Power On For Howard, Out In Portland

The lights went out in Portland last night, but not until new Rainier Kevin Howard had gone deep three times. Howard will get his shot at #4 when the game resumes tonight. Elsewhere, Jorge Sosa was suspended 50 games for a drug violation, and the Jaxx, AquaSox, and P-Mariners all saw late leads get away. Read on for last night's exploits in the minors.

On a bizarre night in Portland, Brandon Morrow struck out 10 batters in 4 2/3 innings as he came within one out of being eligible for his first win as a starter. Unfortunately, even if he had made it through five innings, he would've had to wait another night to pick up that win. In the bottom of the seventh inning with the Rainiers leading the Beavers 9-2, the power went out. It came back on briefly, but went out again, forcing the game to be suspended. The game will be completed before the teams' regularly-scheduled game tonight. Recently acquired Kevin Howard hit three home runs for the Rainiers and should have a chance at getting his fourth when the game resumes.

In pitching news, Tacoma's Jorge Sosa was suspended for 50 games for violating the terms of the league's substance abuse policy. Sosa reportedly tested positive for an amphetamine. His suspension begins immediately, which will put him out of action for the rest of this season and a substantial portion of next season. Sosa has been removed from the Tacoma roster and likely will be released by the Mariners. Sosa, who had moderate success last season with the Mets, was designated for assignment in May after a rough start to this season. He caught on with Round Rock of the PCL but was released again in July, which is when the Mariners signed him. Sosa made 10 appearances with the Rainiers, posting a 3.68 ERA in 14 2/3 innings with 13 walks and 12 strikeouts.

On a long night in Mobile, the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx blew a 5-2 lead in the eighth inning and lost 6-5 in 10 innings to the BayBears. Shawn Kelley, who has been stellar all season for the Jaxx, entered the game in the bottom of the eighth with a three run lead, but allowed a walk, home run, double, and triple to the first four batters of the inning to see the lead evaporate. West Tenn had just put up a four-run rally in the top of the frame, highlighted by Mike Wilson's two-run double. Johan Limonta had two hits and two RBI for the Jaxx. Luis Munoz started and put up a nice line: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K.

High Desert got seven hits from the duo of James McOwen and Ronnie Prettyman, but only one hit from the rest of the lineup as they dropped a 5-2 decision to Visalia. McOwen was 3-for-4 with two doubles and Prettyman was a perfect 4-for-4, but the rest of the lineup seemingly took the night off. Alfredo Venegas pitched well for four innings, but the Oaks got to him for four runs in the fifth inning, which would be all they would need.

Daniel Carroll hit his first professional home run in over 500 plate appearances for Wisconsin last night, but the Rattlers came up short against Quad Cities by a 5-3 score. Joe Kantakevich threw 3 1/3 innings of pretty good baseball in relief of Keith Renaud, but was hung with the loss when he gave up the go-ahead run in the top of the eighth. Carroll and Joseph White has three hits each to pace the Rattlers, who had 12 hits and plenty of opportunities to push across additional runs.

Four Everett errors led to three unearned runs as Salem-Keizer beat the AquaSox 6-5 on Thursday. The Frogs had a 5-2 lead in the seventh but couldn't hang on. Tyson Gillies had another nice night for Everett with two hits, two RBI, and an outfield assist. Travis Howell was 3-for-4 with a solo home run, his second of the year.

The Pulaski Mariners had a nightmare ninth inning on Thursday night. Burlington scored five unearned runs in the top of the ninth to stun the M's 6-5. The M's committed three errors in the half-inning, but the Royals did smack four hits off of Kyle Brown and Blake Nation. It was a tough result for Taylor Lewis, who was in line for the win after allowing just two hits in five innings. Jacob Shaffer had three hits for the second consecutive night. He's 6-for-7 over the last two days. Juan Fuentes was 2-for-4 with a triple and two RBI.

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