Cardinals Minor League Notebook: 08/01/13

Bladimil Franco's bat helped the Dominican Birds dominate their opponents but Kyle Helisek's strong effort went for naught when Peoria's bullpen could not hold as the system won three and lost six on Wednesday.

Results from games played Wednesday, July 31.

Tucson 4 at Memphis 2

Nick Additon's six solid frames went in vain as the bullpen could not hold a late lead in the Redbirds' 4-2 loss to the Padres. Memphis (53-59) and Tucson have each won one of four to be played in their series.

Additon scattered three hits and three walks over six with the only damage being a sixth-inning long ball. The southpaw struck out four with four ground outs and five fly outs.

Additon departed with his team up 2-1 but that lasted only until the eighth when Deryk Hooker (BS, 1) gave up a run on a double and single in his second inning of work. Those were the only hits allowed by the righty, who did not walk a batter over two innings. Fernando Salas (L, 1-2) issued a free pass to the first batter faced then served up a two-run blast, one of two hits yielded in the ninth.

The Redbirds scored a run in the third and another in the fifth. In Mike O'Neill's Triple-A debut, he went 2-for-4 and he was driven in on Chad Huffman's 13th double of 2013 in the third. Audry Perez singled to open the fifth, advanced to second on Additon's sac bunt, went to third on a single by O'Neill and crossed on Jermaine Curtis' force out.

Thursday's game: vs. Tucson (59-53), 7:05 pm CT, Boone Whiting (4-4, 4.54)

Tulsa 4 vs. Springfield 0

Springfield (19-21) mustered just four hits as they dropped the deciding game three of their road series against Tulsa 4-0.

Stephen Piscotty was the most active player for the S-Cards, going 1-for-3 with a walk and his first stolen base. Xavier Scruggs doubled in four at bats and swiped third for his seventh steal of 2013.

Richard Castillo (L, 7-7) was homer-prone on Wednesday. Three of his five hits given up in six were long balls that resulted in all three tallies charged to the righty. He fanned three and issued one free pass.

Zack Russell was charged with an unearned run in the seventh on a single and two errors, one his own throwing error, and a fielding error by Scruggs. It was Russell's Double-A debut. Jose Almarante worked around a base-on-balls for a scoreless eighth.

Thursday's game: at Arkansas (23-17), 7:10 pm CT, Zach Petrick (2-0, 3.06)

Palm Beach 4 at Clearwater 3

The Beach Birds (19-17) accomplished what St. Louis could not on Wednesday as they snapped their six-game slide by edging Clearwater 4-3 in game three of four against the Threshers on the road.

All four tallies came in the second on two singles, two walks and a bases-clearing three-run double by David Popkins. Jonathan Rodriguez had three of his team's nine hits, doubling once in five at bats with a run scored. Jimmy Parque went 2-for-4 while touching home once and driving in Rodriguez.

Joey Cuda picked up his first Florida State League win in his second start for Palm Beach. The right-hander allowed two runs in the first plus one in the fourth on nine total hits and two bases-on-balls through six. He struck out three.

Iden Nazario gave up a hit and free pass in his two-inning stint while fanning two. Ronnie Shaban bounced back from his second blown save, against Clearwater on Monday, permitting a hit with two strikeouts and a wild pitch in the ninth. That produced his 14th save.

Thursday's game: at Clearwater (18-19), 7:00 pm ET, Kurt Heyer (3-3, 4.53)

Quad Cities 4 vs. Peoria 3

Joey Donofrio and Joe Scanio could not hold a two-run lead in the bottom of the ninth as Quad Cities walked off with a 4-3 victory over Peoria (19-18).

Donofrio (BS, 1)(L, 4-2) began his third inning on the mound by hitting the leadoff man then serving up a one-out home run that tied the game. Donofrio got the hook after allowing a double to the next batter. Scanio fanned his first batter swinging but gave up a run-scoring single that ended the game. Donofrio yielded four runs, three earned, on six hits in all with four strikeouts while not issuing a free pass in 2 1/3.

Co-Player of the Day Kyle Helisek outpitched Mark Appel, the number one overall selection of the June 2013 First-Year Player Draft. Helisek shut down the River Bandits on four hits through six while fanning six. He induced three ground outs and five fly outs.

The Chiefs got to Appel for a tally on six hits in 4 2/3 then added two more in the sixth against his replacement. Trevor Martin provided most of the offense, going 3-for-4 with two doubles, a run scored and he drove in Jeremy Schaffer and Patrick Wisdom each once. Martin was brought in by Charlie Tilson and was the only Chief with more than one hit.

Thursday's games: double-header at Quad Cities (21-15). 6:00 pm CT, Ben O'Shea (1-0, 4.50)/Chris Perry (1-1, 3.38)

State College 7 vs. Tri-City 4

The Spikes banged out 10 hits, including five extra bases, in the 7-4 victory over visiting Tri-City. The win ensures State College (23-19) a series win over the ValleyCats.

Second baseman Mason Katz doubled twice in three at bats with a base-on-balls, touched home once and knocked in one, accounting for two of his team's four doubles. Centerfielder Steven Ramos doubled and tripled in five at bats with a run scored and an RBI. Right fielder Matthew Young went 2-for-4 with a double while scoring once.

Juan Bautista yielded single scores in the second and third plus two more in the sixth, his final inning on the mound. Bautista gave up five hits and four free passes in 5 2/3 while fanning two. Jhonny Polanco (W, 1-2) stranded a runner in the sixth after plunking one, then worked around a hit and walk for a scoreless seventh.

Kyle Webb interspersed two strikeouts with a single and hit batsman before giving way to Jeff Rauh in the eighth. Rauh got the final out in the frame to strand two then faced the minimum in the ninth for his third save.

Thursday's game: vs. Tri-City (26-18), 7:05 pm ET, Kevin Herget (4-0, 3.86)

Princeton 10 at Johnson City 9

Johnson City (17-21) fought back from a 9-2 hole but could not quite get over the hump as they were stung by the Rays 10-9 at home. The JC-Cards lost the series, one game to two.

Will Anderson and Norge Paredes dug the big hole for their squad, combining to yield nine runs in 5 2/3. Anderson yielded five on seven hits, including a three-run long ball, and a free pass through three. Paredes gave up four runs on five hits, including a solo shot to the same batter, and two walks in 2 2/3.

Anderson Gerdel stranded two of Paredes' runners to limit the damage but permitted his own home run in the seventh which proved to be the difference in the game. It was the only hit allowed by Gerdel, who issued a free pass as well over 1 1/3. Fernando Baez struck out three in the eighth and ninth while allowing a hit and base-on-balls.

The Appy Birds pushed across two in the first and fifth, one in the sixth plus four in the seventh. Recent arrival, centerfielder Jhohan Acevedo, went 3-for-4 with a walk and three runs scored out of the lead-off slot. Second baseman Leandro Mateo and first baseman Justin Ringo each had two hits. Mateo walked once and touched home twice while Ringo scored one with three RBIs.

Catcher Steve Bean and designated hitter Rowan Wick each sent one over the wall. Bean's solo shot was his only hit in three at bats although he did draw a free pass. Wick's long ball came with Ringo aboard, accounting for two of his three RBI.

Thursday's game: at Kingsport (23-15) (NYM), 7:00 pm ET, TBA

GCL Nationals 2 vs. GCL Cardinals 1 (7) – game one
GCL Nationals 3 vs. GCL Cardinals 2 (7) – game two

The Gulf Birds (17-18) were swept in a Wednesday's double-header at the first-place Nationals, 2-1 and 3-2.

Ismael Brito was charged with his first loss in three decisions in game one when he allowed a two-run home run in the fourth, the first of his three innings on the mound. Brito gave up three hits with three strikeouts, pitching in relief of Ian McKinney.

McKinney, a June fifth-round selection from Boone High School in Florida, made his first start after five relief appearances. Three was a big number for the southpaw who yielded three hits in three innings with three ground outs and three fly outs. He fanned two.

The Nationals pitching staff held the Cardinals to just three hits, including a double by DeAndre Asbury to begin the third. The right fielder raced home when Oscar Mercado reached on a fielding error with two outs. Catcher Luis Cruz accounted for the other two hits, both singles.

In the second contest, starter Hector Salazar (L, 0-3) served up a two-run bomb in his fourth and final inning of work that put the home team up 2-0. Salazar permitted four hits while fanning two. Kender Villegas worked a scoreless fifth with two hits allowed plus a hit batsman thanks to a double play. Villegas was also called for a balk. Kyle Grana allowed a tally on two hits and an intentional base-on-balls in the sixth.

The Gulf Birds notched single tallies in the fifth and seventh. Second baseman Malik Collymore's first professional home run put his squad on the scoreboard in the fifth. Clean-up hitter Rafael Medina started the seventh with his fifth double of 2013 and crossed home on Carlos Torres' two-out single to right.

Thursday's game: vs. GCL Nationals (29-6), 12:00 pm ET, TBA

DSL Cardinals 11 at DSL Mets1 3

Co-Player of the Day Bladimil Franco had four hits and accounted for four tallies in the DSL Cardinals' 11-3 pounding of the DSL Mets1 on the road.

Franco, who is in his second campaign in the Dominican Summer League, singled four times in six at bats with two runs scored and two RBI. Shortstop Allen Cordoba, third baseman Joaquin De La Cruz and first baseman Jorge Baez each singled twice. Cordoba and Baez touched home once while De La Cruz drove in two and Cordoba one. Designated hitter Robelys Reyes had the team's only extra base hit, a double in three at bats, with a run scored and two RBI.

Reliever Yeison Medina evened his record to 1-1 by fanning seven in three frames, yielding an unearned tally on four hits and a base-on-balls. Ronald Medrano had tossed the first four innings, allowing a run on three hits and two free passes with five strikeouts. Frendy Gavin struck out four over the final two innings, giving up an unearned run on a hit and walk.

Thursday's game: vs. DSL Mets 1, 10:30 am ET, Julio Mateo (1-1, 2.89)

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