TACOMA, Wash. - The Tacoma Rainiers rolled to a 7-1 series-opening win over the Sacramento River Cats at Cheney Stadium on Friday night.
Tacoma took an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. First baseman Ji-Man Choi accounted for the Rainiers first run after driving in Mike Zunino with a two-out double. One batter later, Stefen Romero upped Tacoma's lead to two runs with an RBI single that plated Choi.
Choi led off the fourth inning with a double and then scored on a single hit by Joe Dunigan with one out to give the Rainiers a 3-0 advantage.
The lead grew to 7-0 after Tacoma rifled off four more runs in the eighth. Stefen Romero and Jesus Sucre each drove in runs on ground outs, along with Joe Dunigan's RBI double and Carlos Triunfel's RBI single.
The lone River Cats run arrived in the top of the ninth where Anthony Aliotti scored from third on Logan Bawcom's wild pitch.
Tacoma combined to collect 12 hits in the series opener. Choi led the club after ending the night 3-for-4 with an RBI and three runs scored. Joe Dunigan recorded two hits and drove in two runs, and second baseman Ty Kelly turned in a 2-for-4 effort.
Starter Forrest Snow limited Sacramento to two hits over five scoreless innings on the way to improving his record to 4-0 with the Rainiers this season. The right-hander walked three and struck out eight in the first Triple-A start of his 2013 campaign.
The right-hander Bawcom earned his team-leading 21st save of the season after holding the River Cats to one run on three hits and one walk over two innings of work in the eighth and ninth.
The Rainiers (74-67) host the second game of a four-game series with Sacramento (78-63) at 7 p.m. tomorrow, August 31. Right-hander Blake Beavan (5-6, 6.00) is slated to start for Tacoma against River Cats starter Bruce Billings (13-7, 4.40).
Every Rainiers game throughout the 2013 season can be heard live on South Sound Sports 850-AM and is available for online streaming at www.tacomarainiers.com.
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