Jhoulys Chacin could be back in a Rockies uniform very soon.
The affiliates were 3-4 on the night.
The Sky Sox (66-60, 5 GB) got 3 in the 1st, 2 in the 3rd, and 5 in the 5th to cruise to an easy victory, but the big story was Jhoulys Chacin. Making his 2nd (and perhaps final) rehab start for the Sky Sox, Chacin threw 7+ strong innings, allowing one run on five hits and three walks on 91 pitches, though he didn't strike anybody out. It was a big step in the right direction in what has been a lost season for Chacin, who hopes to rejoin the big club soon.
Once again the Drillers (22-30 2nd half, 12.5 GB) struggled to score in a low-scoring loss. It's a good thing that the team has already clinched a playoff berth with their 1st half title. PuRP 1 Nolan Arenado had half of Tulsa's six hits in this game (all of which were singles). The Drillers wasted a solid start by PuRP 22 Joe Gardner, who allowed 3 runs (1 earned) on 4 hits and 4 walks in 5.1 IP.
High A: Modesto 5, Visalia 4
Heading into the 7th, Modesto faced a 2-1 deficit. They quickly turned that into a 2run lead with a 3-run 7th, highlighted by a Juan Crousset solo shot (9) to lead off the frame. PuRP 10 Kyle Parker added a solo shot in the 8th to give the Nuts (29-23 2nd half, 1st place) some much needed cushion, as their opponents scored twice in the bottom of the 8th to make it a one run game -- a lead that would stick.
In addition to the homers mentioned above, Delta Cleary Jr. had 3 hits while Helder Velazquez had 2 hits, including a solo shot (5) and a two run double in the 7th. Josh Mueller pitched 6 innings of 2 run ball to get the win.
Low A: Greenville 10, Asheville 5
Taylor Featherston, who is very quietly having an excellent season playing shortstop when Trevor Story isn't (putting up a .297/.400/.484 line) had three hits, while Tyler Massey had 2 hits and a 2 run homer (9). Unfortunately, Vianney Mayo allowed 11 hits and 7 runs in 4.1 innings of work, so the ultimate result of this game was a loss for the Tourists (29-24, 4.5 GB), who have that 1st half title to get them into the playoffs regardless.Short Season: Boise 7, Tri-City 2
The Dust Devils (9-14 2nd half, 6 GB) fell behind 5-0 early in this one and never recovered. Robert Padilla went 3.2 innings and allowed 5 runs on 7 hits and 6 walks (?!?). PuRP 16 Rosell Herrera knocked in both runs with a single in the 5th.
Rookie: Grand Junction 4, Great Falls 3
The GJ Rockies (9-9 2nd half, 2 GB) only scored runs in one inning, but it was enough for the victory. The Rockies' 4 run 3rd consisted of a Juan Ciriaco RBI triple, a Matt Wessinger RBI single, and a Jeffrey Popick 2 run shot (6). Matthew Carasiti got the win by hurling 5.1 innings, scattering 7 hits and a walk to allow 2 runs. The bullpen held on for the rest and the Rockies got back to .500, within striking distance of a playoff berth in their inaugural season in Grand Junction.
There's a divisional race to watch in the DSL, and it's these two teams that are involved. Entering the game, the Rockies held a 0.5 game lead on the DBacks, who obviously hold the slight advantage now with 8 games left in the season thanks to this win and the Rockies' 3rd straight loss. Unfortunately for the Rockies (37-27, 0.5 GB), they don't play each other again, so they don't control their own destiny.
As for the actual game, Denzel Richardson had 3 hits and 2 steals for the Rockies, but their anemic offense couldn't overcome the struggles of their pitcher, Carlos Estevez, who allowed 5 runs on 6 hits in 4.2 IP.