PCL: Reno spoils Salt Lake's party with 5-4 win
Keith Johnson's first game as the Pacific Coast League's Manager of the Year ended in defeat Friday night at Spring Mobile Ballpark.
Hours after Johnson was honored for his work during Salt Lake's division-winning season, the Reno Aces rallied from a pair of two-run deficits and beat the Bees, 5-4.
The loss ended an invigorating 24-hour stretch for the Bees, who clinched the Pacific North Division title late Thursday night with an 8-4 victory at Tacoma.
After a crack-of-dawn wake-up call and flight to Utah, Johnson came to the park and learned of his honor, just before Reno's comeback ended a two-game Salt Lake winning streak.
Neither pitcher the Aces' Tyler Skaggs nor Salt Lake's Matt Shoemaker allowed a hit in the first two innings.
After the Aces took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third, however, the Bees bunched four hits and grabbed a 3-1 lead.
With one out, John Hester singled. After moving to second on Chance Ross' groundout, he went to third on Drew Heid's infield single. Matt Long followed with an RBI single, which moved Heid to third. Long took second on the throw, setting up Tommy Field's two-run single, giving Salt Lake the lead.
Reno scored once in the top of the fourth to make it 3-2, but the Bees countered with another run in the fifth.
Ross, called up from Inland Empire on Thursday, opened with a single to right. He went to third on Heid's single and scored two outs later when Andy Marte lined a single up the middle.
In the top of the seventh, Johnson pulled Shoemaker in favor of Kevin Johnson.
The Aces tied the game.
After two quick outs, Tyler Harbin singled and Tyler Bortnick walked. Chris Owings lined a double to the gap in left center. Harbin and Bortnick scored to make it 4-4 and spoil a solid performance by Shoemaker, who is 3-0 with two no-decisions since Aug. 3.
In the top of the ninth, Reno scored the game-winner off Bees reliever Jason Urquidez. With one out, Bortnick singled and scored when Owings tripled again to left center. At that point, Urquidez slammed the door with back-to-back strikeouts, but the Aces held on in the bottom half of the inning.
Raptors 5, Owlz 3 • In Ogden, Joey Curletta was 3 for 4 with an RBI, and the host Raptors scored four runs in the first inning and held on for the Pioneer League win.
O Salt Lake's Keith Johnson is named the Pacific Coast League's Manager of the Year.
• Drew Heid and Chance Ross have two hits, but the Bees leave seven runners on base.