For the second straight night the Ems would fall behind big in the early going. Salem plated a pair of runs off of starter Yimmi Brasoban in the 1st as Brasoban struggled to find the strike zone. Entering the game he had yet to allow a run in 10 innings of work but after 3 walks, an error and an RBI single from Salem SS Brandon Bednar, the Volcanoes had a 2-0 lead after half an inning. A lead off double from DH Ryan Honeycutt led to another run in the 2nd, and it was the end of the night for Brasoban who went just 2 innings allowing two hits, four walks and three runs (two earned).
Salem-Keizer’s starter Drew Leenhouts had a polar opposite outing as he hurled five shutout frames while allowing just three hits and three walks. Eugene did get the lead off man aboard in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th but Salem used a couple of expertly turned double play balls to thwart the Emeralds.
The Volcanoes really broke things open with a two-out rally in the 4th. Ems right handed reliever Kyle Loyd had come back out after a 1-2-3 top of the 3rd inning. After Salem's catcher Eugene Escalante led off with a single, Loyd retired the next two batters. When RF Randy Ortiz hit a grounder to third it looked like the inning would be over, but a throwing error from the newest Emerald Fernando Perez opened the flood gates.
Salem-Keizer took advantage by hitting for a natural cycle over the next four batters. An infield single from Tyler Hollick was followed by an RBI double for Brandon Bednar. Then Franmil Reyes played a Sam Eberle line drive into a triple and Shilo McCall capped it off with a two-run homer. All told, the Volcanoes scored six times in the fourth to break the game wide open.
Eugene’s bullpen would settle down after that as Genison Reyes, Josh Richardson and Trevor Gott combined to pitch the final 5.1 innings without allowing a hit. The offense got something going in the bottom of the 7th when the first four batters of the inning reach base safely including an RBI double from catcher Ryan Miller.
With the bases loaded and still none out Felipe Blanco grounded into a run-scoring double play but the rally was pretty much finished. The Ems dropped the series opener 9-2 and now sit three games back of first place Salem-Keizer.