Sunday was a big day down on the farm; Colorado Rockies pitching prospects Jon Gray and Peter Lambert were both scheduled for their season debuts at High-A Modesto and Low-A Asheville, respectively. Gray is in Modesto rehabbing an oblique injury, while Lambert was making his full-season debut after spending last summer at rookie level Grand Junction.
The Rockies' Triple-A affiliate Albuquerque Isotopes were also in action on Sunday, though Sunday would prove a long, long day for them. Double-A Hartford had the day off and completed their media day in Connecticut instead of having a game. Let's get to the updates.
That was a tough one to watch on MiLB.tv. The 'Topes were never really in the game, as Tacoma put up four runs in the first inning and two more in the second off Albuquerque starter Shane Carle. We've seen Carle before—recently, in fact. Here he is on video getting hit around a little bit in a spring training intrasquad scrimmage a couple weeks ago; it happened again on Sunday. Twelve runs (eleven earned) on twelve hits and three walks over four innings netted him the loss. Yohan Flande, Nelson Gonzalez, and Scott Oberg combined to toss the final four innings, allowing just one unearned run.
On offense, the Topes were held in check by Adrian Simpson and two relievers; Albuquerque only mustered five hits on the day, and scored their lone run in the seventh inning on a wild pitch. They return to action Monday night in Reno, for the start of a four-game series.
Double-A: Off Day
The Hartford Yard Goats were off on Sunday, thanks to a doubleheader Saturday in Richmond, but they used the off day wisely, spending it back home in Connecticut at their inaugural Media Day. Here is a nice Story from their media day.
On an afternoon with a few interesting minor league tilts, this was probably the one most Rockies fans had an eye on while watching the big league club beat San Diego. That's because Jon Gray made a rehab start for Modesto, and by all accounts despite the loss, he threw pretty well. In 4.2 innings, he allowed two runs on four hits and a walk, while striking out three hitters (and getting five more ground balls). Reliever Yoely Bello entered in the fifth and allowed an inherited runner of Gray's—and two more runners of his own—to score, to spoil the line a bit and hand Gray the loss.
Of note, Carlos Polanco—the day's scheduled starter before Gray's rehab appearance—went the last three innings, allowing only a walk while striking out three hitters. Modesto's offense never came around, though, scoring just two runs on five hits, including an RBI double from Collin Ferguson. I wonder what Ferguson's walk-up song will be when the team gets back to Modesto.
Starting tomorrow, Stockton heads to Bakersfield for a three-game series against the Blaze. I'll be in Bakersfield for all three games, so look for some good stories from Sam Lynn Ballpark on the Nuts' prospects.
In his season debut, Peter Lambert allowed two runs on eight hits—but no walks—in 4.2 innings, striking out six hitters on 75 pitches (50 strikes). The Tourists had nothing going early in the game, and reliever Dylan Craig allowed five earned runs in two innings of work later on, putting the game out of reach.
On offense, the Tourists scored two runs apiece in the seventh and eighth innings, including solo home runs by Mylz Jones and Brendan Rodgers in the eighth. Max George was also 2-for-4 with two doubles and two RBI. On the other end of the spectrum, Jonathan Piron went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. Get 'em tomorrow.
Upcoming games, probables
Triple-A Albuquerque: Mon., 4/11 @ Reno, Ryan Carpenter (ABQ) vs. Braden Shipley (REN)
Double-A Hartford: Mon., 4/11 @ New Hampshire, Matt Flemer (HAR) vs. Jason Berken (NH)
High-A Modesto: Mon., 4/11 @ Bakersfield, Ryan Castellani (MOD) vs. Eddie Campbell (BAK)
Low-A Asheville: Mon., 4/11 @ Charleston, Trey Killian (AVL) vs. Brody Koerner (CSC)