The Redbirds jumped out to a 7-0 lead after one and never looked back as they easily handled Omaha 12-4 to close their 2012 home schedule. Memphis (53-87) split the series 2-2.
The highlight of the first was Steven Hill's only hit of the day, a long ball that brought in Brock Peterson and Matt Young (single). Peterson pinch ran for Lance Berkman who exited after singling with one out. Seven Redbirds had multi-hit performances, led by Adron Chambers' three singles and a double. Chambers scored one with four RBIs. Lou Montanez had two singles, a double, touched home once and knocked one in. His three hits were matched by Young who crossed home as well. Ryan Jackson, Cedric Hunter and Vance Albitz all singled twice and scored two with Hunter driving in one.
Tyler Lyons scattered seven hits and a base-on-balls over 5 1/3 to up his record to 4-9. The southpaw yielded single tallies in the fourth, fifth and sixth. Barrett Browning finished the fifth with his inherited runner crossing on a double and a groundout. Omaha singled twice in the seventh off Jorge Rondon but were unable to push across a run. The Storm Chasers did notch a tally in the eighth on a home run against Sam Freeman but Eduardo Sanchez was perfect in the ninth.
Friday's game: at second-place Nashville (MIL) (67-73), Shelby Miller (10-10, 4.89)
The S-Cards dropped their third straight contest to Tulsa, the team they will face in the play-offs, this time 9-1.
Kevin Siegrist (L, 1-2) coughed up three in the first and two in the second, allowing six hits and three free passes in four. Chase Reid gave up one in the fifth and two more in the seventh, all on solo bombs. Kevin Thomas allowed an unearned tally in the eighth, the first of his two innings on the bump.
The Cardinals barely escaped being no-hit when Oscar Taveras singled with two outs and two strikes in the ninth. His hit drove in Mike O'Neill, who had drawn a lead-off walk.
Friday's game: vs. Tulsa, 7:08 pm CT, Carlos Martinez (4-3, 3.94)
Palm Beach's faint hopes for post-season play were extinguished on Thursday. A 4-0 shutout by first-place Jupiter eliminated the Beach Birds.
Seth Blair took his third loss in four decisions when Jupiter brought across a run in the second. Blair yielded four hits and three walks in three frames. Danny Miranda kept the Hammerheads off the board over the next three frames but Jose Almarante and Dean Kiekhefer combined to allow three more to cross in the eighth. All three tallies were charged to Almarante, although two touched home with Kiekhefer on the mound.
James Ramsey's two singles represented one-third of his squad's total hits. None went for extra bases. Ramsey worked two free passes as well.
Friday's game: vs. Jupiter, 6:35 pm ET, Kyle Hald (3-4, 3.64)
Gary Apelian's bases-loaded sac fly in the 12th gave the River Bandits a 2-1 victory over visiting Kane County. The Bandits remain one loss or one Burlington win away from elimination.
The contest was scoreless until the eighth when Kane County broke through for a tally. Quad Cities responded with their own score in the bottom of the frame. Matt Williams opened with a base-on-balls and eventually came home on Piscotty's line drive single to right. Piscotty had two singles and a double for three of the River Bandits' eight hits.
Jonathan Cornelius, Yunior Castillo, Heath Wyatt and Ethan Cole joined forces to toss a two-hitter. Our Player of the Day Cornelius was outstanding, tossing a perfect game through six before giving up a double to start the seventh. The lefty out of Florida Tech struck out nine with four ground outs and one fly out. He finished the season strong with 38 strikeouts and only five walks over 28 1/3 innings encompassing his last 10 game appearances, nine of them in relief.
Castillo stranded Cornelius' runner in the seventh but served up a long ball to kick off the eighth for the Cougars' second hit. Castillo proceeded to fan the side. Heath Wyatt faced the minimum over the next three innings with Cole earning his fourth win against one loss by striking out all three batters he faced in the 12th.
Friday's game: vs. Kane County, 7:00 pm CT, Sam Gaviglio (8-9, 4.00)
The Muckdogs' winning streak reached six with a 10-2 thumping of host Williamsport on Thursday. Batavia closed to within a game of Auburn with the victory.
Batavia brought across three in the second on Jonathan Keener's single to left that knocked in David Popkins and Kolby Byrd who both drew base-on-balls. Keener ended up circling the bases and touching home himself due to a throwing error by the Crosscutters' pitcher. The Muckdogs' chased their starter from the game with four more in the fourth. Patrick Wisdom (single), Popkins (single) and Jacob Wilson (walk) jammed the sacks full for Byrd, whose two-run double brought in Wisdom and Popkins. Wilson and Byrd scampered home on Matthew Young's one-out triple that resulted in a pitching change. Keener's second slam of 2012 produced Batavia's final three runs. It came with Wilson and Byrd aboard in the eighth.
Willamsport's two tallies came in the bottom of the fourth off starter Tim Cooney. Cooney (W, 3-2) held the opposition to five hits and a walk over six frames with five strikeouts. Mike Aldrete, Chris Thomas and Joe Scanio combined to wrap things up for Batavia.
Friday's game: at Williamsport, 7:05 pm ET, Kyle Helisek (3-2, 3.44)
Johnson City fell 4-2 at Burlington on Thursday to even their play-off series at one apiece. The Appy Birds' season comes down to tonight's decisive game three. Right-hander Daniel Hernandez and his 1.09 WHIP will go for the Royals. The JC-Cards' counter-move has not been announced.
C.J. McElroy gave his team an early and transient lead when he blasted one over the left field wall to start the game. Burlington answered with single tallies in the first and second off Zach Petrick. McElroy walked and scored the tying run in the third on a two-out double by Jeremy Schaffer. But a solo shot by the Bees off Petrick in the fifth gave Burlington the lead they would not concede.
Petrick (L, 0-1) allowed seven hits and a base-on-balls over five with five strikeouts. Cesar Aguilar worked around three walks in the sixth but Sam Tuivailala gave up a solo bomb in the seventh, the first inning of his two-inning outing. Tuivailala fanned five.
Friday's game: at Burlington, 7:00 pm ET, TBA
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