The Vancouver Canadians lost Game 1 of 36 against the Everett AquaSox by a score of 5-3 at Ron Tonkin Field Tuesday.
The C’s led 3-2 in the ninth and Parker Caracci tried to close the game out. He started off well by striking out Jack Larsen but hit Patrick Frick with a pitch. The next pitch saw Joseph Rosa reach base on an infield single to short. Caracci retired Cody Grosse on a grounder to first that saw both runners move into scoring position. Kaden Polcovich lined a single to left score Frick and Rosa to put Everett ahead 4-3. Caracci then uncorked a wild pitch and Julio Rodriguez made Caracci pay with a base hit up the middle to plate Polcovich for the Frogs fifth run.
Vancouver got the tying run to the plate when Tanner Kirwer walked and stole second to start the bottom of the ninth but Brendan McGuigan retired the next three hits to pick up the save for Everett.
The AquaSox opened the scoring in the third when Grosse tripled with one out and scored on a two-out single by Rodriguez. The Canadians answered back with a run in the next half-inning when Kirwer—the pride of Sherwood Park, Alberta—was hit by a pitch from AquaSox starter and Kingston, Ontario native Matt Brash and scored on a one-out double to left by Cameron Eden.
Kirwer and Eden were responsible for the C’s first lead of the night in the fifth when Kirwer walked, stole second, moved to third on a Carter Bins passed ball and scored on an Eden sacrifice fly to center.
The AquaSox evened things up in the seventh against Canadians lefty Brandon Eisert. Larsen singled, stole second and came around to score on a Frick base hit.
A two-out rally put Vancouver ahead 3-2 in the eighth. Tanner Morris and Luis De Los Santos singled on consecutive pitches from Tim Elliott. Ryan Gold drew a walk on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases and D.J. Neal did likewise in another seven-pitch at-bat to bring in Morris with the go-ahead run. Rafael Lantigua popped up to second base on the next pitch to leave the bases loaded.
Sean Wymer deserved a better fate in this one. The Canadians righty pitched six strong innings and allowed just five baserunners on three hits and two runs, giving up a run while striking out five and getting eight groundball outs. The Flower Mound, Texas native sat down 10 of the last 11 men he faced, including a stretch of eight in a row.
Eisert was charged with the blown save after giving up two hits and walking two but he struck out five over two innings, whiffing the side in the eighth. Caracci was touched up for three runs on three hits and a hit by pitch.
Kirwer was on base four times with a single, a hit by pitch and two walks. He scored twice and stole three bases to give him a dozen on the season. Eden and Neal reached base a couple of times with a hit and a walk while Gold heard ball four twice. Lantigua drew a walk and Horwitz took one for the team.
Philip Clarke went 0-for-5 and saw his 14 game on-base streak come to an end. Clarke’s best chance to reach base came in the fifth when he worked to count to 3-0 against Brash but he struck out swinging.
The C’s best chance to break the game open came in the first inning when Kirwer led off with a single and was joined on base by a one-out walk and Horwitz hit by pitch to load the bases but Brash struck out Morris and De Los Santos swinging.
Courtesy of the Canadians press staff, Horwitz’s 22 walks are the second-most in Minor
League Baseball and his .519 on-base percentage is the fifth highest among players with 10 or
more games played this year.
Also, when the C’s are trailing, Eden is batting .429 while De Los Santos and Gold are hitting .350 and .308 respectively. Of De Los Santos’ 14 RBI on the season, 11 of them have come when the C’s are behind.
According to the High-A West transactions column, Troy Miller has been promoted to Double-A New Hampshire. Miller was 2-0 with a 1.84 earned run average and struck out 17 batters in 14 innings with the C’s. The former Michigan Wolverine will get the start for the Fisher Cats this evening.
Righty Lazaro Estrada is heading back to Dunedin after contributing four shutout innings for the Canadians, striking out five and walking one.
Coming back to Vancouver is righty Sam Ryan. He began the year with the C’s before a promotion to New Hampshire in which he made four relief appearances for the Manchester squad.
On a sad note, the Toronto Blue Jays have released White Rock, BC native Brayden Bouchey. He made three appearances for the C’s this year and could not find his control, hitting five batters and walking three in just 1-2/3 innings. Bouchey was a key cog in the Canadians bullpen during their 2017 Northwest League championship season and pitched two sensational shutout innings in the clinching Game 4 of the final against Eugene. His curveball was working big time that evening and he handed the ball over to Orlando Pascual and William Ouellette who combined to finish the job in the ninth. All the best to Brayden in his future endeavours. You can check out this C’s Chat I had with him after the 2017 season.
C.J. Van Eyk gets the start for Vancouver in the second game of this six-game series against Everett in a 7:05 start at The Tonk. Thursday’s starter is TBA for Vancouver but Nick Fraze, Adam Kloffenstein and Paxton Schultz are listed as the probables from Friday to Sunday. All games can be heard at CanadiansBaseball.com.
C’s Alumni Report
Richard Ureña (2014) homered, singled and walked and Cullen Large (2017) doubled and added two singles as Buffalo beat Scranton Wilkes-Barre 5-2. Logan Warmoth (2017) also had a base hit and Jackson McClelland (2015-2016) pitched a scoreless inning.
Otto Lopez (2018) has a 16-game hitting streak after going 2-for-4 while L.J. Talley and Vinny Capra (2018) contributed base knocks but New Hampshire fell to Somerset 2-1. Mike Ellenbest (2016) and Connor Law (2018) pitched perfect frames in relief with Ellenbest striking out one and Law K-ing two.
Rowdy Tellez (2014) singled and walked as Toronto snapped a six-game losing streak by defeating the New York Yankees 6-2.
Alek Manoah (2019) will not make his major league debut Wednesday in the Bronx as the game has been rained out. There will be a doubleheader instead Thursday.