WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Sacramento River Cats (63-53) used a big three-run fourth inning to take control of the ballgame, going on to beat the visiting Memphis Redbirds (51-65) by a final of 5-2.
Enderson Franco was rolling through three innings before taking a 106-mile per hour line drive off the leg in the fourth inning. The right-hander fought through the pain and finished the inning, but would not come back out for the fifth. Lefty Steven Okert came on to work a one-two-three fifth inning and would go on to earn his team-leading seventh win, while submariner Tyler Rogers worked the final 1.2 innings to pick up his fifth save on the season.
The River Cats wasted little time taking the lead on Thursday and would not surrender it once they did - Francisco Pena blasted a 426-ft. solo shot in the second frame. Sacramento would expand their lead in the fourth when Joe McCarthy and Levi Michael clubbed back-to-back doubles, plating a combined three runs.
The River Cats will go for the three-game sweep of Memphis with righty Yoanys Quiala (6-7, 6.43) getting the nod. The Redbirds will counter with righty Daniel Pounce de Leon (4-4, 3.90) First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. (PT). Listen to all of the action live online at rivercats.com, on the MiLB First Pitch app, and on Money 105.5 FM.
- Newly acquired right-hander Ryan Dull made his River Cats debut on Thursday night, going one inning, giving up a run while striking out one. Dull is the 70th player to see action for the River Cats this season.
- After spending the vast majority of the season in the closer role, Fernando Abad has been used as a set-up man in his last two outings, with the last four save opportunities going to Melvin Adon, Travis Bergen and Tyler Rogers (2).
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.