TROY - The first two Lowell runners to come to the plate during Sunday night's rubber match scored, and that was all the offense the Spinners needed in a 2-1 triumph over the Tri-City ValleyCats in front of 5,210 fans at Joseph L. Bruno Stadium.
Houston Astros second round pick Corbin Martin (0-1) suffered the loss in 2.1 innings, allowing two runs (one earned) in the start. Brandon Bielak dazzled in relief, striking out seven and allowing just one hit in 4.1 scoreless frames. Southpaw Luis Ramirez finished out the game, and lowered his ERA to an even 2.00.
Tri-City (31-33), playing without J.J. Matijevic, the previous team leader in games, hits, RBI, and runs scored, managed just five hits off of two Spinners. Matijevic was promoted to Class-A Quad Cities before the game.
Right fielder Bryan De La Cruz scored the lone run of the game for the 'Cats in the bottom of the 7th. He led off with a double to left-center, and moved onto third base on Jonathan Arauz's one out base hit. Adrian Tovalin followed Arauz with a sacrifice fly to the deepest part of centerfield, and De La Cruz came into score.
Nick Duron (3-4) picked up his third win of the year, yielding just two hits in five innings, and adding two strikeouts. Manager Iggy Suarez then turned to righty Durin O'Linger in the sixth to pitch the duration of the game. O'Linger earned his first save of the season, despite surrendering the lone ValleyCats run.
Lowell (28-34) scored their two runs in the first. Michael Osinski led off the game with a walk, Yoan Aybar reached on a Colton Shaver error, and Garrett Benge and Marino Campana added infield base hits to score Osinski. Zach Sterry grounded into a double play, allowing Aybar to score the second and final run of the game.
PLAYOFF PICTURE - Vermont beat the Aberdeen IronBirds Sunday night, so the 'Cats fall back to 5.5 games behind the Lake Monsters in the Stedler Division. Hudson Valley, however, lost to the Tigers, meaning the ValleyCats remain six games back in the Wild Card Race.
MOMENT THAT MATTERED - Down by a run in the eighth, Kyle Davis led off the bottom half with a base hit. On a 1-2 count, Bernardo Heras struck out on what seemed like a hit-and-run, and Davis was thrown out at second trying to advance.
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS - The ValleyCats pitching staff finished the three game series vs. Lowell with 40 strikeouts in 81 opportunities, meaning they struck out 49% of Lowell hitters who were recorded out.
UP NEXT - Tri-City travels to Hudson Valley tomorrow for a four game series against the Renegades, before returning home on Thursday to host the Aberdeen IronBirds. Tuesday's doubleheader is a make-up from August 18 in Troy. Probables:
Monday: LHP - Carlos Hiraldo vs. LHP Resly Linares
Tuesday: RHP Tyler Ivey / RHP Leovanny Rodriguez vs. RHP Austin Franklin / TBD
Wednesday: RHP Hunter Martin vs. RHP Alex Valverde
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.