Midland Dispatches Appel, Hangs On for Win
East Bay native and Stanford alum Mark Appel was off to a fast start in the Texas League this season. That is until he ran into the Midland Rockhounds. Midland hitters pounced on Appel for six runs (five earned) and seven hits in four innings in an 11-10 win over the Hooks. Ryon Healy had three hits and four RBI in the win.
The game was a high-scoring affair from the outset, as both team scored twice in the first. Corpus Christi had a 7-2 lead after three-and-a-half innings, but Midland climbed back to within a run by the end of the fourth. Corpus Christi scored once in the fifth, but Midland scored once in the sixth and four times in the seventh to regain the lead. Holding an 11-8 lead in the top of the ninth, Midland closer Bobby Wahl allowed two runs before shutting the door for his third save of the season.
Healy had a big day out of the seventh spot in the order. He has a four-game hitting streak and has five hits over his last nine at-bats. Josh Whitaker had a double and a triple, while Colin Walsh picked up three hits, including a double, and he drove home two. Chad Pinder also had a two-hit game. Every Midland batter reached base at least once.
Midland starter Jake Sanchez struggled, allowing eight runs on 11 hits in five innings. However, his bullpen kept the RockHounds in the game, with Tucker Healy and Seth Frankoff combining to throw three scoreless innings to bridge the gap between Sanchez and Wahl. Healy has yet to allow a run this season, while Frankoff's ERA is down to 0.90. A's Director of Player Personnel Billy Owens spoke about Healy and Frankoff in an interview posted to OaklandClubhouse on Wednesday ($).
Midland is now 11-8 on the season and one game behind the first place Hooks in their division.
Beloit Hangs On, as Munoz Homers
Beloit held a 2-1 lead in the eighth inning when Munoz hit his second homerun of the season. Beloit managed just six hits in the game, but they were 2-for-4 with runners in scoring position. Jose Chavez had two hits for the only multi-hit game by a Snappers' hitter. Edwin Diaz had a double, his fifth of the season.
Things got a bit hairy for the Snappers in the bottom of the eighth. Corey Miller allowed a walk and a double to start the inning. After allowing a sacrifice fly for the second out of the inning, Miller gave-up a two-run homer to Alex De Leon to bring the Chiefs to within a run. Left-hander Jose Torres took over for Miller and got Andrew Sohn swinging to end the eighth. Torres then worked a scoreless ninth to earn the save. He got a groundout, allowed a single and then induced an inning-ending double-play. It was Torres' first save of the season. He has allowed just four hits in 11 innings and has 15 strike-outs and a 1.64 ERA. He hasn't allowed a run over his last 8.1 innings pitched.
Stockton Drops Pitcher's Duel Late
Highly regarded pitching prospects Dillon Overton and Edwin Diaz squared off in the Stockton-Bakersfield match-up on Wednesday and neither pitcher disappointed. Overton went five innings, allowing just a solo homerun. He struck-out two and walked one. Diaz threw six shut-out innings, striking out seven.
The Ports were down 1-0 in the top of the eighth when catcher Nick Rickles hit his first homer of the season, tying the game. His homer was one of only six hits for the Ports on Wednesday. John Nogowski had two hits, both singles. Justin Higley's triple was the only other extra-base hit for the Ports.
Overton lowered his ERA to 2.20 and he made it through five innings for the first time this season. This is Overton's first full season back after his 2013 Tommy John surgery. Thus far, opposing batters are hitting .237 against him and he has 12 strike-outs in 16.1 innings. Overton was the A's second-round pick in 2013 out of Oklahoma.
The Ports return home with a 9-12 record after a 3-4 roadtrip. They have an off-day on Thursday and play at home on Friday.
Ladendorf Has Surgery
The Oakland A's announced that utilityman Tyler Ladendorf had surgery on his ankle this week and he will miss several months recovering from the injury he sustained with Nashville. Owens spoke about the potential impact Ladendorf can have on the A's once he is healthy in Wednesday's interview.