Down on the Dodger Farm

When Brett Wayne was in high school, he was a pretty darn good pitcher. Went 7-0 his senior year. But he was an even better shortstop so his time on the mound was limited, then in college (St. Mary's, Cal.) he didn't pitch at all. That's not the case anymore and Columbus is beginning to benefit from it.

At the end of last season, one in which he hit .248 while playing short, it was mutually agreed on by the Dodgers and Wayne that if he was to have a future in pro ball, it was to be as a pitcher. That he's found a new home was evident Tuesday when he came in for five innings in which he didn't allow a hit as the Catfish managed to get past Charleston, S.C.(Devil Rays) in 13, 2-1 to keep their hopes burning in the SAL South.

Wayne, who features an excellent curve, walked only one while striking out six during his stint which was the best of three outstanding pitching performances for the Fish. Zach Hammes started, went five allowing only five hits and that lone run. Marcos Carvajal (4-1) came in after Wayne to throw two perfect innings and gain the victory when Andy LaRoche singled home Jereme Milons in the top of the 13th.

The other Catfish run was a sixth inning solo shot by Chin -Lung Hu, his fifth. With the win, Columbus pushed to within 2 1/2 games of Charleston although both Capital City (1 1/2 out ) and Rome (2 back) stand between them.

Brennan King supplied the muscle and Derek Thompson the arm as Jacksonville also came through with a big victory over the division leader, getting past Chattanooga (Reds), 2-1. For the first time in his six-year pro career, King powered two home runs in a game giving him six for the season and the Suns just enough runs. Thompson (3-2) returned from a bit of arm soreness for seven strong innings in which he held the Lookouts to four hits and that solitary run.

Franquelis Osoria and Yhency Brazoban each pitched a scoreless innings with Brazoban earning his ninth save. With the victory the Suns moved back into second place in the Southern League East, just 1 1/2 behind Chattanooga .

With every starter contributing at least one hit and most more than that, Vero Beach combined for 15 in all for a 12-4 romp past the Daytona Cubs. It started with Alex Requena's leadoff home run, his first of the season, and went on from there. Jesse Hoorelbeke smote his second and third homers, Brian Sprout had three hits, Delwyn Young, a pair of doubles; Russell Martin sent his eighth out plus a single, Joel Guzman added a double and single to raise his average to .301 and Scott Gillitzer had a pair of hits.

This meant that Eric Hull, just back from Jacksonville, had no trouble in achieving his third win against a single loss. Clint Hosford went the final three for his first save. Vero is 5 1/2 out in the Florida State East.

There wasn't any such joy for Las Vegas, however, with the 51's stumbling again, this time falling before Tacoma (Mariners), 5-1. Mark Johnson pitched okay (6.1 innings, six hits, three runs) but still took the loss so is 2-4. Both Daylon Holt and Nick Theodorou had two hits in what little offense the 51's, now 10 back in the PCL South, could muster.

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