Mets Minor League Notebook for June 16th

On a day when the New York Mets had one of their best games of the season, the Mets' farm clubs were less successful, losing their only two games of the day. Rain postponed the final game of Norfolk's four-game series with Louisville. At Reading, Neal Musser took a hard-luck loss as the Binghamton Mets fell 4-2 to the Reading Phillies. Capital City fared no better, as the Savannah Sand Gnats routed them, 11-1. St. Lucie had an off-day following the Florida State League All-Star game.

Norfolk Tides: After taking the first three games in their four-game series against Louisville, the Norfolk Tides were rained out in their attempt to sweep the Western Division-leading RiverBats. Sunday's game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on June 30th, when the Bats return to Norfolk for the final time this year. The Tides pitching was outstanding against the Bats, allowing only six runs in three games. Aaron Heilman took a no-decision in the series opener, allowing just two runs in seven innings pitched, working around ten hits and three walks allowed. Marcos Scutaro was also impressive in his return to Triple-A, reaching twice in each of the series' three games and recording two stolen bases and two extra-base hits, including his fifth home run of the season on Saturday. The Tides improved their record to 36-29 and maintain a three-and-a-half game lead over the Durham Bulls, who also swept their four-game series at home against the Ottawa Lynx. The Buffalo Bison, who took three of four from the Tides in Buffalo earlier this month, come into Norfolk on Monday for a four-game series.

Binghamton Mets: The Binghamton Mets stranded ten baserunners on Sunday and lost the rubber game of their three-game series at the Reading Phillies, 4-2. Neal Musser pitched five innings, allowing just two first-inning runs on six hits and took the loss to fall to 1-4 on the year. Musser struck out five Phillies and walked none, but was hurt by a Garry Maddox leadoff home run. Nick Maness pitched two innings in relief of Musser and also was hurt by the gopherball, allowing a sixth inning solo shot to Juan Richardson. The Mets had a frustrating day at the plate, scoring just two runs despite eight hits, four walks and a hit-by-pitch. In the end, the Mets stranded ten runners altogether, scoring just two, a day after scoring only five runs in a doubleheader. The Mets head to New Haven on Monday for the first time this season for a two-game series with the Ravens. The two clubs split a four-game series earlier this season in Binghamton.

St. Lucie Mets: The St. Lucie Mets had another off-day on Sunday after Saturday's Florida State League All-Star Game, which the East won 4-2. The Mets, who finished the first half of the season fourth in the Eastern Division with a 33-37 record, will need to improve their hitting in the second half of the season if they are to compete for the East title. While they had a staff ERA of 3.21, third-best in the FSL, the Mets finished the first-half under .500, due in large part to an offense that boasted no starter with a batting average above .300 or an on-base percentage above .400. The Mets begin a three-game series against the Dodgers at Vero Beach on Monday evening.

Capital City Bombers: The Bombers scored in the first inning of Sunday's game against Savannah to take a 1-0 lead. A Brett Harper single had plated Aaron Baldiris, who had doubled, and the Bombers had an early lead. Unfortunately for the Bombers, baseball games are nine innings long, not one. The Sand Gnats scored eleven unanswered runs after the first inning to take an 11-1 victory on Sunday and earn a split in their four-game series with the Bombers. Darrell Rasner pitched his best game of the season for the Gnats, hurling five innings of one-run ball, allowing four hits and a walk while striking out ten Bombers. The Gnats relief pitching proved to be even better, allowing no baserunners in four innings. Kevin Deaton allowed two runs in his first five innings of work, but was shelled for another seven runs in the sixth inning. Deaton allowed nine runs and twelve hits in five-and-a-third innings to fall to 6-2 on the season. The Bombers, who fell to 39-29 on the season, are off Monday before heading to Rome to face the Braves in a three-game series this week.

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