The Tri-City Dust Devils can’t control what happens 360 miles away, but they put everything they could into Saturday night’s 8-1 Northwest League victory over the Everett AquaSox in front of 3,010 fans at Gesa Stadium.
With Vancouver’s 5-4 win over Spokane at Nat Bailey Stadium, however, the Canadians moved closer to clinching the second-half North Division title.
The Dust Devils must win their remaining two games against Everett, and Vancouver must lose their final two against the visiting Indians for Tri-City to earn the second-half title.
Anything else, and the Canadians earn the right to face Spokane in the divisional playoffs beginning Tuesday.
It’s a slim proposition, but it’s still possible.
“(The Vancouver series is) in the back of our minds. We have to win to give ourselves a chance,” Dust Devils catcher Robbie Perkins said. “We did what we had to do. If we win out, and they win another game there’s nothing we can do about that. It’s something they can control.”
Perkins was certainly in control at the plate Saturday, smashing a pair of doubles and his first career triple to go with two runs and and RBI.
“It was one of those good nights. Sometimes you get a bunch of hits, and sometimes you don’t even if you hit it on the nose,” Perkins said.
Shane Hoelscher also did some damage offensively for Tri-City, going 2-for-4 with three RBIs, including a two-run double in the bottom of the seventh. Leadoff man Marcos Derkes also added three runs scored.
“This was a team win all across the board. We swung the bats really well,” Dust Devils manager Drew Saylor said. “We won the day. We can enjoy this one tonight and go after (today’s) victory.”
Four Tri-City pitchers combined to allow just one run on six hits. Grahamm Wiest started the game and gave up just one hit through four innings. Billy Waltrip (2-1) followed him with a scoreless inning to pick up his second win of the year.
Dylan Stamey and Carlos Yan each tossed two impressive innings in mop-up duty.
Jefferson Medina (2-8) took the loss for Everett, allowing five runs — four earned — in 5 2/3 innings.
w Jack Millikin; 582-1406; email@example.com