Pickles win regular-season finale
The Portland Pickles played spoiler on Wednesday, and will go into the West Coast League playoffs on a winning note.
The Pickles, after losing the first two games of their final regular-season series, defeated the Victoria HarbourCats, 10-3, on Wednesday night to deny the Canadian team a spot in the four-team WCL postseason.
Portland now gets ready for its best-of-three showdown with the Corvallis Knights in a matchup of the two top teams from the South Division.
The North playoff series will have the Bellingham Bells taking on the Kelowna Falcons.
The Portland-Corvallis series starts at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Goss Stadium.
Game 2 is 7 p.m. Saturday at Walker Stadium in Lents Park.
Game 3, if necessary, will be on Sunday at Walker Stadium.
Portland out-hit Victoria, 18-5, on Wednesday, and never trailed.
Daniel Lopez (University of Portland) homered twice in the first four innings to ignite the Pickles' attack.
Each team scored two runs in the first inning before a crowd of 3,076 at Royal Athletic Park.
Portland's first run came on an RBI single by Jack Murphy (Saint Mary's). The second score came on a wild pitch.
The Pickles went ahead in the second inning on a Lopez's solo shot.
The Pickles added three runs in the third, when Murphy and Gabe Skoro (UP, ex-Lincoln High) each came through with an RBI single and then Noah Cardenas (UCLA) hit a sacrifice fly.
In the fourth, Lopez homered with one runner on base, and Portland led, 8-3.
Brody Barnum's eighth-inning sac fly produced another run.
Skoro provided the Pickles with their final run on a HR in the ninth.
Skoro finished 4 for 5, while Murphy and Gio Diaz (Saint Mary's) each went 3 for 5.
Damon Treadwell (Cal State Fullerton) got the pitching start for Portland. He allowed three runs on three hits and three walks in two innings.
Michael Frias (4-0, UC Irvine) came out of the bullpen to go six innings, blanking the HarbourCats on one hit and one walk.
Colby Wyatt (Cornell) worked a scoreless ninth and gave up one hit.
The Pickles finished the regular season with a 37-17 record, just ahead of Corvallis (36-18) and Bellingham (35-19). The Knights lost at home Wednesday to the Yakima Valley Pippins, 5-3.
Kelowna was 28-26, and Victoria wound up at 27-27.