The Vancouver Canadians dropped to 0-2 on the season after an 11-4 setback to the Tri-City Dust Devils at Gesa Stadium Wednesday.
Sean Wymer gave up a two-strike triple to leadoff hitter Livan Soto before uncorking a two-out wild pitch to bring Soto home with the game’s first run. A leadoff walk to Adrian Rondon in the second was the start of Wymer’s undoing and the end came when 2018 Angels first-round pick Jordyn Adams belted a three-run home run to cap off a six-run rally.
Vancouver finally scored their first runs of the season after getting its first extra-base hit of the season. Luis De Los Santos cleared the bases by drilling a double to centre field off Tri-City reliever Luis Alvarado in the fourth to make it a 7-3 ballgame. De Los Santos’ double scored a Cameron Eden hit by pitch and a pair of walks by Spencer Horwitz and Ryan Gold. It had looked like the C’s were going to waste Eden’s leadoff plunk by Tri-City starter Dylan King before Horwitz and Gold kept the rally alive with two-out walks, both on 3-2 pitches.
Any hopes of a C’s comeback were dashed in the bottom of the fourth. Cobi Johnson—who relieved Wymer in the second inning—was forced to exit the game after Adams tripled home a leadoff single by Brendon Davis. Nick Fraze entered the game and Franklin Del Valle took him deep to right-centre for a two-run dinger to restore Tri-City’s converted touchdown lead at 10-3. Fraze would rebound by striking out the side.
Vancouver got one run back in the top of the fifth when Tanner Kirwer singled and swiped second. Will Robertson singled him over to third before he tagged up and scored on an Eden sacrifice fly.
The Dust Devils scored their final run in the sixth off lefty Marcus Reyes with a two-out rally. A Harrison Wenson walk made its way around the bases on a Rondon infield single to short and an error by De Los Santos before a wild pitch brought Wenson home.
The Canadians made the score a little more respectable in the ninth which began with a walk by Rafael Lantigua. Eden then doubled off Cole Duensing to plate Lantigua before Philip Clarke singled home Eden for the game’s final run.
De Los Santos and Kirwer had two-hit nights with De Los Santos also drawing a walk. Gold and Tanner Morris each had two bases on balls. All nine Canadians batters managed to get on base at least once.
It seemed like after the third inning, Vancouver was never going to score a run. De Los Santos started the frame with a base hit and Kirwer did likewise one out later. Robertson reached on a fielder’s choice to put runners at the corners but the Creighton Bluejay was thrown out trying to steal second by Dust Devils catcher Franklin Torres to end the inning.
Maese made his first appearance in a Vancouver uniform in five years. Though just six of his 16 pitches were strikes, the 2015 third-round pick by the Toronto Blue Jays tossed a scoreless fifth that featured a walk and a strikeout.
According to C’s play-by-play man Tyler Zickel, there was an argument between C’s third baseman Lantigua and Dust Devils designated hitter Wenson during the sixth inning after the De Los Santos error. As Zickel noted, the 6-foot-3, 235-pound Wenson had the size advantage on the 5-foot-8, 153-pound Lantigua but nothing else developed from the shouting match.
The High-A West transactions page says right-hander Paxton Schultz, the player to be named later in the Derek Fisher trade from Milwaukee, will be reporting to Vancouver. Schultz was taken by the Brewers in the 14th round of the 2019 MLB draft from Utah State University. The 6-foot-3 righty pitched in Australia last year after making his pro debut with the Rocky Mountain Vibes of the Pioneer League.
The transaction page also indicates that Vancouver native Brayden Bouchey has been assigned to the C’s once again. Bouchey was a key part of the C’s bullpen in 2017 when the club won the Northwest League title. Bouchey’s 2017 teammate, righty Donnie Sellers, has been placed on the 60-day Injured List.
Elsewhere on the farm, 2018 C’s lefthander Nick Allgeyer submitted his name to Jays brass as a potential call-up later this season after winning his Triple-A debut. He spun six innings of one-run ball on two hits and two walks as the Thundering Herd of Buffalo/Trenton downed Worcester 5-2. His strikeout and groundout totals came in at six apiece. Given the injury woes that have plagued the Blue Jays, Allgeyer’s ETA in the majors could be sooner than expected.
After a strong spring training, 2017 C’s shortstop Logan Warmoth is off to a good start in his Triple-A career. The Jays first-rounder from four years ago is batting .500 so far thanks to a two-run home run that proved to be the difference in Buffalo’s victory over Worcester. The North Carolina Tar Heel also made a nice sliding catch in left field to end a Worcester threat in the eighth.
Troy Miller is slated to start for Monty’s Mounties in Tri-City Thursday night. Tyler Zickel will have the call on CanadiansBaseball.com. You may also be able to find the game on the Sportsnet 650 website through its alternate feed. That’s how I listened in on Opening Night Tuesday.