Following a 2-1 loss in extra innings at Walker Stadium on Saturday night, the first extra-inning game of the year for the Pippins, Yakima Valley returns to action for a 5:05 PM rubber match against the Pickles, seeking the series win. Right-hander Nick Brown will make his first start of the summer for the Pippins, and will be opposed by Portland southpaw Michael Perzan. Pregame coverage with Miles Klotz begins at 4:50 PM at pippinsbaseball.com/live.
PIPPINS FALL IN EXTRA INNINGS TO PORTLAND: The Pippins played their first extra-innings game of the 2019 season Saturday, falling 2-1 in 10 innings to Portland to even the weekend series at a game apiece. With the Pippins leading 1-0 after 8 innings, Portland leadoff man Chase Luttrell hit a solo, game-tying homer to right-center field to lead off the bottom of the ninth inning against Pippins reliever Trystan Vrieling. In the tenth inning, Portland used back-to-back doubles to win it, with John Arndorfer collecting the game-winning hit. The loss spoiled a great outing from starter Joe Magrisi, who struck out 12 batters over 4.2 scoreless innings, allowing one hit and walking 6. Titus Groeneweg, Magrisi’s roommate and college teammate at Cal State Fullerton, tossed 6 innings of 1-run ball on his own, striking out 2 and not issuing a walk.
FOR THE PIPPINS: Right-hander Nick Brown will make his first start of the summer to wrap up the series in Portland against the Pickles. Brown has been one of the Pippins’ most-used relievers this season, appearing in 8 games and posting a 1-2 record and 3.08 ERA. In 11.2 innings, Brown has struck out 10 batters and walked 10 while opponents have hit .261 off of him. A native of Catoosa, Oklahoma, the 6-foot-4, 225-pound Brown will be a redshirt senior at Pittsburg State in the fall.
FOR THE PICKLES: Left-hander Michael Perzan will make his 6th appearance of the summer for the Pickles to close out the series. The reigning WCL Pitcher of the Week, the Chandler, Arizona native tossed 10 scoreless innings in 2 appearances last week, including 6 one-hit innings with 6 strikeouts on June 30 in Bellingham. The 6-foot-2, 170-pound southpaw from Grand Canyon has a 2-0 record and 2.45 ERA over 18.1 innings of work this season, striking out 16 batters and walking 7. Opponents have hit .169 off of him.
JACK ATTACK: Jack Gonzales continued his stellar stretch of relief outings on Friday in Portland, earning the win with 2.1 scoreless innings out of the bullpen, including getting the game-ending strikeout with the winning run at 2nd base in the ninth. The outing was Gonzales’ fifth consecutive without allowing an earned run, and also his fifth consecutive outing of at least 2 innings. In that span, Gonzales has tossed 14.1 scoreless frames to lower his ERA to 1.66. In those innings, he has 13 strikeouts to just 3 walks.
SHUTOUT CITY: The Pippins picked up their second shutout of the season – and their second of the past week – with the 1-0 win on Friday in Portland. Their first shutout came on Tuesday against Bellingham, when three Pippins pitchers combined on a 5-hit shutout. The 3 hits on Friday are the fewest allowed in a Pippins shutout since Taylor Dollar and Connor White held Cowlitz to 3 hits in a 1-0 win on August 1, 2017. The Pippins’ two shutouts this year are tied for the 2nd-most in the WCL, trailing only Corvallis (3).
A LOT OF DUDES: The Pippins had another new addition to the starting lineup on Thursday against Bellingham, with outfielder Eddy Pelc becoming the 43rd different player to appear in a Pippins uniform so far this season through 27 games. A litany of injures has led to larger-than-expected roster turnover early in the season.
ODDS & ENDS: The Pickles will use a left-handed starter for all three games of the series with Perzan starting today…The Pippins lost their first game of the season when leading after 8 innings, falling to 12-8 when entering the ninth ahead…the Pippins set a team record with their 17 strikeouts on the mound.