Carlos Triunfel is starting to get good at this whole game-winning hit thing. Two days after his eighth-inning home run gave the Albuquerque Isotopes a victory, he did it again Monday night.
Triunfel's two-out, RBI double in the eighth inning gave the Isotopes a 5-4 victory over the visiting Sacramento River Cats. Triunfel ripped a double to the hill in center field, scoring Roger Bernadina from first base to give Albuquerque its fourth win in a row.
"It's great, he came up big, he got a pitch that he could handle," Bernadina said. "He drove it into the gap and we won the game."
Bernadina had reached on an infield single that included a collision with first baseman Travis Ishikawa. Both players were tended to on the field and remained in the game.
"I'm OK, I just ran into the first baseman," said Bernadina, who had his left wrist wrapped in ice after the game. "I'll just ice it and see how it feels (Tuesday)."
Jose Dominguez did his best to make things interesting in the ninth, loading the bases with no outs on two singles and an error. Dominguez then got Darren Ford to ground into a force out at home, struck out Nick Noonan and got Juan Perez to pop up to first baseman Brock Peterson to earn his 10th save.
"He's just got to do a better job of coming in out of the pen right off the bat, kind of starting the way he's been finishing," manager Damon Berryhill said of Dominguez. "It's been kind of a trend the last few times out."
The Isotopes' four straight wins have been by a total of five runs. Their only loss since the All-Star break was a 10-9 defeat by Sacramento on Thursday.
"It's been kind of a unique stretch," Berryhill said. "Fortunately we've come out on top four of the five. Obviously you want the ninth inning to go a little smoother then it's been going. We've been able to battle through it."
Both teams came out of the game hot. Fresno (50-53) got an RBI double from Perez and an RBI single from Ishikawa in the first inning.
Tim Federowicz blasted a solo home run to left in the bottom of the frame. In the second inning, Albuquerque (48-55) loaded the bases on two walks and a single.
Triunfel drove in a run on a groundout and starting pitcher Zach Lee helped himself with a two-run single up the middle to put the Isotopes ahead 4-2. That lead would not last as Perez and Marc Minicozzi hit back-to-back solo homers in the third.
Lee was charged with four runs, but his final three innings of the night were sharp. He allowed just one hit over his last three frames.
"Early on he tried to challenge them with fastballs and was kind of missing his spots and they were jumping on him a little bit," Berryhill said. "He kind of made an adjustment, started throwing the changeup a little bit more and mixing in his slider. After the third he pitched a solid three for us."
Matt Magill (6-5) picked up the win with one scoreless inning of relief. Magill needed just four pitches to get through the eighth inning, marking his fifth straight appearance without allowing an earned run.
"Matty, early on when he shifted to the bullpen struggled a little bit," Berryhill said. "His last five or six outings have been real solid. Really starting to command the baseball a lot better. His confidence is up."
As for the rehabbing Dodgers, Chone Figgins started at shortstop and went 0-for-4 at the plate. Scott Elbert pitched a scoreless seventh inning, allowing just one hit.
Albuquerque and Fresno will meet again Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. Right-hander Jeff Bennett (4-4, 4.48 ERA) will start for the Isotopes against Grizzlies right-hander Jason Berken (7-6, 4.32).
Around the Lab
Prior to the game, catcher Johnny Monell was activated from the disabled list. To make room on the roster, right-hander Steve Smith was sent to Double-A Chattanooga.