The Redbirds' 12-game road trip got off to a sour note as they fell 5-2 to the Sounds. Memphis (11-8) squandered an opportunity to take over first place from Omaha (KC) (who also lost) and remain a half game back.
Maikel Cleto (L, 0-1) permitted two runs to cross in the bottom of the sixth, flipping a 1-0 lead into a deficit. One of the two tallies was unearned and was charged to starter Tyler Lyons. Lyons fanned nine over 5 2/3 with three hits and a base-on-balls. He hit a batter. Two was the not-so-magic number for Cleto as he was charged with two runs on two hits and two free passes with a wild pitch and a hit batsman in 1 1/3. Sam Freeman was even less impressive with two more tallies given up on three hits and two base-on-balls and a hit batter in the eighth.
Right fielder Adron Chambers singled and doubled in five at bats from the lead-off slot while touching home once. Chambers had half of his team's hits and stole his third base of 2013. That put him in scoring position in the fifth for Oscar Taveras' RBI single. First baseman Brock Peterson opened the eighth with a double, advanced to third on a wild pitch and raced home on a sacrifice fly by third baseman Jermaine Curtis.
Friday's game: at Nashville (6-12) 7:05 pm CT, Nick Additon (1-1, 5.79)
Seth Blair gave up four runs in 4 2/3 innings as Springfield was defeated by visiting Northwest Arkansas to split the four-game set. The S-Cards (10-10) remain tied for first with Tulsa (COL).
Blair (L, 0-3), who failed to finish the fifth for the third time in his four 2013 starts, retired 10 of his first 12 faced before yielding solo shot in the third. The righty fell apart in the fifth. Two doubles, a hit batter plus two walks, one intentional, brought two across and left the sacks jammed for Kevin Thomas.
Thomas walked in another tally before dousing the fire with a swinging strikeout. Blair gave up four hits and three base-on-balls while striking out five. Thomas fanned four over 2 1/3 with only the aforementioned walk allowed. Kevin Siegrist walked a batter in the seventh then served up a two-run shot. Ramon Delgado faced the minimum in the eighth.
The Cardinals matched the Naturals' five hits but not their runs. Vance Albitz singled twice for the only multi-hit performance. Audry Perez' solo bomb in the first was his first long ball of the season. Tommy Pham matched him with a solo home run in the eighth, his fourth of 2013. 12 of Pham's 23 hits have gone for extra bases and the 25-year-old, who has seen his minor league career hindered by injury, is slugging .706.
Friday's game: vs. Arkansas (9-11) (LAA), Richard Castillo (1-2, 3.43)
Tim Cooney tossed seven strong frames in Palm Beach's 5-0 shut out of Jupiter. The Beach Birds (12-8) are tied for second with St. Lucie (NYM), four games behind Fort Myers (MIN).
Cooney, our Player of the Day, upped his record to three wins in four decisions while fanning six Hammerheads. Three of the four hits given up by the southpaw were doubles but Cooney issued just one free pass with eight ground outs and two fly outs. Lee Stoppelman was perfect over the final two innings, fanning two with two ground outs and a fly out.
The Cardinals plated one each in the fifth, seventh and ninth and two in the sixth, led by Nick Longmire's three hits. Longmire was a triple shy of the cycle, driving in one in addition to his solo bomb in the seventh. Both of Ronny Gil's hits went for extra bases, a double and a triple, in four at bats, with an RBI. While no other Palm Beach player had more than one hit, Colin Walsh, Stephen Piscotty, Jonathan Rodriguez and Tyler Rahmatulla each crossed home.
Friday's game: at Jupiter (5-15), 6:35 pm ET, Travis Miller (0-2, 1.42)
Peoria could not crawl out of an 8-0 crater through four innings, as they were flattened by host Dayton 11-5. The Chiefs (8-9) slip into fourth with the loss, 4 ½ behind Cedar Rapids (MIN).
Joey Cuda (L, 1-1) was pounded for eight runs on 11 hits, including a two-run long ball, and a walk in four. Cuda fanned six. Joey Donofrio kept the Dragons off the board in the fifth and sixth, facing the minimum with one strikeout. Dixon Llorens allowed three runs, earned, on three hits – two of them doubles, and a base-on-balls in just two-thirds of an inning. Mike Aldrete fanned two over the last 1 1/3.
Charlie Tilson and Carson Kelly combined for half of their squad's 10 hits and were the only players with more than one hit. Tilson had three singles in four bats with an RBI, a strikeout and a caught stealing. Kelly had his first multi-hit performance in four games with Peoria, adding a double to a single while scoring twice. Patrick Wisdom's only hit was a two-run blast in Peoria's three-run eighth.
Friday's game: at Dayton (7-13), 6:00 pm CT, Hector Hernandez (0-1, 5.40)
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