More than 6,000 humans and numerous dogs were treated to a pitchers' duel on Sunday afternoon at Raley Field in West Sacramento. It was "Bark at the Park" at Raley Field, but there was little bite to the Sacramento offense, as the River Cats managed only four hits in a 4-0 loss to the Tacoma Rainiers.
A.J. Griffin, called up from High-A Stockton to make a spot start for the River Cats, was impressive in his Triple-A debut. The A's 2010 draft pick worked six innings for Sacramento. He was charged with three runs on six hits. Only two of the runs were earned. Griffin struck-out eight and walked two in the outing, utilizing his big breaking ball to get several swing-and-miss strike-outs.
Tacoma starter Blake Beavan was even better than Griffin on Sunday, however. The former Texas Rangers first-round pick dominated the River Cats for eight innings. He scattered four hits and allowed only two runners past second base. Scott Patterson pitched a scoreless ninth to close out the shut-out. It had been nearly a year since Sacramento was last shut-out.
The River Cats had two unearned runs in the game, but they made some spectacular defensive plays. Outfielders Matt Carson and Michael Taylor each threw out runners at the plate, with catcher Josh Donaldson doing a good job of blocking the plate and tagging out the runner in both instances.
We have exclusive photos from the game below...
ALL PHOTOS BY CHRIS LOCKARD/SCOUT.COM
AJ Griffin struck-out 8 in 6 innings in his Triple-A debut.
Blake Beavan was dominant in his 8 innings.
Mike Wilson hauls in an Eric Sogard fly out.
Matt Carson fouls one at the plate.
Kevin Kouzmanoff watches a foul ball.
Wes Timmons makes a play from his knees at second.
Anthony Recker steals second base.
With a runner on third and one out in the third, Michael Taylor caught a fly ball and fired it from left to home...
...where Josh Donaldson caught it after one hop...
...then Donaldson made the tag...
...and held onto the ball for the double-play.
Wes Timmons connects.
Mariners prospect Alex Liddi went 0-for-3.
Jai Miller went 0-for-2, but he walked twice.
Anthony Recker had a hit and a stolen base and he lined out hard to center.
Ben Hornbeck allowed an unearned run in 1.1 innings of relief.
Fautino De Los Santos struggled with his command but pitched 1.2 scoreless.
De Los Santos wasn't charged with a run because Matt Carson threw out Matt Tuiasosopo at the plate. Josh Donaldson applies the tag.
1 of 18 photos