Gavin Cecchini stays hot in Las Vegas’ win against El Paso

The Las Vegas 51s started a four-game series against the first-place El Paso Chihuahuas with a 6-3 victory Monday in front of an announced crowd of 6,890 at Southwest University Park.

Las Vegas kept its slim postseason hopes alive by shaving a game off El Paso’s lead in the Pacific Southern division. The 51s are 5 1/2 games behind the Chihuahuas with six games to go. The Albuquerque Isotopes are 4 1/2 games back.

The 51s have won five of their last six games thanks to another solid night at the plate. Las Vegas has averaged eight runs per game during that span.

Shortstop Gavin Cecchini is a big reason why the 51 bats are alive. Cecchini collected another three hits Monday to give him 11 in his last 15 at-bats. Cecchini was pulled from the game in the seventh inning for an unknown reason before press time.

Las Vegas broke the game open with four runs in the fifth inning. With the 51s holding on to a 2-1 lead, Ty Kelly hit a two-run single in the fifth.

Brandon Nimmo started the game by drilling a solo home run to left field on the second pitch of the night. Las Vegas recorded 10 hits and two errors. Darin Gorski pitched six innings to get the victory and Las Vegan Paul Sewald recorded the save.

Nimmo, Cecchini and T.J. Rivera are battling for a batting title in the Pacific Coast League. Rivera is atop the category with a batting average of .347, but he’s spent most of the month with the New York Mets. Rivera was sent back down on Monday to make room for former 51s pitcher Rafael Montero.

Nimmo is second in the league at .345 and Cecchini is third with a .329 average.

Up next

■ Who: Las Vegas 51s at El Paso Chihuahas

■ When: 6:05 p.m. PDT Tuesday

■ Where: Southwest University Park, El Paso, Texas

■ Starters: Logan Verrett (2-0, 1.50 ERA) vs. Frank Garces (5-8, 4.53)

Next five

■ Wednesday: Las Vegas at El Paso, 6:05 p.m.

■ Thursday: Las Vegas at El Paso, 6:05 p.m.

■ Friday: Las Vegas at Salt Lake, 5:35 p.m.

■ Saturday: Las Vegas at Salt Lake, 6:05 p.m.

■ Sunday: Las Vegas at Salt Lake, 12:05 p.m.

Update

Logan Verrett, who pitched in 30 games for the New York Mets this season, will look to go 3-0 with the 51s on Tuesday. Verrett was sharp in his last start, giving up only two earned runs in a victory against Salt Lake City.

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