I spent the evening in Bakersfield tonight, catching the Blaze play the High Desert Mavericks. I wasn't really interested in any of the prospects--there weren't any Top Ten Reds or Mariners prospects in the game--but I wanted to see Bakersfield's Sam Lynn Stadium before they tore it down at the end of the season. Sam Lynn Stadium is the last ballpark in organized baseball that faces west, i.e., the setting sun is in the batter's eyes. So of course I go on the summer solstice.
Bakersfield is almost a 90 minute drive, and I had to drive home after a game that didn't start until quarter to eight. So I'll leave any more I have to say until tomorrow.
In case you hadn't heard, Pierce Johnson was promoted to Daytona.
The Iowa Cubs quieted the the Nashville Sounds (Brewers), 6-4.
Yoanner Negrin improved his record to 2-2 by pitching eight innings and allowing four runs on nine hits. He walked two and struck out six.
Brian Schlitter got his fifth save in as many tries with a scoreless ninth inning. Schlitter allowed a two-out infield single, but no other baserunners. He did not have a strike out.
Right fielder Brian Bogusevic was a perfect 4 for 4 with a double and a walk. He scored two runs and batted one in.
With the win, Iowa climbs to within two games of .500 at 36-38. Combined with Memphis's loss at Round Rock, Iowa moves into first place by half a game in the Pacific Coast League American North Division. Somewhere, Lou Boudreau is saying "We're in a pennant race!" And he'd be right.
Austin Kirk started and collected his first Tennessee win of the season and seventh overall. Kirk threw 5.2 scoreless innings, allowing only a leadoff single in the second inning. He did walk four batters, however, but he struck out eight. He also had an RBI single in the fifth inning.
Frank Batista entered the game with a 3-1 lead in the top of the ninth and allowed singles to the first two batters he faced. After a sacrifice bunt put runners on second and third, he walked the bases loaded and gave up an RBI single, scoring one run and leaving the bases loaded with only one out. He then struck out the final two batters to end the game. It was his tenth save of the season.
Shortstop Arismendy Alcantara tripled and scored in the first inning. He was 1 for 3 with a walk.
Matt Loosen tossed the first six innings for his first Daytona win, allowing only four hits. Loosen struck out eight and walked nobody.
Jeffrey Lorick finished out the final three innings for his first save. Lorick surrendered three hits. He also did not walk a batter and he struck out four.
DH Javier Baez crushed his 15th home run of the season with the bases empty in the second inning. That was the final run scored in this game. Baez was 2 for 4.
Third baseman Ben Carhart went 2 for 3 with a double and a walk. He scored the third and final run in the first inning.
Kane County Cougars
The Kane County Cougars were mugged by the Quad City River Bandits (Astros), 5-3.
Brian Smith started and took the loss. Smith pitched five innings and allowed four runs, three earned, on six hits. Smith walked one and struck out four.
I really don't know how they managed to do it, but Kane County had 14 hits in this game, five for extra bases, and only managed to score three runs. They even walked three times. I guess going 2 for 18 with runners in scoring position played a role.
Anyway, left fielder Oliver Zapata went 3 for 4 with a walk and a two-run triple in the second inning.
DH Rock Shoulders was 2 for 3 with a double and two walks. Shortstop Marco Hernandez was 2 for 5 with a double. Both of them scored on Zapata's triple.
First baseman Dan Vogelbach was 2 for 5 with a double.
Rained out in Spokane.
Erick Leal allowed a home run to lead off the top of the first inning, the first batter he faced as a member of the Cubs organization. That was the last run he, or any other pitcher in this game, allowed.