Tonight we're starting with another big day from the Daytona Cubs
Three Daytona Cubs pitchers combined to throw a seven-inning 1-0 no-hitter against the Dunedin Blue Jays in the second game the two teams played today. They also won the first game against Dunedin, 6-4.
This double-header is going to take some explaining, so bear with me. The first game was a continuation of yesterday's game that was suspended after three innings. The second game, which was the no-hitter, was a seven-inning game that was a continuation of a game that got one inning in at Dunedin on August 21. Because that game was started in Dunedin, the Cubs were the road team even though it was played at Jackie Robinson Ballpark.
So both games were continuations of suspended games. Got it?
I'm going to start with the second game because that one was the no-hitter. On August 21, Ben Wells tossed one perfect inning, striking out one. When the game resumed tonight, Kyler Burke took the mound and he threw five excellent innings, walking two and striking out four. Burke got the win, of course, improving his record to 5-1.
Zach Cates pitched a perfect bottom of the seventh inning for his second save. (Technically it was his first save because his second one came on August 23 and this game goes in the books as having been played on August 21.) Cates struck out two. Shortstop Elliot Soto made a great play with one out on a ground ball that Cates had deflected, preserving the no-hitter.
Soto also doubled and scored on a single by first baseman Dustin Geiger in the third inning for the only Daytona run. Both Soto and Geiger were 1 for 3.
Left fielder Anthony Giansanti was 2 for 3 with two doubles.
In the first game the two teams finished tonight, Pierce Johnson pitched three scoreless innings last night. He gave up two hits. He struck out three and didn't walk anyone.
When the game resumed tonight, Ben Wells relieved Lendy Castillo in the fourth inning. Wells would end up getting the win after he threw 2.1 scoreless innings, allowing only one hit. Wells struck out two and didn't walk anyone.
The D-Cubs had a 6-1 lead going to the ninth inning, but Jeffrey Lorick got into trouble, allowing three runs and bringing the go-ahead run to the plate while only getting one out. But Frank Del Valle entered the game with runners on second and third and only one out and struck out the next two batters to end the game. It was Del Valle's ninth save.
First baseman Dustin Geiger hit his fifteenth home run of the season in the sixth inning with a man on. Geiger was 2 for 4.
In the eighth, catcher Chadd Krist hit a solo home run, his fifth this season. Krist went 2 for 3 with a walk and two runs scored.
Right fielder Pin-Chieh Chen was 3 for 4 with two RBI. Shortstop Elliot Soto was 2 for 4 and he scored twice.
In more good news for Daytona, Lakeland lost to reduce their magic number for a second-half title to one. The Daytona Cubs play another doubleheader tomorrow, needing to only win one of the two games to clinch a playoff spot.
The Iowa Cubs kept their slim playoff hopes alive with a 7-6 win over the first-place Omaha Storm Chasers (Royals).
Justin Grimm started and picked up his third win with five strong innings. He gave up two runs, only one of which was earned, on six hits. He walked two and struck out two.
Iowa was leading 7-2 in the eighth, but Zach Rosscup allowed four unearned runs to make the game close. Three of those runs came when Brian Schlitter entered the game with the bases-loaded and two outs and allowed two singles to clear the bases. But then Schlitter retired the next four batters to get his 19th save. Schlitter's final line was no runs and two hits over 1.1 innings. He struck out two and did not issue a walk.
DH Dave Sappelt was 2 for 4 with an RBI and two runs scored. He also walked once. Second baseman Edgar Gonzalez was also 2 for 4 with a walk. He had one RBI and scored one run.
Left fielder Julio Borbon was 1 for 2 with two walks and two steals. Borbon scored twice.
Iowa won despite five errors: two by third baseman Mike Olt, two by shortstop Edwin Maysonet and one by Gonzalez.
The Tennessee Smokies caught the Mobile BayBears (Diamondbacks) hibernating, 4-2.
Eric Jokisch pitched six shutout innings, allowing only two hits. He struck out two and walked one as he improved his record to 11-12.
Frank Batista had to enter the game with one out in the ninth and runners on the corners. He allowed one inherited runner to score on a sacrifice fly and put runners on second and third with two outs before getting a groundout to end the game and collect his 18th save. Batista allowed one walk but no hits over two-thirds of an inning.
Second baseman Arismendy Alcantara hit a solo home run in the fifth inning to make it 4-0. It was his 15th home run this season. Alcantara was 1 for 4.
Third baseman Jonathan Mota was 2 for 3 and scored a run.
Kane County Cougars
The Kane County Cougars were poisoned by the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (Brewers), 8-7.
Starter Nathan Dorris pitched the first three innings and to the first two batters of the fourth. Dorris was charged with six runs on only two hits. Four of the six runs were unearned thanks to some of the six errors Kane County committed in this game. Dorris walked four and struck out one.
The Cougars fought back and tied the score in the top of the ninth on a home run by Jeimer Candelario, but Michael Hamann allowed a walk-off double in the bottom of the inning. Hamann pitched 1.2 innings and allowed one run on two hits. He did not walk anyone and struck out two.
The solo home run by Candelario was his tenth of the season. He also doubled in a 2 for 5 game.
In the fifth inning, right fielder Reggie Golden clubbed his ninth home run of the year with a man on. Golden was 2 for 3 and was hit by a pitch. He scored two runs.
Shortstop Marco Hernandez doubled twice in a 2 for 5 game. Third baseman Giuseppe Papaccio went 2 for 5 and scored one run and had one RBI.
Left fielder Jose Dore 2 for 4 with a double. He scored once and had one RBI.
The loss dropped Kane County's record to 52-77, which is a franchise record for losses in one season.
Travelling home for the final six games of the season in a three-way tie for first place.
Both Ryan Sweeney and Luis Valbuena made rehab appearances in this game. Sweeney was 2 for 5 with a double and Valbuena was 2 for 3 with a double and a walk.