Hops Jump to Victory in Boise
BOISE, IDAHO - Ricky Martinez's leaping catch at third base ended Thursday night's series opener at Memorial Stadium, preventing the tying runs from scoring and preserving Hillsboro's 3-1 win. The Hops (17-10) are now a game and a half out of first place in the South Division --- pending the outcome of first-place Salem-Keizer's game at home against Eugene --- with 11 games remaining in the first half.
Martinez was just one of a number of heroes for Hillsboro. At the top of the list: LHP Michel Gelabert. Fellow lefty Andrew Saalfrank opened for Hillsboro and threw one shutout inning. Gelabert came in and kept Boise off balance for seven shutout frames of his own, allowing just four hits --- all infield singles --- and facing just one hitter over the minimum. It was the longest outing of Gelabert's two-year pro career, and the longest outing by any Hops pitcher this year.
Hillsboro got all the runs they would need in the second inning. Jesus Marriaga led off with a single to left, then scored on Lyle Lin's double. Daniel Wasinger then doubled, scoring Lin, to make it 2-0. After Martinez's ground-out to second sent Wasinger to third, Nick Grande made it 3-0 Hops with a sacrifice fly.
That appeared to be plenty, until hard-throwing right-hander Eduardo Herrera came out of Hillsboro's bullpen for the ninth. He had allowed just one baserunner in 6.1 innings this season between the AZL D-backs and the Hops, but he walked three --- all after extended battles and a lot of foul balls --- and threw 34 pitches while recording just two outs.
Bryan Menendez came on with the bases loaded and two down in the bottom of the ninth, and his wild pitch allowed Isaac Collins to score, and --- more importantly --- sent the tying runs to second and third.
Boise DH Yorvis Torrealba then hit a line drive that looked for all the world like it was headed into the left-field corner... until Martinez jumped and snared it.
Game two of the three-game set in Boise is set for 6:15 PM (Pacific), with the radio broadcast beginning at 6:15 on NBC Sports Northwest Rip City Radio 620 and www.RipCityRadio.com.
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Northwest League Stories from July 12, 2019
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