The Palm Beach Cardinals might have had a glimpse of the week to come when it started it off against Tampa's Shaeffer Hall. The Cards managed only three hits off the Yankees ace as he extended his record to 7-1 with a 2.35 ERA after Palm Beach fell 3-0.
Deryk Hooker was solid though not efficient in his Palm Beach debut. The young right-hander allowed only one run but gave up seven hits and two walks and was only able to last 4.2 innings. On the bright side, he did strike out six.
The Cards got their revenge the next night when D'Marcus Ingram singled home Domnit Bolivar in the bottom of the ninth to pick up the 6-5 victory. Charles Cutler singled, doubled, and scored a run. Alex Castellanos hit his sixth home run, a two-run shot in the sixth inning.
David Carpenter picked up the victory after blowing the save in the top of the ninth.
Palm Beach was able to manage a series split with a 6-4 victory on Sunday night. Cutler singled, doubled, and drove in a pair. Rich Racobaldo showed a little life reaching base three times with a single, a home run, and a walk.
Brett Zawacki picked up his fourth victory after scattering 12 hits in 6.2 innings of work. David Carpenter picked up his 13th save with a scoreless ninth.
After an off day, the Cardinals hit the road on Tuesday and Daytona did not play the role of gracious hosts. The Cubs topped the the visitors 7-5 after roughing up starter Kevin Thomas. The 24-year-old was tagged with his first loss since joining the rotation.
It was more of the same the next night as the Cardinals fell 4-3. Luis De La Cruz had a pair of hits and drove in a run. Cutler reached base three times with a pair of singles and a walk. Racobaldo drew two walks and stole a base.
After three bad outings, Scott Schneider rebounded nicely. The 22-year-old allowed one run on five hits while striking out five in 5.2 innings. He would not factor in the decision. Ramon Delgado was charged with the loss after the Cubs plated a pair of runs off the rock of the Palm Beach bullpen.
The team continued its struggles on Thursday night. The Cubs plated seven runs in the bottom of the first and then cruised to an 8-3 victory. Deryk Hooker was charged with seven runs, six earned, in only two-thirds of an inning.
At the plate, Nick Derba had two hits including his third home run of the season. D'Marcus Ingram and Ryan Jackson added two hits as well.
Alex Castellanos certainly does not want to see the month of July come to an end. During the month, the outfielder is hitting .346/.396/.679 with four home runs and 16 RBIs.
Also during the month, David Carpenter appears to have found his groove. The team's closer posted a record of 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA. In nine appearances, the right-hander has logged five saves and held his opponents to a .226 average.
Two players that started the season at the Quad Cities have really been struggling. D'Marcus Ingram is hitting only .186 in his last 10 games. Over the same stretch, Niko Vasquez is hitting only .206.
Around the League
After the team's rough week, the Cardinals now stand at 16-16 in the Florida State League South. The team is two games back of first place Bradenton.
With his hot July, Castellanos now ranks second in the league in doubles with 26, tied for fourth in triples with six, and ninth in slugging with a mark of .447.
David Carpenter is third in the league in appearances and seventh in the league with 13 saves.
The Cardinals will finish off its series with the Cubs before returning home to host Clearwater. After that four-game set, the team hits the road to face Dunedin.
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