Tacoma tees off on Portland

Drew Macias

Portland, OR— Tacoma's offense teed off against the Portland pitching staff in the seventh and eighth innings to lead the Rainiers to an 8-3 victory over the Beavers Saturday night at PGE Park.

The story for the Beavers was one of lost opportunity as they left 11 men on base, eight of them in scoring position. Portland threatened by putting men in scoring position in each of the first three innings but could not capitalize on their opportunities.

Tacoma struck first in the top of the third inning. After leading of the inning with a single to left field, left fielder Nick Green was driven home by a double off the bat of Bryan LaHair.

Portland came out swinging against Tacoma's starter Robert Rohrbraugh in the fifth inning when Drew Macias and Frank Menechino hit back-to-back solo home runs, giving Portland a 2-1 lead. The home run was Macias' first at the Triple-A level.

Unfortunately for the Beavers, their lead was short lived as the Rainiers busted the game open in the seventh inning. Hensley was relieved by Aaron Rakers after allowing the tying run to score on an RBI-double by Sebastien Boucher. The first Tacoma batter to face Rakers was their lead off man Green who sent Rakers' second offering out of the park for a 2-run jack. The dinger was Green's third in the last three days against the Beavers. Moments after Green finished his homerun trot around the bases, Jeremy Reed blasted a ball off the scoreboard in left-center field, giving Tacoma a 5-2 lead.

Portland answered back with one run in the bottom of the frame, squeezing the gap to 5-3, but Tacoma rallied again in the eighth inning to extend their lead and put the game out of reach. Following a walk to Jeff Clement and single by Gookie Dawkins, Rakers served up a pitch to second baseman Brant Ust which he tagged for a three-run homer over the right field fence.

After giving up three homeruns in one inning of work, Rakers was relieved by Roger Deago. In just his third appearance for Portland, Deago pitched 1.2 innings of scoreless relief.

Left-handers Jaime Cerda and Jason Mackintosh finished off the Beavers, giving up just two hits over the last three frames.

Game Notes:
- On Saturday, Portland placed Craig Stansberry on the temporary inactive list and transferred infielder Eric Sogard to Portland from Class-A Eugene. Sogard was San Diego's second round selection in this year's draft after playing for Arizona State and being named the Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year. Saturday was just his fourth professional game
- The Padres also transferred left-handed pitcher Justin Hampson to Portland
- Both Clay Hensley and Robert Rohrbraugh threw over 100 pitches in the game.
- Tacoma's Nick Green has hit a homerun in three straight games against the Beavers
- Menechino was 3-for-4 and a triple away from hitting for the cycle
- Hensley has lost five of his last six starts
- Macias and Pete Laforest both extended their hitting streaks to four games

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