In the first four series of their inaugural Pacific Association of Professional Baseball League season the Sonoma Stompers played the San Rafael Pacifics and Vallejo Admirals, and on Tuesday night they faced the Pittsburg Mettle in the first meeting of a long six-game road series between the two PAPB teams.
The Stompers were trailing Pittsburg in its home opener 4-2 when Joel Carranza led off the top of the eighth inning with a walk against Pittsburg starting pitcher and former San Francisco Giant, Wayne Franklin, and, with one out, moved to third base on Kyle Jones’ double to left-center field.
Carranza scored on pinch-hitter Reid Chenworth’s errored line drive to left field, and, after the Mettle went to its bullpen, Derrick Fox walked to load the bases and Aritz Garcia walked, with Jones crossing the plate to tie the game for Sonoma.
Then Jayce Ray worked a bases-loaded walk for the lead run and Steve Rinaudo followed with a clutch two-RBI single up the middle and the Stompers had an 8-4 triumph.
Sonoma starter Erik Gonsalves (2-1) was the winning pitcher after going seven innings and yielding four runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out six.
Giving the Stompers’ an early lead were Garcia’s double and run scored on an RBI single by Matt Marquis, and Jones’ solo home run to right field.
Unfortunately, there was no Stompers’ comeback in Wednesday night’s second game of the six-game set thanks to Pittsburg pitcher Marquis Pettis.
Sonoma was kept in check for seven innings by Pettis, who scattered six hits, while walking five, striking out two, but allowing just two runs as the Mettle posted a 4-2 win.
The Stompers, who had runners on base in every inning but failed to capitalize on numerous opportunities, eventually leaving 12 runners stranded, tallied their first run in the second inning, with Marquis singling to lead off, then stealing second base, his first of two steals, and scoring on T.J. Gavlik’s two-out RBI single.
Sonoma tied the game at two with Carranza’s RBI single plating Ray, who scored from third after walking, stealing second, one of his three steals on the night, and moving to third on a deep fly out by Rinaudo.
The Stompers, who played last night – results not available at presstime – continue the six-game series at Pittsburg through Sunday, June 22.
Sonoma’s home opener takes place Tuesday evening, July 1, at Arnold Field, with Stompers’ season tickets currently on sale at stompersbaseball.com or eventbrite.com/e/2014-sonoma-stompers-season-tickets-33-home-games-tickets-11232656177.