Williams Shuts Down Bells, Before Bats Rally To End Skid - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Williams Shuts Down Bells, Before Bats Rally To End Skid

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YAKIMA, WA – When the top two pitching staffs in the West Coast League, you can expect a quality pitching performance. That’s exactly what the Yakima Valley Pippins and Bellingham Bells delivered Tuesday night, as the Pippins rallied late to win, 6-1 at County Stadium.

Brandon Williams was the early story for Yakima Valley (22-15), shining in front of a crowd of 1,449. The right-hander out of Central Washington University was perfect through his first five innings of work, inducing multiple soft pop outs and strikeouts to keep the Bells (26-10) scoreless.

He got some run support in the bottom of the 2nd, courtesy of Ryan Yamane. The Pippins second baseman lined a single into left field that scored Mitch Skaggs from 3rd base and gave Yakima Valley a 1-0 lead.

After allowing his first hit and base runner on a Jack Klein bunt single to begin the 6th, Williams found himself in some trouble in the 7th and 8th. The Bells put the first two men on with back-to-back singles to begin the 7th. Scott Heath then put down a sacrifice bunt and catcher Alex Guenette’s throw to 1st base went down the right field line to allow the tying run to score.

As Bellingham starter Eder Erives found his groove, his bats almost gave him a lead in the top of the 8th, as the Bells put runners on 1st and 3rd with only 1 out. However, back-to-back failed squeeze bunts by Chris Baker and a Williams strikeout ended the Bells’ threat. Williams worked 8 innings, giving up 5 hits, 1 unearned run, 0 walks and a season-high 11 strikeouts.

With Erives out of the game in the bottom of the 8th, the Pippins bats teed off on relievers Dan Ludwig and Burk Fitzpatrick. After a one-out double by Reid Martinez, Mitch Skaggs hit his second home run of the season, putting the Pippins up 3-1. A wild pitch, and two bases-loaded walks later in the inning gave the Pippins a five-run advantage they would not relinquish.

The win ended a four-game losing streak in WCL play for Yakima Valley, while giving Bellingham its first three-game losing streak of the season. Game two of the series is scheduled for Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. However, with rain in the forecast, fans should check the team’s Twitter and Facebook pages to get alerts on potential delays or postponements.
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