Thursday Pebble Report: Tyler Matzek and Dan Winkler shine on the mound

by Charlie Drysdale

Tyler Matzek had his best game of the season, while Dan Winkler is pushing for a birth in the CAL All-Star game. Kyle Parker hit another moonshot and the DSL Rockies used a big seventh inning to defeat the Marlins.

Double-A Tulsa W 11-1 (27-30)

Starter Tyler Matzek (No. 10 PuRP) had his best start of the season, scattering four hits over six innings and allowing only one earned run and no walks. It was Tyler's first game without walking a batter since Aug. 22 of last year, when he went back-to-back games for Modesto without surrendering a free pass.

Tulsa's offense provided plenty of run support for Matzek as nearly every starter secured a hit. Center fielder Rafael Ortega (No. 9 PuRP) had a hit and two walks from the leadoff position and is batting .293 in his past 10 games. With an 0-2 count in the third, Kyle Parker (No. 4 PuRP) hit a monster shot that landed on the left field concourse well above the seating area. It was his 11th home run of the season.

High-A Modesto - W 5-1 (28-31)

Nuts starter Dan Winkler (Honorable Mention PuRP) picked up his league-leading eighth win of the season by going 6 ⅔ innings and allowing one run while inducing seven strikeouts. Winkler held first-place San Jose to only four hits and secured the first series road loss for the Giants affiliate. Winkler kept the ball on the ground through his start, finishing with a 8-to-2 groundball ratio.

Catcher Ryan Casteel started the scoring in the fifth when he hit his 10th home run of the season. Ryan is enjoying a breakout in the California League as he had combined for only six home runs in his previous three years. It was also Ryan's second home run at home as he's struggled in John Thurman Field, batting a mere .225 versus .333 on the road. Left fielder Brian Humphries went 2-for-4 with an RBI.

Low-A Asheville - L 4-7 (31-26)

The Tourists game was called early due to rain on Wednesday, but the two teams still combined to score 11 runs. Asheville struck first when Tom Murphy (No. 15 PuRP) doubled in Rosell Herrera (No. 16 PuRP) and Juan Ciriaco in the opening inning. Murphy later scored on a Francisco Sosa double. Murphy was 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles on the night, while Sosa added a pair of hits, raising his average to .335 on the year.

Starter Matt Carasiti gave up the lead with big innings from the Braves bats in the second and third. Carasiti finished the game with seven earned runs in 5 ⅓ innings and two strikeouts with three walks allowed. The game was called with Roberto Padilla on the mound in the middle of the sixth inning.

DSL Rockies - W 7-5 (2-2)

The Rockies won thanks to a big seventh inning which saw five runs cross the plate. Denzel Richardson loaded the bases with a single that inning and left fielder Omar Carrizales plated two with a groundball base hit to the left side. Carrizales and Richardson then performed a double steal which scored Richardson from third and was ruled a throwing error by the Marlins catcher. Richardson finished with two hits, raising his average to .417 on the year. First baseman Henry Garcia added a three-run double in the seventh.

Starter Carlos Polanco pitched five strong innings allowing only one earned run. He struck out one and walked two. Rockies pitchers have started the year strong with a 2.66 team ERA and rank third behind the Marlins and Yankees in the DSL.

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