Gold Sox come up short at Solano
A disastrous second inning and a sharp Solano Thunderbirds pitching staff killed the Yuba-Sutter Gold Sox chances for a win Wednesday night in Vacaville's Travis Credit Union Park.
The Thunderbirds (23-21, 8-14) won, 8-4, denying the Gold Sox (32-13, 14-9) a win at Solano for the third time in as many chances. The Gold Sox are 4-5 on the road this season with one more game at Solano next week.
Vince DeCoito (2-2) suffered the loss for the Gold Sox and gave up six runs on five hits to Solano in the horrid second. DeCoito was making his first start after leaving a game 10 days ago with stiffness in his leg and lasted just 12/3 innings.
The loss, combined with a win by the first-place Santa Barbara Foresters, eliminated the Gold Sox from the California Coastal League title race. The Foresters defeated the Salinas Packers, 5-1, on Wednesday.
Solano starter Craig Eagle gave up a second-pitch home run to Frank Jeney - his first of the year - but dazzled after that to pick up the win. Eagle retired 11 in a row through the fifth inning - allowing two hits - before hitting A.J. Valentine with a pitch.
Eagle pitched six innings, giving up two earned runs on two hits.
Brett McMillan hit a two-run double in the second for Solano while Johnny Dudoit, Drew Gilmore, Rance Fosdick and Josh Roenicke each knocked in runs for the 6-1 advantage.
Solano tacked on a run in the third with Fosdick's second RBI of the night off reliever Wes Porter. McMillan recorded his third RBI in the sixth to give Solano an 8-2 lead.
Cameron Shick hit an RBI single to drive home Brennan Garr in the sixth for the Gold Sox second run. Garr singled and moved to second on a balk before scoring.
A.J. Valentine's two-RBI single in the eighth cut Solano's lead to 8-4. R.C. Dickerson and Garr scored on the hit after each drew walks.
Jason Searle's nine-game hitting streak was snapped after he failed to get a hit in four plate appearances.
Gold Sox pitching coach Jack Johnson was thrown out of the game after arguing balls and strikes in the second. Porter's first pitch, after taking over for Decoito, was called a ball, and Johnson came out of the dugout to argue.
Gold Sox manager Brad Peek said he will likely start Eric Thompson (7-1, 2.11) and Craig Ayers (4-2, 2.76) against the San Francisco Seals in a two-game CCL series today and Friday in Marysville.
Yuba-Sutter only has three more conference games left in the season. The first-place Foresters' final two league games are today, a doubleheader with the Salinas Valley Packers.
“We'll certainly save our pitching for those guys,” Peek said. “That's why we're possibly keeping the option of using a starter in relief.”
Peek said Nicolas Waechter (5-0, 3.08) might start Saturday or Sunday against the Lake County Red Hawks if he isn't needed in relief in the Seals' series. The Red Hawks are a first-year team that draws heavily from the Ukiah area.
The Gold Sox and Seals have split their four meetings this year. San Francisco actually handed Yuba-Sutter its most disappointing defeat of the year on June 30 when it rallied from a 7-3 deficit in the ninth to tie and eventually win 8-7 in 10 innings.
Injury-wise, Peek said reliever Logan Ardis has recovered from tendentious in his hand and will be available to pitch again. Outfielder Jason Searle's quadriceps are better, although he injured his big toe sliding into second base last weekend.
Notes: The Salinas Californian is reporting that Salinas Valley Packers owner/manager Dave Holt is ending operations with the club after this year. The team would need a buyer to keep the organization alive in Salinas. League president Bill Pintard could not be reached for comment.
The Appeal-Democrat sports department can be reached at 743-0512. You may e-mail the editor at email@example.com.