MODESTO, CA - The Rawhide once again got their offense going early and put up a two-out rally in the first inning to plate four runs. Behind a consistent offensive attack and a solid performance by the pitching staff the Rawhide took the first game of the road trip 8-2.
With Marcus Wilson on third and two outs, Daulton Varsho scored Wilson and kept the first inning going by lacing a single to right. Drew Ellis followed with a double that one-hopped the wall in left and scored Varsho from first. Anfernee Grier then crushed a double to center to plate Ellis and give the Rawhide a four-run inning.
Visalia (5-3) continued to put up chances to score throughout the game, and finally brought around some insurance when Mark Karaviotis doubled home Pavin Smith and Marcus Wilson in the top of the 7th. Karaviotis would later score on a throwing error by former Rawhide catcher Tyler Baker.
Varsho struck again in the ninth inning with a run-scoring single to left to give the Rawhide their eighth and final run of the night.
Visalia's run and hit totals, at eight and twelve apiece, were their second highest marks of the season, trailing only their 11 run and 14 hit effort one week ago. Varsho's drove in two runs and leads the California League with 12 runs batted in.
Rawhide starter Emilio Vargas didn't make it through the requisite five innings to win his first start of the season, but he weaved in and out of trouble and lasted 4.2 frames. Vargas struck out a season high 6 batters and held the Nuts to one run on five hits, but tied his career-high by walking four hitters, including the final batter he faced.
Wei-Chieh Huang inherited two runners and two outs from Vargas in the fifth and struck out cleanup hitter Nick Zammarelli on three pitches to end the threat. Huang (W, 1-1) pitched his first scoreless outing of the season and lasted 1.1 innings.
The Rawhide outfield made two impressive throws to cut down runners. Karaviotis caught Logan Taylor trying to stretch a single in a double in the third inning. Then in the fifth, when Joe Rizzo doubled to score Baker from second, Anfernee Grier and Raymel Flores combined to gun down Bryson Brigman at the plate to keep the Rawhide ahead by three runs.
Modesto (2-6) starter John Richy was chased after four innings in his second appearance of the season. Richy (L, 0-1) settled down after his rocky first and, at one time, retired six straight Rawhide hitters. But a 30-pitch first inning forced the veteran right-hander out early.
Visalia continues the series in Modesto tomorrow night and will match up RHP Riley Smith (0-0, 3.60) on the mound against Nuts LHP Danny Garcia (0-1, 11.57). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM and the live radio broadcast will be available on rawhidebaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.