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Tolman's slam not enough in late-inning bullpen collapse

May 9, 2021 - Triple-A West League (AAA West) - Sacramento River Cats News Release

Las Vegas, Nev. -The game seemed in hand with the River Cats (2-1) up 10-7 with two outs in the ninth inning and Yunior Marte on the mound, but the home Aviators (1-2) had other ideas. The Aviators would tie the game on Greg Deichman's single, and win it in the 10th inning on Buddy Reed's walk-off single.

The River Cats once held a 10-6 lead as late as the ninth inning thanks to their scorching bats. It's just three games into the 2021 Triple-A season, but the River Cats have bombarded the Las Vegas Aviators pitching staff with six home runs, two being grand slams, and 24 runs.

Mitchell Tolman's first career grand slam made it 10-5 in the sixth, and came just one day after Tolman's double-play partner, shortstop Thairo Estrada, hit his own grand slam in the 6-4 victory.

After an early 3-1 deficit, Sacramento center fielder Bryce Johnson knotted things up with a big-fly in the second inning off right-hander Grant Holmes. The two-run home run was Johnson's second in as many days.

Giants' No. 13 prospect on MLB Pipeline, right-hander Gregory Santos, pitched two hitless innings and struck out two to pave the way for Marte, who could not hold on to the victory.

Right-hander Shun Yamaguchi takes the ball for game four of the six game series. He'll face Las Vegas right-hander Paul Blackburn on Mother's Day. First pitch is set for 12:05 p.m. (PT). Listen to all of the action live online at, on the MiLB First Pitch app.

Additional Notes

Johnson became the second River Cat in three games to have homers on back-to-back days. Estrada accomplished the feat with a three-run home run on Opening Day and a grand slam on Friday.

Lefty Conner Menez got his first start of the season and allowed three hits, two walks, and three runs while striking out three in 2.1 innings. Right-hander Daniel Alvarez provided some length for the bullpen with three innings and just one run allowed on a Luis Barrera home run.

Infielder Jason Krizan (0-1) got the loss. The River Cats opted to save their bullpen for the remaining three games of the series. Krizan had 2.1 innings pitched in three games for Double-A Binghamton (New York Mets affiliate) in 2019.

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