Crowd Packs in for Final Home GameAugust 29, 2011 - Pacific Coast League (PCL) Fresno Grizzlies
The Grizzlies topped the 10,000 attendance mark in each of the season's final four games, bringing their season total to 493,691, the highest final mark since the 2008 season. A grand total of 51,808 filled the stands over the final five-game set against the Highway 99 rival River Cats.
On the field, Sacramento (81-55) took the lead on the first batter of the game, as Jermaine Mitchell took Daryl Maday (0-2) deep to center field, just to the right of the batter's eye, for a leadoff home run.
The River Cats opened the game up in the second inning, as the first five batters reached on four singles and a walk. The visitors would bat around in the inning, eventually scoring five times to make it 6-0 Sacramento.
Neither team scored again from there until the bottom of the sixth. With two outs in the bottom of the frame, Brett Pill singled to left for his second hit, and just the second hit of the game for Fresno (60-76) to that point. Edgar Gonzalez followed up by driving a 1-0 pitch to the opposite field and out into the lower lot for a two-run shot, getting Fresno on the board.
The Grizzlies continued to claw their way back into the game on the strength of a pair of back-to-back solo home runs off reliever Michael Benacka in the seventh. First, Max Ramirez pulled a line drive into the seats in left. He was followed by Tyler LaTorre, who lifted a solo shot to nearly the same spot in the left-field bleachers, cutting the deficit to 6-4.
The Grizzlies loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the eighth, putting the tying run at second and potential go-ahead run at first for LaTorre. The catcher popped a ball into shallow center that shortstop Adam Rosales ranged back on and appeared to have a bead on. The ball popped out of his mitt and looked like it would drop, but the center fielder Mitchell, who was running in behind Rosales, caught the ricochet before it hit the turf to help Sacramento escape the inning.
Justin Christian led off the bottom of the ninth with a walk, but Fresno would get nothing else, as Vinnie Chulk retired the final three batters he faced to lock down the save.
The back-to-back homers in the seventh marked the eighth time this season that Fresno batters have gone deep in consecutive plat appearances. In all, 11 different players have been involved in back-to-back home runs for Fresno.
The Grizzlies play the final eight games of the season on the road, beginning with a Monday evening matchup at Reno. Fresno will send lefty Geno Espineli (2-4) against Aces right-hander Barry Enright (8-5) at 7:05pm.
Pacific Coast League Stories from August 29, 2011
- Three-Run Ninth Sends OKC to Comeback Win - Oklahoma City RedHawks
- RedHawks Roar from Behind to Beat Zephyrs 7-6 - New Orleans Zephyrs
- Isotopes Nipped by 'Birds, 3-1 - Albuquerque Isotopes
- Redbirds Edge Isotopes - Memphis Redbirds
- Express Clipped at Omaha 4-3 - Round Rock Express
- I-Cubs' 7th Inning Rally Gives Sounds 8-5 Loss - Nashville Sounds
- Cubs Rally to Defeat Nashville, 8-5 - Iowa Cubs
- Dana Eveland Named to All-PCL Team - Albuquerque Isotopes
- IF Koby Clemens Moved to Temporary Inactive List - Oklahoma City RedHawks
- Round Rock Express - Game Notes at Omaha Storm Chasers - Round Rock Express
- LaHair Named to All-PCL Team - Iowa Cubs
- Giavotella, Mendoza, Robinson Make All-PCL Team - Omaha Storm Chasers
- Navarro Named PCL Player of the Week - Salt Lake Bees
- Round Rock's Butler Named PCL Postseason All-Star - Round Rock Express
- Navarro, Brach Named Players Of The Week - PCL
- Homestand Highlights - Memphis Redbirds
- RedHawks Game Notes - Oklahoma City RedHawks
- Taylor Green Named to All-PCL Team - Nashville Sounds
- Ransom, Cowgill Named to All-PCL Team - Reno Aces
- Three Storm Chasers on 2011 All-PCL Team - Omaha Storm Chasers
- 2011 All-PCL Team Announced - PCL
- South Division Champion River Cats Return to Raley Field for Final Regular Season Homestand - Sacramento River Cats
- Aces Offer $1 'Win and We're In' GA Tickets Tonight - Reno Aces
- Rainiers hold off Sky Sox, 6-5 - Tacoma Rainiers
- Padres Win Home Finale - Tucson Padres
- Crowd Packs in for Final Home Game - Fresno Grizzlies
- Padres Clip Aces, 6-4 - Reno Aces
- 'Topes Fall in Lightning-Shortened Home Finale, 7-6 - Albuquerque Isotopes
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