Minor League Notebook | June 14

In close games the four teams in the Giants' system didn't fare so well. It took a comeback effort to win one, and the other two were bungled away. Fresno didn't have time to mess around with a slim lead and just clubbed their way to a 20 hit performance. Big things are ahead in Just Another Day in the Minors!

Fresno Grizzlies: Fresno 10, Colorado Springs 6 (click to see box score)

Lines of the day:
2B William Bergolla - 2-6, 1 R
CF Dan Ortmeier - 4-5, 4 R, 1 2B (10), 1 HR (6), 1 RBI (27)
1B Scott McClain - 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B (11), 1 BB
RF Justin Leone - 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B (11), 2 RBI (34)
LF Brian Horwitz - 3-5, 1 R, 1 RBI (8)
SS Ivan Ochoa - 4-5, 2 R, 1 3B (1), 2 RBI (15), 1 SB (6), 2 E (10)
C Justin Knoedler - 2-4, 1 RBI (25)
SP Matt Palmer - 5 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 9 SO, 1 HBP, W (5-3)
RP Dan Giese - 2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO, H (1)
RP Pat Misch - 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 SO, H (8)
RP Scott Atchison - 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO

Fresno's ascent to respectability hit a snag when they lost two of three to Sacramento but they bounced back with a big win over Colorado Springs Thursday. Dan Ortmeier returned to AAA after spending a month with the San Francisco Giants and in his third game back went crazy, hitting a home run and scoring four runs. Fresno rallied in the sixth inning for four runs and just kept scoring until their final out. The Grizzlies banged out 20 hits, Brian Horwitz and Ivan Ochoa joining Ortmeier in having huge games.

Matt Palmer was impressive over five innings. Palmer let the SkySox rally in the fifth inning for three runs but held it down long enough to give his hitters a chance to explode later. The bullpen stepped up again. Dan Giese pitched two scoreless innings. Pat Misch is one of the busiest relief pitchers on the staff, and here he got his eighth save of the year. Scott Atchison ended the game allowing one hit and two strikeouts in one inning.

Connecticut Defenders: Trenton 6, Connecticut 5 (click to see box score)

Lines of the day:
2B Eugenio Velez - 1-4, 2 R, 1 3B (4), 1 BB, 1 SB (18)
RF John Bowker - 2-3, 1 R, 1 HR (8), 4 RBI (33), 1 BB
DH Steve Holm - 2-4, 1 2B (5), 1 BB, 1 SO
SP Nick Pereira - 5 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 SO, 1 HR, 1 WP, L (3-6)
RP Justin Hedrick - 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 2 SO
RP Brian Anderson - 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO

Nick Pereira got smacked around and the Defenders made four errors in Thursday's loss, their fourth in a row. Trenton, the team with the best record in the Eastern League, swept Connecticut following a stretch where the Defenders had turned things around to win seven of their previous ten games. Pereira's unearned runs allowed could have made the difference in this game. The errors led to three unearned runs scoring. Pereira made two errors and threw a wild pitch. The right hander stumbled after two good starts in a row since the calendar turned to June. Pereira won both decisions and allowed one run in those games. The bullpen's outstanding effort went for naught. Justin Hedrick and Brian Anderson combined for three hitless innings.

The offense made things interesting. While Trenton scored in bunches, the Defenders put up one run in alternating innings, scoring in all odd-numbered frames. Eugenio Velez was one of three Defenders hitters to have an extra base hit in the game. He led off the game with a tripe, and stole his 18th base in 22 games in AA. John Bowker hit a solo home run and had three RBI aside from the homer, on only one hit. His other RBI came on a sacrifice fly and on a fielding error. Both times Velez scored.

San Jose Giants: San Jose 3, Visalia 2 (click to see box score)

Lines of the day:
SS Brian Bocock - 1-4, 2 RBI (14), 1 SO
RF Ben Copeland - 1-4, 1 RBI (21), 1 SO
3B David Maroul - 1-3, 1 2B (17)
SP Darren Sack - 2 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO
RP Kelvin Pichardo - 4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 SO
RP Jason Waddell - 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO, W (1-0)
RP Taylor Wilding - 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 SO, SV (11)

San Jose came back in the eighth inning to win the series against Visalia. The Giants needed a series win to bounce back from getting swept in the previous series against Lake Elsinore. Starter Darren Sack lasted only two innings before being pulled for an undisclosed reason. Sack has had his share of struggles this season including a recent demotion from Connecticut to San Jose, but the right hander didn't pitch poorly in his two innings. Sack allowed two runs on a base hit, a triple, and a sacrifice fly. Ben Copeland was there to handle the defense for Sack. He made two outfield assists in the first two innings to gun down Visalia runners trying to advance.

Kelvin Pichardo filled in admirably, going four innings in long relief. He did not allow a run and struck out five hitters. Jason Waddell pitched scoreless seventh and eighth innings and found himself in line for the win when San Jose rallied in the bottom half of the inning. Brian Bocock singled with the bases loaded to score to runs. Copeland saved the day again, coming up with a clutch base hit after Bocock's RBI single. Antoan Richardson came around to score the winning run. Taylor Wilding allowed one hit in the ninth inning to get his eleventh save of the year. San Jose retains its hold on first place with the win.

Augusta Greenjackets: Charleston 5, Augusta 4 (click to see box score)

Lines of the day:
3B Ryan Rohlinger - 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B (19), 1 RBI (38), 1 BB
1B Brett Pill - 2-4, 1 R, 2 2B (24), 1 RBI (42), 1 SO
DH Matt Weston - 1-3, 1 3B (1), 1 RBI (40), 1 BB, 1 SB (1)
2B Sharlon Schoop - 0-3, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 1 E (4)
SP Adam Cowart - 5 2-3 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO
RP Ryan Shaver - 2 1-3 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 SO, L (0-2)

Augusta ace Adam Cowart had a more pedestrian start than he is used to, although the three runs he allowed wasn't his fault. In a wild sixth inning Cowart was charged with two unearned runs on Sharlon Schoop's fielding error. Charleston's Mitchell Hilligoss was ejected in the sixth inning prior to this. Tyler Graham got Hilligoss trying to leg out a single into a double with a perfect throw to Schoop covering second. Hilligloss clearly didn't agree with the call and home plate umpire Chris Segal tossed him.

The Greenjackets could have recovered from the blunders, especially since the Riverdogs made five errors and allowed Augusta to score in the ninth inning to make it a one-run game. Ryan Shaver relieved Cowart and gave up two runs. The game didn't lack excitement despite the lackluster outcome. Augusta caught Charleston's Christopher Malec trying to steal home. Matt Weston also showed off a little speed when he hit his first triple of the year in the first inning to score Brett Pill and stole a base after being hit by a pitch. Maybe Schoop is to blame for losing this game in more ways that one; following the steal Weston advanced to third on an error, and Schoop and James Simmons struck out to end the inning stranding Weston at third. Augusta is still in first place in the South Atlantic League Southern division with a comfortable seven game lead.

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