Behind Keibert Ruiz and DJ Peters, Class A Advanced Rancho Cucamonga is headed home in the driver's seat.
The Dodgers No. 7 and 17 prospects combined for eight hits, six runs scored and four RBIs as the Quakes delivered their most prolific offensive performance of the season in a 17-8 win over the JetHawks on Thursday night at The Hangar that knotted the best-of-5 California League semifinals at a game apiece. Ruiz collected a career-high five hits while Peters fell a triple shy of the cycle and drove in four runs.
Rancho Cucamonga belted a season-high six home runs with Brandon Montgomery finding the seats twice. Peters, Quincy Latimore, Ariel Sandoval and Zach McKinstry each went deep once.
"Everybody was swinging the bat really well. I'm pretty sure everyone in the lineup and even off the bench had at least one hit, which is huge for us," Peters said. "The way everyone was swinging the bat well and getting timely hits, not just getting a bunch of hits but having them back-to-back-to-back, you're going to score a lot of runs."
The 21-year-old outfielder opened the scoring with a ground-rule double to right field in the first inning and crushed a three-run blast to right-center in the sixth after singling in the fifth. Although Peters needed a triple to complete the cycle, he said stayed focused on holding what at the time was a 12-7 lead for the Quakes.
"To be honest, I just wanted to put the ball in play hard and just help out my team anyway I can," Peters said. "I knew the team Lancaster has, and in the Lancaster ballpark, it's so easy to score five runs in an inning. I didn't want to be selfish and think about myself in a situation like that."
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While Peters was retired on a lineout in his final at-bat in the ninth, Ruiz piled up singles in the second, fifth, sixth and ninth frames after doubling in the first to put together a career night.
"I saw smooth confidence. It's Keibert being Keibert," Peters said. "Fouling pitches off, and then when he gets that pitch, not missing it. He looked phenomenal up there."
Jason Richman (1-0) tossed two perfect innings -- fanning one -- out of the Rancho Cucamonga bullpen to pick up the win.
JetHawks starter Jesus Tinoco (0-1) was tagged for seven runs on 10 hits and two walks with five strikeouts over five innings. Top Rockies prospect Brendan Rodgers and Roberto Ramos both went yard for Lancaster.
The series moves to Rancho Cucamonga on Friday for Game 3 at 10:05 p.m. ET.
In other Cal League playoff action"
Nuts 11, Ports 5
Top Mariners prospect Kyle Lewis went 3-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs to put Modesto a win away from the Finals. Joey Curletta added three hits and three RBIs while Joe Rizzo plated two runs for the Nuts. Skye Bolt led the Ports with four hits, including a solo blast, and three runs scored. The series shifts to Stockton for Game 3 on Friday at 10:10 p.m. ET. Box score