PEARL, Mississippi-- With a spent bullpen, the Suns used right fielder Jon Weber to pitch the final inning in an 8-7 loss in 12 innings to the Mississippi Braves. Weber (0-1) earned the loss, walking two and uncorking a wild pitch, allowing the winning run to score from third. Weber hadn't pitched since 1998 while with Texas Tech. The Suns' bullpen pitched eight innings Friday and six innings Saturday prior to Weber being called upon. The Suns squandered a 7-2 lead when the Braves scored five runs in the eighth off relievers Carlos Alvarez and Luis Gonzalez. The Suns stranded the bases loaded in the ninth and 12th. Andy LaRoche hit a two-run home run in the seventh, giving the Suns a 6-2 lead. LaRoche had three hits and knocked in three runs. James Loney, Nick Alvarez and Sergio Garcia each had RBI singles. Suns starter Justin Orenduff struck out seven and allowed two runs over five innings. He doubled in a run in the second inning, garnering his first career run batted in. Beltran Perez pitched scoreless ninth, 10th and 11th innings. Chad Billingsley (10-6, 4.02 ERA) is scheduled to start against Mississippi today. Sun Spots: Edwin Jackson was promoted to the Dodgers and will spot start at 1:05 p.m. Monday at Florida. …It was the longest game in terms of innings (12) and time (four hours, 41 minutes) for the Suns this season. The game ended at 11:47 p.m. local time. …The Suns have not lost a nine inning game since August 5. …The Suns tied season-highs with six doubles and three double plays. ...Weber was the first Suns position player to pitch since Tarrik Brock on Sept. 1, 2003, at Tennessee. ...The Suns were 57-2 when leading after seven innings before losing two of the last three games. --Joe Block
VERO BEACH, Florida-- Despite three home runs, including a franchise-tying 26th home run by Matt Kemp, the Vero Beach Dodgers dropped their seventh game in the last eight tries in a 5-4 decision to the Jupiter Hammerheads. Anthony Raglani and Jimmy Rohan hit solo home runs in the loss. Kemp's shot tied Adrian Beltré's mark set in 1997. Raglani's long ball (#18) went off the light pole in right field in the first inning to give the Dodgers an early lead. Jupiter came back to score twice in the third and added two more in the fourth. Starter Brian Pilkington then settled down, keeping Jupiter off the scoreboard over the next 3.1 innings. Rohan's homer (#2) came with two out in the fifth and made it 4-2. A.J. Ellis followed with a walk, then Mayke Cabrera singled him to second. Chin-lung Hu followed with a double down the left field line to score Ellis and bring the Dodgers within a run. Kemp led off the next inning with his home run, a majestic shot that sailed far over the left field scoreboard and tied the game. The Hammerheads went back on top in the eighth with a single run off Casey Hoorelbeke (8-3).
COLUMBUS, Georgia-- Brandon Carter legged out a fielder's choice and an errant throw by the Greenville shortstop allowed LF Ryan Carter to score from third as the Fish pulled out an extra-inning 4-3 win in the series opener against the Bombers. Both Ryan Carter (#9) and CF Ryan Russ (#7) homered for the Catfish. RHP Nate Hochgesang (1-0) allowed a run in the ninth but pitched three innings, allowing just a run while striking out five to earn his first victory of the season for the Fish. Columbus led 1-0 in the second when Russ homered to put the Fish out in front. In the second on his 20th birthday, 3B Blake DeWitt drove home SS David Nicholson with a two out single to center to give the Fish a 2-0 lead. Greenville scored runs off starter RHP Chris Malone in the fourth and fifth to tie the game, but Carter's solo HR gave the Catfish the lead back in the bottom of the fifth. Malone pitched a scoreless sixth, while RHP Blake Johnson shut out the Bombers in the seventh, and Hochgesang threw a scoreless eighth. Dimas Reina (0-3, 5.79 ERA) taking the mound today against Greenville.
BILLINGS, Montana-- The Raptors split a double header with the Billings Mustangs Saturday night, winning the first game 4-2, losing the second game 4-1.
In the second game the Raptors only run came on a David Sutherland solo home run (#3) over the right field wall. It was Sutherland's second homer in his last six games. The game was tied at 1-1 going into the 6th inning. Billings scored three unearned runs on two hits off Kris Krise (0-3). The Raptors held first place in the Pioneer League South Division. Raptor Notes: Right-hander Mario Alvarez (3-2, 6.38 earned run average) will face Great Falls left-hander Carlos Perez (1-5, 4.50) tonight at 7. ... The Raptors went over 100,000 fans at Lindquist Field for the 2005 season. They drew 4,759 rowdy fans Monday and now have 103,866 for the season.
VERO BEACH, Florida-- The Dodgers converted a 2-1 deficit into a 13-2 lead by scoring 12 runs in the fourth inning en route to an easy 17-5 victory over the Mets. Arismendy Castillo (3-2), pitching in relief of starter Mike Megrew, worked four innings and earned the win. Matt Paul led the attack with a single, two doubles and four RBI. Kenley Jensen knocked in three with a trio of singles and Trey Robinson singled and doubled, good for three RBI. Seventeen Dodgers came to the plate in the big inning, with seven batters coming to the plate twice and Jensen collecting a single and a three-run double and Eloy Gutierrez collecting two runs batted in on a single and a bases-loaded walk.