Courtesy: Eugene Emeralds Media Services
EUGENE, Ore.– The Emeralds welcomed in the two-time defending champion Vancouver Canadians Friday night for the opener of a 5-game series. It was the Canadians that struck first in the 2nd inning, taking advantage of a Michael Bass fielding error at second base. Melvin Garcia singled to score Dan Arcila to open the scoring. Garcia then came in to score on a balk called on Ems starter Jimmy Brazoban making it 2-0 Vancouver.
The Ems offense managed four base runners in the first four innings but could not break through against Vancouver’s lefty Scott Silverstein. In the 5th Marcus Davis got things going with a leadoff single. He scored two hitters later on a Ronnie Richardson ground out and the Ems were on the board.
In the 6th, the Canadians made it 3-1 when clean-up man L.B. Dantzler crushed a 2-0 pitch over the right field wall. The Ems responded against reliever Matt Dermody utilizing a leadoff walk and an error on 2B David Harris to make it 3-2. There was a chance to get more but Edwin Moreno grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the rally.
After the stretch, Vancouver gifted Felipe Blanco a triple when RF Melvin Garcia and CF Chaz Frank miscommunicated on a towering fly ball to right center allowing it to land between them. Richardson picked up another RBI with a ground out and the game was tied at 3.
The league leader in appearances, Jairo Gomez, came out of the bullpen for the 8th. The first two men reached on a single and a bunt that was mishandled by Gomez. Dan Arcila would drive in the go ahead run with a single and Josh Richardson had to relieve Gomez to finish the frame. In the 9th, Marcus Davis drew a one-out walk to bring the winning run to the plate. Canadians closer Chuck Ghysels struck out Henry Charles and got Richardson to ground out on just four total pitches to end the game.
The Ems lost game 1 by a final of 4-3 but the same two squads will be back at it Saturday night, first pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm on Star Wars Night at the ballpark.