Great Pitching Features in Three Win

Las Vegas, Inland Empire and Great Lakes got superb starting pitching. Jon Melon sparked Las Vegas to a 4-1 win over Nashville, aided by John-Ford Griffin's two-run homer. Clayton Kershaw was roughed up in Jacksonville's 6-5 loss to Mobile. James Adkins and Josh Bell led Inland Empire to a 2-1 win over Cucamonga and Steven Johnson smothered South Bend 3-0.

Meloan Solid in 4-1 Victory
The Double-A Reliever of the Year has seemingly regained his touch as a starter. Jon Meloan was asked to move from the bullpen to a starting role before the season and after a few glitches along the way, has made the transition.

"It was something the Dodgers offered me, and I said OK," he said. "It sounded good to me."

He worked six innings and allowed a single run on five hits while striking out five. He left trailing 1-0 and John-Ford Griffin hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh inning and Danny Ardoin and Xavier Paul added RBIs in the eighth to give the 51s a 4-1 victory over Nashville.

Las Vegas was held hitless through five before Angel Chavez singled to lead off the sixth inning.

While Meloan didn't get a decision, the 23-year-old is 2-3 with a 3.73 ERA after eight starts.

Las Vegas manager Lorenzo Bundy removed Meloan after he made 101 pitches, 57 for strikes. It was Meloan's longest start since April 16, when he also went six innings.

Ramon Troncoso (2-0) collected the win after a pair of scoreless innings, allowing only one hit. Brian Falkenborg nailed it down with his fifth save.

"The thing with Jon is, as a reliever, what we noticed was a slight drop in velocity when we used him on back-to-back days," Bundy said. "By him starting, hopefully it allows him to get some of that arm strength back and to develop three pitches."

Meloan's fastball hits 90 mph, and he also uses a changeup, curve and cutter.

"As a starter you try to make 100 good pitches instead of 15 or 20. It's a different mind-set but overall it's still pitching," Meloan said. "I've had some ups and downs so far, but I've liked it. I think it will make me more versatile in the long run."

Meloan was a starter for the University of Arizona, recording a 24-4 record from 2003-05, helping lead the Wildcats to the College World Series in 2004.

The Dodgers drafted the 6-foot-3-inch righthander in the fifth round in 2005. He split last year between Double-A Jacksonville and Las Vegas, combining for a 7-2 record and 20 saves, while racking up 91 strikeouts in 66.2 innings.

He was named the Double-A Reliever of the Year by MLB.com. and made his major league debut with the Dodgers pitching two scoreless innings at San Diego.

"There's only 30 closers in the big leagues," Meloan said. "But there's 150 starters, so opportunities are probably a little higher in a starting role."

Las Vegas was held to five hits and outfielder Terry Tiffee, leading the Pacific Coast League with a .430 batting average, went 0-for-3 to end his hitting streak at 18 games. He left in the seventh inning with a bruised thumb and probably won't play today.

Infielder Luis Maza was called up for his first appearance in The Show, replacing Dodger shortstop Rafael Furcal who went on the disabled list with a bad back.

Eric Stults draws the start tonight against the Sounds Richie Gardner.
  Score by Innings
Nashville	010 000 000-1
Las Vegas	000 000 22x-4

  Las Vegas	ab r  h  bi ave
Repko rf	3  0  0  0  .224
Chavez ss	4  0  1  0  .293
Tiffee lf	3  0  0  0  .430
 Troncoso p	0  0  0  0  .000
 Stults ph	1  0  0  0  .444
 Falkenborg p	0  0  0  0  .000
LaRoche 3b	1  1  0  0  .314
 Lindsey 1b	4  1  2  0  .322
Howard 2b	3  0  0  0  .279
Ardoin c	1  0  0  1  .271
Paul cf         4  1  1  1  .265
Meloan p	1  0  0  0  .250
 Griffin lf	2  1  1  2  .276
  Totals	27 4 5 4
  Nashville	32 1 6 1

 HR- Griffin (1). RBI- Griffin
2 (18), Ardoin (15), Paul (23).
S- Meloan. LOB- Las Vegas 8,
Nashville 10. SB- Paul 2 (6).

  Las Vegas	    in  h  r-er bb so  era
Meloan	           6.0  5  1-1  4  6  3.73
Troncoso (2-0)	   2.0  1  0-0  1  3  5.56
Falkenborg (sv 5)  1.0  0  0-0  0  1  6.11
  T- 3:01. Att- 2,355.
BayBears Claw Suns
Mobile scored a run in the eighth inning to break a 5-5 tie and earn a 6-5 win, tagging reliever Zach Hammes with the loss in the process at Hank Aaron Stadium.

Clayton Kershaw, switched back to a starting role after working in relief a few days ago, didn't get a decision -- again -- but that was a good thing in this case. The young lefthander took a 2-1 lead into the fourth inning but was pounded for four hits before leaving with one out.

His teammates tied the game in the fifth to get him off the hook but his earned run average took a hit, jumping to 2.21.

Outfielder James Tomlin hit a first-inning leadoff home run, his second homer in 2008, and Shane Justis singled home Greg Jacobs, who had doubled for an early 2-0 lead.

Kershaw wild pitched in a run in the second and was removed from the game in the fourth inning when he hit his 68-pitch limit. The five earned runs he allowed were the most Kershaw has given up in 13 Double-A starts, including eight this year.

He was tagged for two singles, a double and a sac fly in the fourth before Danny Muegge took over and allowed a double to score the fourth run.

Muegge pitched 2.2 scoreless innings and Hammes allowed only a pair of hits and a single run in his two innings but took the loss after the Suns had tied the game with three in the fifth.

With two out, Jacobs doubled and scored on Russ Mitchell's single. Mitchell stole second and scored on Jamie Hoffmann's single and Shane Justis double in the tying run.

LHP Marlon Arias (3-2, 4.80) will face the BayBears RH Matt Torra (4-1, 1.71) tonight.
  Score by Innings
Jacksonville	200 030 000-5
Mobile	        010 400 10x-6

  Jacksonville	ab r  h  bi  ave
Tomlin cf	4  1  2    .333
De Jesus ss	5  0  2  0  .288
Jacobs lf	5  2  2  0  .275
Mitchell 3b	5  1  2  1  .303
Hoffmann rf	3  1  1  1  .246
Justis 2b	4  0  2  2  .333
 Hammes p	0  0  0  0  .000
Rivera c	4  0  0  0  .198
AGonzalez 1b	4  0  1  0  .241
Kershaw p	2  0  0  0  .200
 Muegge p	1  0  1  0  .333
 JGonzalez 2b	1  0  0  0  .294
  Totals       34  5 13 5
  Mobile       30 6  8 5

  2B- Jacobs 2 (7), Justis (6),
AGonzalez (3). HR- Tomlin (2). 
RBI- Tomlin (12), Justis 2 (9),
Mitchell (17), Hoffmann (9).
LOB- Jacksonville 8, Mobile 8.
SB- Mitchell (4). CS- Justis (2).

  Jacksonville	in  h  r-er bb so  era
Kershaw 	3.1  5  5-5  0  3  2.21
Muegge 	        2.2  1  0-0  1  3  2.79
Hammes (1-3)	2.0  2  1-1  0  0  8.37
  T- 3:04. Att- 2,327.
  
Bell Rings Bell's Bell
The suddenly rejuvenated 66ers faced a pair of rehabbing Anaheim Angels, starter Dustin Moseley and second baseman Macier Izturis, but it made little difference and they ran their winning streak to four with a 2-1 victory.

66er Josh Bell's long home run off the Quakes Trevor Bell tied the score in the sixth and the 66ers added one more, then hung on for the win.

Left-hander James Adkins (2-2) out dueled Moseley, allowing only four hits and a single run over six and two-thirds innings, leaving in the seventh with the bases loaded.

Javy Guerra got an inning-ending strikeout and added three more Ks and two more hitless innings to earn his first save of the season.

Trailing 1-0 in the sixth, a mammoth home run off the Angel's 2005 1st round draft pick Trevor Bell by third baseman Josh Bell tied the score. The ball easily cleared the 20-foot right center field fence.

The second, and winning, run followed on a double by Carlos Santana and two Quake errors. Bridger Hunt collected the other two Inland Empire hits.

Tonight the 66ers (14-23) send left handed Venezuelan native Alberto Bastardo against Rancho Cucamonga's Tommy Mendoza.
  Score by Innings
Rancho	        000 100 000-1
Inland Empire	000 002 00x-2

  Inland Empire	ab r  h  bi  ave
Rogowski lf	4  0  0  0  .271
Hunt 2b         4  0  2  0  .273
Giles dh	4  0  0  0  .271
Bell 3b         2  1  1  1  .274
Santana c	2  1  1  0  .301
Perez 1b	4  0  1  0  .260
Berezay rf	3  0  0  0  .252
Robinson cf	3  0  0  0  .220
Pedroza ss	3  0  2  0  .210
  Totals	29 2 7 1
  Rancho	30 1 4 1

  2B- Santana (13). HR- Bell
(5). RBI- Bell (17). S- Berezay,
Santana. LOB- Inland Empire 8,
Rancho 6. SB- Rogowski 2 (10),
Perez (2), Santana (2). CS- Hunt
(3). DP- Hunt, Pedroza and Perez.

  Inland Empire	in  h  r-er bb so  era
Adkins (3-2)	6.2  4  1-1  4  3  3.40
Guerra (sv 1)	2.1  0  0-0  0  4  2.70
  T- 2:31. Att- 1,150.
Johnson Spectacular in 4-1 Win
Brad Golder/Loons.com
  On a day when former CMU standout Josh Collmenter received the attention, it was Steven Johnson who received the victory as the Great Lakes Loons defeated the South Bend Silver Hawks in front of 1,861 fans at Dow Diamond by a score of 3-0.

Johnson's 7.2 innings were the longest a Loons starter has pitched in a game during the 2008 season.

"It's always a good feeling when it's getting dark and you're still on the mound," said Johnson after the ballgame.

The Loons struck first in the fifth against Collmenter when Preston Mattingly ripped a two-out RBI single to left field to give the Loons the 1-0 lead.  

Scott Van Slyke's RBI sacrifice fly and Jovanny Rosario's RBI single in the sixth inning gave the Loons a pair of insurance runs making it 3-0.

Rosario led the Loons with three hits and an RBI in the victory.

Johnson baffled Silver Hawk hitters all evening long, allowing only four hits and striking out four before giving way to Matt Sartor, who picked up his second save of the season.

Johnson earned the victory to improve his record to 4-1. He is the first in the Dodger system to reach four wins.

"Today was just a great day," Johnson said. "Pitchers live for days like this."

Collmenter, who hails from nearby Homer, pitched five innings allowing one run to pick up the tough-luck loss dropping his record to 2-3.

The Loons improve to 17-18 while the Silver Hawks fall to 13-21.

The Loons and Silver Hawks continue their four game series tonight with Bryan Morris scheduled to start for Great Lakes.
  Score by Innings
South Bend	000 000 000-0
Great Lakes	000 012 00x-3

  Great Lakes	ab r  h  bi  ave
Rosario cf	5  1  3  1  .270
Mattingly 2b	4  0  1  1  .228
Silverio rf	4  0  1  0  .313
Lambo 1b	3  0  0  0  .271
Mathews dh	2  1  0  0  .198
Baez 3b         4  1  1  0  .194
Dalton ss	3  0  0  0  .200
Jansen c	3  0  1  0  .192
Van Slyke lf	2  0  1  1  .148
  Totals	30 3 8 3
  South Bend	31 0 4 0

  Error- Baez (7). 2B- Van Slyke
(4), Jansen (2). RBI- Mattingly
(12), Van Slyke (7), Rosario
(10). SF- Van Slyke. LOB- Great
Lakes 10, South Bend 5. SB-
Rosario (8), Mattingly (7).
CS- Rosario (5). DP- Dalton,
Mattingly and Lambo.

  Great Lakes	in  h  r-er bb so  era
Johnson (4-1)	7.2  4  0-0  1  4  1.69
Sartor (sv 2)	1.1  0  0-0  0  1  1.74
  T- 2:18. Att- 1,861.

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