Ports Breeze Past Storm
The Stockton Ports came into Tuesday night's game leading the California League in homeruns. They showed why, blasting three more longballs en route to a 6-2 victory over the Lake Elsinore Storm.
Renato Nunez and Dusty Robinson each connected on their fourth homeruns of the season, while Matt Olson hit his third of the year. Nunez and Olson were the only Ports' hitters to have multi-hit games.
The Stockton pitching staff was sharp in the win. Starter Seth Streich tossed five scoreless innings. He walked four, but he allowed just two hits and recorded eight outs on the ground, while striking out three. Streich is handling the jump to High-A with aplomb. He hasn't allowed a run in his last two starts (11 innings) and his ERA is at 1.71 on the season. His K:BB is 24:6.
Nolan Sanburn broke a mini-slump with two scoreless innings in relief of Streich. Sanburn allowed four runs over his last two outings (three innings), but he was nearly perfect on Tuesday, giving up just a lead-off hit in two frames. He struck-out two and has a 12:2 K:BB in 13 innings this season. Omar Duran was touched for two runs in the eighth inning, but Tucker Healy breezed through the ninth to secure the win. Healy could be heading to Double-A in the near future. He has allowed just one run in nine innings this season. Healy has allowed three hits and one walk and he has struck-out 13. Healy had a 1.86 ERA and a 31:5 K:BB in 19.1 innings for the Ports last season.
Midland Falls In 12 Innings
After 11 innings and four relievers already used in the game, the Midland Rockhounds had to turn their pitching duties over to position player Conner Crumbliss. Crumbliss retired the first two batters he faced in the bottom of the 12th, but the Corpus Christi Hooks mounted a two-out rally with two singles sandwiching a walk, and that gave them the 6-5 win.
Midland starter Nate Long threw just three innings in his second start of the season (he moved from the bullpen to the rotation this week), so it was a bullpen game early for the RockHounds. Long allowed four runs on five hits and two walks. He gave way to Blake Hassebrock, who allowed a run in two innings of work.
Jesus Castillo, Jeff Urlaub and Seth Frankoff each tossed a pair of scoreless innings to give the RockHounds a chance to win the game. The trio has been lights-out for Midland this season. Castillo's ERA is 1.08, Urlaub's ERA is 0.82 and Frankoff's is 1.86. Frankoff's three strike-outs in the game give him a remarkable 17 in just 9.2 innings this season.
Midland batters collected 14 hits and six walks in 12 innings, but they could push across just the five runs. Crumbliss started the game in right field and he had two doubles, a single, a walk and four RBI. Max Muncy, playing once again at third base, had the other RBI and two hits overall. Muncy is off to another hot start after blistering the California League early last season. This year, Muncy has a .295 average and an 876 OPS. He has walked 18 times and has struck-out 10 times in 17 games.
Chad Oberacker and Beau Taylor also had multi-hit games for the RockHounds.
Snappers Rally Falls Short In Loss To Kane County
Down three going into the top of the ninth, the Beloit Snappers scored twice and had the tying run on second base, but they couldn't push that run across, falling to Kane County by a score of 5-4.
Starter Kyle Finnegan didn't allow his first hit until the fourth inning, but he was touched for two runs in the fourth and one in the fifth and was hung with the loss. Finnegan's ERA rose to 2.49. The 4.2 inning outing was his shortest of the season. He struck-out three and walked two. Finnegan is holding Midwest League batters to a .228 average this season.
Beloit chipped away at the Kane County lead in the top of the sixth when they scored twice on a solo homerun by B.A. Vollmuth and an RBI groundout by Ryan Huck. The game remained at 3-2 until the bottom of the eighth, when relievers Stuart Pudenz and Lee Sosa combined to walk five. Two runs scored in the inning without the benefit of a Kane County hit. Beloit would get those two runs back in the ninth inning, but still fell by one run.
Vollmuth, Luis Baez and B.J. Boyd each had two hits. Vollmuth's homer was his first of the season. Baez had a double. Boyd's two-hit game raised his season average to .299. He has an 836 OPS and is batting .317/.391/.561 over his last 10 games. Boog Powell didn't have a hit, but he walked twice and his OBP is now .421 and his OPS is 845 for the season. Boyd and Powell were co-MVPs for Vermont last season and they have continued to make a good team at the top of the order this year.
River Cats Rained Out In Tacoma
The rains keep coming in the Pacific Northwest and it has resulted in another postponed game. For the second time in the series, the Sacramento River Cats and the Tacoma Rainiers were rained out. Saturday's game was washed out and was made up as part of a doubleheader that took place on Sunday. Tuesday's rain out will be made up as part of a doubleheader in Tacoma on July 26. Rain also cut-short the River Cats-Rainiers game on Monday, although it was an official game.
Sacramento returns to Raley Field on Thursday to take on the El Paso Chihuahuas in that franchise's first ever visit to the Capitol City.