Tacoma's Offense Takes Off in Series Opener

Rainiers roll to 14-9 win against Oklahoma City Saturday night to open a four-game series

(CODY ROPER)

By Oklahoma City Dodgers | July 29, 2017 7:58 PM

Oklahoma City - The Tacoma Rainiers scored seven runs through four innings and tallied five runs in two separate innings Saturday night on the way to a 14-9 win against the Oklahoma City Dodgers at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.

Tacoma broke a scoreless tie with five runs in the third inning and scored two more runs in the fourth inning to extend to a 7-0 advantage.

The Dodgers responded with five runs in the fifth inning to cut the Rainiers' lead to two runs, but that would be the closest the Dodgers would come on the scoreboard.

Tacoma outscored Oklahoma City 7-4 over the final four frames in front of a crowd of 9,610 as the Dodgers allowed their highest run total since a 15-11 loss to Omaha June 15.

The Rainiers (54-53) broke open the game in the third inning.

Zach Shank led off with a single for the first hit of the night for either team, as the first seven batters of the inning reached for the Rainiers on four singles, two walks and a hit by pitch.

Taylor Motter hit a RBI single with the bases loaded to score the game's first run. Daniel Vogelbach then drew a bases-loaded walk, Gordon Beckham added a RBI single and D.J. Peterson was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to boost Tacoma to a 4-0 advantage. Danny Muno followed and grounded into a double play that allowed another run to score for a 5-0 lead.

In the fourth inning, the Rainiers hit three straight singles with one out to load the bases for Vogelbach, who connected on a sacrifice fly to center field for a 6-0 Tacoma lead. A RBI single by Beckham followed for a 7-0 Rainiers lead.

The Dodgers got on the scoreboard in the fifth inning. Infielder Edwin Rios collected a one-out single for the first hit of the night for Oklahoma City (56-49). Todd Cunningham was hit by a pitch and Bobby Wilson drew a walk to load the bases. Charlie Culberson came up to bat next and lined a double off the front of the Budweiser Deck in left field that allowed Oklahoma City's first two runs of the night to score.

Alex Verdugo followed with a walk and became the fifth straight Dodger to reach base with one out to load the bases again. Scott Van Slyke then hit a fly ball to center field for a sacrifice fly that allowed a run to score. Tacoma center fielder Ian Miller threw the ball to shortstop Motter on the play. Motter threw to second base to attempt a force out, but his throw was offline and the ball went into right field, allowing two more runs to score for the Dodgers and cut Tacoma's lead to 7-5.

Tacoma added runs in the sixth inning. Ian Miller led off with a single and scored on a RBI double into the right-field corner by Motter for an 8-5 lead. Later in the sixth inning, the Rainiers loaded the bases with two outs for Tuffy Gosewisch, who drew a walk to bring in Tacoma's ninth run of the game.

Alex Verdugo hit a two-out double into center field to bring home a run for the Dodgers in the seventh inning and cut Tacoma's lead to 9-6.

The Rainiers loaded the bases with none out in the eighth inning and Muno hit a two-run single into left field to take an 11-6 lead. Gosewisch followed with a RBI single to boost the Rainiers to a 12-6 lead. Steven Baron's RBI single and a fielder's choice later in the inning pushed Tacoma's lead to 14-6.

The Dodgers made a late push in the bottom of the ninth inning, scoring three runs. Brant Whiting led off with a single for his first hit of the season with the Dodgers and later scored on a single by Alex Verdugo. Scott Van Slyke then connected on a two-run single into left field to cut Tacoma's lead to 14-9.

Tacoma starting pitcher Marco Gonzales (8-4) was credited with the win, allowing five runs (three earned) and two hits over six innings with four walks and four strikeouts. Tyler Cloyd was credited with his first save with the Rainiers.

Dodgers starting pitcher Justin Masterson (9-5) was charged with the loss, allowing seven runs and eight hits over 3.2 innings with two walks and six strikeouts.

The Dodgers continue their series against the Rainiers at 6:05 p.m. Sunday at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. The game falls on a Chaparral Energy Family Sunday featuring family friendly activities throughout, including pregame player autographs and kids can run the bases after the game.

Live coverage begins at 5:50 p.m. on AM 1340 "The Game," 1340thegame.com, or through the free iHeartRadio mobile app.

Tickets are available through the OKC Dodgers ticket office on South Mickey Mantle Drive, by calling (405) 218-1000, or by ordering through okcdodgers.com. 

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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