Backup catchers help Kernels, Quakes

While Brandon Wood's exploits for Salt Lake are fairly predictable, it's catchers Brett Martinez and Flint Wipke who shined at the lower levels on Wednesday.

Salt Lake dumps Tucson 10-4
For the second time in four games, Brandon Wood went 3-for-5 to pace a 14-hit attack for Salt Lake. The slugger drove in three runs and now has 11 in 14 games this year. By collecting nine hits in his last 17 at-bats, Wood has raised his average nearly 100 points in four days to .293, and may have timed the spurt just right to get a chance at the big-league level when Howie Kendrick officially goes on the DL Thursday.

Nathan Haynes, whose nine-game hitting streak came to an end on Tuesday, started a new by going 2-for-3. The fleet-footed center fielder also walked twice and pushed his on-base percentage up to .491, good for third in the PCL. Haynes also swiped his sixth base of the season and is one off the league lead.

For the fifth time in six outings, reliever Marcus Gwyn held the opponent off the scoreboard. The six-three righty struck out one in his inning of work and avoiding issuing a walk. Gwyn, 29, has struggled with command since the 2005 season, issuing 84 walks against 115 strikeouts in 137 innings.

Arkansas idle
The entire Texas League had a scheduled night off on Wednesday. The Travelers will begin a four game series at Wichita on Thursday.

Rancho edges out Elsinore 6-5
The Quakes held off a late rally by the Storm and moved back to .500 on their current road trip with a 6-5 victory at the Diamond.

Backup catcher Flint Wipke was 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored, his second straight appearance with two hits. The 24-year-old last had back-to-back multi-hit games in June of 2006. He has seen action in four contests this year.

Dallas Morris also had a pair of hits and scored a run. He has hit in eight straight games with multiple knocks in five of those games. The third baseman is now hitting .333 on the year.

Reliever Darren O'Day continued his impressive start to the season. The righty came on with the tying run on second in the eighth, but got out of the inning and then put the Storm away in the ninth. O'Day has yet to yield a run through seven appearances this year and has allowed just five baserunners while striking out eight. Only two opposing hitters have hit fly ball outs on the year.

Kernels erupt for 12-6 win over Silver Hawks
Cedar Rapids had their biggest offensive outburst of the season, pounding out 12 runs on 12 hits to claim their fourth straight victory.

Catcher Brett Martinez, who was added to the active roster earlier in the day, collected five RBIs while going 2-for-3 including a triple to pace the attack for the Kernels. The 23-year-old from Redlands is back in the Midwest League after beginning the year in extended spring training. The five RBIs for the right-handed hitter with a lifetime .241 average matched a career high he set in Orem in 2005.

Matt Sweeney collected a pair of singles and scored twice and has now hit in all nine games this season. The left-handed slugger had an 11-game streak in the Arizona League last summer for his career high. He's leading the Kernels with a .410 on-base percentage on the year.

Hank Conger, playing in the designated hitter slot for the second time this year, had a single and walk, and swiped two bases in the contest. The 210 pound catcher already has four on the year after getting just one in his 19 games.

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