Palm Beach Cardinals Notebook: 2014 Week 6

The Florida State League Cardinals faced an offensive shortfall that led to four straight midweek losses. New arrival Nick Petree has bolstered the pitching staff.

May 7: Palm Beach Cardinals 6 at St. Lucie Mets 1

Thomas Lee (W, 3-2) made it easy for the Cardinals to win their second straight game, as the hurler tossed 6 2/3 innings, scattering seven hits and allowing one earned run. The right-hander struck out three batters without allowing a walk and winning his team-leading third game.

Things did not get off to a great start against the Mets, as Maikes De La Cruz delivered an RBI single in the bottom of the third to give St. Lucie an early 1-0 lead. However, Palm Beach answered with six runs. In the top of the fourth, The Cardinals pushed across four runs on three hits. Jesus Montero drove in the first run with an RBI single, while three other runs came across on a two-run single by Charlie Tilson and a fielding miscue by the Mets.

David Washington put the game out of reach in the top of the fifth inning with a two-run homer to extend the lead to 6-1. Tilson finished the contest with three hits and two RBI.

May 8: St. Lucie Mets 4, Palm Beach Cardinals 2

It was the return of Joe Cuda on Thursday night; at least it felt like it. In his first start since returning to the rotation, Cuda tossed five innings, allowing two unearned runs on five hits, while striking out six. He lowered his ERA to 9.78.

Despite a solid performance by Cuda, Sam Tuivailala (L, 0-1) could not hold off the Mets in the bottom of the eighth inning. The right-hander allowed two runs on three hits. He walked two with one strike out. Big hits by Aderlin Rodriguez and De La Cruz proved to be too much, as the Mets slid by the Cardinals to even the series.

Nick Martini's RBI double in the top of the fifth accounted for the two Cardinals runs.

May 9: St. Lucie Mets 9 at Palm Beach Cardinals 1

The Cardinals dropped their second straight contest, as the Mets scored nine runs on 19 hits in the rout of Palm Beach. Every player in the Mets starting lineup recorded at least one hit, while six of the nine starters had multi-hit games.

Kyle Helisek (L, 1-2) took the loss, giving up five runs, four earned on 10 hits in four innings. The lefty had a rough second inning, as he yielded four runs in the frame and couldn't recover.

The Cardinals were held to five hits on the night. Tilson recorded three, going 3-for-5 on the night.

May 10: St. Lucie Mets 2 at Palm Beach Cardinals 0

In a pitching duel between Marco Gonzales and Matthew Koch, it was Koch who prevailed on Saturday night. The Mets right-hander hurled 6 2/3 innings, scattering three hits with one walk and two strikeouts.

He beat the Cardinals former first rounder, Gonzales. The southpaw had a solid pitching performance, going six innings, allowing one run on five hits. He struck out eight batters, while only walking one.

Gonzales took the loss, as the Cardinals were held to four hits on the night by the Mets staff. Casey Rasmus was the high-man with two hits on the night.

May 11: OFF DAY

May 12: Dunedin Blue Jays 4 at Palm Beach Cardinals 2

In their first contest outside of the South Division, the Palm Beach Cardinals had to welcome the first-place Dunedin Blue Jays from the North Division. With the Jays' record of 26-9 entering the night, the Cardinals knew they would have their hands full.

Things got off to a poor start for Mike Mayers (L, 3-4) early in the game, as the Blue Jays took a two-run lead in their first at-bats.

The Cardinals scored a run in the bottom of the frame on an RBI double by Starlin Rodriguez, cutting the lead to 2-1.

After exchanging runs to make it 3-2, Dalton Pompey put the game away with solo homer off Mayers in the fifth. Mayers went seven innings, allowing four runs, three earned runs and eight hits.

May 13: Palm Beach Cardinals 1, Dunedin Blue Jays 0

The Cardinals snapped their four-game skid with a blanking of the first-place Blue Jays. Nick Petree (W, 2-0) was spectacular, tossing seven innings, allowing six hits without a run. He struck out three and walked two. Danny Miranda and Kyle Barraclough preserved the victory, tossing one scoreless inning each. Barraclough recorded his first save at Palm Beach.

Offensively, the Cardinals needed to push across one run to defeat the Blue Jays. In the third inning, Breyvic Valera drove in the lone run of the game with a sacrifice fly.

Pretty Petree: In two starts for Palm Beach, the right-hander has tossed 14 innings, allowing one earned run with nine strikeouts. Petree has two quality starts, as he tossed seven innings in both his starts. Prior to joining Palm Beach, he was 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA at Peoria.

Getting Ahead: The Cardinals lost four games this week. In three of the contests, the Beach Birds fell behind early. The Cardinals are 3-11 when the opponent scores the first run of the game, while posting a 14-10 record when they score first.

Dimming Star: In his third stint with the Palm Beach Cardinals, Starlin Rodriguez hasn't excelled as expected. In his last five games, the outfielder is batting .071 (1-for-14) with one RBI.

Saturday Night for the Win: Beach Birds are 17-21 on the season. They have excelled on Saturday nights, posting a 5-1 record. Saturday and Wednesday (3-2) are the only days the Cardinals have a winning mark.

Transactions

5/11 RHP Robert Stock sent down to State College
5/11 RHP Kyle Barraclough added from Peoria

On the Horizon

The Cardinals will finish off their series with the Blue Jays before traveling to Tampa for a four-game series against the Yankees starting on Friday. Palm Beach returns to Roger Dean Stadium on Tuesday, May 20 as they play host to the Brevard County Manatees (MIL).



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