WEST SACRAMENTO — Pacific Coast WHIP leader Bruce Billings gave up six runs in seven innings on Wednesday night at Raley Field, as the Sacramento River Cats fell to the visiting Salt Lake Bees, 7-2.
Billings began as good as ever, striking out the side in a perfect first inning. He wasn’t as sharp in the second, however, relinquishing five earned runs in the frame, capped by a three-run home run by Salt Lake center fielder Kole Calhoun. Billings righted the ship, shutting out the Bees for the next four innings, but the damage was done.
Sacramento scored a run in each of the fourth and seventh innings, but it wasn’t enough.
Daric Barton was the only River Cat to record multiple hits, finishing 2-for-3 with a double, a run scored and a stolen base. Anthony Recker was the only Cat to drive in a run, finishing 1-for-3 with an RBI.
Calhoun finished 2-for-3 with a home run, a triple and three RBIs. Former Sacramento left-hander Greg Smith gave up one earned run in six innings with two strikeouts for the Bees, earning his third win of the year.
Despite the loss, the River Cats maintain their 2.5-game lead in the division as the second-place Fresno Grizzlies lost to the Reno Aces, 6-3.
The Cats and Bess return to Raley Field at 7:05 p.m. as right-hander Brad Peacock (6-4, 5.99 ERA) will take the mound for Sacramento.