Mailon Arroyo Saved Win, Hillsboro Hops Over Dust Devils 2-1
Mailon Arroyo saved the tenous lead in one of the most exciting finishes of the year as the Hillsboro Hops defeated the Tri-City Dust Devils 2-1 and take a 2-1 lead in the championship series.
Arroyo walked to the mound in not the easiest of situations. The bases loaded and no outs and a two run lead in the bottom of the ninth. There would be no next chance. It was now. For the first eight innings, neither side crossed the plate. The first seven saw no runner in scoring position.
Instead, two starters fireballed their way in a tough pitcher’s duel. Luarbert Arias took the mound for the Dust Devils and sailed through the first six innings on 72 pitches. He took a perfect game and no-hitter through the second out of the fourth inning. When he left the game after six, he allowed just one hit and faced one batter above the minimum.
Hillsboro starter Tyler Holton went toe to toe against the opposite hurler and a little further. Holton was allowed to stay through seven innings on 88 pitches. During his stay on the mound, Holton struck out nine batters. It was the first time in five games that Holton did not strike out batters in double digit quantity. Holton left with the score still locked at 0-0 and had faced only two batters above the minimum.
Ironically, neither pitcher would have a chance for the win after they left with no score. Instead, Nick Snyder (W, 1-0) earned the win when Tristin English belted his two-run homer during his watch. Angel Acevedo (L, 0-1) gave up the English home run for the loss.
Waiting Kettle Finally Boils
Eventually, something had to happen. The kettle can stay on the stove for only so long before it boils over.
Both teams came close in the eighth inning. Tri-City managed to get a runner in scoring position after Luke Becker led off with a walk and reached second on a ground out. The Hops’ Liover Peguero reached third after making first on a fielding error. But, neither scored.
The game’s first run waited until the ninth inning for both sides. With two outs, Corbin Carroll singled to extend the inning for the Hops. Just long enough for Tristin English to belt a two-run homer to left-center. Now, they needed three outs to win the game and take the series lead.
Mailon Arroyo Saved Day
But, the wait was not easy. The Dust Devils Reinaldo Ilarraza singled. Jordy Barley and Logan Driscoll loaded the bases with consecutive walks with no outs. That was when Mailon Arroyo (S, 1) saved the game for the Hops by taking the mound. First, Kelvin Melean smacked a sacrifice fly to right and scored Ilarraza from third for the final score. Jack Stronach sent his first pitch to first baseman Andy Yerzy as a grounder for an easy out.
The last batter proved to be the most difficult. But, Mailon Arroyo saved his best for last. Luke Becker fouled off five different pitches before watching a heater cross the plate for the final out of the game. It took Arroyo ten pitches to retire the last batter.
The Hillsboro Hops take a 2-1 series lead over the Tri-City Dust Devils in the best of five. Both teams return to Gesa Stadium for game four of the series. Game five, if necessary will also be played in Pasco. Game time is 6:15 PM.
Be sure to check out the Minor League Sports Report for game recaps and more for minor league teams across the nation during the playoffs. Also, follow me tomorrow and the rest of the playoffs on Twitter for half inning updates on all remaining Hops games.