VISALIA, CA - With a 2-2 tie in the ninth, the Rawhide were gifted a bases-loaded rally by the wildness of the Inland Empire bullpen. 66ers reliever Max Cordy walked Raymel Flores, plunked Camden Duzenack, and walked Mark Karaviotis and, just like that, the winning run was 90 feet away with no outs.
Ramon Hernandez, who delivered the only other walk-off win of the season on May 10, faced an Inland Empire defense with the infield in and pounded a one-strike pitch into the ground. The slow chopper brought a charging Alberto Triunfel in from short and, as he bent down to make a bare-handed play, the ball took a low hop and skidded below his knuckles.
Hernandez, who has hit some of the farthest home runs of any Visalia (25-20) player this year, delivered his second walk-off hit of the year by hitting a ground ball about 50 feet away from the plate.
Cordy (L, 0-1) suffered both a blown save and the loss after he allowed the tying run to score in the eighth on a Pavin Smith single hit the other way.
Riley Smith was dynamic for Visalia, working past some early struggles with his command to throw six innings while allowing one run on only three hits with five strikeouts. Smith also received some help from his defense as Karaviotis made a diving play on a sinking liner in left to end the third and Duzenack made a pair of sliding plays on grounders up the middle.
Tommy Eveld tossed a scoreless eighth inning and, after Pavin Smith tied the game, Kevin Ginkel was summoned for the ninth. Ginkel (W, 1-1) made short work of the 66ers, striking out a pair over a perfect frame to set up the walk-off.
Daulton Varsho hit a solo home run in the sixth inning to, at the time, tie the game at one. It was Varsho's sixth blast of the season and nearly cleared the Pasture seating section in right field.
Inland Empire (22-23) starter Evan Manoah lasted 4.2 innings and was relieved by Carlos Salazar after getting a double play ball from Flores.
The Rawhide will look for their fourth straight win tomorrow, RHP Connor Grey (4-2, 5.30) on the bump against 66ers RHP Matt Ball (10-, 0.00) First pitch is slated for 6 PM and tickets are available on rawhidebaseball.com.
The Visalia Rawhide are a professional baseball team in the Class A Advanced California League and are the only professional sports team in Tulare and Kings counties. The team has been an affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks since 2007 and is entering their 72nd year of play in 2018. The Rawhide renovated their home at Recreation Ballpark in 2009 and have since become the largest gathering of individuals in Tulare County, having set an attendance record for the seventh time in the past eight seasons in 2017. In 2018, the Rawhide look to continue their reputation for hosting competitive baseball while providing affordable family entertainment. To be a part of the 2018 Visalia Rawhide season, please contact the Visalia Rawhide Ticket Office at 559.732.4433, visit us online at rawhidebaseball.com, or follow us on Facebook (TheRawhide), Instagram (@VisaliaRawhide), and Twitter (@VisaliaRawhide).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.