Dust Devils can match their longest win streak of the season — four games – with a victory tonight against Yakima. If the bullpen can keep pitching the way it has, there's a good possibility of that happening.
Tri-City relievers have allowed just one earned run over the last nine games. That's a stretch of 36 innings.
Unfortunately, during the same stretch, the Dust Devils offense has hit just .223 in those games.
At four games behind Spokane in the East Division race, Tri-City has a very short nine-game window before the first-half playoff winners are decided.
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Before the game it looked like Dust Devils starter Edwar Cabrera was struggling with some discomfort in his left foot. He was throwing in the bullpen just before the game and then sat down on the ground with his left sock off being attended to by trainer Andy Stover.
But Cabrera made it to the mound for the first pitch, so we'll see what happens. He'll take on Yakima right-hander Andrew Berger.
Cabrera doesn't seem too bothered by his foot, but he's definitely not as sharp as I've seen him. He allowed a leadoff double to Justin Hilt and then walked No. 2 hitter Westely Moss. The No. 3 hitter, Raoul Torrez then laid down a nice bunt down the third base line. Dust Devils catcher Bryce Massanari got to the ball, but right before he was about to square to first for the throw, Cabrera ran into him, thus foiling the play.
Henry Zabala hit a two-run single to give Yakima a 2-0 lead later in the inning. Cabrera was fortunate to escape the inning without giving up more than that, however.
Tri-City gets a run back in the bottom of the first after a leadoff triple by Russell Wilson. The ball was hit the opposite way by Wilson, a right-hander, and tailed away from right fielder Zabala, who was charging in on the ball before it bounced away from him and into the corner. Jeremiah Sammy then drove him in with a sacrifice fly to left.
2-1 Yakima after one inning.
Bears go up 3-1 with another run in the top of the fourth off Cabrera. Tough outing for the lefty who has been one of the Dust Devils' top starters this season. But it looks like he just didn't have it tonight.
Brad McAtee comes in to relieve and gets out of the inning without any further damage. Let's see how much more the bullpen can add to its scoreless innings streak of 18 1/3 innings.
Dust Devils add another in the bottom of the seventh to pull within 3-2. Chandler Laurent reached on a throwing error by shortstop Tom Belza to lead off the inning. He advanced on a grounder to short by Jared Simon and then scored on Mark Tracy's double down the left field line.
Tri-City bullpen ends its scoreless streak at 21 2/3 innings as Yakima scores two runs off reliever Kraig Sitton to take a 5-2 lead in the top of the eighth. Sitton, a seventh-rounder out of Oregon State, allowed singles to Zabala and Raywilly Gomez to lead off the inning. Both came around to score.