Scarsone Reaches Milestone In DH Split
After a rainout on Saturday, the Sacramento River Cats and the Tacoma Rainiers played two on Sunday. The River Cats fell just short in a pitcher's duel in Game One, but they stormed back for an easy win in Game Two. In the process, River Cats' manager Steve Scarsone earned his 500th win as a minor league manager.
In Game One, the Rainiers' pitching staff limited Sacramento to just two hits in nine innings. The game was technically an extra-innings game, as minor league doubleheaders are set for two, seven-inning games.
Shane Peterson and Ryan Ortiz were the only River Cats to collect hits in Game One. Both hits were singles. Sean Murphy got the start for the River Cats and he tossed seven scoreless innings. He scattered three hits and two walks and he struck-out four in his best start at the Triple-A level thus far. Murphy lowered his ERA to 3.52. Murphy has pitched into the sixth inning in each of his last three starts.
Fernando Nieve took over for Murphy in the eighth. He escaped that inning unscathed despite allowing two hits. However, he couldn't wiggle his away out of the ninth. Nieve allowed two singles to start the inning. After an intentional walk, Nieve gave-up a game-winning single to Luery Bonilla.
Sacramento jumped on the board quickly in Game Two, scoring once. They fell behind, 2-1, in the bottom of the second, but a three-run rally in the top of the third would put them in the lead for good. Jake Goebbert had a huge game at the plate, collecting three hits, including a three-run homer. He is batting .340 on the season. Catcher Phil Pohl also had a big game. He had two hits, including a double, and he drove-in two. Pohl has three hits in 11 at-bats since being promoted from Low-A Beloit.
Peterson reached base three times by walk, raising his OBP to .392. The centerfielder has an 871 OPS on the season. Kent Matthes and Alden Carrithers each had two hits in the win, which was Scarsone's 500th of his career. Marcus Walden, who was claimed by the A's off of waivers from the Toronto Blue Jays last week, made his first start as a member of the A's organization. He lasted three innings, allowing three runs on six hits and two walks. Walden struck-out one. Joe Savery, Deryk Hooker and Jose Flores combined to throw four scoreless innings in relief. Savery was credited with his third win.
The River Cats are now 11-7 on the year.
Forsythe Makes A Grand Entrance
In his first official game as a member of the Oakland A's organization, catcher Blake Forsythe made his presence known. Newly acquired from the New York Mets' organization, Forsythe was a walk-off hero for the Midland Rockhounds on Easter Sunday. His fourth hit of the day was a three-run homer in the bottom of the 12th that sent the home crowd home happy. The homer came with two outs.
This was Forsythe's first game of the year, as he had been at extended spring training with the Mets before he was dealt to Oakland. Forsythe actually got his first start with Midland on Saturday, but the game was called early because of rain and the stats from the game were not counted. On Sunday, he had three singles and the game-winning bomb.
First baseman Josh Whitaker also hit a three-run homer in the game. The homer was his third of the season and he is batting .328 on the year. Max Muncy, playing third base, had a hit and two walks. Muncy has seen several starts at third recently. Billy Burns went 0-for-4, but he reached twice on walks and stole two bases. Burns has 11 stolen bases already this season. Infielder Colin Walsh collected three hits. The former St. Louis Cardinals' prospect is batting .393/.433/.429 in six games with Midland.
Right-hander Drew Granier got the start for Midland. He pitched well but had to leave in the fifth inning due to illness. Before he fell ill, Granier allowed a run on four hits and two walks. He struck-out three. Granier allowed seven runs in 1.2 innings in his first start of the season, but since then he has given up just two runs in 14.2 innings.
After Granier exited, Murphy Smith took over. He was outstanding in a long-relief role, allowing just a hit in 3.1 innings. Smith struck-out two. He has allowed just a run in 13 innings of relief this season. This is the first season in the bullpen for Smith, who has an 11:3 K:BB and has allowed just seven hits.
Closer Seth Frankoff took over in the ninth with Midland leading, 3-1. Frankoff had a rare poor outing, allowing a game-tying homer in the ninth. The two runs were the first earned runs allowed by Frankoff this season. He has three saves and a 14:3 K:BB in 7.2 innings this season.
Lefty Jeff Urlaub, in relief of Frankoff, pitched a scoreless 10th, but he allowed a run in the 11th inning. Facing the possibility of a disappointing loss, Midland fought back in the bottom of the 11th. Jefry Marte walked to start the inning and he advanced to second on a single by Forsythe. However, the runners remained at first and second while two more outs were recorded. Conner Crumbliss came to the plate and singled to center, evening up the game once again. Forsythe would then play walk-off hero in the bottom of the 12th. Blake Hassebrock earned the win by pitching a scoreless top of the 12th.
Midland is now 10-5 on the season.
Fuld Claimed Off Waivers
Outfielder Sam Fuld's time in DFA limbo is now over. A week after being designated for assignment by the Oakland A's, Fuld has a new home. The speedy centerfielder will join the Minnesota Twins, a team he hit a homer against earlier this year.