The Eugene Emeralds (10-8, 26-30) dropped a nail-biter to the Vancouver Canadians (6-12, 21-35) on Monday night falling by a final score of 3-2 at PK Park.
The Ems struck first in the bottom of the second inning, and it was Sunday night's walk-off hero that scored Monday's first run. Caleb Knight led off the inning with a single to center field, and after later stealing second, Knight was brought home thanks to a triple from Edmond Americaan to put the home side up early, 1-0.
Two innings later, another Americaan extra-base hit plated Knight once more. With Knight on third after earlier reaching via a fielder's choice, Americaan slapped a double to right field to once again score Knight and double the Ems' lead.
Eugene's two-run advantage lasted only a matter of minutes as Vancouver cut their deficit back to just one in the top of the fifth. With Brett Wright on second with two outs, Dominic Abbadesa found the perfect spot on the right side of the infield to send a soft-rolling grounder, leaving Ems second baseman Chase Strumpf no play at first. Having gotten a decent jump on the play, Wright rounded third and headed for home, and the throw from Strumpf was off mark allowing Wright to score and cut Vancouver's deficit back to one.
In the sixth, the C's struck for the second straight inning, this time to tie the game. Mc Gregory Contreras started a two-out rally with a single to left field, and after Will Robertson was hit by a pitch in the ensuing at-bat, Ronny Brito smacked a single to right field that scored Contreras from second to tie the game at 2-2.
Vancouver scored for the third consecutive inning and simultaneously took their first lead of the game in the seventh. With Cameron Eden on second and Will Robertson on first, Jesus Lopez skied a shallow pop fly that was ruled an infield fly, but a miscue by Ems first baseman Grayson Byrd while fielding the pop fly resulted in Eden coming all the way around to score from second to put the C's in front, 3-2.
Eugene's offense went quiet for the following two innings until the ninth when Chase Strumpf singled on the first pitch of the frame to inject life back into the PK Park crowd. Caleb Knight and Grayson Byrd each followed with back-to-back strikeouts leaving Eugene's hopes on Edmond Americaan's shoulders, and the Ems outfielder almost delivered by ripping a hard-hit ball down the left field line, but Canadians third baseman Jesus Lopez robbed Americaan of a would-be game-tying base knock to wrap up the road victory for Vancouver.
Americaan finished the game 3-for-4 with two doubles, a triple and two RBI. The second-year pro currently boasts a five-game hit streak and is batting .528 (11-for-21) during that span.
Emeralds starting pitcher Michael McAvene excelled once again in limited duty. Making just his third professional appearance, the 2019 3rd rounder fired 2.0 scoreless, hitless innings while issuing no walks and striking out three Canadian batters. Through his first 5.0 pro innings McAvene has yet to allow a hit or walk.
The Emeralds will look to win the series against the Canadians on Tuesday at 7:05pm PST at PK Park. Tuesday is Dog Day at PK Park, presented by Sweet Cheeks Winery & Vineyard. Proceeds from tickets purchased for dogs will go directly to the Greenhill Humane Society. Tuesday is also Hoppy Tuesday, presented by Ninkasi Brewing Company, where fans can enjoy discounted Ninkasi tap beers.
You can find the full promotional schedule for the 2019 Eugene Emeralds season by visiting www.EmeraldsBaseball.com.
Tickets to Emeralds home games are on sale now at www.EmeraldsBaseball.com or by calling (541) 342-5367.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.