Clayton Blackburn provided the only run of the game offensively, in addition to 7 1/3 shutout innings as the Sacramento River Cats blanked the Reno Aces, 1-0, Monday night at Raley Field.
Reno (66-70) matched a season-low with just two hits against Blackburn who was dynamite from the get-go.
The Sacramento (67-70) right-hander racked up seven of his nine strikeouts through the first four innings, including five consecutive punchouts. He ended the third with a pair before wiping away Mike Freeman, Todd Glaesmann and Nick Evans on strikes in the fourth.
While Blackburn was dealing, Aces starter Blayne Weller went pitch-for-pitch with the River Cats’ ace. The 25-year-old’s lone blemish of the night came in the bottom of the second inning. After beaning Mac Williamson to start the inning – who moments later stole second – Weller issued back-to-back walks to Trevor Brown and Nick Noonan, loading the bases with no outs. Weller recorded the first out via an infield pop-up, bringing up Blackburn.
On the tenth pitch of the at-bat, Blackburn sent a shallow fly ball to left-center. Glaesmann, Peter O’Brien and shortstop Danny Worth converged on the ball, but none of the three called for it, resulting in a bloop base hit.
Credited with a single and RBI, Blackburn (9-4) used the self-supported run and ran with it. He lost his perfect-game bid with one out in the sixth when Worth lined a clean single to right. O’Brien then dropped his 31st double of the season into shallow right with one out in the eighth, knocking Blackburn out of the game.
Left-hander Braulio Lara was brought on to face pinch-hitter Jordan Pacheco, whom he struck out looking before retiring Worth on a 6-3 groundout. The southpaw then sat down the Aces 1-2-3 in the ninth for his first save of the season.
Weller (1-2) was tagged with the loss, despite allowing just one earned run and five hits over six innings. He walked three and fanned four.
Glaesmann, named the PCL Player of the Week for his 17-hit output from August 24-30, finished 0-for-4 with three strikeouts, snapping his hitting streak at 11 games.
The Aces and River Cats play game two of their four-game series Tuesday night. Right-hander Aaron Blair (6-2, 3.55) starts for Reno against Sacramento right-hander Tommy Hanson (3-5, 5.63). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Reno Aces Press Release