Cardinals Minor League Notebook: 04/23/12

The system went 1-3 on Sunday. Palm Beach was the only winner on the day as Memphis, Springfield and Quad Cities were on the wrong side of contests each decided by one run.

Iowa 2, Memphis 1

Memphis' offense stalled out as they fell to Iowa 2-1 on the road. The Redbirds' record dropped to 5-12 with the loss, 7.5 games out.

A day after scoring 12 runs on 14 hits, Memphis' bats managed only one run on three hits and left only three runners on base. Even scoring that run needed the assistance of the Cubs. It came in the ninth inning when center fielder Adron Chambers walked with one out. He advanced to third on a passed ball and ground out, then scored via a timely single by Cedric Hunter. With Matt Adams, the Redbirds' big bat, not available because of a hyper-extended elbow, Memphis will have to be more opportunistic if they are to dig themselves out of their third-place divisional hole.

The offense wasted a fine outing by Brian Broderick. Broderick (L, 1-3) limited the League's fourth-best offense to just two runs on six hits and two walks in six innings. Iowa's first run scored in the second on a sacrifice fly that followed consecutive singles. Their other run came in the sixth on back-to-back doubles. Maikel Cleto tossed a perfect seventh and Eduardo Sanchez worked around a triple and a walk to pitch a scoreless eighth.

Monday's game: at Iowa (game three of four), 12:05 pm CT, Joe Kelly (0-1. 2.12 ERA)

Tulsa 6 at Springfield 5

A five-run sixth inning by the visitors was the big blow as Springfield was downed by Tulsa 6-5. The Cardinals (8-8) slipped into a tie with Arkansas (LAA) for second, three games back of Tulsa (COL).

Scott Gorgen began the sixth with a 3-0 lead but that unraveled on consecutive singles and back-to-back walks that forced in Tulsa's first run. Those singles were two of the five hits he allowed to go with two of the three free passes Gorgen issued and ended his night after 5 1/3 innings. Kevin Thomas entered and gave up a grand slam to the first batter he faced. Springfield rebounded to tie the game up in the bottom of the sixth so Jesse Simpson's scoreless seventh maintained that tie. Sam Freeman (L, 0-1) took the loss via an unearned run in his final two innings of work when Adam Melker's errant throw to Jose Garcia allowed the winning run to score.

Right fielder Oscar Taveras drove in two of the Cardinals' five runs on a double and a ground out. Greg Garcia went 2-for-3 with two runs scored while Kolten Wong went 3-for-5 with two doubles and a run scored.

Monday's game: Springfield begins an eight-game road trip starting with four at Northwest Arkansas (KC) (fourth of four teams, Texas North Division), 7:00 pm CT, John Gast (3-0, 1.33 ERA)

Palm Beach 11, Charlotte 1

A six-run fourth highlighted a big offensive evening as Palm Beach destroyed Charlotte 11-1. The victory ups the Cardinals' record to 6-10, eight games behind St. Lucie (NYM) but only one game behind Charlotte and the other three teams in their division.

Starlin Rodriguez, our Player of the Day, was a double shy of the cycle with three hits, five runs driven in and two scored. His fifth-inning home run was the second baseman's first of the season. Jonathan Rodriguez and Nick Longmire both went 2-for-5 with a double, a run scored and two driven in. Lead-off hitter Mike O'Neill had a double and two walks with two runs scored as well. Rehabbing Allen Craig did not play.

Anthony Ferrara (W, 1-1) kept the Stone Crabs off balance all evening as he shut them out for seven innings. The southpaw allowed just three hits, all singles, and two walks while striking out two. Iden Nazario gave up a run on two hits and a walk in his two frames.

Monday's game: vs. Charlotte (TB) (game two of three), 6:35 pm EST, Drew Benes (0-2, 6.23 ERA)

Bowling Green 4, Quad Cities 3

Quad Cities took a 3-2 lead into the bottom of the ninth but could not make it hold as they lost to Bowling Green 4-3. It is the River Bandits' third consecutive loss after a five-game winning streak and dropped their record to 10-7. That is still good for a tie for first with Wisconsin (MIL).

A free pass issued by closer Danny Miranda (BS, 1) (L, 2-1) came back to bite Quad Cities as the runner later tied the game on a fielding error by shortstop Matt Williams. After Miranda issued another walk, this one intentional to set up a potential double play, he then gave up a line drive single to right that ended the game. Dail Villanueva started for the River Bandits and went six innings, allowing seven hits that resulted in two runs. He struck out six and did not walk a batter. Brandon Creath tossed 1 2/3 scoreless frames as the bridge between Villanueva and Miranda.

The River Bandits scored all of their runs in the fifth inning as they chased the Hot Rods' starter from the game. All of the runs were unearned, however, because of two errors by Bowling Green, a fielding error by the first baseman and a later throwing error by the pitcher that plated Quad Cities' first run. Nick Martini's single scored Garrett Wittels for the team's second tally. David Medina's double-play groundout allowed the third run to cross home plate. Martini was the only River Bandit with more than one hit as he had three.

Monday's game: at Bowling Green (TB) (game two of three), 6:35 pm CT, Tyrell Jenkins (0-1, 1.89 ERA)

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