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ValleyCats vs. Spinners: Tri-City spreads offense

Sunday, July 6, 2014
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— Power, average, on-base percentage.

The Tri-City ValleyCats wanted it all in Saturday night’s game, and they went out and got it in a 9-4 New York-Penn League drubbing of the Lowell Spinners.

Two ’Cats hit home runs, another two doubles, eight had at least one hit and eight had at least a run or an RBI. They drew eight walks, as well, and turned four of them into runs.

“Whenever the team’s scoring, you’ve got runs up on the board, you don’t feel too much pressure to get something done or score runs,” said left fielder Ryan Bottger, who hit his first pro home run in the third inning. “You’re just up there relaxed.”

J.D. Davis got the ValleyCats on the board with one out in the first, cracking his team-leading third home run, a two-run shot to left field. One pitch earlier, Lowell starter Heri Quevedo’s offering was wild, sailing behind Davis.

Jose Solano and Mott Hyde both had a single and a double, Hyde scoring once and driving in two runs, Solano scoring two runs and stealing home after a botched safety squeeze.

In the fourth, Solano led off with a double and was bunted over by Hyde. Alex Hernandez then missed on a bunt attempt on a safety squeeze, hanging Solano out to dry. Solano was caught in a rundown for a couple turns before making up his mind he was going for the plate. He avoided a tag and slid in with the ’Cats’ fourth run.

It was his first stolen base of the season.

“Solano’s got speed,” Tri-City manager Ed Romero said. “We’ve got to work with him, as far as stealing bases, because he’s got good speed. He’s just got to learn how to use it, how to read pitchers. He’ll get it.”

The ValleyCats (14-8) put up eight runs by the fifth inning to pull ahead, 8-1, and chase Quevedo. Quevedo lasted 41⁄3 innings, allowing eight runs on seven hits, walking five and striking out four.

Meanwhile, Tri-City knuckle­baller Blaine Sims went five innings, allowing one run on five hits, walking two and striking out three. Hyde said the ’Cats pitchers were feeling good about the early run support.

“It’s pretty awesome,” Hyde said. “I know the pitchers are really proud of that. It makes their job a whole lot easier. They can go in there and throw any pitch at any time in the count and feel a lot more comfortable.”

“I’m very happy for Sims,” Romero said. “He battles all the time. He goes out there tonight, very good tonight. Five solid innings tonight, only one run. He threw a fairly low amount of pitches, I think he threw [71] pitches, and for a knuckleballer, that’s very good. I feel good for him, because he’s been begging to go five innings.”

The four runs in the fifth inning came after Quevedo struck out Davis to open the inning. A.J. Reed and Ricky Gingras both drew four-pitch walks, then three straight singles came from Solano, Hyde and Hernandez. A two-out single from Bobby Boyd chased home two runs.

Hyde said that still wasn’t enough for the ’Cats to take their foot off the pedal.

“Of course we were feeling good, but in this league, no lead is safe,” Hyde said. “We couldn’t give up. We had to just keep pouring it on.”

They will play Lowell (11-11) for the final time this season tonight at 5.

LOWELL TRI-CITY

ab r h bi ab r h bi

Mars cf 3 0 1 1 Boyd cf 3 1 1 2

Lopez 3b 4 0 0 0 Bottger lf 5 1 1 1

Travis dh 4 0 0 0 Davis 3b 3 2 1 2

Longhi rf 4 1 2 0 Reed 1b 3 1 1 0

Tellez 1b 4 0 0 0 Gingras dh 3 1 0 0

Prcyshn c 1 0 1 0 Joyce ph-dh 1 0 0 0

Bethea c 1 1 0 0 Solano rf 4 2 2 0

Dubon ss 3 1 1 1 Hyde ss 3 1 2 2

Meyers lf 4 1 1 2 Hrnndz 2b 3 0 1 1

Flores 2b 3 0 1 0 Gonzalez c 4 0 1 0

Totals 31 4 7 4 Totals 32 9 10 8

Lowell 000 100 300—4

Tri-City 201 141 00x—9

E—Lopez (4). DP—Lowell 2, Tri-City 2. LOB—Lowell 4, Tri-City 8. 2B—Meyers (2), Solano (4), Hyde (4). HR—Davis (3), Bottger (1). SB—Flores (8), Mars (2), Solano (1), Gonzalez (1). S—Hyde.

IP H R ER BB SO

Lowell

Quevedo L,1-3 4 1-3 7 8 8 5 4

Martinez 2-3 2 0 0 0 1

Show 2 1 1 1 2 0

Smorol 1 0 0 0 1 1

Tri-City

Sims W,1-0 5 5 1 1 2 3

Rdzwski 2 2 3 3 2 1

Vlzquez 2 0 0 0 0 3

WP—Quevedo, Sims.

Umpires—Home, Grant Conrad; Bases, Chris Graham.

T—2:42. A—5,708.

 
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