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Sam Lynn Lives On, Blaze Win

September 10, 2016 - California League (CalL) - Bakersfield Blaze News Release

Sam Lynn Ballpark was alive, rising to a crescendo in the 9th as the Bakersfield Blaze came from behind to beat the San Jose Giants 5-3, securing a berth in Playoff Semifinals by winning two straight games, and also guaranteeing at least one more game at Sam Lynn on Monday night.

The ballgame had a playoff feel right from the outset. Tyler Pike got the start for Bakersfield, and after an easy 1st inning, Pike worked into and out of messes in each of the next three frames. Pike allowed just one run while stranding seven baserunners and though San Jose took the lead, the situation could have been much worse for the Blaze.

And for a while, it looked like Bakersfield might not get off the mat. Recent stud call-up Jake McCasland got the start for San Jose, and the righthander did not allow a hit throuh the first three innings.

But the first hit he allowed was a doozy. After a walk put a man aboard, Joe DeCarlo eked a homer just over the wall in left to give the Blaze a 2-1 lead.

The game was far from done. Drew Jackson banged home an insurance run to put the Blaze in front by two, but as soon as Bakersfield went to the pen, the Giants rallied to even the contest at three runs apiece.

Kody Kerski (W, 1-0) surrendered three straight hits in the 6th, but after two runs scored, Kody settled down, and the Blaze pen was largely untouched the rest of the way. Joe Pistorese got one out in the 7th and Vinny Nittoli followed with four big outs to get the game to the back end of the pen.

Meanwhile, Jay Baum provided the theatrics on offense. A leadoff skyscraping homer in the bottom of the 6th pushed Bakersfield back front 4-3, and in the 8th, Kyle Petty looped a single into right to score Chantz Mack for a two run lead. Those runs came off Giants relievers Ryan Halstead (L, 0-1) and Tyler Cyr.

Thyago Vieira (S, 1) was asked to get the final four outs, and the Brazilian flamethrower delivered, striking out three straight before a diving catch in leftfield secured the win.

With the ballpark almost shaking on its foundation from one of the loudest crowds in years, the Bakersfield Blaze advanced past the first round and will take on the Visalia Rawhide in a best-of-5 Northern Division matchup, the winner of which will represent the North in the Cal League Championship round.

The next Blaze home game will be Monday the 12th, and if the series isn't a three-game sweep by either team, Tuesday will be another hosted game at Sam Lynn Ballpark. Tickets are available for Dollar Monday already.

The series begins in Visalia in a 7pm start on Saturday night. Dan Besbris and Dave Gascon will be on the combined call at 6:50pm through TuneIn Radio and

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