(Scotiabank Field at Nat Bailey Stadium - Vancouver, B.C.) - A five-run top of the 3rd inning chased Canadians starter RHP Jose Espada from Thursday's game and gave the visiting Everett Aquasox enough to pull away with a series evening 8-1 victory out at sold out Scotiabank Field. The loss for Vancouver (20-14) combined with Spokane's lopsided victory over Tri-City means the Canadians lead in the North Division is reduced to just one with four regular season games remaining.
Vancouver opened the scoring in the bottom of the 2nd inning when LF McGregory Contreras hit his 4th triple of the season off Everett starter LHP Michael Plassmeyer cashing in 1B Jake Brodt (walk) to give the Canadians an early 1-0 lead.
Everett would score the remaining eight runs in the game with a five-run outburst in the top of the 3rd inning that featured five consecutive base hits from the Aquasox including a bases clearing double from 2B Matt Sanders that scored 3B Ryne Ogren (single), LF Charlie McConnell (single) and CF Jost Stowers (single). The next hitter, C Cal Raleigh hit his 9th double of the season to bring in Sanders capping off the five-run feat.
Vancouver would get 2 1/3 innings of scoreless baseball from RHP Justin Watts before turning the ball to RHP Denis Diaz who struggled once more on Thursday night allowing three runs on three hits and a pair of walks as Everett handed the Canadians a seven-run loss just hours after the C's handed the Aquasox a seven-run defeat.
Everett pitching was strong striking out 15 Canadians hitters including 1B Jake Brodt three times and RF Griffin Conine, 2B Nick Podkul, LF McGregory Contreras and 3B Sterling Guzman twice.
Vancouver also left nine on-base including CF Tanner Kirwer twice after he hit back-to-back triples in the bottom of the 4th and 6th innings respectively.
With the loss, Vancouver falls to (39-33, 20-14) and hang on to a one game lead in the North Division over Spokane who pounded Tri-City 15-7 out at Gesa Stadium. The Aquasox, who clinched the North Division First-Half pennant improve to (34-37, 14-19) with the victory.
Vancouer will wrap up this three-game series on Friday, August 31st at 1:05pm with RHP Randy Pondler (5-4, 2.67) getting the ball opposite Seattle Mariners RHP Hisashi Iwakuma (0-0, 9.00) who will throw up to two innings as part of a rehabilitation appearance. The game has been announced as sold out, the Canadians 32nd sellout of the season marking a new franchise record. The Canadians will welcome 239,086 fans out to Scotiabank Field over 38 dates marking a stadium capacity of 98.1% for the season.
The Vancouver Canadians have put potential post-season tickets on-sale at www.canadiansbaseball.com and can also be purchased by calling 604.872.5232 or by visiting the Nat Bailey Stadium Box Office at 4601 Ontario Street, Vancouver, B.C.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.