The Tri-City Dust Devils found a way to put a happy face on the month of July, ending a 10-game home losing streak with a 4-3 Northwest League win in 13 innings against the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes on Thursday at Gesa Stadium.
Miguel Dilone led off the 13th with a walk, took second on a wild pitch, advanced to third on Ryan Garvey's infield grounder and scored on another wild pitch by S-K reliever Armando Paniagua.
"I saw the ball go far away (from the catcher), and I knew I could score," Dilone said. "This will give us a lot of momentum. We got a win. Now we'll try to get another."
When Dilone crossed the plate, he was met by an entire dugout of joyous teammates, surrounding him and dousing him with water in celebration of the win. The bullpen sprinted in from the right field corner, too, unable to contain their excitement.
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"Jubilation, relief. All the pent-up tension just being removed in that instant," Dust Devils manager Drew Saylor said when asked to describe the feeling of seeing the winning run cross the plate.
The win put Tri-City (4-6 second half, 18-30 overall) into a second-place tie with Vancouver, two games behind Everett in the North Division standings.
"Hopefully, this will be (a turning point)," Dilone said. "We'll be working hard to get wins from now on."
Dust Devils second baseman Cesar Galvez did everything he could to maximize the Dust Devils scoring opportunities, going 2-for-4 with two runs scored. He led off the bottom of the first with a single to left. He stole his 11th base of the year and then scored on Sean Dwyer’s two-out double down the right-field line to put Tri-City up 1-0.
The Dust Devils went up 2-0 in the bottom of the fourth, as Ryan Garvey’s single up the middle plated Dwyer.
Salem-Keizer scrapped back with a run in the top of the fifth, as Fernando Pujadas singled to center to bring in Shilo McCall.
Lost was an impressive start by Dust Devils pitcher Blake Shouse, who matched his longest outing of the year at six innings. The second-year pro left the game clinging to a 2-1 lead after working through a tough Volcanoes lineup.
"Blake went long, his second quality start in a row," Saylor said. "He jammed the snot out of their right-handed hitters."
After Shouse left, however, the Volcanoes scored two runs in the top of the eighth inning to take a 3-2 lead.
Fortunately, Tri-City got one back in the bottom of the eighth after a walk and a throwing error put Galvez on third. One batter later, Weeks brought Galvez home with a deep flyball to left field to tie it up.
NotesThe Colorado Rockies assigned 1B Roberto Ramos, a xxth-round draft pick out of College of the Canyons (Calif.), to Grand Junction, the Rockies’ rookie-level affiliate in Colo. Ramos hit .220 with two home runs and seven RBIs in 15 games for the Dust Devils. ... Volcanoes 1B Hunter Cole, a 26th-round draft pick out of Georgia, picked up his first professional base hit, a two-out single between short and third in the top of the fourth.