BMLN: Mathews, Shoffit Leadoff Sparkplugs

Down in the farm on Wednesday Syracuse swept a doubleheader, New Hampshire swept the series from Reading, Jesse Litsch got the loss as Dunedin fell to Palm Beach, and Lansing continues to roll at home with a victory over Kane County. Today's Blue Jays Minor League Notebooks spotlights Brandon League, Adrian Burnside, Kurt Isenberg, Jesse Litsch, Aaron Mathews, and more

SkyChiefs Sweep Doubleheader

The Syracuse SkyChiefs swept a double header from Pawtucket Wednesday evening winning game one 2-0 in eight innings, and game two by a score of 5-2.

Ty Taubenheim tossed three scoreless innings in game one, allowing just one hit. Ben Weber followed with 2 2/3 scoreless innings before giving way to Adrian Burnside who picked up the victory pitching 1 1/3 scoreless innings. Lee Gronkiewicz notched his eighth save of the season with a scoreless eighth inning.

Burnside extended his scoreless streak to 13 innings this season and has struck out at least one batter in his last five appearances. Gronkiewicz extended his scoreless streak to four innings, and recorded his fourth consecutive save.

Wayne Lydon singled to lead off the eighth inning and then scored on a Luis Figueroa double. A throwing error by the right fielder also allowed Figueroa to cross the plate.

Syracuse scored a run in the second, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh inning in game two. Sergio Santos went 2-for-3 with his first home run of the season, and drove in two runs. Chad Mottola and John-Ford Griffin went 2-for-4 in game two, with Mottola driving in a run.

Brandon League continued his superb pitching with three scoreless innings as he started game two. Vinnie Chulk picked up the victory tossing two scoreless innings, and striking out two. Ryan Houston had his first bad outing of the year, walking three and allowing two runs.

League has tossed 13 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings dating back to April 24 and has a 1.01 ERA this season in 26 2/3 innings, with opponents batting just .226 off him.

Brian Tallet recorded two outs for his second save of the season.

Fisher Cats Sweep Phillies With 4-2 Win

Kurt Isenberg led the Fisher Cats to complete a three game sweep of the Reading Phillies Wednesday morning with a 4-2 victory.

Isenberg picked up his first win of 2006, allowing just two runs on eight hits and two walks in six innings. He struck out two batters. Opposing batters are hitting .306 off the left-hander this season, who has walked seven batters and struck out twenty in thirty-three innings. Isenberg is struggling on the mound with runners in scoring position as he allowed a hit 33% of the time. The 24-year-old is also having a tough time finishing the inning off as batters are hitting 5-for-13 off him with runners in scoring position and two outs.

Miguel Negron led off the third inning with a single, moved to third on a single from Eric Arnold, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Manny Mayorson to put New Hampshire up 1-0.

The Fisher Cats would add a pair of two-out runs in the fourth as Chip Cannon doubled, Curtis Thigpen walked, and Maikel Jova drove them both home on a double for a 3-0 lead. New Hampshire extended their lead to 4-0 in the seventh as Brad Hassey plated Negron, who walked earlier in the inning, with a double.

Cannon extended his hitting streak to five games, but also struck out for the seventh consecutive game, The left-handed slugger now has 37 strikeouts in 110 at bats.

Jordan De Jong and James Bullard each pitched 2/3 of an inning allowing a hit and no runs. Tracy Thorpe picked up his second save of the season with 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Thorpe has tossed 10 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings and is holding batters to a .108 batting average.

Dunedin Falls to Palm Beach

Palm Beach scored four runs in the fifth inning and added one more in the sixth inning as they rolled to a 5-2 victory against Dunedin Wednesday night.

Jesse Litsch allowed all five runs to Palm Beach and fell to 2-4 on the season. Palm Beach began the fifth inning with a single, followed by a two-run home run, and then two more singles, before Litsch recorded a strike out. Brady Toops and Sean Danielson followed with two more singles that scored two runs. Litsch allowed a home run to begin the sixth inning and was replaced after inducing a ground ball out, and allowing a single to his final batter.

Litsch continued striking out batters and not walking any. He fanned five batters, without issuing a walk. The right-hander has fanned 39 batters in 37 2/3 innings this season, and has issued just five walks. The 21-year-old has a 7.84 ERA in his last two outings, despite striking out 13 batters and issuing 1 walk in 10 1/3 innings. With runners on base opponents are hitting .442 off Litsch, while with the bases empty they are hitting just .214 off him. Litsch has done a good job this season retiring the leadoff batter in each inning. Hitters leading off an inning are hitting just .205 off him.

Bradley Mumma tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings after Litsch. Kyle Yates and Milton Tavarez each pitched a scoreless inning in relief.

Aaron Mathews, Ryan Patterson and Dustin Majewski each went 2-for-4 in the loss. Patterson drove in two runs, while Majewski added a triple.

Mathews is 13-for-20 over his last four games and has seen his average rise to .349 from .209 in a span of four days. Over his last six games, Mathews is hitting .556 (15-27) with 11 runs scored. The leadoff batter for Dunedin is 8-for-13 on the year when he leads an inning off.

Lansing Scores Ten to Defeat Kane County

The Lansing Lugnuts scored in each of the first four innings on Wednesday afternoon as they took care of the Kane County Cougars 10-4, and improve to 13-3 at home on the season.

Trailing 2-0 going into the bottom first, Joey Metropoulos put Lansing on the scoreboard with a two-run double to right field that scored Sean Shoffit and Cory Patton. Lansing took the lead in the second inning and never looked back. Sean Shoffit had the big blow of the inning, a three run home run over the left field wall.

Kane County walked ten Lugnut batters and hit three more in the game. Two of the walks directly led to Lansing runs. One of those RBI walks occurred with Brian Bormaster at the plate in the seventh inning. Lansing would score two more runs in that inning, one on a Jesus Gonzalez sacrifice fly and the other on a Sean Shoffit single.

Shoffit finished the game 3-for-5 with four runs batted in, a home run and two runs scored. Metropoulos went 4-for-5 in the victory with a pair of doubles and RBI.

It was the seventh time in twenty-eight games that Shoffit recorded three hits in a game, and in 28 games, he has scored 23 times.

Kristian Bell got the win for Lansing after tossing five innings, allowing three runs on four hits. Jordan Timm notched his first save of the season by throwing the final four innings without allowing a hit and giving up just one run. Timm issued two walks and struck out a pair of batters.

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