Rockies right-handed pitching prospect Daniel Winkler was dominant for seven innings on Wednesday, but the inability of his teammates to take advantage of opportunities on offense cost him a win.
Winkler lasted seven innings, allowing only a run on four hits and a walk while striking out five, lowering his ERA to 1.45. However, Double-A Tulsa was able to muster up only one run out of their nine-hit performance and reliever Ken Roberts allowed a tie-breaking home run in the bottom of the eighth inning to send the Drillers to a 2-1 loss.
After he was "roughed up" for three runs in six innings in his last outing, Winkler bounced back nicely by throwing 63 of 99 pitches for strikes and inducing nine ground-ball outs compared to only one fly out. The 24-year-old native of Illinois has 56 strikeouts and only 13 walks while surrendering just 28 hits in 55⅔ innings this season.
Offensively, Jayson Langfels and Delta Cleary had two hits apiece. Cleary knocked in Tulsa's lone run on a one-out double in the seventh. Tulsa very well could have added on that inning, but Cleary was thrown out trying to stretch the hit into a triple.
Former Rockies farmhand Edwar Cabrera started for Frisco and recorded 12 ground outs against only one fly out and held the Drillers to one run over seven frames.
Swanner homers twice in rout
Catcher Will Swanner hit his second and third home runs of the season and the previously 13-33 Nuts racked up 14 hits in their 11-2 victory over Visalia on Wednesday.
Swanner had three hits, as did Patrick Valaika, who was playing in just his third game for High-A Modesto. The 21-year-old infielder is 6-for-9 with a triple and three runs batted in his last two games.
28-year-old left-hander Ryan Kulik, who last pitched in affiliated professional baseball in 2011 with the Springfield Cardinals of the Texas League, allowed only two runs on six hits in seven innings while walking one and striking out six. Alving Mejias followed by striking out the side around three hits and Shane Broyles shut the door with a scoreless ninth.
After getting a rare day off on Tuesday, Trevor Story was back in the lineup and went 1-for-5 with a couple of runs scored.
McKenry, Paulsen homer in loss
Michael McKenry and Ben Paulsen both homered for the Sky Sox but Dan Houston and Rob Scahill struggled on the mound in the team's 9-6 loss to Memphis.
Houston allowed three runs on six hits and a walk in three innings and Scahill came on a couple of frames later, at which point the wheels came off for Triple-A Colorado Springs. Scahill surrendered four runs on five hits -- including a Randal Grichuk two-run homer --and a walk in two innings of work. In all fairness to Scahill, only two of the runs he gave up were earned as a result of a two-out fielding error by Josh Rutledge.
Chris Martin saw his first minor league action in a month after spending a chunk of time with the big league club. Martin struck out two and worked around a hit in a scoreless eighth inning.
McKenry, Drew Garcia and and Evan Frey had two hits apiece to pace the Sky Sox offense. Big-time Cardinals outfield prospects Oscar Taveras and Stephen Piscotty had three hits a piece against Colorado Springs pitching.