Fresno Grizzlies: Omaha 11, Fresno 10 (click to see box score)
Lines of the day:
SS Luis Figueroa - 2-6, 2 R, 1 2B (8), 1 RBI (14)
RF Nate Schierholtz - 4-5, 2 R, 2 2B (14), 1 RBI (24), E (2)
DH Lance Niekro - 2-4, 2 R, 2 2B (2), 3 RBI (3), 1 BB, 1 SO
LF Justin Leone - 4-5, 1 R, 3 2B (6), 1 SO
2B William Bergolla - 2-5, 1 R, 1 SO
C Justin Knoedler - 1-3, 1 R, 1 2B (8), 1 RBI (12), 1 BB, 1 HBP
SP Brian Bowles - 2.0 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 1 BB, 1 HR
RP Sun Woo Kim - 3.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K
RP Billy Sadler - 1.1 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, BS (3)
RP Scott Atchison - 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, L, 1 HBP (0-2)
This game wasn't as close as your typical one-run contest. Brian Bowles had a disastrous outing, allowing the bulk of Omaha's runs in the first three innings. Fresno recovered with six unanswered runs to add to the four they scored in the early part of the game. The bullpen then collapsed. Billy Sadler has struggled lately and his seventh inning was the worst he's pitched thus far -- three runs allowed, none of them earned. Two runs scored on Nate Schierholtz's error and then Sadler walked another run in. Scott Atchison impressed in spring training and the first six weeks of the Pacific Coast League season, but blew the game when he allowed the winning run to score in the eighth inning.
The poor pitching ruined the hit parade the Grizzlies put on. Schierholtz's return from injury yielded a four-hit game. Lance Niekro returned to Fresno after being released by San Francisco and is hitting like old times in Triple-A. Justin Leone hit three doubles Sunday and tied Niekro with most RBI in the game with three. Also worth a mention is Sun Woo Kim. His performance was the only one of the afternoon among pitchers that went well. Kim is no doubt looking for a job with a major league team and gets few appearances with the Grizzlies to prove himself. This was his fourth game for the entire PCL season and only his second quality appearance.
Connecticut Defenders: Reading 10, Connecticut 4 (click to see box score)
Lines of the day:
2B Jake Wald - 1-5, 1 RBI (11), E (5)
CF John Bowker - 2-5, 1 2B (6)
SS Mark Minicozzi - 1-5, 1 R, 1 2B (4)
LF Eddy Martinez-Esteve - 1-2, 2 R, 2 BB
C Todd Jennings - 1-4, 1 RBI (6), 1 SO
3B Trey Webb - 1-3, 2 RBI (2)
SP Darren Sack - 2.2 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 3 K, L (1-3)
RP Brooks McNiven - 3.1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 K
RP Joe Bateman - 2.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 1 HR
RP Brian Anderson - 1.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
The reliable arms from San Jose's successful 2006 season moved up to Connecticut for 2007 and have looked less than stellar. Darren Sack has lost his last two starts including this game where he lasted only 2 2/3 innings. Brooks McNiven was dependable both starting and relieving last season, but he has been shaky with the Defenders. He and Brian Anderson -- last year's record breaker for saves in the California League -- allowed three runs to let this game get far beyond Connecticut's control.
The Defenders cannot generate much offense these days either. By the time they scored their first two runs, Reading was already ahead and the two runs Connecticut would score in the sixth inning put them within sight of the lead as they were down 6-4. Trey Webb had half of the team's RBI, driving in one with a base hit in the second, and the other with a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Reading scored four more times to ensure their win.
San Jose Giants: San Jose 5, Lancaster 2 (click to see box score)
Lines of the day:
CF Antoan Richardson - 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B (5), 1 SO, 1 SB (19)
LF Alex Requena - 1-3, 1 R, 1 RBI (3), 1 SO
2B Anthony Contreras - 0-4, 1 RBI (24)
1B Pablo Sandoval - 0-4, 1 RBI (12)
RF Mike Mooney - 1-2, 1 R, 1 2B (9), 2 BB, 1 SO, 1 SB (5), 1 CS (2)
DH Brad Boyer - 2-3, 2 R, 1 RBI (10), 1 BB, 1 SB (3)
C Adam Witter - 1-4, 1 RBI (11), 1 SB (2)
SP Dave McKae - 7.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 1 HR, W (4-1)
RP David Quinowski - 1.0 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K
RP Taylor Wilding - 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K, SV (6)
Dave McKae won his second start in a row and fourth game overall with seven strong innings. San Jose put their starting pitcher ahead early, scoring their runs among a flurry of four stolen bases. Antoan Richardson stole his 19th of the year, leading the Giants and putting him in second place in the California league.
San Jose's win was a team effort. Five different Giants had RBI, and the bullpen took over from McKae to nail it down. Taylor Wilding leads the club with six saves. He allowed two hits and no runs over one inning to end of the game.
Augusta Greenjackets: Greenville 6, Augusta 2 (click to see box score)
Lines of the day:
3B Ryan Rohlinger - 1-5, 1 2B (10)
LF Bobby Felmy - 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B (8), 1 HBP
1B Brett Pill - 2-2, 1 R, 1 2B (10), 1 RBI (23), 2 BB
C Henry Gutierrez-Portalatin - 0-3, 1 RBI (12)
SP Steven Calicutt - 2.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 5 BB, 1 K, L (1-3)
RP Ryan Shaver - 3.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR
RP Thomas King - 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K
The Greenjackets lost their fourth game in five days Sunday. They stranded 10 baserunners and catcher Henry Gutierrez-Portalatin allowed four stolen bases. The stranded runners really hurt. James Simmons grounded out with the bases loaded to end the fourth inning, where the Greenjackets could have had more than the one run they scored on Gutierrez-Portalatin's sacrifice fly. They had two runners in scoring position in the ninth inning, but Bobby Felmy grounded out for the final out of the game.
Starting pitcher Steven Calicutt had a rough day, lasting 2 1/3 innings to take the loss. He has a habit of allowing lots of runs in a short amount of innings pitched. In his last four outings he has one win; the three other starts his longest performance was 4 2/3 innings, and counting today he has allowed 13 runs in those games.
Suddenly Augusta has come back down to earth. Their lead over Asheville in the South Atlantic League Southern Division is only a half game.