Las Vegas, NV - One game after scoring one run and having their three-game winning streak snapped, three Tacoma Rainiers hitters collected a trio of hits as the club woke up the bats on Sunday to best the Las Vegas Aviators, 10-6.
Las Vegas (22-16) took a 2-0 advantage in the second inning, but the Rainiers (18-20) responded with four runs in the third, highlighted by Tim Lopes' fourth home run, a three-run blast and his second of the series. The round-tripper scored Mallex Smith and Billy Cooke after Cooke reached on a fielder's choice to score Ian Miller.
Tacoma added a run in the fourth on Miller's sacrifice fly, hit deep enough to plate Kristopher Negron for a 5-2 advantage. Negron did it all himself in the sixth with his fourth home run, a solo shot to right center.
Smith recorded his third double later in the sixth, which scored Miller and Connor Kopach to extend Tacoma's lead, 8-2. Kopach, playing in his second career Triple-A game, finished 3-for-5 with a run in the victory.
Miller was back at it in the eighth inning with Tacoma's third home run to make it 9-2. The Philadelphia native drove in the final run of the game with a fielder's choice RBI in the ninth, bringing home Jose Lobaton to push the Rainiers into double-digits.
Altogether, the Rainiers knocked out 16 hits, with Negron, Miller and Kopach all collecting three. Miller and Lopes each drove in a pair of runs and Miller scored three of his own.
Tyler Cloyd (1-1) earned his first win of the season, pitching 5 2/3 innings with two runs, five hits and five strikeouts on his ledger. Right hander Matt Festa recorded the next four outs with a strikeout and no damage allowed in his first appearance since being activated from the IL on Sunday.
David McKay pitched 1/3 of a frame with three runs allowed and Aaron Northcraft surrendered a tally but recorded the final five outs of the game, ending the contest with his second strikeout.
The Rainiers have taken eight of their last 11 games and will start Monday no more than 1 1/2 games out of first place in the PCL Pacific Northern Division.
Monday's game three between Tacoma and Las Vegas starts at 7:05 p.m. PDT as Mike Curto will have full coverage on South Sound Talk 850 with audio streaming available on the Tacoma Rainiers TuneIn Radio Network. Lefty Jon Niese (1-0, 3.38) will get the start on the mound for the Rainiers.
All tickets, group outings, and suites packages for the 2019 season are available for purchase in person at the Cheney Stadium Box Office, online at TacomaRainiers.com and WeRTacoma.com, or over the phone at (253) 752-7707. The most up-to-date news and notes about the Rainiers throughout the season can be found by following the Rainiers on Twitter (@RainiersLand), Instagram (tacomarainiers) or liking the team on Facebook.
- We R Tacoma -
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.