RENO, Nev. - Joc Pederson's bid for a go-ahead home run in the ninth inning was caught at the warning track, in front of the 424-foot sign, as the Reno Aces held on for a 5-4 victory over the Albuquerque Isotopes on Thursday night at Aces Ballpark.
Reno (4-4) took a 5-2 lead into the ninth inning. After singles by Nick Buss and Trayvon Robinson, Miguel Rojas and Walter Ibarra delivered run-scoring singles to make it 5-4.
With two outs, Aces manager Phil Nevin took out Zeke Spruill and went to lefty reliever Eury De La Rosa to face Pederson. After falling behind 0-2, Pederson worked the count to 3-2. His towering drive was caught by Ender Inciarte in deep right-center, about five feet from the fence, ending the game.
Buss drove home the Topes' first two runs of the game, with a groundout in the fourth and a single in the sixth. Pederson also just missed a home run in that sixth inning, hitting a ball about 18 feet up the 22-foot high fence in left-center, settling for a double.
Albuquerque starting pitcher Matt Magill (0-1) allowed four runs in four innings. Inciarte manufactured a run in the first inning with a single, stolen base, and scored after two groundouts. In the fourth, Magill walked two batters, and veteran Mike Jacobs made him pay with a three-run homer to right-center.
The Aces tacked on an important insurance run in the seventh off Topes reliever Josh Judy. Roger Kieschnick and Blake Lalli singled, and one batter later, Andy Marte hit a sacrifice fly for a 5-2 lead.
· The Home Opener for the Isotopes is Friday night at Isotopes Park against the Tacoma Rainiers. RHP Zach Lee starts for the Topes against LHP Anthony Fernandez of the Rainiers. Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda will be in attendance.
· Coverage begins at 6:30 pm MT with announcer Josh Suchon joining "The Sports Drive" on 610 The Sports Animal. The pre-game starts at 6:45 and first pitch at 7:05. The game will also be broadcast on 1400 ESPN Santa Fe.
· Colt Hynes pitched two scoreless innings for the Isotopes. Since joining the team on Monday, Hynes has retired all nine batters he's faced.