Windsor, Rall Combine For One-Hitter
The Midland Rockhounds' offense was relatively quiet on Wednesday, but they didn't need to make much noise to gain the win over the San Antonio Missions. Right-hander Jason Windsor and left-hander Tim Rall combined to smother the Missions' offense, holding the Seattle affiliate to one hit over nine innings.
Windsor was knocked around a bit on Opening Day, but he made his second start a memorable one. In arguably his best start since being promoted from high-A to AA last season, Windsor was simply marvelous on Wednesday. The Fullerton alum allowed only a first inning double and a second inning walk over six innings of work. He struck out seven and lowered his ERA to 3.18.
Windsor earned the win, in part, because Rall gave him excellent support out of the bullpen. The minor league Rule 5 pick actually pitched for San Antonio for most of last season. Rall entered in the bottom of the seventh with Midland up 2-0. He worked the final three innings and allowed only an eighth inning walk. Rall struck out one and induced a double-play to earn his second save of the season.
On offense, the Rockhounds managed only eight hits and two runs themselves. DH Lloyd Turner had three of the hits, but he was picked off base once and was caught stealing. Turner is hitting a robust .353 on the season. Second baseman Kevin Melillo and left-fielder Danny Putnam each had an RBI. Kurt Suzuki picked up a hit in three at-bats (and a walk) to keep his batting average higher than .400. He is hitting .450 on the season.
River Cats Finally Get Good Pitching, Earn Win
The Sacramento pitching staff has had a slow start this season. With the exception of Chad Gaudin and Shane Komine, the River Cats' pitchers have been hit around. On Wednesday, however, newcomers Juan Dominguez and Kazuhito Tadano got the River Cats off to a good start on the mound, and Sacramento veterans Ron Flores and Santiago Casilla finished off the job. Sacramento beat Tacoma by a score of 5-1.
Dominguez was hit hard in his first outing, but he was much better on Wednesday. The right-hander allowed only one hit in five innings of work. He did walk three, but struck out four. Tadano took over for Dominguez in the sixth inning with the River Cats up 1-0. He worked the next 1.2 innings and allowed one run on two hits. Flores tossed 1.1 scoreless innings and Casilla had a scoreless ninth to secure the win.
On offense, Bobby Kielty finally got on the homerun board with a solo blast in the fourth. He is hitting .267 this season and could be recalled to Oakland next week. Five River Cats collected an RBI, with Kielty, Doug Clark, Jeremy Brown, Brian Stavisky and Mark Kiger each gathering an RBI. The RBIs for Stavisky and Kiger were the first of the season for each of them.
Stockton Rained Out Again
For the second straight day, the Stockton Ports had their game rained out in San Jose.
Martinez Powers Kane County To Win
Shortstop Frank Martinez continued his hot-hitting with a two-run homer in the seventh inning that gave the Cougars a two-run lead they would never relinquish. They would beat the Burlington Bees by a score of 8-6.
The game was a back and forth affair. Burlington struck first with two in the top of the third, but the Cougars stormed back with four in the bottom of the inning. Burlington would add another run in the fourth and two more in the fifth to take a 5-4 lead. The Cougars tied it in the bottom of the fifth and would take the lead in the bottom of the seventh on Martinez's homerun. Each team would score once in the eighth.
Martinez, the team's third hitter on Wednesday, has been a surprising force at the plate after a poor offensive season last year. He went 2-3 with a homer, four RBI and a walk on Wednesday to up his average to .364. He has seven RBI on the year.
Mike Massaro was once again the team's lead-off hitter and he reached base twice and had a sacrifice. He also scored a run and drove one home. Massaro is hitting .320. First baseman Steve Kleen broke through an early season slump with a three-hit effort, including a double and an RBI. Wes Long, filling in for Jeff Baisley at third, went 2-4 with two runs scored.
On the hill to start the game for the Cougars was Vince Mazzaro, who was making his second start of the season. Mazzaro pitched well in his first outing, but he struggled on Wednesday. After two scoreless innings, Mazzaro allowed two runs in the third, one in fourth and two more in the fifth. He would finish with a line of five innings pitched, five runs allowed on seven hits. He allowed one walk, one homerun and three strike outs.
Ron Madej relieved Mazzaro and helped keep the Cougars in the game. He blanked the Bees in the sixth and seventh. He left with a runner on and one-out in the eighth. That runner would eventually score (it was unearned). He walked three and struck out three and earned the win. John Herrera pitched the final 1.2 innings to earn his first save. He gave up only one hit.
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