The Tri-City Dust Devils still have a window of opportunity to reach the Northwest League playoffs.
But it got a lot smaller after Friday’s 7-6 loss to the Hillsboro Hops in front of 2,713 fans at Gesa Stadium.
Tri-City second baseman Sam Bumpers delivered a two-run double in the bottom of the seventh inning to tie the game at 5, capping a three-run rally and giving the Dust Devils some hope for a comeback.
But Hillsboro responded with two runs off Tri-City All-Star reliever Jerad McCrummen, who gave up four singles in the top of the ninth, including a two-run single to right by Grant Heyman to make it 7-5.
The Dust Devils fell one game behind Vancouver in the North Division standings with three games to play in the regular season. The Canadians, who have won the last three NWL championships, beat Eugene 4-2 to take four of five games from the Emeralds and whittle their magic number down to two games.
Stryker Trahan drove in four runs for the Hops, blasting a three-run home run in the first off Dust Devils starter Logan Sawyer and adding a run-scoring single in the fifth.
Tri-City LF Drew Weeks made the defensive play of the game, coming up with a diving catch on Kevin Cron’s fourth-inning liner near the left-field line, ending the fourth inning and preventing a Hillsboro run. On the flip side, Dust Devils SS Chris Rabago committed his seventh error in the last eight games.
... Dust Devils RHP Grahamm Wiest (1-3, 4.50 ERA) will make his final start of the season today in the first of a three-game series against the visiting Everett AquaSox. ... The Seattle Mariners announced they were shutting down C Jesus Montero, the former super-prospect who was sent to Everett on a rehab assignment. Montero was ejected from Thursday night’s AquaSox game in Boise after a confrontation with a Mariners scout who was sitting in the stands.