Down on the Dodgers Farm June 15

As the season began, Shane Victorino had been sent to Las Vegas with instructions to pattern his game after Dave Roberts. It didn't work that way for him so he found himself back in Jacksonville. Now, if he wants to emulate Rickey Henderson, that's perfectly okay with L.A.

Victorino, who simply didn't get on enough at Vegas, has never hit more than four home runs in a season before. Suddenly, he's Rickey -- a leadoff man with muscle. He not only rocked one, he sent two out Tuesday which gives him four in five nights for Jacksonville who profited by taking the Carolina (Marlins) 8-4 . >br>
The victory enabled the Suns to move past the losing Mudcats into third place in the Southern League East, just 1 1/2 games behind Chattanooga and Tennessee, which are deadlocked in first. Victorino added a single to his big evening with a bases-loaded double by Reggie Abercrombie starting the assault in the fifth. Nick Alvarez helped out with his fifth home run.

Although he was to give up three dingers himself, Dimas Reina (1-2) picked up the win. Yhency Brazoban pitched the final 2.1 innings for his 11th save.

Columbus received plenty of everything it needed, 16 hits to back strong pitching, to blank the Rome Braves 9-0 to keep its first-half hopes burning. Mike Nixon pounded a triple and two singles, Jereme Milons added three hits, Matt Kemp sent No. 5 out plus a single, with Xavier Paul and Jimmy Rohan also good for a pair of hits in the barrage.

Not that Julio Pimentel and company needed all that. Pimentel, who struck out 16 his last time out, only K'ed four this time but so what -- he threw six innings of the shutout for his seventh victory (he's lost four), tops in the organization. Chris Testa (two innings ) and Marcos Carvajal (one) iced the effort. As a result, Columbus and Rome are now tied for third in the SAL South, three behind Capital City with Charleston, S.C. 1 1/2 out in second place with five games to go in the first half.

Walks and a home run did Vero Beach in, however, as the Dodgers lost ground in the Florida State East as they were edged 3-2 by Brevard County (Expos) to drop 4 1/2 back, also with five games left in the half.

A shot down the left field line that stayed fair by Brian Sprout (No. 2) had given Vero a 2-0 lead but starter Chad Billingsley walked six in his 3.1 innings, two of those following a single in the fourth to load the bases. Reliever Richard Barlett then passed the next two to force a 2-all tie that was erased when Bartlett (2-2) was reached for a sixth inning blast.

Las Vegas ended a four-game losing streak by taking Portland (Padres) 7-2. Tom Farmer held the Beavers to two hits over five innings, his best effort yet, to right his record at 3-3. Chin Feng Chen, Jason Repko and Rick Bell all had three hits for the 51's with Chen's total including his 13th double and Repko's his first triple. Vegas remains 13 out in the PCL South.

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