Thursday Pebble Report: Joe Gardner Flourishing in the Bullpen

AAA Colorado Springs - W 11-6, (58-54, W1, 2nd, 7.0 GB)

The Sky Sox erupted for an 8-run 5th inning in Iowa, helped in part from #15 PuRP Charlie Blackmon's (2008, 2nd round) 5th home run in 45 AAA games. Blackmon also doubled in the game, but he was hardly the only one who crushed Cubs pitching. HM PuRP Thomas Field (2008, 24th round) had two doubles and a single, Charlie Culberson (2012, trade) had a couple hits and Chad Tracy (2012, trade) drove in three. Guillermo Moscoso (2012, trade) allowed 5 runs on 7 hits in 5.2 IP.

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AA Tulsa - W 6-4, (16-22, W1, 3rd, 10.0 GB)

It was an encouraging game for a few select PuRPs last night. #14 PuRP Corey Dickerson (2010, 8th round) broke a 1-for-17 stretch following his nose injury with a double, single and walk. Mike Zuanich (2008, 28th round) homered, singled and walked twice, and #1 PuRP Nolan Arenado (2009, 2nd round) had two hits. In his last ten games, he has gone hitless twice but has at least one extra base hit in the other eight.

Josh Outman (2012, trade) was shaky, allowing four runs in four innings on eight hits. After allowing 9 runs in two innings July 9, Joe Gardner (2011, trade) was banished to the bullpen, and he has responded. After throwing three scoreless innings last night for the win, he has allowed just one run in 14.1 IP. He has not walked a batter since July 14.

High-A Modesto - L 1-6, (22-17, L3, 1st)

The Nuts managed just three hits in a game started by Anthony Meo, a very good pitching prospect taken in the 2nd round last year. #10 PuRP Kyle Parker (2010, 1st round) kicked off his August with a hitless game, and Jayson Langfels plated the Nuts' only run with a solo homer. Kennil Gomez (2012, MiLB FA) got the loss.

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Low-A Asheville - L 2-3, (21-19, L2, 2nd, 5.0 GB)

Ben Alsup (2011, 18th round) pitched very well through 5.2 IP, allowing just one hit while striking out five. It wasn't enough, as Nelson Gonzalez allowed three runs in relief, and the offense wasn't very helpful. #12 PuRP Trevor Story (2011, sandwich pick) struck out three times for the fifth time on the season, but he did become the first Tourist to 100 hits on the year. #13 PuRP Will Swanner (2010, 15th round) doubled and Jordan Ribera (2011, 21st round) had three of the Tourists' eight hits.

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Short-season A Tri-City - L 2-3, (2-6, L1, 4th, 4.0 GB)

Tom Murphy (2012, 3rd round) had two hits and drove in a run and had a chance to tie the game with two outs in the ninth inning. Instead, he took a walk, and Miguel de Leon (2008, DR), a .184 hitter, struck out to end the game with the bases loaded. Benjamin Hughes (2011, 10th round) delivered the definition of a quality start, permitting three runs in six innings.

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Rookie Grand Junction - L 4-7, (0-4, L3, 4th, 4.0 GB)

After striking out 26 and walking just three in 11 relief outings, Shawn Stuart (2012, 31st round) was given a chance to start a game. It did not go well. After facing the minimum in two hitless innings, the wheels came off in the third. Stuart allowed four runs on a hit batter, a walk, double, single and two home runs. Matt Wessinger (2012, 5th round) tripled twice, and the Rockies got solo home runs from Julian Yan (2008, DR) and Ben Waldrip (2012, 10th round). After falling just shy of the first half division title Saturday, the Rockies have gone winless in the season's second half. David Dahl (2012, 1st round) had a no-good-terrible game, only getting one hit to extend his hitting streak to 16 games.

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DSL Rockies - W 4-2, (31-20, W3, 1st)

Antonio Senzatela continues to impress, as the 17-year-old Venezuelan lowered his ERA to 0.57 yesterday. He allowed just one unearned run - thanks to a passed ball. Every member of the starting lineup recorded a hit, led by Marcos Derkes getting three base knocks.

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