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Saturday Pebble Report

Colorado Springs: Suspended 1-1, third inning, will be completed Sunday.

Cory Sullivan hit a monstrous homerun to right for the Sky Sox to lead off the first, while Greg Reynolds got knocked in his half by a Colby Rasmus double and Brian Barden RBI single, but had a clean second inning.

Tulsa: L 8-7 (10 innings)

This was a crazy and sloppy seesaw battle that probably excited the home faithful in Arkansas, but didn't turn out so well for our Drillers. Corey Wimberly, Chris Nelson and Tony Blanco each hit singles to manufacture a run in the first, while errors by pitcher Ching Lung Lo and first baseman Jeff Kindel helped the Travelers take the lead in the third. The teams went back and forth from there, including in the final frame when Dexter Fowler walked with two outs, advanced to third on another Nelson single and scored on an error by the opposing pitcher to give the Drillers a 7-6 lead before yet another E-1 (by Ryan Mattheus) led to the winning rally. In all, the game saw six errors (four by the Drillers, including Nelson's thirteenth) , four HBP's and a wild pitch.

Blanco would finish with three hits and five runs batted in. Nelson, Wimberly and Daniel Carte each had two for the Drillers.

Modesto: L 5-3

Trevor Cahill had faced the minimum amount of Nuts possible through five, being aided by double play after plunking Daniel Mayora earlier in the game, but a pair of singles, a pair of walks and another HBP allowed Modesto to score three times in the sixth and maintain some of their diginity against the Cal League's best pitcher thus far. I'm just glad he's headed to the American League.

Speaking of headed to the AL, apparently Zach Simons took the trade that had him packing and sent Jason Grilli to us pretty hard. I feel for him and am sorry that he has to part with his friends in the organization, but professionally I think the deal gives him a much better opportunity at making an MLB club. The Tigers system had been hit hard by their trades with Atlanta and Florida this winter, while the Rockies system is filled to the brink with right handed relief guys -I know, if we have so many, how do we explain last night? I don't have an answer for you- which left Simons on the periphery of the team's attention, but not really seen as a part of their future plans.

At any rate Simons was well liked in the organization and by the media, Jason McGill reminisced about Zach after learning the news.

Asheville: W 3-0

Connor Graham just steamrolled through seven and two thirds innings, allowing just four singles and no walks while striking out nine Catfish. I really hope he's able to stay a starter, because if he could do stuff like this at upper levels, look out. Pitch limits meant Connor got pulled for Craig Baker with two out in the bottom of the eighth. Baker K'd the one guy he faced before Randall Taylor came on in the ninth to pick up his eighth save. Baker's still got an undefined K/BB ratio with sixteen strikeouts in over twelve innings this season, but zero walks. I mentioned this in a comment a while back, but Taylor's surface numbers are a little deceptive. I love the number of K's he generates, and the walks are acceptably low, but less inspiring is a very poor 18% groundball rate, and a very lucky looking batting average on balls put into play. I've seen too much sharp line drive contact off of him to make me give a full endorsement just yet. Compare that to Baker's 57% GB rate, and maybe you can understand why.

The Tourists offense themselves also managed just four hits, but it helped that three were of the extra base variety, including Warren Schaeffer's homerun. Lars Davis and Brian Rike both doubled.