An offensive outburst coupled with a strong start from Sam Gaviglio lifted the Tacoma Rainiers to their third consecutive road victory, an 8-1 decision over the Las Vegas 51s on Thursday night.
Gaviglio earned his second win of the year after working 7 2/3 innings and allowing one run on three hits. He issued no walks and struck out five — at one point, he sat down 18 consecutive Las Vegas batters.
Second baseman Mike Freeman fell just shy of hitting for the cycle to lead the offense for Tacoma (17-9), going 3 for 5 with a double, a triple and three RBIs.
Center fielder Leonys Martin (2 for 5, with a double, two RBIs), third baseman Seth Mejias-Brean (2 for 4, with a double and a run driven in) and right fielder Zach Shank (2 for 3 with a triple) all collected multiple hits for the Rainiers.
Las Vegas (13-15) jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a pair of singles and a hit batter in the second inning. Desmond Jennings drove in the run with a two-out single.
The Rainiers rallied for two runs in the third inning, kick-started by a leadoff single from Shank. Two batters later, Freeman brought home Shank with an RBI triple to right-center field. First baseman D.J. Peterson wrapped the scoring with an RBI groundball forceout at second base.
Freeman tacked onto the Rainiers’ lead with a two-out, two-run double in the fifth inning. Peterson checked in with an RBI double of his own two batters later to make it 5-1.
Tacoma send eight batters to the plate and scraped together three more runs in the eighth inning. Mejias-Brean doubled in a run while Martin doubled home two runs three batters later.
Nick Hagadone notched the final out in the eighth inning and sat down Las Vegas in the ninth to close things out.
Rainiers right-hander Chris Heston (2-0, 2.38 ERA) and Las Vegas right-hander r Tyler Pill (1-0, 0.00) take the mound at 7:05 p.m. Friday at Cashman Field.