Pebble Star of the Night
Shortstop Hector Gomez hit two home runs for the second time this season, this time against Visalia's LHP Paul McAnaney. A couple things to note: Gomez' previous two HR were off of RHP, and McAnaney is not exactly low farm filler. The 2008 8th rounder was undefeated, had allowed only 3 HR, and had given up only 11 runs in 7 starts coming in.
For good measure, Gomez roped a run-scoring single in the 7th to give the Nuts what turned out to be the game-winning margin. Game Line: 3-for-4, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 2 R. Season line: .304/.333/.533 with 4 HR and 18 RBI. Gomez also homered twice May 2 at San Jose.
AAA Colorado Springs, Off Day - (23-15, 1.5 GB)
The Sky Sox will try to extend their winning streak to three against the Round Rock Express (Astros) tonight at 6:05 MDT.
AA Tulsa, W 5-3 - (20-18, 2.0 GB)
Tulsa had scored just one run in the previous two games combined. Not coincidentally, manager Stu Cole called for two suicide squeeze plays; Rex Rundgren and Cole Garner were both successful in squeezing in a run each in Tulsa's 5-3 win over the Northwest Arkansas Naturals (Royals). Jeff Kindel recorded three singles and four other Drillers roped two hits each.
Samuel Deduno (5-1, 2.91) continues to impress as he earned his fifth win. Deduno allowed two runs on just two singles in 7.0 IP, though he also permitted five free passes. Ryan Speier worked around two singles for a clean inning in his first AA rehab appearance, and Andrew Johnston got his 12th save. Box Score
Keith Weiser (1-3, 4.99 ERA) will face Matthew Kniginyzky (1-3, 5.29 ERA) in the series finale vs the Naturals at 6:05 MDT.
High-A Modesto, W 7-6- (24-16, 2.0 GB)
The Nuts trailed first place Visalia (Diamondbacks) four different times and only had one one-run lead (for a half inning) before a two run seventh gave them the winning margin, 7-6. Other than Hector Gomez' marvelous night, Jay Cox, Maikol Gonzalez and Wilin Rosario each collected a single and double.
Cory Riordin struggled mightily with his start, allowing 8 hits, 5 R, 4 ER, two wild pitches, a hit batsman, and a balk in 4.2 IP. Joey Williamson (5-0, 3.19) picked up the pieces nicely, throwing 3.1 IP, striking out five and allowing one run on two doubles. The 22yo RHP was a 36th round pick in 2007 and is having himself a very impressive season in relief. He might be worth keeping an eye on. Box Score
Modesto will play Visalia again tonight at 8:05 MDT. A win would pull Modesto to within one game of the CAL North leading Rawhide.
Low-A Asheville, W 6-1 - (15-22, 6.0 GB)
It took the Tourists seven tries, but Asheville finally got Joe Mikulik his 700th career win, 6-1 at the Rome Braves. The victory was only the Tourists' second in two weeks, which was especially surprising since it came against Zeke Spruill (6-1, 2.72), who was previously undefeated and coming off six straight wins.
Asheville struck early and scored all six runs off Spruill, stringing together four hits and a walk in the first for three runs. David Christenson homered (5) and Delta Cleary broke out a bit by reaching base four times. Dan Houston (1-1, 2.73) finally won his first game, as he pitched seven strong innings. Box Score
Ethan Hollingsworth (1-2, 2.65) gets the call tonight against Rome's J.J. Hoover (2-1, 2.27) at 5:05 MDT.