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River Cats open four-game set with a victory over Sky Sox

Jai Miller tied a team record for home runs in a month, helping the Sacramento River Cats hold off a late rally by the Colorado Springs Sky Sox to get the 4-3 win on Saturday night at Raley Field.

In the third inning, Miller blasted a two-run homer onto the roof of the building beyond the 403-foot mark in center field. It was his 27th home run of the season and his 12th in July. This tied a mark shared by former River Cats Dallas McPherson, who hit 12 home runs last August, and Graham Koonce, who also hit 12 in August 2003.

Miller’s home run gave the River Cats a 3-1 lead, and they added one more in the fifth inning.

River Cats pitcher Anthony Capra, recently called up from Double-A Midland, made his first start for Sacramento. He recorded four strikeouts and allowed three hits over five innings. In the third inning he walked three consecutive batters, which led to the first Sky Sox run of the game on a sacrifice fly by designated hitter Mike Jacobs.

River Cats relievers Justin Souza and Vinnie Chulk combined to retire nine of the 10 batters they faced over the sixth and seventh innings, after Souza surrendered a home run to Jacobs to open the sixth.

The Sky Sox made things interesting in the ninth inning as center fielder Joe Mather opened with a single off the River Cats’ fourth pitcher of the night, Fernando Cabrera.

With two runners on and just one out, third baseman Matt Macri hit a sacrifice fly to left field, which brought Mather home and cut the River Cats lead to 4-3. A groundout by second baseman Warren Schafer ended the rally.

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