McMahon's clutch hit paces Salt River in win

Rockies No. 6 prospect breaks tie with triple in 7th inning

McMahon's clutch hit paces Salt River in win

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- After hitting just five triples in 133 games during the regular season, Ryan McMahon came through with a clutch two-run triple in his sixth game of the Arizona Fall League.

The Rockies' No. 6 prospect finished 1-for-3 with two RBIs, including the decisive blow in Salt River's 4-1 win over Surprise at Salt River Fields on Tuesday night.

With a pair of runners in scoring position and the game tied 1-1 in the bottom of the seventh, McMahon found himself down in the count, 1-2, knowing he needed to find a way to drive in a run.

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"I was just trying to grind out that at-bat, had to get him in from third," McMahon said. "I was trying to get jammed if I had to, just do anything. The pitcher left one over the middle and I was able to put the barrel on it."

McMahon, who hit .242 with Double-A Hartford this season, brought in two runners as he lined an 84 mph fastball into the right-field corner for a triple.

Prior to the triple, the Rafters' offense was stifled through six innings, mustering just two hits.

"They're good," McMahon said. "They weren't leaving a lot of balls over the middle, they were making good pitches."

Tanner Anderson got the start for Surprise and was lights out in his four innings of work. The 23-year-old right-hander gave up one unearned run and fired 27 of his 36 pitches for strikes. The Pirates' farmhand gave up just two hits, but erased each of the runners with groundball double plays.

Anderson was good, but Salt River kept battling and finally broke through in the seventh.

Rockies' farmhand Pat Valaika started the rally with a base hit, JaCoby Jones (Tigers' No. 9) followed up with a double to left-center field and then McMahon came through with triple.

"You've got to take them when you can get them," the 21-year-old said of the RBI opportunity in a close game. "It was important to focus and lock in."

Javier Salas (Brewers) got the nod for Salt River and kept his team in the game with three innings of one-run ball. Salas, a 24-year-old righty, threw 38 of his 59 pitches for strikes and has given up just one run in six total innings through two AFL starts.

"We shoved tonight," McMahon said.

Although it was a well-pitched game, both teams had a couple of defensive lapses. Surprise third baseman Yoan Moncada (Red Sox's No. 1, No. 1 overall) made a pair of errors on ground balls in the fourth inning, while Salt River shortstop Isan Diaz (Brewers' No. 8, No. 96 overall) misplayed two balls in the sixth.

Of course, that doesn't mean there wasn't some strong defense as well.

Surprise had a chance to put a rally together as Tanner English (Twins) led off the seventh with a base hit, but when the next batter, Danny Mars (Boston), hit a slow chopper behind the mound, third baseman Travis Demeritte (Braves' No. 9) charged the ball and made a nice play, quelling the potential threat.

"That was a great play," McMahon said. "In and out of the glove quick. Obviously in that spot, it's important to get at least one out there. If we were to get no outs there, we would have been in a tough situation for sure."

William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.