The Vancouver Canadians and Eugene Emeralds only got one game in at P.K. Park Thursday and it did not end well for the visitors as they fell 9-2 in the completion of Monday’s series opener.
Trailing 5-1 after three innings, the Canadians got one run back in the top of the fourth against Emeralds reliever Ty Weber. A one-out single to right by P.K. Morris was driven in by a Mack Mueller two-out triple to right that Armani Smith misjudged as it went over his head. It is hard to catch fly balls with raindrops in your eyes.
The Emeralds matched that run in the bottom of the fifth when Hunter Bishop doubled against C’s reliever Garrett Farmer. Replays on MiLB.TV showed the ball clank off the camera bay above the wall in center field over a leaping Garrett Spain before it went back on the field. However, the umpires called it a double instead. Bishop would steal third base and that would bring the Canadians infield in. Farmer induced a grounder to short by Smith but Leo Jiménez doubled-clutched and made a high throw to the plate to pull catcher Zack Britton away from the plate, allowing Bishop to slide home safely.
Eugene would salt the game away in the seventh against Mark Simon. Singles by Ghordy Santos and Bishop started the inning before Smith ripped a base hit up the middle that nearly decapitated Simon to bring home Santos. A walk by Jairo Pomares loaded the bases before Casey Schmitt cashed home Bishop with a single over the head of Miguel Hiraldo at second base. That was the end of the line for Simon. Will McAffer took over on the mound but he walked Carter Aldrete with the bags full to bring in Pomares.
Spain was robbed of a hit in the fifth inning by Pomares who made a sliding catch on the left field line.
Jiménez ripped a single to left to begin the sixth inning but Addison Barger hit a sharp grounder very close to first in which Toribio stepped on the bag, resulting in Jiménez getting tagged out by Schmitt at short. Morris would dunk a single into left but Tirotta struck out swinging.
Spain started the eighth with a walk against Clay Helvey but Britton, Jiménez and Barger all went down swinging with Britton and Barger whiffing on a full-count pitch.
Helvey would turn the trick again in the ninth by sitting down Morris and Tirotta swinging and Mueller looking to end the game.
Jiménez and Morris had two hits apiece and Mueller had the other. Mueller was also on base twice with a walk. Spain and Tirotta earned free passes with Tirotta snaring his fourth stolen base of the year. Vancouver had just three at-bats with runners in scoring position, going 0-for-3 with four runners left on base.
C’s second baseman Miguel Hiraldo made a nice diving stab to his left to handle a sharp grounder by Luis Toribio to open the bottom of the fourth. Addison Barger followed with a diving stop to his left at third and skipped a low to throw to Riley Tirotta at first to retire the next hitter Rodolfo Bone.
Jiménez got the C’s out of the seventh inning by charging a slow roller at short and throwing out Jimmy Glowenke.
Farmer worked a perfect fourth with a strikeout but gave up a run on two hits in the fifth.
Simon struck out two en route to a 1-2-3 sixth inning but could not get anyone out in the seventh, surrendering three runs on four hits and a walk.
McAffer walked the first man he faced with the bases loaded but stranded two of Simon’s runners and retired the last six men he faced, two by strikeout.
Sem Robberse took the loss by allowing five runs on six hits, including a homer, over three innings. He struck out two and all six of his outs in play were on the ground.
The MiLB.TV broadcast had indicated that MLB had intended to play the second game of the doubleheader despite the steady rainfall but in a rare dose of common sense by Rob Manfred‘s minions, it was decided that the game would be rescheduled during the C’s next visit to Eugene August 9-14.
The Toronto Blue Jays have made some roster moves affecting the Canadians. Infielder/outfielder Hugo Cardona is going down to Dunedin. The 5-foot-11 right-handed hitter had an RBI triple in Spokane April 10 and he followed that up with a three-hit effort in Tri-City two days later. The 22 year-old from La Sabana, Venezuela has only been able to muster up two more hits and was in a 0-for-10 skid, resulting in a slash line of .194/.286/.387. However, he was successful on all four of his stolen base attempts.
Coming to Vancouver is outfielder Steward Berroa. The 22 year-old switch-hitter from Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic opened the year with Double-A New Hampshire but hit just .182/.250/.273 with a triple and a home run. Berroa has also been perfect in the stolen base department by going 7-for-7. He stole 58 bases last year with Low-A Dunedin. Berroa will take over number 29 from Cardona.
The Blue Jays have also released righthander Colton Laws. The 6-foot-7 hurler pitched twice this season, earning the victory each time. The 26 year-old pitched a shutout inning in Spokane April 10 and before giving up two runs (one earned) in 1-2/3 innings in Tri-City April 15. That was the last time Laws had pitched as he was placed on the injured list April 28. A seventh-round pick by Toronto in 2017 out of Charlotte, Laws was promoted to Vancouver from Bluefield later that year and had a 2.25 earned run average in three appearances. All the best to Colton in his future endeavours. You can check out the chat I had with him in 2018.
The third game of this series goes Friday night at 7:35 p.m. Hunter Gregory gets the starting assignment for Vancouver. The game will be on CanadiansBaseball.com and MiLB.TV.
The Canadians have announced Friday, June 17 as the makeup date for the April 21 game that was rained out against the Emeralds at Nat Bailey Stadium. The two seven-inning games will begin at 1:05 p.m.