Greg Halman's team in Championship Final!
SEATTLE, Washington (USA) -
Dutch professional player Greg Halman will play for the championship title in the Pacific Coast League with the Tacoma Rainers (Triple-A team of the Seattle Mariners), starting on Tuesday-evening. Halman's team opened the best-of-five Play-Off vs. the Sacramento River Cats (Oakland A's) with two victories (10-8, 8-5) at Sacramento, but then lost the next two games at their temporary home in Seattle. On Sunday-evening, Tacoma won the decisive fifth game in the Pacific Conference to move onto the championship series. In the best-of-five final, Tacoma will meet the Memphis Redbirds (St. Louis Cardinals), who defeated the Oklahoma City RedHawks (Texas Rangers) in the American Conference final.
Tacoma, which was the champion in the Pacific North Division, went home with a 2-0 lead, but then were beaten twice by Sacramento, the champion of the Pacific South Division, to force a fifth and deciding game. The last three games were all played at Safeco Field, the home of the Seattle Mariners, as Tacoma's own site, Cheney Stadium, is undergoing a major reconstruction. Because of this, all games of the PCL-final will be played at Memphis, including the home games of Tacoma.
On Friday, Sacramento won 6-2 to force a fourth game. Sacramento scored twice in the first inning when Matt Watson hit a 2-run homerun, then added a run in the third on sacrifice fly. In the home of the third, Tacoma got one run back when Eliezer Alfonzo led off with a walk, moved on a double by Tug Hulett and scored on a sacrifice fly by Greg Halman.
Sacramento then decided the game in the sixth inning when Michael Taylor hit a 3-run homerun to make it 6-1. Tacoma added only one more run in the seventh.
...Triple-A Championship Final...
(© Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
On Saturday, Sacramento evened the series at 2-2 by winning 5-1. The team from California again opened the score in the first inning, scoring one run on a single by Matt Watson. After four scoreless innings, Sacramento doubled its lead in the sixth on a single by Corey Brown, then rallied for three runs in the ninth at bat, highlighted by a 2-run double by Travis Buck. Tacoma scored its lone run in the home of the ninth on a sacrifice fly by Eliezer Alfonzo. Greg Halman was 1-for-3 in this game. Former Major League-pitcher Brett Tomko threw six innings for the River Cats and gave up only three hits, while striking out six.
On Sunday, Tacoma trailed 1-0, but came alongside in the sixth, then took over the lead in the seventh en route to a 4-1 victory to win the Pacific Conference-title. In the top of the fifth inning, Chris Carter homered with two outs to give Sacramento an 1-0 lead. In the bottom of the sixth, Greg Halman plays a part in the comeback of Tacoma. With one out, Dustin Ackley singles, who then moves into scoring position when Halman also singles and scores the tying run on a single by next hitter Matt Mangini. In the seventh inning, Tacoma takes a 2-1 lead in a strange situation. With one out, runner Mike Wilson appears to be forced out at second base on a grounder to short, which then looks to end in an inning-ending double play.
Hereafter, Sacramento's first baseman Tommy Everidge committed a crucial mental error, as he tossed the ball into the crowd for a souvenir, thinking the double play was completed and the inning was over.
However, Wilson was called safe at second base, meaning only the batter was retired for the second out.
Because Everidge threw the ball out if play, according to the rules, runner Wilson was awarded two bases, enabling him to score the go-ahead run. This season, Everidge played in 65 games for Tacoma, hitting .229 with seven homeruns, before being traded to the Houston Astros-organization in June. A week later, he was released, but then on August 31, he re-signed with the Oakland A's, who had released him in January, before he was picked up by the Mariners, who assigned him to its Triple-A team. Tacoma then makes it 4-1 in the eighth inning when Matt Mangini hits a 2-run homerun. Winning pitcher Ryan Feierabend threw eight strong innings and gave up only two hits.
recap first two games played by Tacoma
Memphis vs. Oklahoma City
OKLAHOMA CITY, Oklahoma (USA) -
The Memphis Redbirds, the champion of the American North Division, also took a 2-0 lead in their series vs. the Oklahoma City RedHawks. The Redbirds won 7-5 and 3-2 at home, then completed a 3-0 sweep when it also won the next day at Oklahoma City, 6-2.
Memphis broke an 1-1 tie by scoring two runs in the third inning on a 2-run double by Mark Hamilton. The Redbirds then added two more runs in the sixth at bat on a double by Donovan Solano and single by James Rapoport. In the eighth, Memphis made it 6-1 on an RBI-double by Allen Craig. Oklahoma City was able to score only one more run in its eighth on a double by Venezuelan Hernan Iribarren.