Saturday Pebble Report: Seven victories in one night

Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE

It is unusual that all the affiliates come away with the win, but that is exactly what happened last night. The affiliates earned seven wins, and they were seven very different routes to victory. T.J. Oakes' one-run complete game was the minor league highlight of the night, while Ryan Casteel's 15th homer of the year, and two pitching staffs which did not allow a run to score also deserve some notice.

Colorado Springs 8, Tacoma 3

It was a night of extra base hits and fly balls in the springs. Drew Pomeranz' official line on the night was two runs off of five hits and a walk, while striking out 3. What that doesn't reveal, however is that every single hit that he gave up was a double, or that 9 of his outs were in the air as opposed to 8 on the ground. The quality of the air is no doubt a factor, but it is still a disturbing trend to see.

The Colorado Springs offense was able to rack up 14 hits against the Tacoma Rainiers, including two doubles, four triples, and a home run. Three hits, including triples from Charlie Culberson and Charlie Blackmon, gave the Sky Sox a quick 2-0 lead by the end of the first inning. They built momentum through the 4th, 5th, and 6th innings, and were able to take advantage of mistakes made by Tacoma's defense and pitching, timely hitting, and a plethora of extra base hits.

In addition to his leadoff triple in the first, Culberson also hit his 12th home run of the year to drive in Lars Davis. Culberson, Hernan Iribarren, Ben Paulsen, and Greg Golson had multiple hits apiece, while only 2B Drew Garciawent completely hitless.

Tulsa 2, NW Arkansas 0

The Tulsa pitching staff was able to combine for a 7-hit, 10-strikeout shutout against the NW Arkansas Naturals.Tim Gustafson allowed only five hits and struck out five over six innings, though with four walks he did show some command issues. The only real offensive threat came in the fifth inning, when a single, double and walk loaded the bases. Gustafson struck out Orlando Calixte to end the threat. Isaiah Froneberger, Mike Marbry, and Cole Whitefinished what Gustafson started, allowing 2 hits and four walks with five more strikeouts.

While winning against the toothless NW Arkansas team should be relatively easy, the Drillers offense made it look difficult. Opposing pitcher Andy Ferguson had a no-hitter through five innings, with only three batters reaching via walk. Delta Cleary broke the no-hitter with a single to lead off the sixth inning, and advanced to second on aCristhian Adames sacrifice bunt. Angelys Nina tripled in Cleary, and later scored the only other run of the game with a groundball single from Dustin Garneau. A Kyle Parker single in the 7th and a Delta Cleary single in the 8th were the only other two hits that Tulsa collected in the game.

Modesto 10, Visalia 6

Modesto was able to accomplish a rare feat and score more runs (10) than hits(7). The Visalia team struggled with pitching command issues and poor defensive play. Visalia's pitching staff allowed 9 walks and hit 3 batters for a total of 12 free passes, while 3 errors and 2 wild pitches allowed runners to advance and score. The Tulsa offense also struck out 11 times, including three swinging strikeouts from Trevor Story.

Ryan Casteel hit his 15th home run of the year and is the only Modesto batter with home run totals in the double digits. He leads the team in doubles, homers, runs batted in, slugging percentage, and OPS. He is within the top three for runs scored, total hits, triples, batting average, and on base percentage.

Eddie Butler made his sixth start with Modesto and improved to 3-1 since his mid-season promotion from Asheville. He pitched five innings, and was absolutely solid through the first four. He struck out eights batters and issued only one walk.

Asheville 4, Delmarva 1

As last night demonstrated, T.J. Oakes possesses potential, however he has not shown any sort of consistency in performing up to his potential. After allowing 6 runs in his last started, Oakes pitched a complete game, allowing only one run on three hits and a walk. After allowing a lead-off double to score in the first, he allowed only a walk through the next six innings. He allowed a double and a single with two outs in the eighth, but retired the next four batters to complete the game.

The Asheville offense quickly shot out to a 2-0 lead after the first frame, and added a run in the fifth and eighth innings. Rosell extended his hitting streak to seven games and had a two-hit, two-RBI night. While his batting average over the last 10 games has been at an impressive .421, the power that he demonstrated earlier in the season has dropped a bit. Of his 16 hits in the last 10 games, he has hit only two doubles and a home run.

Tri-City 4, Eugene 3

After falling behind 0-2 through the first three innings, the Dust Devils flashed some power in the fourth to tie up the game, including a Patrick Hutcheson double and an Ashley Graeter triple. The team rallied again in the seventh, taking advantage of wild pitching to bring two more runners home.

Johendi Jiminian started the game for the Dust Devils, and despite a great start where he allowed only two isolated runs in the first and third, he did not factor into the decision. Shawn Stuart was credited with the win, though he faced only three batters, and Trent Blank remains unhittable as he pitched a perfect inning and earned his fourth save.

Grand Junction 6, Ogden 3

Joel Payamps made a successful stateside debut, throwing five innings of one run, two hit ball, striking out five and walking four en route to the win (1-0).

2nd round pick Ryan McMahon continued the hot start to his professional career with another multi-hit night, while Aussie DH Robbie Perkins went 2-2 with his first professional homer, a two run shot in the 6th.

DSL Rockies 2, DSL Marlins 0

The DSL Rockies were the second team to benefit from a pitching staff which combined to shutout their opponents. In this case, five pitchers combined to allow only four hits and three walks, while striking out seven. Defensive errors put the shutout in jeopardy at a couple of points in the game.

The Rockies scored a run in the fourth and sixth innings, and collected six hits. 18-year-old centerfielder Omar Carrizales stole his ninth base of the season, has collected a hit in 9 of his last 10 games, and is getting on base at a .397 clip.

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