Eugene Emeralds Baseball

Ems drop game one against Tri-City 3-1

By: Joe Krasnowski

EUGENE, OR –  The first place Ems — who entered ten games over .500 lost to the last place Tri-City Dust Devils — who entered eight games under .500 — and lost because… baseball.

Unable to slug out of their fatal slump, the Ems were held to just three knocks — two of which came in the first —  on the night. The lackluster offensive showing came while Tri-City’s clutch third inning proved to be the difference in the low-scoring contest.

After twirling three innings of scoreless baseball, Hayden Wynja’s second time through the order was less successful. 

He allowed a leadoff homer to Matt Coutney (2-2) before loading the bases for Caleb Ketchup who singled through the left-side to bring home a pair.

The three-run outburst would be all Tri-City would need on a night the Ems’ offense will soon look to forget. 

Wynja fired a scoreless fourth to end his day, his ERA on the season was raised from 3.86 to 4.32 after the subpar showing. 

Daniel Blair — who entered on the heels of a scoreless four inning outing — was terrific in relief, firing five scoreless innings in relief. He struck out four, walked three and allowed two hits. Of his 71 pitches, 47 were strikes. 

He walked two in his first inning of work but settled in tremendously, limiting hard-contact and featuring a devastating slider in his outing. 

Blair’s outing even had its fair share of defensive prowess as well .

A no-look behind-the-back grab on a chopper retired the first batter he faced in the seventh. He then allowed a pair of runners to reach in the seventh, before a perfect relay from Tanner O’Tremba and Quinn McDaniel retired the final out of the inning. 

The Emeralds gave Wynja some early support, manufacturing one run in the first on a Onil Perez sac-fly. But were unable to get anything going on the cool Eugene night. 

Blair’s dominance coupled with the terrific defensive display kept the Emeralds within striking distance. 

But the Ems never struck. 

Save for a fourth inning Matt Higgins single, the Ems were held hitless from the fifth inning beyond.

Both first inning knocks for the Ems were of the infield variety, coming via a Quinn McDaniel grounder to short and a Diego Velasquez bunt. 

Tri-City’s terrific defense only exacerbated a lackluster offensive showing. Eugene was a perfect 1-1 with runners in scoring position and left two runners on base. 

Six scoreless innings from Jorge Marchecho — who entered with a lackluster 5.11 ERA — underpinned the three-run fourth. Leonard Garcia and Camden Minacci — who suffered the loss on opening day — combined to go the rest of the way, facing the minimum for Tri-City. 

Game two of the series is set for 7:05 tomorrow. Manuel Mercedes is set to toe the rubber for the Ems against Walbert Urena.

Short Hops 

Last time out the Ems totaled six runs in the third inning against Spokane. They had three hits and hit a combined 3-30 on a forgettable night. 

The Eugene Emeralds are the High-A affiliate of Major League Baseball’s San Francisco Giants. The Eugene Emeralds are dedicated to providing the best in family entertainment and creating a fun, safe environment for everyone to enjoy watching a baseball game. For more information, please visit our website at or call the Emeralds front office at 541-342-5367. • • •