Nat Bailey Stadium - Vancouver, B.C. -- 437 pitches, 11 pitching changes, 21 walks, a pair of six-run innings, six lead changes and one playoff spot on the line were just some of the storylines coming out of Thursday's four-hour, forty-two minute extra inning marathon that saw the Canadians fall 13-12 to Tri-City in front of a sold out crowd of 6,413 at Nat Bailey Stadium. The loss for Vancouver (15-19) eliminates them from both playoff clinching options heading into the final four games of the second half.
Vancouver struggled early as Alex Nolan allowed three runs in the top of the first inning with Jonny Homza collecting an RBI double to help the Dust Devils build a 3-0 lead. The Canadians would get to within a run in the bottom of the second inning when Will Robertson hit his fourth home run of the season off Nick Thwaits who gave up runs in each of his three innings of work.
The Canadians chased Thwaits from the game in the third inning plating six runs off Thwaits, Starlin Cordero and Martin Carrasco building a five-run lead. Vancouver scored those six runs on four hits, all singles and four walks.
Up 9-4 heading to the top of the seventh inning, Vancouver's bullpen imploded with Josh Almonte walking the bases loaded before giving way to Mike Pascoe who couldn't record an out allowing five runs, two of them Almonte's as the San Jacinto Community College right-hander gave up a hard-hit two-run double to Jack Stronach and then a bases-clearing double to Luke Becker before Grayson Huffman finally managed the final out of the seventh. When the dust had settled Tri-City had a 10-9 lead.
Vancouver regained the lead with a two-run bottom of the seventh that saw Philip Clarke smack an RBI single. Clarke would finish Thursday's game 2-for-3 with three walks.
Grayson Huffman was just three outs away from a series clinching victory but ran into trouble allowing a walk and two singles before Matthew Acosta hit a sacrifice fly deep enough to score Jack Stronach (walk) to send the game to extra innings.
After Vancouver and Tri-City traded one-run innings, the Dust Devils broke a 12-12 tie in the top of the eleventh when Tre Carter singled home extra-inning baserunner Jonny Homza to give Tri-Cits its third lead of the night. Sam Keating would stifle the Vancouver offense in the bottom of the eleventh to secure his first save of the summer and propel the Dust Devils to a 13-12 victory ending the Canadians chase toward a spot in the post-season.
Vancouver was eliminated from the North Division second half pennant after last night's game with Spokane's victory over Everett. The only other way for the Canadians to find a way in was to have Spokane win both halves and then finish with a better second half winning percentage than both Everett and Tri-City, which comes to an end with the C's Thursday night loss.
Will Robertson had the big bat for the Canadians going 4-for-5 with a home run and three RBI while Tanner Morris (2-for-4), Spencer Horwitz (2-for-7), Philip Clarke (2-for-3), McGregory Contreras (2-for-5) and Dom Abbadessa (2-for-4) all had multi-hit games.
Parker Caracci had five strikeouts over his 2 1/3 innings of work in relief as the Canadians used five pitchers while Tri-City used a season-high eight. Tri-City walked twelve Canadians, Vancouver walked nine.
The Canadians wrap-up the 2019 home portion of the schedule on Friday, August 30th at 1:05pm as they face Tri-City. Jared DiCesare will get the start in front of a sold out crowd of 6,413, Vancouver's 25th sellout of the summer.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.