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Thursday Pebble Report: Nothing But Wins, Drama and Playoffs

Mr. Walk-Off - Will Swanner
Mr. Walk-Off - Will Swanner

High-A Modesto, 

W 3-1

The Nuts keep on roasting.  After winning their final six games to sneak into the playoffs, Modesto won Game 1 of their three game series against the Stockton Ports (Athletics).  The win was important, as it came in the only home game of the series.  Rob Scahill (2009, 8th round) was absolutely magnificent in turning in his best performance of his career.   The right-hander tossed a complete game, striking out 11 and walking nobody.  A solo home run was the only way the Ports got to him.

Two outfielders are begging not to be forgotten.  David Christensen (2006, 2nd round) doubled, stole a base and scored twice.  Both times, he was driven in by PuRP # 8 Tim Wheeler (2009, 1st round), who singled twice and hit a sac fly as a Modesto line-up missing Thomas Field (2008, 24th round) mustered just enough offense.

Game 2 is tonight at 8:05 MDT.  I believe reigning California League Player of the Week and PuRP #15 Juan Nicasio (2006, DR) is slated to pitch tonight.


Rookie Casper,  W 9-8

The Ghosts just keep winning (three in a row), but unfortunately, they dug themselves too large of a hole with a preceding four game losing streak. With a win by the Orem Owlz last night, Casper was officially eliminated from playoff contention.  Hopefully that won't be the issue with the parent club.

Casper won another one-run comeback game, showing some real resiliency.  Idaho Falls got to Tyler Gagnon (2009, 15th round) early, taking a quick 5-1 lead in the top of the second.  A four-run fifth tied the game, highlighted by triples from Corey Dickerson (2010, 8th round) and Blake McDade (2010, 20th round).  Single tallies (on a Jeffrey Squier (2009, 14th round) home run and McDade sac fly) in subsequent innings gave the Ghosts a two run lead going into the eighth, but the bullpen couldn't hold.  Kenneth Roberts (2010, undrafted) and Nelson Gonzalez (2007, DR) combined to allow five straight men to reach, plating three runs.

In typical Rookie League fashion, Casper tied the game without benefit of a hit in the bottom of the eighth.  Juan Crousset (2007, DR) walked, stole second, moved to third on an error and scored on a balk.  Back-to-back two out doubles in the ninth from McDade and Will Swanner (2010, 15th round) gave the Ghosts the walk-off win.  McDade fell a home run shy of the cycle, and Dickerson stroked two triples and a double.

Casper's final game is tonight at 7:05MDT.