VISALIA, Calif. - The Visalia Rawhide took command of Tuesday's night's contest in the first inning and never looked back. After failing to plate a run in the top of the first, the Stockton Ports quickly found themselves in the quicksand as Visalia scored five runs in the bottom of the inning en route to a 12-1 win in the first game of a three-game series in Visalia.
Addison Russell opened the ballgame with a double to right-center and advanced to third on a groundout from Myrio Richard. Rawhide starter Kyle Winkler (1-2) would strike out Max Muncy and Ryan Ortiz to escape the jam.
Visalia's offense came to life right away in the bottom of the first. With one out, Gerson Montilla singled and Raywilly Gomez doubled him home to right to give the Rawhide a 1-0 lead. With two outs, Michael Perez hit an RBI single to right and Tom Belza followed with a two-run homer to right to make it 4-0. Matt Helm followed with a single to left and scored on an ensuing double from Kerry Jenkins to increase the Visalia lead to 5-0.
Ports starter Tanner Peters (2-1) gave up three more runs in the third, beginning with a leadoff home run by Yazy Arbello. Visalia also added an RBI double from Jenkins and an RBI single from Raul Navarro to make it 8-0.
Peters took the loss on the night, going 2.2 innings and allowing eight runs on 10 hits while striking out six.
Stockton's lone run of the contest came in the fifth on a two-out solo home run by Bobby Crocker. It was the lone run allowed by Winkler, who picked up his first win of the season after going six innings and allowing one run on six hits while striking out six.
Visalia scored four more runs in the sixth off Ports reliever T.J. Walz. Evan Marzilli led off with a triple and scored on an ensuing RBI single from Montilla. Walz then hit Gomez and walked Arbello to load the bases. With one out, Belza came up and drove in another run with an RBI groundout to short, and Helm followed with a two-run double to right to make it a 12-1 Rawhide lead.
Seth Simmons and Blake Cooper combined for three scoreless innings to close out the ballgame for Visalia.
Omar Duran pitched two scoreless innings to finish the ballgame for Stockton.
The Ports and Rawhide will play the middle game of their three-game set on Wednesday afternoon at Recreation Ballpark. Andres Avila (0-2, 6.00 ERA) will make the start for Stockton, opposed by Visalia left-hander Andrew Barbosa (1-1, 1.13 ERA). First pitch is set for 1 p.m. PDT.