River Cats win Pacific Coast League title

September 14th, 2019

Here’s a look at the top performances of the past week by Giants prospects in the Minor Leagues:

Friday, Sept. 13: River Cats win PCL
Triple-A Sacramento snapped a six-year playoff drought earlier this season when it won the Northern Division and then parlayed that momentum into a Pacific Coast League title.

The River Cats topped Round Rock, 7-5, on Friday night to complete the three-game sweep and will play Columbus in the Triple-A championship on Tuesday.

Round Rock scored in each of the first three innings and led, 5-4, through seven innings, but Sacramento broke the game open with three runs in the eighth.

The River Cats got a bit of help to begin the frame as Round Rock’s pitchers struggled to find the zone and walked the bases loaded. From there, Abiatal Avelino, the Giants’ No. 27 prospect who finished 2-for-4 with three RBIs, put his team on top with a two-run single. Mike Gerber added an insurance run on a groundout and then Sacramento’s pitching staff closed the door. Friday's prospect stats »

Wednesday, Sept. 11: River Cats move up 2-0 in finals
The Triple-A Sacramento River Cats jumped out to a 2-0 lead in their Pacific Coast League Championship Series with a 4-2 win over Round Rock on Wednesday night at home. After Sacramento’s 8-7 win to open the series on Tuesday, the Rock Cats are now one win away from clinching the title.

After Round Rock tied the game, 1-1, in the top of the sixth inning, Sacramento finally broke through with three runs in the bottom half to create some separation. Third baseman Cristhian Adames delivered the big blow with a solo home run, part of a 2-for-4 day with two RBIs. Jacob Heyward followed that with a two-run single to add some insurance while Zach Houchins went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles.

Following an off day on Thursday, the River Cats hit the road to Round Rock for the remainder of the series beginning on Friday evening. Wednesday's prospect stats »

Tuesday, Sept. 10: Avelino comes up clutch in Game 1
Abiatal Avelino, the Giants’ No. 27 prospect, sent Triple-A Sacramento home with an 8-7 win in Game 1 of the best-of-five Pacific Coast League Championship series. Avelino, who finished 2-for-5, came up clutch with a two-out, walk-off double after Round Rock had tied the game in the top of the ninth.

The 24-year-old, whom the Giants acquired in a 2018 trade with the Yankees, hit .283 over 121 games with the River Cats this year and also appeared in four games with the Giants, batting 2-for-7.

Sacramento is set to host the first two games of the series before travelling to Round Rock for the final three games of the series. Tuesday's prospect stats »

Sunday, Sept. 8: River Cats advance to PCL championship
No. 27 prospect Abiatal Avelino went 1-for-4 with a solo home run and a walk on Sunday to help lead Triple-A Sacramento to the Pacific Coast League Championship Series with a 7-3 win over Las Vegas in the fifth and deciding game of its semifinals. Over 121 games at the Triple-A level this season, Avelino hit .283 with 12 home runs and a .759 OPS. He hit .292 over the five-game playoff series with a pair of homers and five RBIs. After Avelino opened the game with his homer, Joe McCarthy and Zach Houchins launched first-inning homers of their own to give Sacramento an early 4-0 lead. The River Cats will open their League Championship Series against Round Rock on Sept. 10. Sunday's prospect stats »

Saturday, Sept. 7: Avelino sets the table for River Cats win
The Triple-A Sacramento River Cats forced Game 5 in their Pacific Coast League semifinals against Las Vegas on Saturday with a 5-3 win. No. 27 prospect Abiatal Avelino went 2-for-5 with an RBI out of the leadoff spot, but the Rock Cats got most of their work done with the long ball. Zach Houchins launched a solo homer in the fifth inning before Christhian Adames followed in the sixth and Peter Maris tacked on an insurance run with a solo homer of his own in the ninth. Sacramento and Las Vegas meet for Game 5 on Sunday in Las Vegas with a trip to the PCL championship series on the line. Saturday's prospect stats »