With the Dunedin Blue Jays having the day off yesterday, here’s a rundown of the three affiliates that were in action, as well as a recap of the 51s game from May 29.
Highlights include an unbelievable five-run ninth inning to give the Fisher Cats their second straight walk-off win, Brett Lawrie continuing to rake in Vegas, and a well balanced attack in Lansing for a solid team win.
Wins/Losses: 31-21 | Streak: L2 | 2nd in PCL Pacific South (2.0 GB)
Tacoma Rainiers 8, Las Vegas 51s 5
Though the 51s were within two runs for a large chunk of the game, the four runs Tacoma scored early in the game proved to be too much to overcome, as they dropped the final game of a four game set against the Rainiers, splitting the series 2-2.
David Cooper went 2-for-3 with two walks and a double, raising his average on the season to .393, and Brett Lawrie went 2-for-4 with a walk, a double, and two RBIs. Fellow Canadian Adam Loewen went 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI, and leadoff hitter Manny Mayorson continued to stay hot with a 1-for-3 showing and two walks as well.
Overall, the 51s went just 5-for-20 with runners in scoring position and managed to score three runs in the final two frames, but the game was out of reach at that point.
Starter Brad Mills was effective, walking one and striking out eight in six innings of work, but allowed four earned runs on seven hits as well. Mills mainly ran into trouble in the third inning when, after allowing a leadoff walk and striking out the next batter, he gave up four consecutive hits – double, single, double, single – in a three-run inning.
The bullpen didn’t fare much better, as Rommie Lewis came in to pitch the 7th and 8th and allowed a run, and Winston Abreu allowed three earned runs in his 31-pitch ninth inning to close out the game.
- Loewen and Cooper’s doubles were their 18th of the season, putting both of them one behind team leader Lawrie, who has 19. Out of the 51s’ ten hits, five of them were doubles in this game
- The 51s catchers continued to struggle at the plate, this time it was Ryan Budde going 0-for-4
May 29: Tacoma Rainiers 10, Las Vegas 51s 6
Hitting in the cleanup spot, Brett Lawrie led the charge yet again, this time “only” going 2-for-5 with a triple, a home run, and three RBIs. Adam Loewen went 2-for-4 with a solo home run, bringing his average over .300, David Cooper added a pair of singles. Though the 51s scored six runs on ten hits, the team went just 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position.
Danny Perales, a 22nd round pick in 2006 by the Diamondbacks, is thoroughly enjoying his year in the PCL so far, currently rocking a .410 average and .415 on-base percentage in 17 games so far this season, including a .436/.452/.615 slash line over his last ten.
Starter Scott Richmond pitched a solid five frames despite walking four, allowing two earned runs on six hits. Richmond fanned a season high 11 batters, which represents one quarter of his entire strikeout total so far this season (44). More impressively, his first seven outs were all strikeouts, and he struck out 10 batters in the first four innings.
Josh Roenicke was roughed up in the sixth inning thanks to two Las Vegas errors and a grand slam, and was charged with six runs (one earned) on five hits in one inning of work. After striking out the side in the seventh inning, Wil Ledezma allowed a leadoff single in the eighth before picking him off. The next two batters reached base on back-to-back fielding errors by Chris Woodward, so when Ledezma was relieved by Clint Everts and those two runners eventually scored, he was charged with two runs but neither were earned.
- Lawrie’s home run was his 15th of the season, tying him for second place in the entire Pacific Coast League
- Although catcher Brian Jeroloman was credited with a caught stealing on the Ledezma pickoff, opposing teams continued to wreak havoc on the base paths against him, stealing three bags in this contest
Wins/Losses: 34-16 | Streak: W7 | 1st in EAS Eastern (0.0 GB)
New Hampshire Fisher Cats 7, New Britain Rock Cats 6
In their second straight walk-off win, the Fisher Cats rallied to score five runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to steal a win from New Britain
Moises Sierra continued to impress, going 2-for-3 with two walks, Adeiny Hechavarria went 4-for-5 with a double, and Anthony Gose hit his fourth home run of the season, a two-run, two out blast in the third inning.
Calix Crabbe and Darin Mastroianni drew back-to-back walks in the ninth inning to start the Fisher Cats’ rally. Hechavarria then singled to load the bases with nobody out, and Gose reached base after that because of a throwing error that allowed Crabbe and Mastroianni both to score. Mike McDade then singled home Hechavarria to make it a 6-5 game, STILL with nobody out!
New Britain finally changed their pitcher, and his first play of the game was an errant pickoff throw that advanced the Fisher Cats runners to second and third. As a result, Sierra was intentionally walked to load the bases and create the force at any bag. Red-hot Travis d’Arnaud struck out pinch hitting after that, but fellow catcher Yan Gomes drew a clutch walk to tie the game.
Starter Rey Gonzalez managed to avoid taking the loss in an uncharacteristic rough outing, allowing six earned runs on ten hits in 5.2 innings. Prior to this outing, Gonzalez hadn’t allowed more than three earned runs in any start and hadn’t pitched less than six innings since his season debut back on April 8.
- Over his last 10 games, Sierra has hit .410/.477/.564 with six doubles and five walks, and could make a case to be promoted to Triple-A before the end of the season if he continues at that pace
Wins/Losses: 28-23 | Streak: W2 | 3rd in FSL North (11.0 GB)
May 30: Off-day
Wins/Losses: 29-20 | Streak: W1 | 1st in MID Eastern (0.0 GB)
Lansing Lugnuts 11, Bowling Green Hot Rods 7
The Lugnuts scored early and often to stay ahead the entire game and get the win, improving their record to 34-16, a whopping 18 games over .500.
Every Lugnuts hitter had at least one hit except for Kevin Nolan, who has been on a tear ever since he was demoted from Hi-A Dunedin to get regular playing time. Lance Durham went 3-for-5 with two doubles and three RBIs, while Jonathan Jones hit his first home run of the season, a solo shot in the third inning.
Starter Drew Hutchison got the win after allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits in five innings, walking one and striking out five. Hutchison’s only real mistake of the night was a two out, two-run home run that he allowed in the second inning.
- Standout outfielders Jake Marisnick and Michael Crouse sat this one out
- Overall, the Lugnuts scored 11 runs on 15 hits, and nine of those hits were for extra bases