A late-inning error was again the deciding factor for the Tri-City Dust Devils as they lost the opening game of the second half of the Northwest League season to the Spokane Indians 3-2. Dust Devils shortstop Rosell Herrera bobbled a ground ball in the ninth inning with the bases loaded that allowed the game-deciding run to score and give the Indians the lead. The loss was the first of the second half, which began Tuesday night, for Tri-City as they look to capture the lone remaining playoff spot in the East Division.
Tri-City (0-1 second half, 18-21 overall) starting pitcher Roberto Padilla, in his first start since his return to the Dust Devils after spending time with the advanced-A affiliate Modesto Nuts, allowed two runs over four innings. Righty Ryan Arrowood relieved Padilla, throwing four shutout innings while allowing four hits and striking out five. Seth Willoughby (2-1) then came in for the ninth inning for Tri-City and allowed the eventual game-deciding run and took his first professional loss.
Spokane (1-0 second half, 12-26 overall) starting pitcher Connor Sadzeck lasted three innings on the mound, allowing two runs on three hits while striking out four and walking three. Reliever Cody Kendall (3-2) earned the win for the Indians, throwing two shutout innings. Josh McElwee (Sv, 4) then came in for Spokane in the ninth and tallied his fourth save of the season.
At the plate the Dust Devils tallied seven hits on the night, two of them off of the bat off second baseman Patrick Hutcheson, who ended the night 2-for-4. Outfielder Francisco Sosa drove in both Dust Devils runs, going 1-for-2 with two walks.
The Dust Devils and Indians face off in game two of three Wednesday night at Gesa Stadium as Tri-City tries to even the series. It will also be the second of three Wine Nights at Gesa Stadium this season, sponsored by Thompson Hill Cellars. There will be wine for sale, in addition to the usual concession offerings at Gesa Stadium. Righty Ben Hughes will start on the mound for the Dust Devils with right-hander Abel De Los Santos starting for the Indians.