MODESTO, Calif. - The Stockton Ports won their ninth extra inning ballgame of the season on Saturday night at John Thurman Field, and they did so thanks in large part to their bullpen. Stockton's bullpen did not allow a hit over seven innings pitched, and Ports pitching as a whole recorded the final 28 outs of the game without allowing a hit as the Ports beat the Modesto Nuts by a final of 6-4 in 13 innings.
After the Ports scored a run in the top of the first to take a 1-0 lead, Modesto scored all four runs they'd plate in the contest in the bottom of the first. After allowing back-to-back singles, Ports starter Tanner Peters issued a one-out walk to Ryan Casteel that loaded the bases. Taylor Featherston came up and hit a three-run double to left-center that gave the Nuts a 3-1 lead. Trevor Story followed with an RBI single to left that made it 4-1.
Peters did not allow a run and scattered just three hits over the remainder of his outing. The right-hander received a no-decision, going six innings and allowing four runs on seven hits while striking out five.
Stockton got a run back in the second as Dusty Robinson doubled with one out and scored two batters later on a two-out single by Antonio Lamas to make it a 4-2 game. It was the final run allowed by Nuts starter Chris Jensen, who received a no-decision after going six innings and allowing eight hits while striking out seven.
Patrick Johnson came on to pitch the seventh and gave up a leadoff single to Lamas. Three batters later, Bobby Crocker lined an RBI single to center to cut the Nuts lead to 4-3. It was the lone run allowed by Johnson in his lone inning of work.
Bruce Kern came on to pitch the eighth and recorded back-to-back outs to start the inning. Robinson came up with two outs and the bases empty and hit a game-tying solo homer to left, his 18th of the season, knotting the game at 4-4.
Trey Barham took over for Peters to begin the seventh and pitched around a pair of walks, getting Featherston to fly out to center to end the inning. The final out of the seventh began a stretch of 17 batters in a row retired by Stockton's bullpen, taking them one out deep into the 13th. Barham, Tucker Healy, Seth Frankoff, and Omar Duran (2-0) combined on the feat.
Stockton had a chance to take the lead in the 10th with Kraig Sitton on the mound. B.A. Vollmuth led off with a double and went to third on a single by Tony Thompson, putting runners at the corners with nobody out. Sitton, though, struck out Bruce Maxwell and then induced an inning-ending double-play off the bat of Robinson.
Sitton induced another double-play to end the 11th inning and left the game with runners and first and second and two outs in the 12th. Nelson Gonzalez (4-6) came on and recorded back-to-back strikeouts to end the 12th.
Gonzalez stayed in the game to pitch the 13th and retired the first two batters of the inning. With the bases empty and two outs, Lamas doubled to right and scored on an ensuing single to center by Myrio Richard to put the Ports in front 5-4. After Addison Russell singled, Crocker hit a ground rule double to right that scored Richard and extended the Ports lead to 6-4.
Gonzalez took the loss, allowing two runs on four hits while striking out four.
Duran, who would pitch three scoreless innings to end the game, pitched around a walk and an error in the bottom of the 13th and struck out Jordan Ribera to end the ballgame.
Ports pitching faced the final 34 batters and recorded the final 28 outs without allowing a hit in the ballgame. Lamas went 4-for-6 with an RBI and two runs scored.
The Ports and Nuts play the rubber match of their three-game series on Sunday night at John Thurman Field. Raul Alcantara (4-2, 3.16 ERA) make the start for Stockton. Modesto's starter will be a game time decision. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. PDT.