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Bewildered in B.C.: Dust Devils Clipped Again by Canadians

August 13, 2023

For the third time this week the Tri-City Dust Devils (16-25 2H, 50-57) found themselves with a late lead and within reach of their first win of the series but the Vancouver Canadians (29-12 2H, 67-39) continued to trouble their guests, scoring three runs in the 8th inning and taking

For the third time this week the Tri-City Dust Devils (16-25 2H, 50-57) found themselves with a late lead and within reach of their first win of the series but the Vancouver Canadians (29-12 2H, 67-39) continued to trouble their guests, scoring three runs in the 8th inning and taking an 8-7 win Saturday night at Rogers Field at Nat Bailey Stadium.

The winning run for Vancouver came as part of a two-out rally when SS Josh Kasevich was hit by a Willian Suarez pitch with the bases loaded. CF Dasan Brown, who had singled off Tri-City reliever Roman Phansalkar (4-3), jogged home from third to break a 7-7 tie. Canadians reliever Sam Ryan (5-0) got the win by working around two walks to pitch a scoreless 8th inning, and bullpen-mate Justin Kelly got his fifth save with a 1-2-3 top of the 9th.

Swinging back-and-forth four times, the game saw the Dust Devils grab a 2-0 lead early on. 2B Arol Vera doubled home CF D’Shawn Knowles, who had singled, in the 1st inning to get on the board in their first at-bat. 3B Werner Blakely scored the next inning on a double steal involving SS Andy Blake to double the lead.

The Canadians would answer back with five unanswered runs, the first coming in the bottom of the 2nd inning and the last two coming on a two-run home run by 3B Cade Doughty in the 4th.

Tri-City starter Nick Horvath, the tip of a bullpen day spear, went 2.2 innings and struck out four. Reliever Andrew Peters followed and went 1.1 innings, their collective work concluding after four innings with a 5-2 Vancouver lead.

The visitors began their climb back into the game in the top of the 5th, scoring twice on RBI singles by LF Joe Stewart and Vera to get within 5-4, and took the lead back an inning later by plating three runs for a 7-5 advantage. Blake singled through the right side to score Blakely and tie the game at 5-5 and C Myles Emmerson followed in his train and drove a grounder to right, scoring 1B Matt Coutney, who had been hit by a pitch, for a 6-5 lead. Knowles added an RBI double to right-center for what was the team’s two-run advantage.

They got help in the middle innings as well from Dust Devils debutant Andre Sanchez, who threw three scoreless innings while giving up only two hits and striking out four. The Córdoba, Mexico native had not thrown above the Arizona Complex League prior to the game, but seemed unfazed by the two-level jump to High-A.

The rally by the Canadians, though, handed the Dust Devils their seventh straight loss overall and their seventh straight loss in Vancouver, dating back to the team’s first visit in April. Tri-City has had at least an 8th inning lead in three of the five games of this series, and either matched or outhit the home team in all five contests. Also, the series continued its closeness, with the Dust Devils falling in the first five games by a combined six runs (four one-run losses and one two-run loss).

Tri-City had a total of 13 hits in the game, including a pair of three-hit games from Werner Blakely and D’Shawn Knowles. Andy Blake grabbed both his first two hits for the Dust Devils as well as his first RBI, adding a walk to reach base three times. Arol Vera also had two hits, including his early RBI double.

Tri-City will now look to shake off the prior contests and end the week by salvaging a game in the series finale at 1:05 p.m. Sunday afternoon at Rogers Field at Nat Bailey Stadium. Right-hander Bryce Osmond (3-7, 3.89 ERA) has been announced as the probable starter for the Dust Devils, and righty Pat Gallagher (0-0, 2.70 ERA) the same for the Canadians.

Broadcast coverage will begin with the pregame show at 12:45 p.m., both here and at the MiLB First Pitch app.

After Sunday’s game Tri-City will head east for a six-game series with the Spokane Indians at Avista Stadium, returning to Gesa Stadium on Tuesday, August 22 for a six-game set with the Everett AquaSox. Tickets for both the Everett series and all games are on sale now with special ticket rates available for groups of 20 or more. For more information on Dust Devils single game, season, mini-plan (11, 22, 33) and group tickets, visit dustdevilsbaseball.com, call the team office at (509) 544-8789, or visit the team office (10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on game nights, or Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. otherwise).