West Sacramento, Calif. - The Sacramento River Cats (16-18) came from behind to force extras, thanks to a pinch-hit homer from Mike Yastrzemski, but fell to the Fresno Grizzlies (18-16) 7-4 in ten innings. The Washington Nationals' number one prospect, Carter Kieboom's home run in the tenth was the difference.
River Cats starter Shaun Anderson cruised through five innings on Thursday, but ran into trouble in the sixth when he loaded the bases with one out. Steven Okert came on in relief and served up a grand slam to Grizzlies left fielder Yadiel Hernandez. Anderson would finish with a no-decision, tossing 5.1 innings and allowing three runs on five hits with five strikeouts.
Outfielder Mike Gerber started the River Cats' comeback in the sixth with a two-run double to cut the Grizzlies lead in half, then Mike Yastrzemski came on as a pinch hitter in the seventh and smacked the first pitch he saw over the bullpens in right field to tie the game. The Grizzlies would score three times in the tenth, however, to arrive at the final score.
Left-hander Ty Blach (1-1, 5.79) will take the ball for the River Cats in the series finale and the Grizzlies will counter with right-hander Mario Sanchez (0-1, 36.00) who will be making just his second Triple-A start. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. (PT). Catch all of the action live online at rivercats.com, on the MiLB First Pitch app, or on Money 105.5 FM.
• Mike Yastrzemski's home run in the seventh inning came on the first pitch of his at bat. Sixteen of the River Cats' 82 home runs have come on the first pitch this season - that leads the Pacific Coast League.
• The game-tying home run from Yastrzemski was also the River Cats' very first pinch-hit home run of the year. Sacramento pinch hitters are hitting .263 (5-for-19) this season.
The Sacramento River Cats are the Triple-A affiliate of the three-time World Champion San Francisco Giants. The team plays at Raley Field in West Sacramento, consistently voted one of the top ballparks in America. Season Tickets, Mini-Plans, and Flex Plans can be purchased for the River Cats' 20th season by calling the River Cats Ticket Hotline at (916) 371-HITS (4487). The only place to guarantee official River Cats tickets is at www.rivercats.com. For information on other events at Raley Field, visit www.raleyfield.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.