Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
Triple-A Affiliate
The Official Site of the Sacramento River Cats Sacramento River Cats

Early Sacramento Lead Gives Way Against Las Vegas

Cats Club Four Homers Including Two-Dinger Game for Reetz
Armando Alvarez connects with a pitch during Sacramento's contest at Sutter Health Park. (Ralph Thompson Photo)
September 9, 2023

SUMMERLIN, Nev. – An early six-run lead was not enough to last the Sacramento River Cats on Friday, as the Las Vegas Aviators scored 11 times over four consecutive innings before outlasting Sacramento in an 11-10 game four decision. When it seemed as if the Aviators (70-65) might be set

SUMMERLIN, Nev. – An early six-run lead was not enough to last the Sacramento River Cats on Friday, as the Las Vegas Aviators scored 11 times over four consecutive innings before outlasting Sacramento in an 11-10 game four decision.

When it seemed as if the Aviators (70-65) might be set up for a big inning with the bases loaded and no outs in their first set of swings, River Cats (60-75) starter Sean Hjelle was able to stay collected as he punched out Yohel Pozo and then induced and inning-ending 1-2-3 double play to escape danger.

Meanwhile, the offense spotted him run support in by scoring once in the second, twice in the third, and thrice in the fourth. All but one run was scored on a home run, as Armando Alvarez started the trend in the second when he lifted off on a 1-0 pitch for his 16th homer of the campaign.

During the third, Jakson Reetz launched an absolute moonshot that doubled the lead, while former Aviator Trenton Brooks doubled to right field later in the frame. Finally in the fourth it was Reetz again, clobbering a first-pitch homer to left field that scored three and gave Sacramento a 6-0 cushion. This marked the second multi-homer game of the season for Reetz, the second River Cat to do so as Armando Alvarez first accomplished the feat on July 25 and 28 at Albuquerque.

Last time out on Sept. 2 Hjelle carried a no-hit bid into the sixth, and while this outing was not as long, Hjelle had yet to allow a knock after three innings. In the fourth he ran into trouble, as five hits and a walk resulted in the Aviators scoring five times to return the contest to a one-run ballgame.

Action was tied in the home half of the fifth as a Kyle McCann leadoff double for Las Vegas resulted in a run when he was sacrificed to third by Brett Harris and later scored on a balk.

Taking the lead right back in the sixth was Sacramento, loading the bases with a single and pair of walks, which included an intentional free pass to Reetz. With the bases loaded and only one out, Meckler collected an RBI on a fielder’s choice in which the play at the plate was not in time, but the River Cats were held to only one run after they hit into their own inning-ending double plays.

It was another big inning for the Aviators in the sixth, dropping four runs with a rally that was highlighted by a two-RBI triple from Cody Thomas into the right-field corner. Two batters later and Pozo drove the other pair in with a big fly, scoring Thomas on the play as Las Vegas pulled in front, 10-7.

Each team swapped runs in the seventh, with Brooks leaving the yard for the fourth time with Sacramento (20th overall) on the first pitch of the seventh, while the Aviators countered with a bases loaded walk.

Down but not out, Sacramento fought through their final set of at-bats which saw them open the frame with three straight hits including a double from Luis Gonzalez and an RBI single by Johnson. Responsible for the last run was Gonzalez, as he scored on a double play ball hit by Johan Camargo before the game came to its 11-10 conclusion.

For the Aviators, it was Kirby Snead (2-3) who collected the win despite allowing two runs on three hits in only 1.0 inning. Meanwhile, Cody Stashak (0-1) was tagged with the loss after he surrendered four runs on three hits. Turning in the only scoreless outing for Sacramento was Melvin Adon, who tossed 1.1 innings and did not allow a run or hit.

Five different River Cats produced multiple hits, with the 3-for-5 effort by Alvarez leading the way by scoring twice and driving one in on his homer. Additionally, the group of Brooks and Johnson were each 2-for-4 with the former scoring once on a homer while the latter scored twice. Surging with power was Reetz, who was 2-for-2 with his solo and three-run home runs.

Locked at two games apiece, both teams will try to take an edge in the series when they line up for game five at Las Vegas Ballpark at 7:05 p.m.