Seventh-inning rally lifts Spokane Indians over first-place Eugene 8-5

The Spokane Indians rallied for four runs in the bottom of the seventh – all starting with two outs – and beat the Eugene Emeralds 8-5 in the second game of a six-game High-A Northwest League series at Avista Stadium on Wednesday.

The Indians (15-16) remained in fourth place in the NWL second half, moving 4 1/2 games behind first-place Eugene (20-12).

Trailing 5-4 in the seventh, Mateo Gil and Hunter Goodman started the rally with back-to-back doubles to tie it. Colin Simpson bounced to first but Luis Toribio couldn’t come up with it cleanly and Simpson beat him to the bag.

While Toribio was pleading with the umpire, Goodman hustled home for a 6-5 lead.

Ronaiker Palma and Nic Kent hit consecutive singles for another run, then Palma raced home on a wild pitch to make it 8-5.

Anderson Bido pitched a scoreless eighth and Tyler Ahearn handled the ninth for his fourth save at High-A this season.

Indians starter Joe Rock had a tough time finding the strike zone in the first inning and Eugene took advantage. Leadoff hitter Vaun Brown took a ball just off the outside corner for a walk then Jairo Pomares doubled to the wall in left center to knock in Brown.

In the bottom half, Zac Veen drew a one-out walk, stole second and third then scored on a groundout. It pushed Veen’s league-leading stolen base total to 50.

With two on and two down, Simpson laced a single to center. Warming Bernabel scored easily but Goodman was out by a country mile trying to add another.

Palma led off the second with a double, went to third on a groundout and scored on a single by Bladimir Restituyo to make it 3-1.

Restituyo made it 4-1 in the fourth when he beat out an infield single with two down and Palma scored on the play.

Eugene rallied in the fifth. With two on and one down, Casey Schmitt lined a single to center and Restituyo’s throw beat Brown to the plate, but Palma couldn’t hang on to in and Brown was safe. A second run scored in the inning on a groundout and the Emeralds trailed by one.

Rock finished five innings and allowed three runs on six hits and three walks with five strikeouts.

Eugene took the lead in the sixth on a two-run double by Brown off reliever Blake Goldsberry, setting up the Indians comeback in the seventh.

Palma finished 3 for 4 with three runs, while five others had two hits apiece.