The ball meets Jordan Pacheco's bat a lot.
AAA Colorado Springs, L 8-9 (10) - (10-7, 2nd, 1.0 GB)
Jordan Pacheco (2007, 9th round) wants back in the big leagues. Checo hit a clutch, two-run home run in the ninth to turn a one run deficit into a one run lead. He also doubled and singled and is hitting .478 since his demotion. Zach Putnam (2012, trade) failed to close it out in the ninth after a walk and two singles, and a couple cheap singles in the tenth off Stephen Dodson (2008, 10th round) led to the loss.
Tyler Chatwood (2012, trade) started the game and allowed three runs in four innings on six hits. He did strike out four and did not walk a batter, keeping his theme of 2012 alive. Edgar Gonzalez (2012, MiLB FA) was the mound culprit, as he allowed five of the ten men he faced to reach base, and four of them to score. Wil Nieves (2012, MiLB FA) homered and drove in four and Brandon Wood (2012, MiLB FA) had two hits. Guillermo Moscoso (2012, trade) gets the ball today at 1:05 MDT trying to build on his last start.
AA Tulsa, W 3-2 - (10-5, 1st)
The first place Drillers had lost their first two games of the series in Springfield, outscored 9-1, but they turned it around on Saturday. Nick Schmidt (2012, trade), who was acquired for Huston Street, had his second consecutive strong start. The lefty went six innings and struck out seven, walking just one. He did allow two solo home runs to cleanup hitter Xavier Scruggs, the only runs the Cardinals managed on the night.
Catcher Jose Gonzalez (2006, VZ) broke up the shutout with a 2-run home run in the seventh inning. Gonzalez also singled twice and has a hit in all five of his starts this season. Requiring a clutch in in a late tie game, the Drillers had just the guy to deliver. #2 PuRP Nolan Arenado (2009, 2nd round) laced a double to left field, scoring Michael Mitchell (2007, 25th round) from first. With that double, Arenado now has an equal number of extra base hits as strikeouts (8) once again. #9 PuRP Josh Rutledge (2010, 3rd round) and HM PuRP Mike Zuanich (2008, 28th round) had two hit days. #18 PuRP Joseph Gardner (2011, trade) faces Scott Gorgen in the series finale at 1:08 MDT.
High-A Modesto, L 7-15 - (4-12, 5th, 7.5 GB)
#5 PuRP Tyler Matzek (2009, 1st round) started this game, which appears at first glance to bring back nasty 2011 flashback. But Matzek wasn't largely responsible for the blowout, though it was certainly his poorest outing on the season. #19 PuRP Corey Dickerson (2010, 8th round) misplayed a line drive into a triple on the second pitch of the game. In the second inning, a potential double play ground ball turned into an infield single, and a subsequent throwing error by Jared Clark (2009, 12th round) resulted in four unearned runs. Unnerved by a poor defense, Matzek walked five and threw two wild pitches in three innings of work. He allowed eight runs, though just four were earned, and struck out five of the nine out he recorded. Before the game, Matzek gave an interview to Nuts play-by-play man Alex Margulies:
"I'm just sticking with my routine...let the game take care of itself. Anything bad happens, I know I can get through it. I now know what rock bottom looks like"
Honest and straight-forward. It could be argued that last night's rock bottom was better than 2011, an improvement overall. Still, the 21-year-old let "anything bad" get to him.
Jayson Langfels (2010, 16th round) singled three times and Timothy Smalling (2011, 15th round) reached base three times for the Nuts, who trailed 12-6 before their offense failed to score in an inning for the first time, in the fourth. #27 PuRP Josh Slaats (2010, 5th round) will pitch the series finale today at 2:05 MDT.
Low-A Asheville, L 5-6 - (11-5, 2nd)
On paper, this looked like a win going in. The Tourists were at home with a season record of 11-5 and had won, hosted the 2-13 Rome Braves. It didn't work out that way, as Alex Gillingham (2011, 11th round) allowed runs in three innings before the Tourists got on the board. Gillingham allowed nine hits, two walks, a hit batter, a balk and a wild pitch in 5.2 IP, allowing four runs. Asheville made an error-fed charge in the bottom of the ninth inning, putting four runs on the board all after two outs were recorded, but HM PuRP Sam Mende (2011, 31st round) flew out to center with the tying run on second. Ryan Casteel (2010, 17th round) singled twice, and #12 PuRP Trevor Story (2011, sandwich round) lowered his season batting line with his third double of the year, which broke up Rome's no-hitter in the fifth. Vianney Mayo (2007, VZ) pitches the series finale today at 12:05 MDT.