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Tuesday Pebble Report: Big Innings Propel Four Teams to Wins, Not Enough to Save Modesto

AAA Colorado Springs: W 8-6

The Fresno Grizzlies got on the board first, but a six run seventh inning from the Sky Sox would prove to be enough for a win. Starter Alan Johnson allowed all three earned runs he would during the game in the first two innings, throwing another four cleanly afterwards. Eric Stults, who would get his second win of the year in the game, threw the seventh inning, Edgmer Escalona and Rex Brothers allowed the final three Fresno runs together in the eighth, and Jim Miller, who has been serving as the current Sky Sox closer with Andrew Johnston struggling and often injured, would get his fourth save of the season.

The offensive star in the game was second baseman Brad Emaus, who went 3 for 4 including a solo home run and a double. Left fielder Cole Garner and shortstop Radames Nazario also had multihit games. For the second straight game, a Sky Sox batter hit a grand slam; this time it was right fielder Mike Paulk, his only hit of the game, as part of that big seventh inning comeback. Paulk and Garner also each gathered an outfield assist in the game, throwing out runners at third base. The only Sky Sox batter to walk in the game was Charlie Blackmon, who did so in a pinch hitting appearance.


AA Tulsa: W 7-2

After a bizarre outing last week that saw an incredible number of errors behind him, Christian Friedrich rebounded with an excellent performance for his fourth win on the season. The lefty starter allowed one earned run on just two hits and a walk while striking out five Frisco RoughRiders over seven innings pitched. Joe Torres pitched a clean eighth inning in relief. With the Drillers already far ahead of the RoughRiders, closer Adam Jorgenson got an inning of work in which he allowed a solo home run, but struck out two.

Tim Wheeler continued his excellent year, serving as an effective table-setter from the leadoff spot. Wheeler singled three times, and would come around to score twice. Second baseman James Cesario and first baseman Ben Paulsen did most of the cleanup work, with two hits (including a double for each) and two RBI apiece. Shortstop Thomas Field also got two hits including a double, while designated hitter Scott Beerer singled in two runs.

Check out Modesto, Asheville and the DSL Rockies after the jump.

A+ Modesto: L 11-7

In every frame of every inning for both teams, one of five, two or zero runs were scored. Both the Nuts and the Inland Empire 66ers had a five run inning, but the 66ers had two more two run innings to put them on top. Starter Chad Bettis had one of the worst starts in his pro career, giving up nine earned runs on 11 hits and three walks over five innings pitched. He allowed two home runs, but also struck out six. Leuris Gomez pitched an inning in relief and allowed another two runs, with Kurt Yacko (who has been quietly excellent this year after a late start to the season) throwing the last two innings cleanly. Bettis was stuck with his third loss of the season.

On the offensive side, right fielder Kent Matthes and catcher Dallas Tarleton were the most productive batters, each with two hits and two RBI. Matthes hit the Nuts' only extra base hit in the game, a double. Center fielder Delta Cleary Jr. also had a multihit game, but was unable to bat anybody in or score himself. Strikeouts were a problem; only third baseman Nolan Arenado did not strike out at least once for the Nuts, and the team K'd 11 total times. Inland Empire starter Ariel Pena was perfect through the first three innings.


A Asheville: W 9-7

An eight run eighth inning would catapult the Tourists to this win. The Greenville Drive held the lead for most of the early game as Josh Slaats, much like Alan Johnson with the Sky Sox, gave up several runs in the first two innings of the game, then settled down into the later innings. Slaats would allow five runs (four earned) on eight hits and three walks over six innings. Brad McAtee, who threw the seventh, got his first win of the season to compliment his four losses. Closer Juan Perez allowed two runs over two innings of work to finish the game.

Left fielder Corey Dickerson had three hits (including a double) in the game, scoring once and knocking in two more. Shotstop Cristhian Adames was one of several players with two hits, one of which was a three run home run, his second of the season. Designated hitter Kyle Parker and second baseman Joey Wong also had multiple hits. Third baseman Brett Tanos and catcher Dustin Garneau also had productive nights with just one hit each, though Tanos committed his eleventh error of the season. Though 2011 minors star Bryce Massanari (at first base for the game) did not get a hit, he walked twice. Like Modesto, the Tourists struck out in double digits in the game (10 Ks), but unlike Modesto, were able to overcome.


DSL Dominican: W 7-5

The Rockies DSL team are off to a 2-0 start. Starter Johendi Jiminian had to be pulled from the game after just two and a third innings, having given up three earned runs, including two home runs back to back at the top of the third. He also walked three batters in that short time. Radhames Valerio came in in relief and pitched the next three and two thirds, allowing another two runs himself. Though the early pitching struggled, the DSL Rockies would catch a break in the eighth inning when they would score all seven of their runs, getting similar sounding relievers Angel Marcano (first win) and Andres Medrano (first save) rewards for their good late-game pitching.

The offense started slowly, as the team didn't get a hit until the fourth inning. When the offense did come, because it was largely in one inning, it was spread out amongst the lineup. No batter got more than one hit in the game, nor more than one RBI. Center fielder Raimel Tapia hit the only extra base hit of the game, a double.