Andy Yerzy cooked, Hillsboro Hops Hustles Ahead of Canadians, 7-5
Andy Yerzy cooked while the Hillsboro Hops jumped to the lead at the start and stayed in front as the Vancouver Canadians tried to chip away at the lead. In the end, The Hops were uncatchable as the Canadians fell 7-5.
Justin Vernia Wins Second of Season
Justin Vernia (W, 2-3) pitched over five innings for his second win of the year. After that, a succession of Hops pitchers kept the Canadians at bay. Kyler Stout (H, 5), Gerald Ogando (H, 1) and Nick Snyder (H, 7) carried the ball through middle relief holding the home team to only one more run. Wesley Rodriguez closed the ninth protecting the lead.
The Vancouver pitching Corps weren’t that far behind. Both sides gave up eleven hits. The Canadians lost the strikeout battle 11-7 but they led in the numbers of walks given 2-3. Starter CJ Van Eyk (L, 3-6) allowed three runs in his first three innings. He managed to keep the Hops under control in the fourth but also reached 80 pitches before he could get to the fifth.
Reliever Will McAffer spent 41 pitches in his two innings and allowed two more runs when the first four Hops reached base in the fifth. Closer Cobi Johnson took the ninth. His first four batters included three singles and a sac fly. Hagen Danner pitched two innings of three-hit, scoreless relief after McAffer.
Andy Yerzy Cooked 5 Runs
The batting from both sides put up a battle. But Vancouver remained a step behind the entire game. The Hops scored two runs in the first when Eduardo Diaz and Jorge Barrosa scored on a passed ball and a sac fly. The Canadians only answered with one run in the second on Luis De Los Santos solo home run. The Hops Andy Yerzy cooked an unanswered run in the third with his solo shot.
Then, two more Hops’ runs on Yerzy’s two-RBI single scoring Diaz and Barrosa in the fifth. This time, Vancouver did answer with two runs of their own in the sixth. Eric Rivera and Rafael Lantigua scored on Will Robertson’s sac fly and Orelvis Martinez’ RBI single.
Vancouver finally gained instead of keeping pace in the seventh. Zac Cook tripled and scored on Davis Schneider’s sac fly. But, the Hops shot forward, again, in the ninth. Diaz and Barrosa scored on Tristin English’s sac fly and another Yerzy RBI single. Zac Cook’s solo homer in the ninth made the final score.
Zac Cook brought most of the power tonight for Vancouver. His triple in the seventh and home run in the eighth resulted in two runs and an RBI. Rafael Lantigua brought a solo shot of his own.
Barrosa/Diaz – One-Two Punch
A couple of weeks ago, Eduardo Diaz hit the second Hops’ Grand Slam at Ron Tonkin Field in their short history. That led to a five-run first inning. Tonight, with teammate Jorge Barrosa, they combined for six runs.
In fact, Barrosa and Diaz scored six of the seven Hops’ runs on their own. And they scored together every time. Two in the first, two in the fifth and two in the ninth. Another source of consistency lay in Andy Yerzy. Andy knocked home five of the Hops seven runs. Four of those runs were Barrosa and Diaz. Andy added a fifth on a solo shot in the third. In addition, Andy reached base four times tonight going 3 for 4 and a walk.
The win not only means the Hillsboro Hops (39-44) take the series 4-2, but they also ended on a four game winning streak. After losing the first two games of the week, the Hops stormed back with their four wins. Tonight’s win gained them a half game on Spokane and are within two games of third place. They also gained a half game on Everett as the Everett/Spokane game was postponed.
The loss dropped the Vancouver Canadians (37-47) a half game on Everett and a full game behind Hillsboro. Two and a half games now separate the two.
Both teams move on for the start of another six game series starting on Tuesday. Hillsboro comes home to Ron Tonkin Field to host the Eugene Emeralds. The Ems are eight and a half games ahead of the Hops. But, Spokane is only two games away. Another 4-2 week would result in both teams being tied for third place.
Meanwhile, Vancouver will travel to Everett to play the league leading Aquasox. 16 games separate the two.
Since the Hops are returning home, the fan now has several options. Attend the game in person, watch the game on MiLB.tv, listen to the game on 620 AM radio or follow the game on Twitter for half inning updates. You can find my Twitter handle below for the half inning updates.