VISALIA — One of baseball dark-humor bromides goes something like this: As bad as things are, it always can get worse.
It got worse Wednesday afternoon for the Modesto Nuts.
Their spirits rose when catcher Ryan Casteel contributed arguably the team's best clutch hit to date, a two-out, two-run homer in the ninth for a 6-5 lead. But minutes later, their spirit sank when the Rawhide pushed across two runs for a 7-6 win.
Modesto (9-17) lost its seventh straight game while the Rawhide (17-9) won its 12th straight at Recreation Ballpark.
Closer Scott Oberg gave up a leadoff walk in the ninth and, later with two out, walked Gerson Montilla to load the bases. Jake Lamb, on a 2-1 pitch, doubled down the first-base for the walkoff win.
The teams combined for six home runs, three apiece, during the warm afternoon. Taylor Featherston homered in the third, and David Kandilas connected for his first home run in the seventh.
Casteel, besides his homer, doubled twice and drove in three for Modesto.
The Nuts will try to avoid a three-game sweep tonight in Visalia. They'll start a seven-game homestand Friday night against the Bakersfield Blaze.