MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Sacramento River Cats scored five runs in the top of the first inning, then held off host Memphis for a 6-3 victory on Wednesday at AutoZone Park.
Despite a long, cross-country travel day, the Cats (74-58) jumped all over Redbirds starting pitcher Zach Petrick, knocking the righty out of the game before he could record an out. Sacramento batted around in an inning that saw Nick Buss hit a two-run homer, Daric Barton deliver a run-scoring single and Alden Carrithers drive in a run with a single to right field.
Sacramento scored its sixth and final run in the top of the second on an Anthony Aliotti single that plated Buss.
Meanwhile, River Cats starting pitcher Matt Buschmann cruised through the first five innings before Memphis (71-60) scored its only runs in the bottom of the sixth.
Sacramento relievers Philip Humber and Evan Scribner combined to toss 2 1/3 scoreless frames to seal the Cats’ victory. Scribner notched his 16th save.
Buss’ dinger was his fifth of the year, Jose Martinez went 3-for-5 and infielder Tyler Ladendorf made his return to the Cats’ lineup after missing 50 games due to suspension.
The two teams return to AutoZone Park on Thursday at 5:05 p.m.