The week ended in a bang for Daytona on Saturday night in an 11-10 win over Jupiter. Aside from the fact that Anderson Tavarez snapped a string of five straight losing decisions, two Cub players were given the heave-ho, as was one coach. The usually shy Chris Walker was tossed after going 3-for-5 at the plate. He finished the week on a five-game hitting streak with three more stolen bases to add to his total, which currently stands at 45.
Also tossed on Saturday night were right-hander Lee Gwaltney and hitting coach Mike Micucci. Gwaltney, making his 10th consecutive relief appearance, allowed six runs (one earned) to eight batters in a third of an inning. He has allowed only one earned run over his last nine outings, totaling 13 2/3 innings. The former Phillies sixth round pick in 2002 picked up his first career save on Tuesday against Clearwater.
For the week, Walker and Issmael Salas each collected eight hits while Brian Dopirak managed six RBI despite only four hits in 21 at-bats. Starting outfielder Jeff Culpepper recorded five hits in 13 at-bats. Between Daytona and Boise, he is batting .271 in his first season of professional ball. Right-handed reliever Paul Schappert surrendered two runs on Saturday, just his third and fourth with the club, respectively, for a 1.19 ERA in 30-plus innings.
Scott Moore added four hits and drove in five runs on Saturday after his average fell to a season low .269 on Friday. Moore has struck out nine times over his last six games.
Peoria (Mid-A) Notes
Sean Gallagher picked up his organizational best 12th win on Thursday, allowing three runs (one earned) on four hits through six innings. He lowered his Midwest League best ERA to 2.24 and now has amassed 115 strikeouts through 22 starts.
Grant Johnson continued to pitch well. In his last four outings, the right-hander has allowed three earned runs in 21 2/3 innings. Tim Layden had an ERA of over 11 for July after surrendering 15 earned runs in only 12 outings. But the left-hander has three wins in his last four appearances, allowing one run in 6 1/3 innings during that span.
There wasn't much to note from an offensive standpoint. The team hit just .191 for the week with Ryan Harvey leading the way with eight hits. Harvey picked up three two-hit games, homered twice and drove in seven runs. Eric Patterson continues to shine in his rookie season. Patterson had six hits for the week and still leads the Midwest League with a .331 batting average this season.
Boise (Low-A, SS) Notes
Rookie outfielder Johnny Defendis is scorching hot. The 29th round pick from Rutgers has 10 hits in his last 22 at-bats to bring his average to .339 since joining the Hawks on July 17. The left-handed batter hit .370 in 53 games during his final season of college ball. Catcher Mark Reed has six hits in his last 16 at-bats and is batting above .250 for the first time since mid-July. He recorded just two multi-hit games last month. OF Jesus Valdes has a hit in all but one of his last 24 games. He is batting .250 (35-for-140) for the year.
The Hawks ended the week with a five-game losing streak but not because of the efforts of their starters. Darin Downs and Mitch Atkins each went five innings and allowed two runs. Downs notched four strikeouts to add to his season total of 42, which leads the team.