Joey Butler's pinch-hit single in the seventh was the game's difference as Memphis (12-14) downed Colorado Springs 5-3, taking game three and ending a four-game slide.
Butler's bases-loaded hit brought in Ed Easley (single) and Pete Kozma (single) and broke a two-all tie. Xavier Scruggs (walk) raced home on Kolten Wong's fly out to left later that inning. It was Kozma's second run scored for the game, as the shortstop compiled two of Memphis' seven hits, both singles. Oscar Taveras extended his hitting streak to 14 games.
Keith Butler picked up his first win, recording the final two outs in the top of the seventh and stranding an inherited runner. Sam Freeman tossed a one-two-three eighth. David Aardsma earned his second save despite allowing a run on a hit and walk in the ninth, only the second run given up by the Rice University product in 11 appearances covering 11 2/3 frames.
Player of the Day Angel Castro's fifth start of 2014 was his best to date, two runs permitted on four hits, including a solo shot, and two bases-on-balls in 6 1/3. The right-hander struck out two with six groundball and six fly-ball outs.
Thursday's game: vs. Colorado Springs (11-14), 11:05 am CT, Tim Cooney (3-1, 2.35)
Kurt Heyer yielded tallies in half of his innings pitched, leading to a 6-4 loss to Northwest Arkansas. Springfield (13-13) trails the four-game home set 0-2.
Heyer (L, 2-2) gave up two in the second and third plus one in the fifth, the result of seven hits and two free passes. Two of the runs were unearned and three were the result of two long balls by the Naturals' clean-up hitter.
James Ramsey's sole hit in four at bats was his sixth home run, a two-run shot that brought across Rafael Ortega (error). Earlier, Ortega tripled and scored on a groundout by Ramsey to get the S-Cards' scoring started in the first. Travis Tartamella was the only Springfield player with more than one hit, going 2-for-4 with an RBI double.
Thursday's game: vs. Northwest Arkansas (10-16), 7:10 pm CT, Kyle Hald (2-0, 2.13)
The Beach Birds' slide into ignominy continues with a 5-3 decision to facility mate Jupiter, their fourth consecutive loss and eighth in their last ten games.
Palm Beach (10-16) managed nine hits but the two players with multi-hit games, David Washington and Casey Rasmus, were followed by two PB-Cards that both went 0-fer. Washington and Rasmus, the eight and nine batters, each singled and doubled in three at bats with Washington adding a free pass plus two RBI. Rasmus drove in the other.
Joe Cuda's mound struggles continue as the righty allowed 12 hits and two walks resulting in five runs in five. Cuda (L, 0-4) struck out six. Iden Nazario yielded a hit with a strikeout over the next two frames before Sam Tuivailala faced the minimum in the eighth.
Thursday's game: vs. Fort Myers (16-10) (MIN), 6:35 pm ET, Thomas Lee (1-2, 4.66)
The Chiefs were held to just three hits in their 3-1 loss at Beloit, a series Peoria (15-9) leads 2-1.
Arturo Reyes (L, 2-2) came out on the wrong end of a pitching duel, permitting single tallies in the first and sixth. Reyes gave up six hits and two bases-on-balls, one intentional, in six while fanning five. He threw a wild pitch. The solo shot Chris Perry allowed in the eighth, his second inning on the mound, gave the Snappers breathing room.
The Chiefs' sole score was the result of right fielder Jimmy Bosco's first home run, a fifth-inning smash that temporarily knotted things up at one all. Lead-off batter C.J. McElroy produced his team's other two hits, both singles. McElroy went 1-for-2 in stolen base attempts.
Thursday's game: at Beloit (9-16), 11:00 am CT, Jimmy Reed (1-1, 4.29)
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