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Pebble Report

To save myself a little time and stress right now, rather than go over the game recaps of the last three days, I'm going to just single out some of the exceptional (good or bad) performances that I have noted. First, on Wednesday at Modesto, I do have to mention that Ian Stewart did have his struggles going zero for four with a walk and three K's, and Ubaldo Jiminez had an oddly erratic inning that won't show up in his ERA, allowing just one run in six innings but also six walks and four hits to go along with five strikeouts. Chris Ianetta had a homerun and two doubles as well as a walk in a perfect three for three day and gave us hope that should JD Closser not find his stroke we have another chance at redemption at the position. Thursday, Matt Macri hit his fifth homerun of the season, a grand slam, to help lead the Nuts to another win. And then yesterday, Macri, Ianetta and Christian Colonel capped their recent hot performances by leading the Nuts to a nineteen to one pounding of the Ports.

Colonel's nine game line since he made his 2005 debut returning from injury is unreal, while Ianetta started okay for about a week or so, went into a deep slide and has since come back with a vengeance over the last two weeks. Macri also started a little slow at the plate as he got reacquainted with shortstop but has since heated up. His strikeout rate is still quite high, but he has been drawing walks and hitting for good power and I am still saying Rockies fans should pay close attention to his ascent, actually, make that the ascent of all three of these players. Colonel's the oldest at 23, Macri's about half a year younger, turning 23 tomorrow (happy birthday!) and Ianetta just turned 22 in April.

Another player I hope we haven't forgotten about, Jeff Salazar, is tearing it up in Tulsa after getting off to a slow start of his own. It's taken him two weeks to raise his average forty points, but he's approaching .300 rapidly. Yesterday he hit his fourth homerun of the season showing his power is still hanging around as well and it looks like he's going to try to make my preseason prediction of seeing both him and Jeff Baker starting at Coors by the end of the year true after all (Baker already did his part, although it was thanks to the Atkins injury).

Way down at Asheville, I doubt anybody else is going to point out the job Frank Morales did in relief on Thursday, so I will: 4 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 7 K's, 0 R. Morales is doing the Dragon Lo thing of last year, starting the year in the pen before they ease him into the rotation. It doesn't look like he needs much more easing. Ryan Mattheus had 9 K's on Wednesday, but also gave up three homeruns.

Finally, back at the top at Colorado Springs, the offense has stagnated over the last three games, producing only six runs which in the PCL isn't a good sign. Jeff Baker hasn't been in the lineup during that time, I'm not sure yet why that is.

For all of you interested in the Draft, John Sickels will be conducting a community mock-draft a week from Monday on his SportsBLOGS site, minorleagueball.com. Get involved in the Rockies draft group through this diary.