Daily Minor League Report - July 10

InsidethePark.com's exclusive Daily Minor League Report - the complete source for all the stellar performances from around the Mariners' minor league system and some other information worth mentioning.

Two's company, three's a crowd and 10 were quite enough for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers on Wednesday night.

The Mariners A-level affiliate snapped a 10-game home losing streak by defeating Dayton 9-0.

Third baseman Matt Hagen started off the scoring with a two-run homerun, his 16th, in the first inning. He also added a double and scored three times.

Outfielder Chad Ehrnsberger hit his first home run since joining the Rattlers on June 30. Ehrnsberger came from Kansas City in the Independent Northern League as the league's leader in slugging percentage and extra-base hits.

The two, first-inning runs were more than enough for Rattlers starter T.A. Fulmer and more than he's been accustomed to lately.

Those runs alone would have made wins out of his last two losses (both 1-0 decisions against Clinton).

Fulmer (6-5) pitched eight determined innings, allowing only two hits and a walk and striking out eight. In his last three starts, Fulmer has struck out 23 batters in as many innings.

The Rattlers finish the four-game set tonight with a chance at a split before they head to the road for six games.

Portland 5, Tacoma (AAA) 2: First baseman J.R. Phillips started the game off right with his fourth home run of the season and 250th of his minor-league career.

Phillips added another RBI in the third, but the Rainiers' scoring ended there against potent Portland pitching.

The same could not be said about Tacoma starter Brian Sweeney.

Sweeney (7-8) cruised through four innings, giving up only one hit, but his trouble started soon thereafter.

Portland shortstop Donaldo Mendez stuck it to the Mariners' organization once again with a game-tying, two-run homer in the fifth and the go-ahead run in the seventh.

Mariners' fans might remember Mendez as the San Diego Padres batter who hit the mystery double, ending Ryan Franklin's no-hit bid in an eventual loss. The umpire ruled the ball foul and then switched his decision, allowing Mendez to reach second and later score the first run of the game.

Mendez also homered in the game which Rondell White hit his second grand slam against the M's in a span of only nine days.

Carlton Loewer picked up his seventh win for the Beavers, and Brandon Villafuerte pitched a perfect ninth for his third save.

San Antonio (AA) 7, Round Rock 2: Missions manager Dave Brundage called starter Bobby Madritsch's performance on Wednesday "effectively wild."

Madritsch walked six, but gave up only two hits and two earned runs over six innings helping the Missions to a win over second-place Round Rock.

Madritsch left with the Missions behind 2-1, but third baseman Justin Leone erased the deficit, and then some, with a two-run homerun in the eighth.

Leone kills the Express with 14 hits – four home runs – in nine games against Round Rock.

Leone has 12 homers and 62 RBIs to go with a .933 OPS – second in the league.

The Missions added four runs in the ninth, including Chris Snelling's second home run of the season.

The bullpen continued their tremendous pitching with Josue Matos (6-1) and Tim Hamulack shutting down the Express the final three innings.

Inland Empire (Advanced-A) 3, High Desert 2: Ryan Ketchner didn't face Rancho Cucamonga starter Ervin Santana on Wednesday, but, even so, he got one over on him.

Giving up only one earned run in eight innings, Ketchner (10-3) claimed the league lead in victories over Santana, who gave up eight runs in three innings in a 9-7 loss to Lancaster.

The bottom two hitters in the 66ers lineup accounted for all three runs. Second baseman Ismael Castro and shortstop Eriberto Menchaca both had two hits. Menchaca drove in Castro for both his RBIs.

Menchaca scored the third run on a third baseman Hunter Brown's sacrifice fly.

Emiliano Fruto recorded the last two outs via strikeout for his first save. He may get a lot more familiar with the closer's role in the future with California-League leader Mike Steele fighting a shoulder injury.

Salem-Keizer 6, Everett (SS-A) 1: Everett missed their chance at a first-place tie as league-leader Salem-Keizer avoided a three-game sweep.

The Volcanoes scored all of their runs in the fourth and fifth innings off starter Victor Ramirez (2-3) and reliever Kenly Chang.

Chris Colton led the Aquasox with two hits and his sixth stolen base.

Oswaldo Navarro scored the lone run for the Aquasox, with Nick Orlandos picking up the RBI.

On deck:
Tacoma (40-54; -7.5): RH Ken Cloude (1-4 W-L, 5.34 ERA) vs. Portland
Notes: Tacoma must be getting tired of seeing Portland. They've played the Beavers 7 times since June 30, with four more games through this weekend. The Rainiers are 4-3 so far against their nearest neighbors. After this series, the Rainiers will play at Portland in one more series in August.

San Antonio (15-6, second half; +5.0): RH Clint Nageotte (9-2, 2.76) vs. Round Rock
Notes: Nageotte pitched a one-hitter in his last outing. He ranks fourth in the Texas League in wins, second in strikeouts and third in ERA.

Injuries at the major-league and AAA level have decimated the Round Rock roster. They recently signed OF Jacques Landry, who started the season with Tacoma.

Inland Empire (12-7, second half; -1.0): LH Glenn Bott (3-5, 3.42)
Notes: The news on the injury front keeps getting worse for the 66ers. Already without OF Shin-Soo Choo and closer Mike Steele, OF David Delucchi took a ball off his arm in last night's game. Delucchi finished the game, but swelling hindered his ability to swing and he may miss tonight's game.

After his promotion from Wisconsin, Delucchi has hit .331 with .383 OBP and seven steals…

First baseman John Castellano extended his hitting streak to 18 games with a single in the first inning. He collected another base hit and raised batting average to .306 on the season.

Wisconsin (7-14, second half; -7.0): RH Cesar Jimenez (7-5, 2.36) vs. Dayton
Notes: The Timber Rattlers denied Dayton a chance to move into first place in the Midwest League Eastern Division. Eastern Division Leader South Bend lost to Peoria in the first game of a schedule doubleheader. Rain canceled the second game. They'll try to fit in two again today, so Dayton has another shot to take over the lead…

Everett (11-11; -2.0): RH Felix Hernandez (3-0, 0.75) vs. Tri-City
Notes: Hernandez, 17, in his second professional start faces the hapless Tri-City offense. Out of eight teams, the Dust Devils rank last or seventh in runs, hits, batting average, home runs, strikeouts and stolen bases.

However, Everett, which doesn't boast particularly impressive offensive numbers itself, has only a one-game advantage in the win column.

James is a Central Washington University student interning for InsidethePark.com this summer. He welcomes your feedback, hints, tips or other observations (including any ideas on a better name than "Daily Minor League Report." Original, huh?) at cwusports@hotmail.com

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