Memphis (6-3) pushed across runners in five straight innings to take their home opener versus Iowa 8-5. The Redbirds sit atop the American Southern Division by a game over Round Rock (TEX).
A third-inning double by Randal Grichuk plated Jermaine Curtis (single) and Greg Garcia (hbp), knotting the contest at 2-2. Player of the Day Oscar Taveras' single to left brought in Grichuk for a lead the home squad never relinquished.
The lead expanded in the fourth when Ed Easley walloped his first home run, scoring Xavier Scruggs (single). Taveras' second single of the game drove in Garcia (double) in the fifth to put the Redbirds up 6-2.
That lead nearly evaporated when Tyler Lyons (W, 1-0) served up a three-run bomb in the top of the sixth but the offense got back in action with single tallies in the sixth and seventh. Scruggs singled and scored via a sac fly by Curtis in the sixth and Easley singled home Taveras (single) in the seventh.
Taveras had three of his squad's 10 hits to pace the Redbirds. Scruggs and Easley added two hits apiece.
Lyons notched his first 2014 win despite yielding five runs on six hits and two walks in six. The native Texan fanned eight with six groundball outs and two fly-ball outs. Jose Almarante issued one free pass over the next two frames before Eric Fornataro picked up his first save of the season with a scoreless ninth.
Saturday's game: vs. Iowa (4-5), 6:05 pm CT, Scott McGregor (0-1, 7.36)
James Ramsey's night accounted for half of Springfield's tallies as they flew past San Antonio 8-4 on the road. The S-Cards (3-5) are tied for second with Tulsa (COL), three games behind Arkansas (LAA).
Ramsey went 2-for-3 with a walk, his big hit being a two-run long ball in the fifth that made the score 5-2. The centerfielder touched home three times in addition to his two RBI. Mike O'Neill crossed three times as well, singling once in three at bats while drawing two bases-on-balls. Matt Williams's 2-for-4 game with a run scored and one knocked in was Springfield's other multi-hit performance.
Seth Blair picked up his first win of 2014, allowing seven hits and three free passes that produced four runs, three earned, through six. Ryan Sherriff permitted a single and two walks over 2 1/3, keeping the opposition off the board thanks to Dean Kiekhefer (S, 1) who got the final two outs via a fly out to right/doubled off at first combo that stranded two of Sherriff's runners.
Saturday's game: Springfield goes for the three-game sweep at San Antonio (4-4), 7:05 pm CT, Sam Gaviglio (0-1, 9.00)
Joe Cuda dug a 6-0 first-inning hole that proved insurmountable as Palm Beach (5-3) was edged in the series opener at Charlotte 6-5. The second-place Beach Birds trail Fort Myers (MIN) by a game.
Cuda (L, 0-1) could not get untracked early, giving up seven of his 10 total hits and only walk in the first. He went on to toss two more innings. Corey Baker held the Stone Crabs to two hits with two K's in 2 2/3 while Iden Nazario issued two free passes with two strikeouts in 1 1/3. Sam Tuivailala fanned two while walking one in the eighth.
Down 6-0 after one, the PB-Cards battled back with three in the second and single scores in the third and sixth. Anthony Garcia's third home run of 2014 scored David Washington (double), representing the only extra base hits Palm Beach mustered in their eight hits in all. Ildemaro Vargas went 2-for-3 with a walk and two RBI for his team's only multi-hit performance.
Saturday's game: at Charlotte (2-6), 6:00 pm ET, Kyle Hald (1-0, 3.18)
The Chiefs (4-4) pounded out 12 hits, stalling the Hot Rods 6-5 in the series opener. The standings in Western Division of the Midwest League are jammed tight with four teams tied at the top and Peoria amongst the four other teams that are one game off the lead.
The scoring was a team-wide affair with eight Chiefs either crossing home, driving at least one in or both. Cesar Valera's three hits in four at bats led the Chiefs. The second baseman knocked in one.
Juan Herrera, Michael Schulze and C.J. McElroy each had two hits with Herrera knocking in two, Schulze scoring one and McElroy doing one of each. McElroy's double was one of Peoria's three extra base hits, the chief one being Ronald Castillo's two-run bomb, his first of the season.
Silfredo Garcia tossed five innings, allowing three hits – including a two-run blast – plus four walks resulting in four runs, two earned, to even his record at 1-1. Blake McKnight gave up a run on a hit and two base-on-balls in 2 2/3. Zach Loraine limited Bowling Green to a hit over the final 1 1/3 for his first save of 2014.
Saturday's game: vs. Bowling Green (2-6), 1:00 pm CT, Chase Brookshire (0-1, 3.18)
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