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Isotopes battle back to overwhelm Grizzlies

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No one on the field was safe Wednesday night at Isotopes Park. Three players and one umpire were hit by pitches and a pitcher had to leave his start early.

Add it all up and it was a rough win for one team and a painful loss for another. The Albuquerque Isotopes were lucky to come out on top, rallying for an 8-7 victory over the banged-up Fresno Grizzlies.

"As far as time-wise and everything you figured it was going to be a (14-12) type of game," manager Damon Berryhill said of the 3-hour, 30-minute contest. "A lot of delays with injuries. It was kind of a slow-moving ballgame."

Fresno (51-54) saw starting pitcher Jose De Paula leave the game before the start of the fourth inning. He was warming up when he appeared to pull something in his side.

Things got worse for the Grizzlies when catcher Andrew Susac was hit by a pitch in the fifth inning. Susac, rated as the Giants' No. 11 prospect prior to the season by Baseball America, was hit on the left hand and had to leave the game as well.

"We really don't know (Susac's condition)," Fresno manager Bob Mariano said. "The trainer said it didn't seem like it was broken but we need to get X-rays."

Albuquerque (49-56) got a scare when center fielder Joc Pederson was hit by a pitch on the left forearm in the fourth inning. He ultimately stayed in the game and showed no ill effects.

Pederson, who was ejected in Tuesday's 1-0, rain-shortened loss, went 1-for-2 with a solo home run while also drawing two walks, scoring two runs and stealing a base.

"It got him just above the elbow in the funny bone area, got that nerve going a little bit," Berryhill said. "He'll probably be a little tender, but it's a good sign that he was able to stay in there and it didn't stiffen up on him."

Trailing 6-3, the Isotopes staged their rally in the fourth inning. Drew Carpenter's 2-out RBI single got things started, followed by Chone Figgins reaching on an infield single and then Pederson getting plunked.

Reliever Adam Reifer (5-2), who came in for De Paula, then walked Tim Federowicz to force in a run. The Grizzlies brought in Jake Dunning, only to see Brock Peterson greet him with a bases-clearing double to left-center field.

"Offensively we had our one (big) inning," Berryhill said. "It got us up into the lead. We had more opportunities to open that game up. ... It was just a good W."

Carpenter was pulled with two on and two outs in the fifth inning, at which point the Albuquerque bullpen took over. For once this season, the relievers shined.

Matt Magill (7-5) retired the four batters he faced on a strikeout and three groundouts. Scott Elbert and Josh Ravin followed with two perfect innings apiece.

"Pitching-wise, Carpy struggled with the (second) inning, giving up five (runs)," Berryhill said. "But when we went to the 'pen they did an outstanding job tonight."

Pedro Baez retired the first batter of the ninth before giving up back-to-back singles that put runners at the corners. Gary Brown's sacrifice fly brought home one run, but Darren Ford was thrown out trying to steal second base, ending the game.

"We'd like to get clean in the ninth," Berryhill said. "We seem to always go out there and give up a base hit to make it interesting."

The Isotopes will go for the series win over the Grizzlies on Thursday at 12:05 p.m. Right-hander Red Patterson (3-7, 5.40 ERA) will start for Albuquerque against Fresno lefty Mike Kickham (7-5, 3.53).

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