and got some help from Taylor who made a diving stop at second before throwing out Jose Gonzalez. He began to falter in the eighth when he walked Young and Cruz with two outs but William Ouellette got Remillard to pop out to first for the third out. Chavez Young drew a two-out walk in the bottom of the eighth but he would be stranded.
Ouellette came back for the ninth with a new left fielder in tow as Brandon Polizzi replaced Obeso. The All-Star closer got Bethencourt to fly out and struck out Jared Young but a wild pitch allowed Young to get to first. Rafael Narea came in to pinch-run but Ouellette got Gonzalez to fly out to right and Singleton to line out to short to preserve the win for Vancouver.
— MiLB.com (@MiLB) September 12, 2017
Radar Gun Rundown
Pearson was clocked from 76-98 MPH. His strikeouts were at 77, 95, 98 and 79. He also threw offspeed offerings at 77 and 82.
Spraker threw in the 90-94 range with his lone strikeout coming in at 98. Bergen was in a wide range of 73-94 with strikeouts at 90, 92, 90 and 94.
Ouellette reached 94 and his lone strikeout/wild pitch came in at 80.
The C’s had just three hits in their Game 2 loss and had just three hits in Game 3 as well but this time it was enough. Clemens reached twice with a single and a walk and drove in the first run with an RBI groundout. Vancouver was 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position and stranded four men.
Pearson scattered three hits and two walks in four innings of one-run ball in which he struck out four. Spraker had one strikeout, Bergen had four punchouts to offset a hit and two walks over 2-2/3 innings. Ouellette had one strikeout as the C’s allowed just four hits and four walks while whiffing 10. Spraker got the win again in this Northwest League final and Ouellette picked up the save.
C’s Fast Forward
— Vancouver Canadians (@vancanadians) September 11, 2017
Brandon Polizzi dons the rally skunk during Game 3 Monday night.
The C’s and Emeralds play Game 4 at Nat Bailey Stadium this evening at 7:05 pm. The game will be carried on CanadiansBaseball.com and TSN 1040 Radio in Vancouver with Rob Fai.
Justin Dillon will be on the mound for the C’s according to this story from the C’s website.
C’s take the lead 2-1 pic.twitter.com/TxzCIrnRCj
— Vancouver Canadians (@vancanadians) September 11, 2017