Loons Clinch First Playoff Berth

Jaime Hoffmann ... two home runs, five RBI

For the first time in franchise history, Great Lakes is headed to the Midwest League playoffs after a 6-0 win over the South Bend. Albuquerque and Memphis combined for eight home runs in an 11-9 Memphis win. Jacksonville topped Chattanooga 5-4. Inland Empire popped High Desert 4-1. Ogden stopped Casper 5-2 and the Arizona Dodgers lost 11-9 to the Padres 8-1 in their final game of the season.

Five Home Runs Not Enough For 'Topes
The fourth-best crowd of the season, 13,085, showed up hoping to see another home run derby and Albuquerque and Memphis didn't disappoint. The Isotopes slugged five and the Redbirds added three with Memphis pulling out an 11-9 win despite a desperate rally by the 'Topes in the eighth and ninth.

However, Albuquerque (74-61) reduced it's magic number to clinch the PCL American Southern title to two games thanks to an Oklahoma City loss and could secure a postseason spot Sunday with a win and an RedHawks loss.

Jamie Hoffmann collected five RBI and accounted for two of the five Isotopes home runs after going homer-less since July 9. The first, a three-run shot with Blake DeWitt on base with a walk and Hector Luna on after being hit by a pitch.

The three run lead vanished after Memphis wracked up seven runs off starter Eric Stults, who wasn't helped by a fumbling defense. Tony Abreu's error set up a grand slam homer in the third and the Redbirds scored twice more in the fourth.

Memphis built an 11-3 lead and Albuquerque bats went silent over the next six innings.

Luna restarted the 'Topes with a solo home run to open the eighth. Mitch Jones doubled and Hoffmann crushed his third home run in the past two days to cut the deficit to 11-6.

DeWitt joined the derby in the bottom of the ninth by slugging a two-run homer that scored Luis Maza who singled to open the inning. Five of the DeWitt's seven home runs have come in the month of August.

Jones then smacked a solo shot two batters later, his 32nd of the year, but Memphis held on for the 11-9 win. During the wild game, 18 of the 20 runs scored were driven in via the long ball.

Eric Stults (5-4), who allowed nine hits in five innings and seven runs, three earned, and took the loss. J.D. Durbin and Henry Bonilla was also roughed up before Brent Leach worked a scoreless ninth.

The two teams will wrap up its five-game set with right-hander Giancarlo Alvarado (11-10, 3.72) starting against Memphis righty Adam Ottovino (7-11, 4.36).

  Score by Innings
Memphis	        005 202 020-11
Albuquerque	300 000 033- 9

  Albuquerque  	ab r  h  bi  ave
Abreu 2b-ss	5  0  1  0  .347
DeWitt 3b-2b	4  2  2  2  .256
Luna 1b-3b      3  2  1  1  .352
Jones lf-rf	5  2  3  1  .285
Hoffmann rf-cf	5  2  3  1  .286
Repko cf	3  0  1  0  .278
 Bonilla p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Closser ph-1b	1  0  0  0  .297
Hu ss        	4  0  1  0  .290
 Leach p	0  0  0  0  .000
Ellis c        	4  0  0  0  .313
Stults p	1  0  1  0  .467
 SGarcia ph	0  0  0  0  .238
 Durbin p	0  0  0  0  .125
 Maza lf	2  1  2  0  .295
---------------------------------
  Totals 	33  9 14  9
  Memphis 	40 11 13 10
 
  Error- Abreu 2 (5). 2B- Jones (22),
HR- Hoffmann 2 (8), Luna (17), DeWitt
(7), Jones (32). RBI- Hoffmann 5 (48),
Luna (59), DeWitt 2 (44), Jones (90).
LOB- Albuquerque 5, Memphis 6.
DP- Abreu, DeWitt and Closser. 	
 	 
  Albuquerque	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Stults (5-4)	5.0  9  7-3  2  2  5.28
Durbin 	        1.0  2  2-2  1  1  7.54
Bonilla	        2.0  2  2-2  0  3  6.37
Leach	        1.0  0  0-0  0  0  7.82
  WP- Durbin. HBP- Luna. T- 3:07. 
Att- 13,085.
Chattanooga Loses 5-4 in Ninth
A two-out double in the last of the ninth gave Jacksonville a 5-4 win after Chattanooga had tied the game with a single run in the top of the inning.

The Lookouts took a 3-2 lead in the second inning before Jacksonville tied in the third and went up 4-3 in the seventh. Singles by Vinny Rottino, Justin Sellers and Gaby Martinez tied the game in the top of the ninth.

Jesus Castillo started and allowed five hits and three runs, two earned, in his five innings while striking out five. Zach Schreiber allowed the tying run in the seventh, Victor Garate worked a scoreless eighth and Matt Sartor (4-6) was tagged with the loss.

Trailing 2-0 in the top of the second, Andrew Lambo walked, Luke May singled and Russ Mitchell, wielding the hottest bat on the team, doubled in the first run. Castillo drove in the tying run with a sac fly and James Tomlin's single put the Lookouts up 3-2.

From that point until the ninth, Chattanooga collected only two hits, May's double in the sixth and Martinez's single in the seventh.

The loss dropped the Lookouts two full games behind Tennessee and West Ten in the North Division race with eight games left in the regular season.

  Score by Innings
Chattanooga	030 000 001-4
Jacksonville	201 000 101-5

  Chattanooga 	ab r  h  bi ave
Tomlin cf-rf	5  0  1  1  .306
Sellers ss	2  0  1  0  .282
Martinez 3b-1b	5  0  2  1  .297
Perez 1b	5  0  0  0  .278
 Sartor p	0  0  0  0  .000
Lambo lf	3  1  0  0  .257
May c        	3  1  2  0  .308
Mitchell 2b	4  1  1  1  .242
Giles rf        2  0  0  0  .247
 Schreiber p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Guerra p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Rottino ph-3b	1  1  1  0  .256
Castillo p	1  0  0  1  .212
 Robinson cf	1  0  0  0  .212
---------------------------------
  Totals	32  4  8  3
  Jacksonville	34  5 11  5

  Error- Perez (6). 2B- Mitchell (29),
May (17). RBi- Mitchell (61), Castillo 
(8), Tomlin (31), Martinez (42).
S- Robinson. SF- Castillo.
LOB- Chattanooga 9, Jacksonville 9.
CS- Sellers (8). DP- Robinson and
Perez.

  Chattanooga  	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Castillo	5.0  5  3-2  3  5  4.38
Schreiber	2.0  3  1-1  1  0  2.45
Guerra 	        1.0  1  0-0  0  1  3.75
Sartor (4-6)	0.2  2  1-1  1  1  4.11
  T- 3:06. Att- 7,289.
Mavericks Run Into a Wall
Josh Wall had his best outing of the season, taking a no-hitter into the sixth and allowing just one run over seven innings en route to a 4-1 Sixers win over the High Desert Mavericks to keep Inland Empire's playoff hopes alive.

Wall (4-8, 5.91) retired the first 13 batters he faced before a walk in the fifth broke the streak. It wasn't until a homer with one out in the sixth that Wall allowed a hit. In his seven innings of work, Wall, in his best start since mid-July allowed one run on two hits and a walk while striking out three.

Jake McCarter took over in relief and walked two before Dave Pfeiffer retired the final five Mavericks in order to record his fourth save.

Inland Empire scored in the third when Elian Herrera reached second on a throwing error and stole third. He was driven in on a sac fly to right by Scott Van Slyke for his team-leading 96th RBI.

In the fifth, with two out and Justin Fuller on second with a double, Herrera was hit by a pitch and back-to-back walks to Van Slyke and Andres Perez forced in a run home.

The Sixers held on to the 2-1 lead until Justin Fuller walked in the seventh and rehabbing Doug Mientkiewicz slugged a 3-1 pitch over the netting in right field to extend the lead to 4-1.

The Sixers remain two games behind Rancho Cucamonga for the last wild card spot after the Quakes beat Stockton 3-1.

The 66ers (57-75) and High Desert meet in the final game of the series tonight.

  Score by Innings
High Desert	000 001 000-1
Inland Empire	001 010 20x-4

  Inland Empire  ab r  h  bi  ave
Mientkiewicz dh	4  1  1  2  .222
Herrera 3b	2  1  1  0  .290
Van Slyke rf	2  0  1  1  .292
Perez 1b	3  0  1  1  .311
mattingly lf	4  0  0  0  .237
Rosario cf	4  0  1  0  .209
Garabedian c	3  0  0  0  .233
Lara ss        	4  0  0  0  .256
Fuller 2b	2  2  1  0  .254
---------------------------------
  Totals	25  4  6  4
  High Desert	29  1  2  1

  2B- Fuller (11), Rosario (1).
HR- Mientkiewicz (1). RBI- Van Slyke
(96), Perez (14), Mientkiewicz 2 (2).
SF- Van Slyke. LOB- Inland Empire 7,
High Desert 4. SB- Herrera 2 (38),
CS- Herrera (5).    
 	  
   Inland Empire in  h r-er bb so  era
Wall (4-8)	7.0  2  1-1  1  3  5.91
McCarter	0.1  0  0-0  2  0  3.48
Pfeiffer (sv 4)	1.2  0  0-0  0  0  3.05
  WP- McCarter. HBP- Herrera. PB- Garabedian 
(10). T- 2:56. Att- 3,276.
The Loons Are Playoff Bound
Brad Golder
Great Lakes Loons

For the first time in franchise history, the Great Lakes Loons are headed to the Midwest League playoffs after a 6-0 win over the South Bend Silver Hawks in front of a crowd of 5,065. Another night of dominating pitching, clutch hitting and sterling defense ensured the Loons long-awaited playoff berth.

  After going 40-30 in the first half but failing to qualify for the postseason – becoming the first Eastern division team to win that many games in any half and not nab a playoff spot since the league's 1995 expansion – and finishing at least 13 games ahead of the other three non-playoff Eastern squads (South Bend, Dayton and Lansing), the Loons were widely expected to earn a postseason berth in the second half.

Great Lakes started slowly in the second half, winning only seven off their first 18 games, but the Loons got hot in mid-July and never looked back.

  They wasted no time in establishing the lead this night, scoring a two-out run in the bottom of the first inning on a double by Anthony Hatch and a single from Midwest League RBI leader Kyle Russell. Russell's RBI was his 95th of the season and proved to be the game-winning RBI.

  The Loons young tandem off Nathan Eovaldi and Ethan Martin combined for six shutout innings, with Eovaldi starting and pitching the first three hitless frames before Martin took over and struck out five in his three innings.

  Their standout pitching was necessary, because the game remained 1-0 into the bottom of the sixth inning. The Loons broke it open with four runs that started with a leadoff walk by Dee Gordon. The Midwest League Prospect of the Year stole second base and scored on a single by his keystone combo partner Jaime Pedroza for a two-run edge.

  Anthony Hatch singled and Russell was hit by a pitch. A wild pitch scored the Loons' third run, and Joe Becker provided insurance with a two-run single to make it a 5-0 game after six innings.

  Steve Smith finished the Loons third consecutive shutout with three innings of scoreless relief, allowing two hits and a walk while picking up his third save of the year. Great Lakes' pitchers have now hurled 32 consecutive scoreless innings dating back to August 26th against Fort Wayne, and have allowed only three hits in each of the last three games.

  Nick Buss plated the Loons final run with a one-out double in the eighth inning. The final outs of the game came on a tailor-made double play turned by Gordon and Pedroza.

  In today's matinee, right-hander Josh Walter (10-4, 3.55) starts for the Loons against Silver Hawks' righty Eric Smith (0-0, 1.50).

  The Loons will open up in the playoffs on Wednesday, September 9 at home. 

  Score by Innings
South Bend	000 000 000-0
Great Lakes	100 004 01x-6

  Great Lakes 	ab r  h  bi ave
Gordon ss	3  1  0  0  .304
Pedroza 2b	4  1  1  1  .261
Hatch 3b	4  2  3  0  .290
Russell rf	3  2  2  1  .275
Buss cf        	4  0  1  1  .255
Wallach c	4  0  2  0  .255
Becker dh	4  0  1  2  .375
Sands 1b	3  0  0  0  .220
Silverio lf	3  0  1  0  .274	
---------------------------------
  Totals	32  6 11  4
  South Bend	39  0  3  0
 
  Error- Gordon (34). 2B- Hatch (36),
Buss (13). RBI- Russell (95), Pedroza
(76), Becker 2 (6), Buss (60). LOB- Great
Lakes 4, South Bend 7. SB- Russell (16),
Gordon (70). CS- Gordon (25), DP- Pedroza, 
Gordon and Sands; Gordon, Pedroza and
Sands.
  	
  Great Lakes	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Eovaldi	        3.0  0  0-0  2  2  3.38
Martin (6-8)	3.0  1  0-0  1  5  3.90
Smith (sv 3)	3.0  2  0-0  1  2  2.71
  HBP- Russell, by Martin. T- 2:27. 
Att- 5,065.
Raptors Top Casper 5-2
Ogden out-hit the Ghosts 13-2 but the spirits hung around until the final out to make a fight of it before losing 5-2. The Raptors moved to 13-12 in the second half of the season.

Ogden was 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position and left ten men on base, but the pitching staff was stingy with the hits, struck out 12 and the five runs were all they needed.

Matt Magill (6-2) worked into the sixth inning, giving up just one hit. Magill struck out six and walked three while allowing two runs, one earned. Graham Miller added two shutout innings in relief and Javier Solano got the final six outs for his first save of the year. Solano struck out the side in the ninth.

Angelo Songco singled and scored from second base on an error in the second inning. Ogden made it 4-0 in the fifth, as david Iden doubled with two out, moved to third on a single by Brian Ruggiano and scored on another Casper error. A passed ball and Songco's RBI single made it 4-0.

After Casper scored two runs in the bottom of the inning without the aid of a hit, the Raptor pitching stopped the Ghosts the rest of the way, allowing only a two-out single in the eighth. Ogden added an insurance run in the top of the ninth on a Gorman Erickson sacrifice fly to provide the final margin.

Their was a near altercation in the top of the eighth when Chris Jacobs bumped into the Casper third-baseman while being tagged out on a grounder. After the two collided, the benches emptied, but no punches were thrown and no one was ejected.

The Raptors have taken eleven of fifteen meetings with the Ghosts in 2009. The teams will end their season series tonight as Ogden wraps up its six-game road trip. Edwin Contreras and Ricardo Ferrer are the scheduled starters.

  Score by Innings
Ogden	010 030 001-5
Casper	000 020 000-2
   
  Ogden	        ab r  h  bi  ave
Ruggiano 3b	5  1  2  0  .381
Hernandez ss	5  2  2  0  .282
Galvez rf	4  0  2  0  .332
Songco lf	5  1  3  1  .358
Erickson c	3  0  1  1  .324
Akins dh	4  0  0  0  .250
Jacobs 1b	4  0  1  0  .275
McGee cf	4  0  1  0  .264
Iden 2b        	4  1  1  0  .241
---------------------------------
  Totals	38  5 13  9
  Casper	35  2  2  1

  Error- Hernandez 2 (12). 2B- Ruggiano
(12), Iden (2). RBI- Songco (25),
Erickson (33). SF- Erickson. LOB- Ogden
10, Casper 6. SB- Galvez (14).
CS- Hernandez (3), Ruggiano (3),
DP- Erickson and Iden 2; Hernandez,
Iden and Jacobs. 

  Ogden	         in  h r-er bb so  era
Magill (6-2)	5.0  1  2-1  3  6  3.86
GrMiller	2.0  0  0-0  2  2  4.30
Solano (sv 1)	2.0  1  0-0  0  4  4.10
  WP- Magill. HBP- by Magill, by GrMiller. 
PB- Erickson (6).  T- 3:04. Att- 2,516.
AZ Dodgers Lose Slugfest in Final Game
The Arizona Dodgers fought back to tie the game after trailing the Padres 8-1 in the sixth inning, only to lose 11-9 on two, ninth-inning runs. The Dodgers finished their season in fourth place with a 24-32 overall record in the West Division, They were 11-17 in the second half.

Seven different pitchers saw action. Travis Schlichting kept his ERA at a spotless 0.00 after working one inning. Carlos Frias, Justin Dignelli, Ji-Mo Lee (in his first game of the AZ season), James Marshal, Gari Tavarez and Beyker Fructuoso (1-5) combined to allow 13 hits and 11 runs, four of them unearned because of five errors, but they struck out 15 Padres.

Trailing 3-1 in the sixth, the Padres tagged Lee with five runs to put the Dodgers in a real hole. But they rallied to score three in the sixth and seventh and two in the eighth to deadlock things at 9-9. Furctuoso allowed two in the ninth and took the loss.

Casio Grider topped the hitting department by going 3-for-3 with a double and an RBI, plus two stolen bases to run his team-leading total to 22. Ivan De Jesus, playing in only his fourth game after coming back from a broken leg, had his first two hits of he year and three runs batted in. Jan Vazquez also had a pair of hits and Ramon Jean chipped in with a two-run triple.

Eighteen-year-old Tae-Hyeok Nam saw his first professional action in the United States, going 0-for-3 and making a pair of errors in the field.

  Score by Innings
AZL Padres	003 005 012-11
AZL Dodgers	100 003 320- 9
  
  Dodgers	ab r  h  bi  ave
Grider 2b	3  2  3  1  .263
Banks cf	4  2  0  0  .231
De Jesus ss	2  0  2  3  .200
 Jean pr-ss	2  1  1  2  .280
Green 1b	5  0  1  1  .274
Cilladi c	5  0  0  1  .122
Nam 3b        	3  0  0  0  .000
Ray rf        	4  1  1  0  .130
Vazquez dh	4  1  2  1  .216
Perry lf	2  2  0  0  .050
---------------------------------
  Totals	42  9 10  9
  Padres	42 11 13  9

  Errors- Green (4), Nam 2 (2), Grider
(18), Jean (21). 2B- DE Jesus (1),
Vazquez (3), Grider (5). 3B- Jean (2).
RBI- De Jesus 3 (3), Cilladi (3), Jean
2 (23), Green (7), Vazquez (3), Grider
(15), SF- De Jesus. LOB- Dodgers 5,
Padres 7. SB- Grider 2 (22). DP- Nam
and Green. 

  Dodgers	 in  h r-er bb so  era
Schlichting	1.0  0  0-0  0  2  0.00
Frias	        2.1  5  3-0  1  5  4.28
Dignelli	1.2  1  0-0  0  3  7.71
Lee        	0.0  4  5-4  1  0  ----
Marshall	2.0  0  0-0  0  2  4.09
Tavarez 	1.0  2  1-1  0  1  6.75
Fructuoso (1-5)	1.0  1  2-1  0  2  6.28
  WP- Frias 3, Lee.  HBP- Grider 2, Banks,
Nam. PB- Cilladi 6. T- 3:14.

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