From staff reports
Pinch-runner Jamari Baylor scored from second on a throwing error, and the Spokane Indians edged the Hillsboro Hops 4-3 in a Northwest League game at Avista Stadium on Saturday.
The Indians (18-23) have taken three of the first five games of the six-game series from the Hops (17-24). Spokane scored four runs on two hits, went 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position and left seven runners on base.
The Indians scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth without the benefit of a base hit.
Parker Kelly and Robby Martin Jr. led off the ninth with back-to-back walks by Hops reliever Eli Saul.
Bryant Quijada attempted a sacrifice bunt fielded by first baseman Jean Walters, but he threw it down the right field line and both runners scored.
Quijada ended up at second and was pinch run for by Baylor. AJ Lewis grounded to shortstop Juan Corniel, who tried to get Baylor at third base, but his throw sailed into foul territory and Baylor raced home with the winning run.
Scoring was at a premium early in the game as Indians starter Carson Palmquist and Hillsboro starter Joe Elbis traded zeros through the first five innings, combining for just four hits and two walks against with 15 strikeouts.
Hillsboro struck first in the sixth inning. Palmquist registered another strikeout, but Wilderd Patino mashed Palmquist’s 79th pitch of the game over the fence in right center field for his fourth home run of the season.
The Indians loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh. Kelly was hit by a pitch, and Martin Jr. reached via error, ending Elbis’ evening. Carlos Meza entered for the Hops and committed an error on a grounder by Quijada and all hands were safe.
Braiden Ward grounded to shortstop and the Hops got the force-out at second, but Kelly scored to tie it.
Indians reliever Angel Chivilli retired the first two Hops batters in the ninth, but Joshua Day’s soft line drive fell safely in center field, then Franco lofted a high fly ball down the right field line that barely reached the short porch for a two-run homer.
Palmquist struck out 10 over six innings. He allowed one run on three hits and a walk and threw 92 pitches, 67 for strikes.