Cardinals Minor League Notebook: 8/12/15

It was four up and three down in the minors on Tuesday. Memphis, Palm Beach and Peoria all triumphed, due in no small part to noteworthy performances by Marco Gonzales, Luke Weaver and Austin Gomber. State College triumphed as well but Springfield, the GCL and DSL teams all fell. Johnson City’s double-header was rained out again.

Results from games played Tuesday, August 11th.

Memphis 5 at Omaha 0

Five runs in the last two innings broke open a pitcher’s duel, allowing the Redbirds to fly past the Storm Chasers, 5-0, in the series’ opener. Memphis (62-55) remains in second, four games behind Round Rock (TEX).

Dan Johnson had a third of his team’s hits, going 3-for-5 with a double and RBI. Jeremy Hazelbaker added his eighth Triple-A home run, coming with Cody Stanley (error) aboard. Dean Anna took part in three scores, singling once in three at bats with two free passes, touching home twice while knocking in one.

Marco Gonzales led a quartet of Redbirds pitchers twirling a four-hitter. Gonzales went six, allowing two hits and three walks on 96 pitches, 56 strikes. He struck out three.

Heath Wyatt (W, 2-0) worked around two hits for a scoreless seventh, aided when the second baserunner was nailed trying to stretch a single into a double. Two of the three outs recorded by Miguel Socolovich were Ks. Sam Tuivailala walked two in the ninth.

Wednesday’s game: at Omaha (63-54), 7:05 pm CT, Zach Petrick (7-5, 4.30)

Springfield 6 at Midland 10

Seven runs yielded by the S-Cards’ bullpen resulted in a 10-6 loss at Midland, the first of the three-game series. Springfield (24-21) remains atop the North Division, assisted by second-place Arkansas’ six-game losing skid. The Travelers are one game back.

Chris Perry (BS, 2) (L, 1-2) entered the fifth trying to protect a 4-3 lead. He recorded the final out, leaving two of reliever Thomas Lee’s runners on, but was not as effective the next inning. Perry gave up three runs on three hits and two walks. Newcomer Silfredo Garcia finished the damage, permitting four runs on five hits and a base-on-balls in two.

Starter Jimmy Reed did not help his own cause by not finishing the third, yielding three runs on six hits and a walk in 2 2/3. Reed threw 64 pitches, 37 for strikes. Lee recorded six outs, allowing two hits and a walk.

The S-Cards’ nine hits were spread among seven players, Nick Martini and Anthony Garcia having two apiece. Martini blasted a solo shot in three at bats, walking once and stealing a base, while Garcia went 2-for-5 with a run scored. Charlie Tilson touched home twice and swiped two bags, singling once in two at bats with two free passes.

Wednesday’s game: at first-place (South) Midland (30-15), 6:30 pm CT, Arturo Reyes (7-7, 2.64)

Palm Beach 2 at Charlotte 0

PB-Cards’ pitchers made single tallies in the first and third to hold up as the Beach Birds blanked Charlotte, 2-0, guaranteeing a series’ win with one game remaining. Palm Beach (31-13) remains in first, 3 1/2 in front of Bradenton (PIT).

Facing the Stone Crabs for the second straight start, Luke Weaver (W, 6-5) again blanked them, striking out six in seven, giving up five hits and issuing two free passes. Weaver coaxed five ground-ball versus three fly-ball outs.

Tyler Melling worked the next 1 2/3, striking out three and walking two. Robby Rowland retired his only batter faced, leaving Melling’s runners aboard, for his fifth save since joining Palm Beach.

Charlotte’s pitchers matched Palm Beach’s five hits given up but two of them occurred in the first, with Mason Katz doubling in C.J. McElroy (single). Katz reached again in the third on a swinging K/wild pitch combination. Luke Voit’s sac fly eventually drove him in. Stolen bases by Katz and McElroy proved key in the scoring.

Wednesday’s game: at sixth-place Charlotte (16-26), 7:00 pm ET, Blake McKnight (1-0, 2.00)

Peoria 2 at Dayton 1

Austin Gomber spun seven strong frames as Peoria (29-15) edged Dayton in the first of three games, 2-1. The win moves the Chiefs back into a tie for second with Quad Cities (HOU), three behind Kane County (ARI).

Gomber (W, 13-3) struck out nine, surrendering just one run on five hits. The 21-year-old induced eight ground-ball versus two fly-ball outs and was charged with a wild pitch.

Nick Frey and Dixon Llorens each tossed one scoreless inning, giving up one hit. Llorens earned his second save.

Both of the Chiefs’ tallies scored in the third when consecutive singles by Alex De Leon and Brian O’Keefe drove in Andrew Sohn (single) and Oscar Mercado (fielder’s choice). O’Keefe and Paul DeJong each had two of Peoria’s nine singles, in four and three at bats, respectively. DeJong was successful in his only stolen base attempt while Mercado went one-for-two, swiping his league-leading 42nd bag.

Wednesday’s game: at Dayton (19-25), 7:00 pm ET, Jack Flaherty (6-1, 2.75)

State College 7 vs. Mahoning Valley 5

Orlando Olivera’s hot night at the plate led State College (26-24) over Mahoning Valley, 7-5, for a three-game sweep. The Spikes are second in the Pinckney Division, trailing Williamsport (PHI) by 5 ½.

Olivera went 3-for-4 with a double, run scored and four RBI, including two in the seventh that put the Spikes up for good. Thomas Spitz and Leobaldo Pina both went 2-for-3 with a base-on-balls, Spitz scoring twice and Pina three times. One of Pina’s two hits was his first triple.

Starter Juan Perez was not able to finish the fifth, permitting a solo shot in the first and four more in his last inning of work. The right-hander allowed five hits and four free passes in 4 2/3.

Kender Villegas picked up his first win in three decisions, giving up two hits, one of them allowing two of three inherited runners to score. Jery Then pitched the final two frames, yielding a hit, for his first save.

Wednesday’s game: at Brooklyn (25-24), 7:00 pm ET, Landon Beck (1-3, 2.79)

Johnson City vs. Bristol – rained out

Another double-header between Johnson City (21-23) and Bristol was called off due to unplayable field conditions. They will try again to play two on Wednesday. The JC-Cards, who currently have a four-game losing streak, have fallen to fourth but are only 2 1/2 games in back of first-place Greeneville (HOU) in the tight West Division.

Wednesday’s games: vs. fifth-place Bristol (20-23). Game one – 6:00 pm ET, Ramon Santos (1-4, 6.97)/Harley Holt (1-2, 4.88)

GCL Cardinals 5 at GCL Nationals 6

A day after the Gulf Birds’ four-run ninth stunned their Nationals counterparts by flipping an easy win into a close loss, the Nationals returned the favor, sending the GCL Cardinals (22-22) to a 6-5 defeat. The second-place Gulf Cardinals trail in the four-game series, one game to two and are three behind the Mets in the standings.

Up 5-2 with three outs remaining, Estarlin Arias (BS, 2) (L, 3-4) instead gave up four runs, three earned, on a lead-off walk, three straight singles and a wild pitch that allowed the winning run to score. Arias did not record an out.

That spoiled a solid effort by Sandy Alcantara and Gerwuins Velazco. Alcantara went the initial six, yielding two tallies three hits and three bases-on-balls, fanning four. Velazco allowed two hits in two, striking out two.

Dylan Tice led the team with three of the team’s 10 hits but Allen Cordoba swung the most productive bat, taking part in four runs. Tice went 3-for-5 with a double and two RBI while Cordoba singled twice in four at bats with a free pass, scored two and drove in two. He also stole his sixth bag of 2015. Bladimil Franco, the final Gulf Bird with a multi-hit game, went 2-for-4 with an RBI.

Wednesday’s game: vs. GCL Nationals (20-24), 12:00 pm ET, Ian Oxnevad (0-1, 0.69)

DSL Rangers1 8 at DSL Cardinals 0

Oneiver Diaz absorbed his fifth loss against two wins, giving up a four-run fourth as part of his five-inning stint. Three of the four tallies were earned, coming on four hits and two walks. The DSL Cardinals (28-34) have already been eliminated from the postseason.

Fabian Blanco was charged with a run on two hits and a free pass in two, followed by Brian Pirela. Pirela faced the minimum in the eighth, the only Cardinals pitcher to not be scored upon. Frendy Gavin permitted three runs on three hits and two walks.

The home team had six hits, two by Starlin Balbuena, who singled and doubled in five at bats at the top of the order. The shortstop committed two errors, however.

Wednesday’s game: vs. DSL Mariners2 (41-21), 10:30 am ET, Will Changarotty (1-3, 2.63)

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