Visalia, CA (Thursday, August 18) – The Fresno Grizzlies (66-45, 25-20) survived the Visalia Rawhide (39-72, 19-26) 10-8 Thursday evening from Valley Strong Ballpark. With the win, Fresno improved to 32-7 overall against Visalia in the last two seasons, outscoring the Rawhide 264-167. The Grizzlies have won 10 straight against
Visalia, CA (Thursday, August 18) – The Fresno Grizzlies (66-45, 25-20) survived the Visalia Rawhide (39-72, 19-26) 10-8 Thursday evening from Valley Strong Ballpark. With the win, Fresno improved to 32-7 overall against Visalia in the last two seasons, outscoring the Rawhide 264-167. The Grizzlies have won 10 straight against their Highway 99 rivals and moved to 13-2 versus them in 2022. Fresno jumped to 6-4 when tied after eight innings and 8-7 in two-run affairs.
Fresno’s offense supplied 10 runs on nine hits, eight walks and three hit-by-pitches. For the third consecutive contest, eight of the nine Grizzlies starters reached base safely. Juan Guerrero led the charge with a 2-for-4 night, driving in three RBI and scoring two key runs. Guerrero enjoyed a two-run double and swiped a pair of bases, his second time completing that feat in the series. Benny Montgomery provided the other extra-base hit, a solo missile in the third. It was Montgomery’s first road homer, most recent bomb since July 6th and fourth longball of the season. He added a pair of runs and walks in the triumph.
Besides the duo above, a couple other Grizzlies batters had sensational final lines. Zach Kokoska reached base four times, mustering a run, RBI and stolen base. Bryant Quijada also got on base four times and was not retired. He slapped two singles, drew a walk and was hit once. Braxton Fulford waltzed home twice after a single and walk. Yorvis Torrealba snuck in the go-ahead run with a force out in the ninth and stole a base, resulting in an insurance run. Cuba Bess had a big at-bat in the fourth, notching a single and RBI. Ben Sems walked and was beaned by a pitch.
On the other side, Visalia’s lineup blasted 10 hits with seven of them landing for extra-bases. Gavin Conticello concluded his contest a clout shy of the cycle. He spanked a triple, double and netted two runs. Juan Corniel reached base three times, crushing a double and scoring twice. Manuel Pena brought in two RBI thanks to a double and walk. Sergio Gutierrez connected on his sixth wallop of the year, a two-run shot in the second. S.P. Chen broke an 0-fer streak with a two-hit night. He whacked a late double and RBI.
Both starting pitchers did not factor in the decision. Grizzlies’ righty Brayan Castillo did not get out of the second inning after allowing seven hits and five runs. Rawhide lefty Yu-Min Lin permitted a quartet of runs over four frames of work. Fresno relievers Ever Moya (2.1 IP) and Sergio Sanchez (3.0 IP) tossed season-highs in innings and combined for three punchouts. Southpaw Gabriel Rodriguez (1-0) relished the win after striking out two over a clean eighth and Felix Ramires wrapped up his first save with a 1-2-3 ninth. Visalia’s Listher Sosa (3-4) agonized the defeat after blowing the tied game in the ninth. The squads are back to battle tomorrow evening from Valley Strong Ballpark.
Top Performers: Fresno Grizzlies (Colorado Rockies)
• DH Juan Guerrero (2-4, 2B, 3 RBI, 2 R, 2 SB, CS)
• CF Benny Montgomery (1-3, HR, RBI, 2 R, 2 BB)
• LF Zach Kokoska (2-3, RBI, R, 2 BB, SB)
• 1B Bryant Quijada (2-2, R, BB, HBP)
• C Braxton Fulford (1-4, 2 R, BB)
Top Performers: Visalia Rawhide (Arizona Diamondbacks)
• 1B Gavin Conticello (3-5, 3B, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R)
• SS Juan Corniel (1-3, 2B, RBI, 2 R, 2 BB)
• 2B Manuel Pena (2-4, 2B, 2 RBI, BB)
• C Sergio Gutierrez (1-5, HR, 2 RBI, R)
• DH S.P. Chen (2-4, 2B, RBI, R)
Friday, August 19 @ Visalia Rawhide, Fresno RHP Victor Juarez (5-5, 4.89) vs. Visalia RHP Jose Cabrera (2-1, 4.76) , 6:30 pm PT
ON THAT FRES-NOTE:
The Grizzlies were very aggressive on the base paths. Fresno plated two runs thanks to double steal plays (one successful and one back-pick Visalia error).