Homers Power Pippins to 8-4 Battle of Basin Win Over Sweets

Tommy Eisenstat and Jace Phelan both homered early as the Yakima Valley Pippins beat sibling rival Walla Walla 8-4 on Saturday in the Battle of the Basin series at Yakima County Stadium.

The victory, coupled with a win on Friday, gave the Pippins the series win over the Sweets. The final game of the series begins at 6:05 p.m. Sunday.

After the Sweets scored three runs off Pippins starter Tyler Frieders in the top of the first, Eisenstat hit a solo homer in the bottom of the frame as 2,341 fans looked on.

Walla Walla added a run in the third, but Phelan knotted the game at 4-4 with a three-run homer with an estimated distance of 422 feet after a two-out walk to Spencer Shipman and a single by Eisenstat.

Blake Balsz broke the tie and put the Pippins up for good with a one-out single in the fifth. Zack Blaszak and Shipman singled home runs in the sixth, and YV’s final run scored on a wild pitch.

Frieders picked up the win with three scoreless innings after the Pippins tied the game before Ryun Cross completed the game with three more scoreless innings to earn the save.

Frieders ended with five strikeouts and two walks while scattering five hits. Cross struck out four, walked none and gave up two hits.

Phelan, who leads the West Coast League with 42 RBI, also won the Home Run Derby between the two teams after the game.

Eisenstat and Balsz each had two hits in the game.

Kennedy Hara and Puukani De Sa collected two hits apiece for the Sweets.

By Logan Peter

July 30, 2023