ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The Fresno Grizzlies (16-16) used a four-run ninth to defeat the Albuquerque Isotopes (15-16) 5-3 Monday afternoon in front of 8,015 fans at Isotopes Park, extending their winning streak to nine games. In the ninth, Tyler Colvin hit a pinch-hit two-run single to tie the game at three and Guillermo Quiroz followed with a bloop single that scored Chris Dominguez and allowed Colvin to score all the way from first when the ball sailed past catcher Griff Erickson all the way to the backstop.
Fresno trailed the entire game until securing the lead in the ninth. Albuquerque went up 1-0 in the first on Jamie Romak's RBI single off starter Mike Kickham. The Isotopes collected their second run off the lefty when Griff Erickson blasted a 0-2 pitch over the wall in center for a solo home run (3). But that was all Kickham would surrender, as he was only touched for the two runs on six hits over 7.0 innings, earning a no decision.
The Grizzlies cut the deficit in half in the sixth when Adam Duvall struck for the only run off Isotopes' starter Carlos Frias with a solo homer (9) to center. The homer was Duvall's third in his last two games and granted him the Pacific Coast League lead in the category entering tonight's games.
The third homer of the game came in the eighth when Clint Robinson (4) poked a 3-2 pitch from reliever Brett Bochy (1 ER/1.0 IP) over the wall in right, giving the 'Topes a 3-1 lead. Despite surrendering the run, Bochy picked up the win, his second of the season.
Everything changed in the ninth when the Isotopes handed the game over to Jose Dominguez (BS, L;3 ER/1.0 IP) to record the last three outs. Nick Noonan led off the inning with a single, extending his hitting streak to a team-high 10 games, and advanced to second on a wild pitch. A four-pitch walk to Duvall put two runners on and then Chris Dominguez loaded the bases with a single to left. Tyler Colvin, pinch-hitting for Juan Ciriaco, laced a single through the hole at second to tie the game at three and then Guillermo Quiroz followed up with a go-ahead two-run single to left, giving Fresno a 5-3 lead entering the bottom of the ninth.
The Grizzlies held on as Heath Hembree (1.0 IP, K) earned the save (7) by striking out Joc Pederson (0-5, 3 K) looking with a runner on first. Hembree enters tonight's games leading the PCL in saves.
The win provides the Fresno Grizzlies their longest winning streak since their inaugural season back in 1998 (11 wins) and gives them a .500 record or better for the first time since June 2, 2013 when they were 29-29.
Albuquerque suffered their first sweep at home since the Iowa Cubs swept a four-game set back in 2006.
The Grizzlies return home tomorrow night to open a four-game series with the El Paso Chihuahuas, Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. PST and will feature left-hander Jose De Paula making his first start (second appearance) for Fresno. Tickets are available for the four-game series and can be purchased at the Chukchansi Park Box Office (located on the corner of H and Kern Streets) in Downtown Fresno. For more information, call 559.320.HITS or visit FresnoGrizzlies.com