Cardinals Minor League Notebook: 07/05/14

There were several noteworthy pitching performances on Friday, the best being Ian McKinney's dominating effort for Johnson City, one of five victories in St. Louis' minors. Memphis, Peoria, State College and the GCL Cardinals were all victorious as well but Springfield, Palm Beach and the DSL Cardinals all went down to defeat.

Results from games played Friday, July 4th.

Memphis 3 vs. New Orleans 2

Tim Cooney tossed eight-plus strong frames and PCL all-star Stephen Piscotty accounted for all his team's tallies as the Redbirds clipped the Zephyrs 3-2 in the series' opener. Memphis (40-46) remains in fourth, 5 ½ in back of Nashville (MIL).

Cooney (W, 8-5) scattered six hits and a free pass, resulting in two runs in the fourth that brought the visitors to within a run. Cooney fanned five, tossing 101 pitches, 68 for strikes.

The southpaw's bid for a complete-game victory ended after he walked his first batter faced in the ninth. Dean Kiekhefer fanned his only batter, giving way to Joe Donofrio, who plunked the only Zephyr he faced. Pedro Feliciano notched the final two outs, earning his first save.

Saturday's game: vs. third-place New Orleans (44-44), 6:05 pm CT, Joe Kelly (0-0, 3.00)

Springfield 0 at Corpus Christi 8

The S-Cards' losing streak reached six as they were blanked by the Hooks 8-0, the second consecutive series sweep of the Cardinals. Springfield (5-10) sits in last, three behind Arkansas (LAA).

Kurt Heyer (L, 3-6) permitted three runs on five hits and four walks, one intentional, through 5 2/3, with the final run scoring under Logan Billbrough. Billbrough did not retire a batter, yielding two unearned runs on a hit and three bases-on-balls. Ryan Sherriff recorded the final out in the sixth, stranding three, thus limiting the damage to Billbrough.

Sherriff was not nearly as effective the next frame, giving up three runs on four hits and a free pass. Lee Stoppelman worked around two hits for a scoreless eighth.

Designated hitter Cody Stanley went 2-for-3 with a walk, garnering half of his team's hits.

Saturday's game: at San Antonio (10-5) (SD), 7:05 pm CT, Kyle Hald (6-2, 3.28)

Bradenton 7 at Palm Beach 4

Seven runs off the Beach Birds' bullpen resulted in a 7-4 loss on Friday, game one of three. The defeat drops Palm Beach (11-5) a game out of first behind St. Lucie (NYM), which is in the midst of a seven-game winning streak.

Relievers Thomas Lee and Kevin Alexander ended up wearing the goat horns, yielding all seven tallies in the game's final two innings. Lee allowed five hits and a wild pitch, producing three runs.

Alexander (BS, 1) (L, 0-1) was put at an immediate disadvantage in the ninth when the lead-off batter reached on a fielding error by left fielder Jimmy Bosco, resulting in the tying run on second with none out. Alexander unraveled, giving up four runs, three earned, on three hits and two walks.

That spoiled fine pitching efforts by Corey Baker and Kyle Barraclough who joined forces to shut down the Marauders (PIT) on three hits and a base-on-balls through seven. First-time starter Baker went five, allowing two hits with three strikeouts while Barraclough permitted a hit and walk over two.

Luke Voit led Palm Beach's nine-hit effort, going 3-for-4 with a run scored. Charlie Tilson singled twice in four at bats, the only other Beach Bird with more than one hit. Mason Katz added his second home run since joining Palm Beach, plating Anthony Garcia (single), part of his team's three-run second.

Saturday's game: vs. Bradenton (9-6), 6:35 pm ET, Tyrell Jenkins (2-1, 2.57)

Peoria 6 vs. Burlington 0

Three Chiefs' hurlers joined forces to twirl a three-hitter, blanking the Bees 6-0 in the series' opener. The victory allows second-place Peoria (10-5) to keep pace with Kane County (CHC), which they trail by 1 ½.

Blake McKnight, Kevin Herget and Jhonny Polanco did the honors for Peoria, allowing just seven base runners the entire game. McKnight gave up three hits and walked one, permitting only five balls out of the infield during his six-inning stint. He threw 82 pitches, 55 for strikes.

Herget struck out five in two innings, issuing one free pass. Polanco worked around two bases-on-balls in the ninth, fanning one.

Shortstop Juan Herrera and catcher Steve Bean had three hits apiece, touched home once and had an RBI. Bean doubled and worked a free pass for a perfect 3-for-3 night.

Richy Pedroza went 2-for-4 with a run scored and one driven in. Justin Ringo accounted for three tallies, doubling in three at bats with a walk, touching home twice with an RBI.

Saturday's game: vs. Burlington (8-7) (LAA), 5:30 pm CT, Luis Perdomo (0-1, 9.64)

State College 11 vs. Jamestown 9

The Spikes provided their own Fourth of July fireworks at Medlar Field on Friday, outlasting the Jammers 11-9 in an offensive display featuring 20 runs on 26 total hits. State College (14-7) remains atop the Pinckney Division, a game in front of Batavia (MIA).

Designated hitter Alex De Leon led six State College players notching more than one hit, singling four times in five at bats with two runs scored. Left fielder Nick Thompson went 3-for-5 with a double, touched home twice and knocked in three.

Down 5-4 after six, the home team plated six runners in the seventh to go up 10-5, the big blow being a grand slam by Jake Stone. The first baseman went 2-for-4 with a run scored and five RBI, joining Darren Seferina, Danny Diekroeger and Andrew Sohn in the two-hit club. Seferina and Sohn both tripled while Diekroeger's extra-base hit was a double. Sohn scored once, driving in two and was one-for-two in stolen base attempts. Seferina and Diekroeger each scored twice, the latter working one of the Spikes' two bases-on-balls.

With this much offense, it was not a good day for either pitching staff. Cody Schumacher, the first of five Spikes hurlers, went the initial four innings, yielding four hits and a free pass, resulting in three tallies, two earned. He also hit a batter.

Kyle Grana, Cardinal Nation's Reliever of the Month for June 2014, allowed a run on two hits and a walk in the fifth, giving way to Nick Lomascolo (W, 1-0) who was the pitcher of record when his team took the lead. Lomascolo did well, relatively speaking, permitting a run on two hits over two.

Tyler Bray did not have a good outing, serving up four runs on a hit, two bases-on-balls and a hit batsman while recording just one out. Three of the four runners crossed with Josh Lucas on the mound. Lucas allowed all three inherited runners to score on two hits in 1 1/3, striking out two, but still picked up his fourth save.

Saturday's game: vs. Jamestown (8-13) (PIT), 6:30 pm ET, Austin Gomber (0-1, 2.25)

Johnson City 7 vs. Princeton 0

Ian McKinney fanned 10 in eight as the JC-Cards blanked the Rays 7-0, evening the series at one game each. First-place Johnson City (9-5) leads Elizabethton (MIN) by a half-game.

Player of the Day McKinney controlled Princeton on two hits and a base-on-balls. The 19-year-old induced five ground- to six-fly-ball outs and hit one batter. Ismael Brito finished the superb pitching effort, striking out two in the ninth, yielding one hit.

The Appy Birds' 13-hit effort was provided by eight players, seven of whom came around to score. Designated hitter Casey Grayson and first baseman Jesus Ustariz smacked their first long balls, resulting in four tallies. Grayson went 3-for-4 with a three-run bomb that was part of his four RBI while Ustariz' solo shot capped his team's scoring in the eighth. Ustariz, Cole Lankford and Oscar Mercado all went 2-for-4 with Lankford also driving in one.

Saturday's game: vs. Princeton (8-7), 7:00 pm ET, Juan Perez (2-0, 6.48)

GCL Cardinals 7 vs. GCL Nationals 1

A trio of Gulf Birds pitchers joined forces for a three-hitter as the GCL Cardinals (11-2) rolled to a 7-1 victory over the GCL Nationals for their fifth straight win. The Cardinals have widened the gap between them and the second-place Mets to four games.

Frederis Parra gave up all three hits to go with two free passes, yielding a run through five, striking out two. Ramon Santos and Drew Reidt each tossed two frames, Santos walking one while Reidt faced the minimum.

First baseman Elier Rodriguez reached base every time up, going 3-for-3 with a double, run scored and took one for the team. Third baseman Michael Massi garnered his first multi-hit game, singling twice and doubling once in four at-bats with a run scored and an RBI.

18-year-old centerfielder Magneuris Sierra tallied his fourth multi-hit performance in his last five games, singling twice in five at bats while touching home once and stealing two bags. Catcher Frankie Rodriguez produced at the plate, going 1-for-2 with two bases-on-balls, two runs scored and one driven in.

Saturday's game: at GCL Nationals (5-6), 10:00 am ET

DSL Cardinals 7 at DSL Yankees1 8 (11)

Twice the Dominican Birds' bats took the lead and twice their pitching staff gave it back, leading to an 8-7 loss to the DSL Yankees1 in 11. The DSL Cardinals (11-19) remain in eighth, but have dropped 10 games off the pace set by the DSL Giants.

The home team took an instant 2-0 lead in the first but the Dominican Cards answered with a three-run fourth plus two in the fifth. David Oca yielded the last of his three runs on a solo home run in the sixth, his final inning of work. The lefty allowed seven hits and two walks, striking out five and departing with a 5-3 lead.

That advantage lasted only until the seventh when the Yankees pushed across two off Enrique Perez (BS, 1) who yielded a hit and two free passes in 2/3 of an inning. Franyel Casadilla held the opposition at bay on a hit over the next 2 1/3, fanning three.

The visitors took their second lead with two in the 10th, leaving the save opportunity to Jose Lara (BS, 2) (L, 0-2). Lara gave up two in the 10th plus an unearned run that proved the difference maker in the 11th, five hits overall.

Second baseman Luis Flores had a quarter of his team's 16 hits, going 4-for-6 with a double and two RBI. Jonathan Rivera, Allen Cordoba and Joaquin De La Cruz each had three hits, Rivera doubling and touching home once while Cordoba tripled, crossed twice and knocked in one, both in six at-bats. De La Cruz went 3-for-4 with a walk, run scored and one driven in. Catcher Dennis Ortega singled twice in five at bats, crossed home twice with an RBI.

Saturday's game: at DSL Mets1 (16-14), 10:30 am ET, TBA

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