River Cats answer rally, topple 51s

Chris Denorfia’s two-out RBI single in the eighth inning drove in the decisive run Saturday night in the Sacramento River Cats’ back-and-forth 9-8 victory over the 51s in a Pacific Coast League game in West Sacramento, Calif.

With the River Cats leading 3-2 entering the seventh inning, Las Vegas (5-11) loaded the bases with no outs, and Howie Clark unloaded them with a double to left field. One out later, Randy Ruiz’s RBI single put the 51s up 6-3.

But Sacramento (9-8) responded with five runs in the bottom of the seventh, with Sean Doolittle belting a two-run double and Matt Carson a two-out, two-run homer for an 8-6 River Cats lead.

Aaron Mathews’ RBI single and Buck Coats’ run-scoring groundout in the top of the eighth tied the score at 8. But Eric Patterson reached base in the bottom of the inning on a two-out single, stole second and scored on Denorfia’s decisive hit.

Las Vegas loaded the bases on two hits and a walk with two outs in the ninth. But River Cats reliever Kevin Cameron (2-1) caught Angel Sanchez looking at a third strike on a full-count pitch to end it.

Carson and Doolittle each had three hits for Sacramento, which held a 14-11 advantage in hits. Carson drove in three runs and Doolittle two.

Wade Miller started for the 51s and gave up two runs on four hits and three walks in five innings. T.J. Beam (1-1) took the loss, giving up two runs on four hits in 1 2/3 innings.

Cameron, the fifth of five River Cats pitchers, pitched two shutout innings.

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