The Vancouver Canadians ran their winning streak to nine games in a row after defeating the Spokane Indians 7-2 at Avista Stadium Friday.
Steward Berroa drew a base on balls on four pitches from Evan Shawver to start the game before stealing second and getting to third on a throwing error by Drew Romo behind the plate. Leo Jiménez brought Berroa home with a base hit to left to give Vancouver a 1-0 lead.
Spokane would answer back against Trenton Wallace in the top of the second inning. Warming Bernabel walked and Hunter Goodman singled to left field with one out. A two-out single to right by Trevor Boone scored Bernabel with the tying run and sent Goodman to third. A wild pitch allowed Goodman to score the go-ahead run.
The C’s would erase the one-run deficit in the fourth. Miguel Hiraldo singled to right to lead off the fourth before Riley Tirotta took Anderson Pilar deep to left-center field for a two-run home run to give Vancouver a 3-2 lead. Garrett Spain doubled on the next pitch with an opposite-field double to left and went on to steal third before Harry Ray put a 1-2 pitch into play by chopping a ball to third to send Spain home with the C’s fourth run.
The Canadians got another two-run homer to start the seventh off Comox, BC native Adam McKillican. Jiménez started the inning with a double to center before Surrey, BC native Damiano Palmegiani put one over the fence in left-center.
The C’s got their final run in the eighth off Luke Taggart. A base hit to center by Anthony Morales, a walk by Berroa and a single to center by Dasan Brown loaded the bases. Jiménez grounded into a 3-2 fielder’s choice that saw Morales forced out at the plate. Palmegiani struck out but Berroa made sure the Canadians would not come away empty-handed as he scored by stealing home plate.
Spokane had to go to their bullpen in the first inning when Shawver left the game due to injur after giving up a Hiraldo base knock up the middle. Pilar would retire the next five hitters and seven of the next eight with the only baserunner being Brown’s first hit in a Vancouver uniform when he singled to right field.
The C’s tried to stage a two-out rally in the fifth against Blake Goldsberry when Tirotta lined a single to left and Spain walked. They advanced 90 feet on a wild pitch but Ray struck out to end the frame.
Berroa walked with one out in the sixth and stole second base but the inning ended when he was nabbed trying to steal third on a pick off by McKillican.
Anderson Bido turned the Canadians away with a 1-2-3 ninth but the C’s had at least one runner on in seven innings, going 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranding 10.
Berroa drew four walks, scored twice and was 3-for-4 in stealing bases to give him 36 on the season. Brown, Jiménez, Hiraldo, Tirotta and Morales all had two-hit nights with one extra-base hit. Tirotta and Palmegiani clubbed their fourth and fifth homers of the year and Tirotta also drew a walk. Jiménez is now up to 12 doubles. Spain had a double, a walk and a stolen base.
Wallace had runners at the corners to deal with after Boone’s go-ahead single in the second inning was pushed to third on a Jiménez throwing error at short. The C’s lefty struck out Eddy Diaz swinging to keep the Spokane lead to a single run.
A two-out walk to Romo was Wallace’s only misstep in the third but he ran into trouble in the fourth. The former Iowa Hawkeye got ahead of Ronaiker Palma 0-2 but walked him on eight pitches. A Morales passed ball moved Palma into scoring position but Wallace struck out Boone to end his evening.
Garrett Farmer entered the game and gave up a base hit to left by Bladimir Restituyo but he got Diaz to ground out to third to leave the tying runs on base.
Farmer struck out Zac Veen and Julio Carreras looking to start the fifth. Romo drew a two-out walk and stole second before Farmer induced a groundout to short by Bernabel.
In the sixth, Palma singled to center with one out but Farmer caught a bunt popup by Boone and retired Restituyo on a foul pop up to first. Farmer got the win with 3-1/3 shutout innings, scattering four hits, striking out three and getting three of his four outs in play on the ground. He stranded a runner for Wallace, who pitched 3-2/3 innings and allowed two runs on two hits and three walks while whiffing six. Four of Wallace’s six outs in play were on the dirt as he threw 48 of his 80 pitches for strikes.
Juan Nuñez had just one runner to deal with as the result of a Jiménez two-out throwing error on a ground ball by Palma before geting Boone to fly out to center for out number three.
Jol Concepcion saw the first hitters reach base in the ninth when Restituyo singled to center and Diaz walked. Concepcion got Veen to pop up to short before striking out Carreras looking and Romo swinging to end the game.
The Double-A exodus continues for the C’s as they lose not only lefthander Ricky Tiedemann but catcher/outfielder Zach Britton, third baseman Tyler Keenan and righthanded reliever Ryan Boyer. The early clue was something was up with Britton and Keenan was their removal from the lineup in the late stages of Sunday’s series sweeping win against Hillsboro.
Britton leaves YVR after compiling a .390 on-base percentage and an OPS of .831 in 57 games. Keenan batted .300 in 15 games with Vancouver after coming over from Seattle in the Ryan Borucki trade. Boyer was a big-time contributor to the bullpen with a 2-0 record, a 2.45 ERA and two saves with a 29-4 strikeout/walk total in 18-1/3 innings.
Coming to Vancouver from Dunedin are outfielder Dasan Brown, catcher Jommer Hernandez and pitcher Michael Dominguez. The 20 year-old Brown from Oakville, Ontario put up OBP and OPS marks of .369 and .819 respectively, stealing 13 bases in 20 attempts over 51 contests. Checking in at 6-foot-0, 185 pounds, the right-handed hitting Brown was the Toronto Blue Jays third round pick in the 2019 MLB Draft from Abbey Park High School in Oakville. He wore number 24 during Friday night’s game.
The 21 year-old Hernandez signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates as a free agent in 2017 before joining the Jays on September 8 of last year. In his first taste of full-season baseball with Dunedin, the 5-foot-11, 181-pound righthanded hitter put up a .374 on-base percentage with six runs batted in over 27 games. Hernandez hails from Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic.
The 5-foot-10, 175 pound Dominguez was Toronto’s 15th round selection in 2019 from Jefferson High School in Tampa, Florida. Born in Newport News, Virginia, the 21 year-old hurler struck out 66 batters and walked 19 over 51 innings with 11 of his 13 appearances coming as a starter.
Jimmy Robbins will be on the hill for the Canadians Saturday against Mike Ruff. First pitch is at 6:35 p.m0. Abdiel Mendoza goes on the bump for the C’s in the 1:05 p.m. series finale against Mason Green. Both games are on CanadiansBaseball.com.