The Sacramento River Cats put together an inning for the history books on Thursday. When you look at the box score, you see a '1' in the second inning and then a '2' in the sixth before you have to blink and make sure your mind isn't playing tricks on you.
Sacramento plated 13 runs in the seventh inning, as a 6-3 deficit turned into a 16-6 lead over the Colorado Springs Sky Sox. The River Cats scored one more run on Orlando Calixte’s second home run of the game in the top of the ninth and went on to win, 17-7.
With 13 runs in one inning, the River Cats broke a franchise record that was first set two weeks from 17 years ago on May 25, 2000. To make matters even more wild, the previous franchise record of 12 runs in one inning occurred at the same exact stadium, Security Service Field.
The historic seventh inning was also the first 10-plus-run inning in the Pacific Coast League this season. Sacramento fell one run shy of the modern-day record, coming in 1978.
In the historic hitting barrage, the River Cats nearly batted around twice in one inning. They sent 17 batters to the plate and recorded eight hits, five of which were extra-base hits. Along with all the hits, the River Cats also walked four times and Winton Bernard was hit by a pitch.
The Sky Sox went through three pitchers in the seventh inning.
Former Stanford standout Austin Slater smacked two doubles in the seventh frame. Slater knocked four runs in during the inning and came across to score twice himself. Slater went 3-for-6 on the day and is now batting .283 in 29 games this season.
Even with Slater's big game, Calixte, the team’s leadoff hitter, was the real star of the day. Calixte collected the River Cats' first five-hit game of the season as he went 5-for-6 with two home runs, one double, drove in four runs, and scored four runs. He came within a triple of the cycle.
Through 32 games, Calixte leads the River Cats in home runs (6), RBI (22), runs scored (16) and stolen bases (9).
Calixte and Slater earned the spotlight, but they weren't alone in the blowout win. In total, five players produced multi-hit games, the team had 19 hits all together and nine of those were extra-base hits. Now let's compare some numbers of the Triple-A team's historic game to their big league club, the San Francisco Giants.
The Giants ended a five-game losing streak Wednesday thanks to rookie Christian Arroyo, who San Francisco called up from Sacramento on April 25, with a 6-5 win over the Mets. Arroyo's game-winning double made sure the Giants weren't swept in two straight three-game road series. Over the Giants' five-game losing streak, they scored nine runs, or four less than the River Cats scored in the seventh inning alone on Thursday.
It took a four-run ninth inning in Wednesday's win to get the Giants over the 13-run threshold for six games. But, that still couldn't match the 17 the River Cats came away with against the Sky Sox. In Cincinnati and New York, the Giants combined for 15 runs over six games.
Long story short, history is fun and appreciate every single run the River Cats scored in their offensive onslaught.
Around The Horn
— ICYMI: I spoke with Giants prospect Ryder Jones earlier in the week. Jones, a usual first and third baseman for the River Cats, is getting time in life field for Sacramento. He told me all about the transition.
— Baseball America came out with an updated Top 100 prospects list on Thursday. Tyler Beede went from No. 89 to No. 84 while the previously unranked Christian Arroyo is now No. 92.
— Chris Shaw is on a seven-game hitting streak and has played left field in three straight games in Double-A for the Richmond Flying Squirrels. In his last 10 games, the Giants’ top pick from 2015 is batting .412 with 14 hits.