The Albuquerque Isotopes (37-36) ended the Fresno Grizzlies (45-28) winning streak at six games with a 7-5 victory Friday night at Chukchansi Park. Despite the loss, Kyle Tucker (3-for-5) extended his team-high hit streak to 11 games. In that span, Tucker is 25-for-50 (.500) with seven extra-base knocks, 10 RBI, 12 runs, four free passes and four stolen bases. Also, Tucker had three hits for the fourth consecutive game.
Albuquerque jumped out to a 3-0 advantage in the top of the first. Raimel Tapia (3-for-5) led off with a double to the left-center gap and waltzed home on a single by Mike Tauchman (2-for-5). A wild pitch and RBI single by Pat Valaika netted the other pair.
Four straight hits in the top of the second expanded the Isotopes lead to 6-0. Jan Vazquez singled and scored on a single by Garrett Hampson (5-for-5). Tapia (double) and Hampson would record the additional runs on a Tauchman single.
In the bottom of the fourth, Jon Kemmer cut the deficit in half when he raked a three-run shot to center field. His 10th homer of the season made it 6-3. AJ Reed (3-for-5) trimmed the discrepancy to 6-4 in the bottom of the fifth when he poked a single to right field. It was his 66th RBI on the year (leads Triple-A). Reed is on pace for 127 RBI if he remains with Fresno for the duration of the season. That would shatter the single-season record of 108 held by Scott McClain in 2008.
A couple of miscues by the Grizzlies in the top of the sixth pushed the Albuquerque advantage to 7-4.
Antonio Nunez plated Garrett Stubbs (2-for-4) in the bottom of the eighth when he singled sharply to right field. Fresno trailed 7-5 heading into the ninth. Isotopes closer D.J. Johnson didn't have time for a comeback, shutting down the game. He earned his 11th save in the process.
Grizzlies' starter Mike Hauchild (5-6) suffered the decision after two rough innings. He gave up eight hits, six runs (earned), while striking out a pair. He still remains fourth in franchise history with 27 wins (Eric Hacker, 28). Albuquerque reliever Keith Hessler (3-1) received the win after two shutout frames. He followed Sam Howard, who hurled four-plus innings of four-run ball.
The teams finish the series with a doubleheader tomorrow night from Chukchansi Park. First pitch is scheduled for 5:05 PT. Fresno RHP Trent Thornton (5-4, 2.88) gets the nod in game one and RHP Rogelio Armenteros (5-0, 3.47) takes the rock in game two. Albuquerque has not named a starter for game one, but righty Antonio Senzatela (2-1, 2.70) will counter Armenteros in the finale.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.