Jose Carlos Urena might have been a bit disappointed he wasn’t named to the Northwest League All-Star team earlier this week.
But in the Dust Devils’ 10-3 win over the Hillsboro Hops on Thursday night in front of 2,141 fans at Gesa Stadium, the Tri-City left fielder showed the NWL what it might be missing.
Urena went 3-for-5 with two runs scored, a stolen base and an RBI as the Dust Devils moved into a first-place tie with Everett in the North Division standings.
A.J. Kennedy and Carlos Belen also had big nights, driving in two runs apiece to even the NWL interdivision series at a game apiece. Peter Van Gansen added two hits and scored twice.
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The Hops took a 3-0 lead in the top of the third, but Tri-City scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth, anchored by Kennedy’s two-run double.
The Dust Devils poured it on in the eighth, with Mason Smith’s two-run double highlighting a six-run explosion in which 11 batters came to the plate.
Around the league
First-place Everett (2-2) fell into a tie with Tri-City for first place in the North, losing 8-2 at Salem-Keizer (3-1). Vancouver (2-2) also grabbed a share of first place in the North, winning 6-4 at Boise (1-3). Eugene (3-1) maintained a first-place tie with the Volcanoes in the South, winning 6-4 in Spokane (1-3).
Streaks & stats
Tri-City: Rod Boykin extended his hitting streak to nine games and reached base for the 25th game in a row. ... Van Gansen, who reached base for the 10th consecutive game with a sixth-inning single, is sixth in the NWL in batting (.308) and tied for fourth in hits (44). ... Kennedy reached base for the 11th consecutive game with his sixth-inning single. ... Ty France is seventh in the league in batting (.307) and second in on-base percentage (.418). ... Belen leads the league in strikeouts (61) but is also tied for the lead in sacrifice flies (4) and tied for third in doubles (11). ... Urena is fourth in the NWL with 30 RBIs. ... Corey Kimber is tied for third with four saves. Hillsboro : Zach Nehrir is fifth in the league in batting (.311), third in hits (46) and tied for the league lead with 14 doubles. ... Three of the Hops’ starters rank in the top five in ERA. Carlos Hernandez (1.26), Jared Miller (1.65) and Cody Reed (2.85) are ranked Nos. 1, 2 and 5. Miller also leads the league with seven victories in eight starts.
Did you know?
France, a 34th-round pick by the San Diego Padres out of San Diego State, has a lot in common with his former college coach, the late Tony Gwynn. Gwynn, a Hall of Fame outfielder who played for the Padres for his entire 20-year career, also played at SDSU, was drafted by the Padres in 1981 and started his professional career in the Northwest League, playing for Walla Walla in 1981.