The Jason Windsor watch is officially on. Windsor blanked the Iowa Cubs for six innings in the River Cats' 3-0 win on Monday night. He moved his record to 3-0 since arriving in AAA two weeks ago. Windsor has been simply superb this season. He began the year in AA-Midland, and he went 4-1 with a 2.97 ERA in six starts. He then moved up to AAA-Sacramento, where he hasn't missed a beat.
Since joining the River Cats, Windsor has allowed 19 hits and three walks in 17.1 innings while striking out 16. He has given up only four runs and one homerun. On the season in both AA and AAA, Windsor has whiffed 51 batters in 50.2 innings, and he has walked only 13. On Monday, Windsor scattered seven hits in six innings. He struck out six and walked none.
Although Windsor is only two years removed from the college ranks, it isn't too soon to wonder whether Windsor is getting close to a major league call-up. A's ace Barry Zito was promoted to Oakland midway through his second season of professional baseball and he never looked back. Windsor is a full year older then Zito was at that time and Windsor has the maturity that comes from being the Most Outstanding Player at the 2004 College World Series. If the A's starting rotation continues to struggle with injuries, look for Windsor to get the call, perhaps as soon as mid-season.
Windsor got some offensive help from the newest Sacramento River Cat, Hiram Bocachica, who finished a brief assignment with A-Stockton after missing the first six weeks of the season recovering from a broken wrist. Bocachica homered in his first at-bat of the season with Sacramento and later added a double. Charles Thomas and Keith Ginter drove in a run a piece to cap the River Cats' scoring.
Sacramento's bullpen was outstanding on Monday. Shawn Kohn, Matt Roney and Jason Karnuth each pitched a scoreless inning to finish off the win for Windsor. The save was Karnuth's sixth of the season.
Midland Drops A Tight One
Springfield's Stuart Pomeranz and the Cardinals' bullpen stifled the Midland offense on Monday, limiting the Rockhounds to one run, three hits and four walks. Midland second baseman Kevin Melillo doubled and scored the Rockhounds' only run and Matt Allegra also doubled to pace the Rockhounds' offense.
Midland's offensive woes prevented Ray Aguilar from earning a well-deserved win. Aguilar allowed only two runs in 5.2 innings pitched to lower his season ERA to 3.23. Connor Robertson was dominant in relief, allowing only one hit in 2.1 innings of scoreless pitching. He has a 3.24 ERA and a 21:8 K:BB ratio this season.
The Midland pitching has been superb this season. Rockhound pitchers have allowed only 368 hits in 383.2 innings. They have struck out 319 batters and have walked only 122. Their 3.68 team ERA leads the Texas League.
Stockton Had An Off-Day
Kane County Wins Sixth Straight
The Kane County Cougars are streaking and they have ridden that streak all the way to the top of the Western Division. Kane County has the best record of any Oakland A's affiliate at 26-18. Jason Ray continued his strong run of pitching with a five inning, one-run performance that upped his record to 3-1.
Ray has allowed two runs or fewer in seven of nine starts this season. He is 3-1 with a 3.46 ERA, and he has 48 strikeouts in 41.2 innings pitched. He has held opposing batters to a .196 BAA. Ray, an eighth round draft choice in 2005, has averaged well over a strikeout an inning during his short professional career.
The Cougars scored four runs in the first inning and Ray combined with Joe Piekarz, Joe Newby and Steven Sharpe to hold on to a 6-4 win. Mike Massaro reached base three times and Anthony Recker went 2-3 with a walk to lead the Kane County offense. The patient Cougars walked five times on Monday, raising their season total to 155 on the season. Kane County is reaching base as a team at a .342 clip.
Newby allowed two runs in the eighth and Sharpe coughed up a run in the ninth, but Kane County held on for the win. Sharpe earned his ninth save in nine tries and the win moved the Cougars to 20-0 in games in which they have led after six innings.