Chris Withrow's Strong Effort Sparks 66ers

Another of the Dodgers first round picks, Chris Withrow, made a spectacular debut, holding the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes without a hit over his five-innings of work in a 7-2 win. Albuquerque was again battered by Omaha, his time 10-4 and Chattanooga lost a tough, 7-6 decision on a pair of errors in the 10th. Great Lakes had an open date on Easter.

Albuquerque (1-3) staged a mini-rally in the bottom of the ninth but the three runs did little but change the score as Omaha banged out 16 hits and earned a 10-4 decision.

Trailing 10-2 in the bottom of the ninth, second baseman Chin-Lung Hu and designated hitter Dee Brown singled and Hu scored on a double play. shortstop Juan Castro lined a base hit and Luis Maza belted a two-run home run to at finish on a positive note.

The battery of knuckleballer Charlie Haeger and catcher A.J. Ellis had a hard time getting coordinated. A pair of hits and two passed balls gave the Royals a 2-0 lead.

Trailing 3-0 in the second, a walk to first baseman Valentino Pascucci, a single by Hu and a second single by Brown broke an 11-inning scoreless streak for Albuquerque that dated back to Friday.

After that, Royals starter Brandon Duckworth held the 'Topes to one hit and a walk until he left after four. Former Dodger Tim Hamulack (1-0), earned the win with two scoreless innings.

Haeger was knocked out in the fifth after four hits and a hit batsman. He left the game having allowed seven runs on 11 hits. Erick Threets entered the game with runners on first and second with nobody out but coaxed a pop-out and double-play to end the threat.

Omaha struck tagged Threets for a run in the seventh on an RBI single by Hulett, but Dwayne Pollok entered the game with none out and produced a pop out before getting another inning-ending twin killing.

Maza Hu and Brown finished with a pair of hits each.

Albuquerque hopes to end its three-game skid when the Iowa Cubs, Triple-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs, come to town for an afternoon game. Veteran southpaw Shawn Estes takes the mound for the Isotopes against former University of Notre Dame football and baseball standout, Jeff Samardzija.


Score by Innings
 Omaha	        210 130 102-10
 Albuquerque	010 000 003- 4

  Albuquerque	ab r  h  bi ave
Maza 3b	        5  1  2  2  .235
Repko rf	5  0  1  0  .333
Paul cf	        2  0  1  0  .429
 Jones ph-rf	1  0  0  0  .091
Pascucci 1b	2  1  0  0  .167
Young lf	4  0  1  0  .111
Hu 2b	        4  1  2  0  .438
Brown dh	4  0  2  0  .600
Ellis c	        4  0  1  0  .385
Castro ss	4  1  1  0  .182
-----------------------------
  Totals	36  4  11  3
  Omaha	        39 10  16  9

  HR- Maza (1). RBI- Brown (4),
Maza 2 (4). LOB- Albuquerque 7,
Omaha 8. SB- Paul (1). DP- (3) Hu,
Castro and Pascucci 2; Castro, Hu
and Pascucci. 

  Albuquerque 	in  h r-er bb so  era
Haeger (0-1)	4.0 11  7-7  4  1 15.75
Threets	        2.0  3  1-1  0  1  6.00
Pollok        3.0  2  2-2  0  1  3.60
  PB- Ellis 2(2). HBP- by Haeger.
T- 2:52. Att- 4,401.
Errors Drop Lookouts
Chattanooga (1-3) saw 4-0 and 6-3 leads disappear before a pair of errors in the 10th inning cost them the game and series at Birmingham.

John Shelby, Jr., son of former Dodger player and coach by the same name, was a thorn in the Lookouts' side all during the series. After Chattanooga took a 4-0 lead, he walked to start a three-run rally. Trailing 6-3 in the seventh his two-run double tied the game at 6-6.

Shelby led off the 10th with a walk, moved to second on a throwing error by catcher Lucas Man and moved to third on a wild pickoff attempt by reliever Brent Leach. A single scored Shelby to end the game.

The Lookouts took a 2-0 lead in the second when third baseman Josh Bell singled and designated hitter Russ Mitchell lived on an error. May's pop-up dropped for a second and Bell scored before center fielder Jovanny Rosario's ground ball drove in Mitchell. Right fielder Jamie Hoffman doubled and scored on a fielding error in the third.

Birmingham scored three times on starter Travis Chick to cut the lead to 4-3 but May doubled in the fourth and came around on Rosario's sac fly. Left fielder Andrew Lambo doubled and Hoffman walked in the fifth and both of them scored on first baseman Gabe Martinez's doubled and the Lookouts stretched their lead to 6-3.

In the bottom of the seventh, Jacobo Meque was touched for a single, two doubles and a walk in the seventh and Francisco Felix put out the fire but not before Birmingham had tied the score. Felix worked a scoreless ninth, then handed the ball to Leach (0-1) for the fateful 10th.

Chattanooga put four men on base in the final three innings but couldn't get any of them across the plate.

May singled twice and doubled to lead the Lookouts. Lambo added a singe and a double while Martinez and Rosario each knocked in two runs.

Game five of the series completes the series tonight in Birmingham. James Adkins draws the start for the Lookouts.

  Score by Innings
Chattanooga	021 120 000 0-7
Birmingham	000 300 300 1-6

  Chattanooga	ab  r  h  bi ave
Mercedes 2b	5  0  0  0  .150
 Gonzalez 2b	0  0  0  0  .000
Lambo lf	5  1  2  0  .421
Hoffmann rf	2  2  1  0  .357
Martinez 1b	5  0  2  2  .316
Bell 3b	        4  1  1  0  .188
Mitchell dh	5  1  0  0  .222
May c	        5  1  3  1  .333
Sellers ss	4  0  0  0  .250
Rosario cf	4  0  1  2  .231
-----------------------------
  Totals	39  6 10  5
  Birmingham	30  7  6  6

  Errors- may (1), Leach (2). 2B-
Hoffmann (2), May (1), Lambo (2),
Martinez (1). RBI- May (1),
Rosario 2 (2), Martinez 2 (5). S-
Sellers. LOB- Chattanooga 10,
Birmingham 6. DP- (2) Bell,
Mercedes and Martinez: Mercedes,
Sellers and Martinez.

  Chattanooga 	in  h r-er bb so era
Chick	        6.0  2  3-3  4  1  4.50
Meque	        0.2  3  3-3  1  0 27.00
Felix	        1.1  0  0-0  0  1  1.69
Leach (0-1)	1.0  1  1-0  0  1  0.00
  WP- Chick. HBP- Mercedes.
T- 3:11. Att-1,949.
Withrow Helps Sixers Earn Split Right-hander Chris Withrow, who was selected by Los Angeles in the first round of the 2007 draft, was limited to just 13 innings in his first two years seasons of injuries.

But tossed five hitless innings in his first start to lead the Inland Empire 66ers (2-2) to a 7-2 win over visiting Rancho Cucamonga as the 66ers earned a series split.

The 20-year-old Texan, who threw more innings than he did all of 2008, struck out six, including the first three hitters he faced, and walked two.

He needed just 55 pitches to complete his five inning start and manager Carlos Subero preferred to take the cautious route given Withrow's history and replace him with Thomas Melgarejo, who allowed only one hit over the next three innings.

"It's early and there is no reason to take a chance with Withrow," Subero said. "We were going to keep it to five innings no matter what and he did a great job. It was just great to see him get out there. At times, he completely overmatched them."

Withrow (1-0) threw a total of only nine innings in six appearances in 2007 and pitched just four innings in four relief outings last season, his debut not coming until Aug. 10.

"It was tendonitis in the shoulder, the elbow - a little bit of everything. It has been frustrating," he said. "Spring training went well and my arm felt fine. This is a good start. Hopefully all the injuries are behind me."

Withrow's teammates pounded out 10 hits, scoring twice in the first inning when center fielder Tray Robinson was hit by a pitch and scored on left fielder Preston Mattingly's double. A wild pitch and a ground ball by right fielder Tommy Giles made it 2-0.

The game was tight until the fifth when second baseman Garrett Green smacked his first homer of the season, sparking a four-run inning.

Third baseman Pedro Baez's first hit of the season, a three-run home run to left center, put the game on ice.

Mattingly reached base three times on a single, double and a walk, scoring each time. He also made the defensive play with a sliding catch shallow left.

First baseman Eduardo Perez ripped two stand-up triples, one more than he had all of last season.

"I might get the win but the guys played great behind me," Withrow told the San Bernardino Sun. "They made all the plays defensively and scored some runs. That made my job easier."

Rancho Cucamonga prevented the shutout with a pair of runs in the ninth off Daigoro Rondon.

The Sixers will start a three-game set at Lancaster tonight with right-hander Tim Sexton, 5-8 in 28 appearances at Inland Empire last season, on the mound.

  Score by Innings
Rancho Cucamonga	000 000 002-2
Inland Empire		200 012 10x-7

  Inland Empire		ab r  h  bi  ave
Robinson cf		3  1  1  0  .267
Lara ss		        5  0  1  0  .235
Mattingly lf		4  3  2  1  .167
Giles rf		4  0  0  1  .250
Perez 1b		3  1  2  1  .429
Baez 3b		        3  1  1  3  .111
Van Slyke dh		4  0  0  0  .000
Garabedian c		2  0  0  0  .000
Green 2b		4  1  2  1  .286
-----------------------------
  Totals		29  7  9  2
  Rancho		29  2  4  2 

  Error- Green (1). 2B- Mattingly
(1). 3B- Perez 2. HR- Green (1),
Baez (1). RBI- Mattingly (1),
Giles (1), Green (1), Baez 3 (3),
Perez (2). LOB- Inland Empire 8,
Rancho 5. SB- Robinson (1). CS-
Robinson (1), DP- 2 Robinson,
Lara and Green: Green, Lara and
Perez.

  Inland Empire 	in  h r-er bb so  era
Withrow (1-0)		5.0  0  0-0  2  6  0.00
Melgarejo		3.0  1  0-0  0  1  0.00
Rondon		        1.0  3  2-2  1  0  6.00
  HBP- Robinson, Mattingly, by Withrow,
by Melgarejo. T- 2:42. Att- 1,406.
Great Lakes––No Game Scheduled

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