Salt Lake Bees score 7-6 walk-off win over Sacramento
Salt Lake's Vance Albitz didn't look like the winning run coming to the plate in bottom of the ninth.
Knotted with the Sacramento River Cats in the final game of the homestand, at 6-6, Albitz had gone 0-for-3 for the day. But the crafty shortstop was able to stare down an 0-2 count and drill a grounder into left field. Leadoff hitter Shawn O'Malley moved Albitz to second with a perfect sacrifice bunt, bringing Brennan Boesch to the plate.
Sacramento reliever Jeremy McBryde worked around the center fielder. Boesch expected it. All season long, pitchers danced around the plate trying to get Boesch to chase. Siting on a 3-1 count, Boesch knew he couldn't chase anything and waited for his pitch.
"Chase pretty much what every pitcher in this league does to me. Just a standard at-bat," Boesch said. "Hopefully, [they] have me chase. I stayed disciplined and got the slider I could hit."
Connecting on a 3-1 pitch, Boesch drove the ball into the right-center field gap. Albitz didn't pause as he streaked from second. Waved on by manager Keith Johnson, Albitz beat the throw, sliding for the 7-6 win.
"It was a good team win. We did a good job this time of minimizing damage and made the routine plays late in the game and didn't give them extra opportunities to score that go-ahead run," Johnson said. "The guys put together some really good at-bats in the last inning and we were able to push it across with Boesch's huge hit."
Jarrett Grube made his first start since being sent down by the Angels. He pitched five innings, giving up five runs on eight hits with three strikeouts and a walk. Roughed up in the first with a Nate Frieman home run, Grube earned Johnson's praise for his ability to reset and continue to attack.
"Lots of deep counts, his pitch count was way up definitely wasn't his sharpest outing," Johnson said. "But I thought he did a real good job after giving up the three-run homer in the first. I thought he competed well to keep us in the ballgame, got us through five innings and our bullpen did a good job for us today."
Bees 7, River Cats 6
R Salt Lake's Shawn O'Malley goes 3-for-5 with a two-run triple to tie the game in the second inning.
• In his first outing since being sent down by the Angels, Jarrett Gurbe pitches five innings, giving up eight hits, five runs and a walk, with three strikeouts.
• Brennan Boesch's walk-off single scored Vance Albitz. The Bees went 3-1 against Sacramento in their homestand. They start an eight-game road trip at Oklahoma City on Monday.