Cardinals Minor League Notebook: 9/11/15

Nick Thompson and Alex De Leon provided the firepower while Austin Gomber shone on the mound in Peoria’s series’ clinching win over Kane County.

Results from the game played Thursday, September 10th

Peoria 3 at Kane County 2

The Chiefs swept Kane County (ARI) out of the post-season with a 3-2 win, taking the series two games to none. Peoria will face Cedar Rapids (MIN) in the best-of-three Western Division Finals beginning Saturday at Dozer Park. The Kernels eliminated Quad Cities (HOU), the first-half division winner, two games to none.

Austin Gomber (W, 1-0) pitched a dandy, striking out seven in six innings while permitting six hits. The only runner to score against the lefty came on two hits in the first. Gomber threw 92 pitches, 64 for strikes and departed with his team holding a 3-1 advantage.

Nick Thompson was responsible for two of the three scores, with the right fielder launching one over the wall in left center, scoring Alex De Leon (single). That made the score 2-1 midway through two and was Thompson’s only hit in four at bats.

The visitors’ final run came in the sixth when they capitalized on their hosts’ erratic pitching. Oscar Mercado and Harrison Bader were both hit by pitches, putting two aboard with one out for De Leon, whose single to left brought Mercado in. De Leon and Darren Seferina each had two of eight team hits while Mercado drew the sole base-on-balls.

Handed a 3-1 lead, Peoria gave half of it back in the seventh after Nick Frey allowed two hits, recording just one out. Sasha Kuebel retired three but not before giving up a hit and walk, scoring one of Frey’s runners.

Tyler Bray retired both batters faced before some unofficial fireworks erupted in the top of the ninth. A check swing call on a Chiefs’ batter brought Kane County manager Mark Grudzielanek out of the dugout to argue with first base umpire Brock Ballou. Ballou was having none of it, tossing Grudzielanek. He then tossed the Kane County pitcher for good measure.

Enter Kyle Grana to close out the game. Grana allowed a lead-off single but recovered for a fly out before catching a Cougars’ batter looking at strike three, the latter call triggering yet another Kane County ejection, this time the batter by home plate umpire Tyler Olsen. A pop out to third earned Grana his first save of the postseason.

Friday’s game: Off

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