Jack Cassel earned a no-decision after being charged with an unearned run on five hits and a walk over six innings. The right-hander threw 85 pitches and struck out five. Since allowing 12 earned runs over his first 12.1 frames, Cassel has given up just one earned in his last 24.1 innings. He has not allowed an earned run in his last 19.1. His ERA has dropped from 8.76 to 3.19.
Andrew Brown continued his mastery out of the pen, pitching scoreless ball over an inning, allowing one hit and striking out two. Brown has retired every batter he has faced four times in his last 10 outings. Since giving up three hits in his first 1.2 innings, Brown has allowed just six over his last 17.2 - all without allowing an earned run.
Craig Stansberry went 3-for-4 with a solo homer to extend his hitting streak to seven games. He did, however, commit his first error of the year – playing third base. It is just his fourth game playing third this season, as he has spent the majority of his time at second base. While Portland's team batting average is the worst in the league, Stansberry is sitting third in the Pacific Coast League with his .367 average. His 47 hits sit second, pending the night's action.
San Antonio won 6-1 over Midland (A's)
Josh Geer pitched eight strong innings, surrendering one run on five hits while striking out seven to pick up his Texas League leading sixth win. The right-hander has allowed two runs on seven hits over his last 15 innings and Friday marked the fifth time that he has allowed two runs or less and fourth time he has yielded one run or less. In 41.2 innings this year, Geer has walked just four batters.
Nick Hundley doubled in two with two outs in the fifth and drew two walks. He did, however, ground into his second double play of the year. The catcher is now 6-for-11 in the fifth inning and but has combined for a .152 average in every other inning. He it hitting .200 on the year – just the sixth time in 26 games that he has matched that mark. Hundley has just a .277 on base percentage a month into the year.
Will Venable went 2-for-4 with a walk, a stolen base and an RBI. The outfielder came into the game in a 3-for-32 slump that saw his average dive from .356 to .287. Friday marked the 13th time in 34 games that he has notched a multi-hit game. The stolen base was his third in four attempts. Venable is hitting .396 at home but just .219 on the road, including Friday.
Lake Elsinore lost 3-1 to Modesto (Rockies)
Wade LeBlanc made it through five, allowing two runs, one earned, on five hits and a walk while striking out five. He did uncork two wild pitches; LeBlanc had just one wild pitch in his debut season in the minors. The lefty also picked off a runner at first base. LeBlanc came into the game with a 23.1 inning scoreless streak and three straight wins. He has not allowed more than five hits in any of his seven starts to begin the year.
Brooks Dunn made his California League debut, putting down the side in order in his inning of work, striking out two. Dunn went 1-1 with a 2.14 ERA over 14 appearances with the Fort Wayne Wizards. In 21 innings of Midwest League play, Dunn gave up 14 hits, holding the opposition to a .179 average. He only gave one hit up to the leadoff man of an inning during his time in Fort Wayne.
Jose Lobaton hit a solo homer for his lone hit of the game and the sole run. The catcher came into the game with a .182 average in May after hitting .313 in April. He snapped a ten-game streak in which he did not collect an RBI. Three of four runners were successful in their stolen base attempts off the backstop – although he did get credit for a caught stealing when LeBlanc picked off the runner – and committed his eighth error of the year. His eight errors lead all catchers. He is officially 18-of-54 in throwing out runners.
Fort Wayne lost 7-4 to Kane County (A's)
Nathan Culp suffered his worst outing of the year and, arguably, his career on Friday. The left-hander allowed seven runs, all earned, on nine hits, a hit batsman, and three walks over 4.1 innings. His ERA nearly doubled in the process from 1.45 to 2.81. Only once previously in his minor league career had he allowed as many runs – eight, five earned, on August 29, 2006. He entered the game with four runs allowed over his previous four outings, spanning 26.2 innings.
Ernesto Frieri faced six batters over two innings and retired them all, striking out three. While he does have a .213 average against it was just the second time he has retired every batter he has faced in 10 appearances, none spanning more than 2.1 innings. The right-hander has held lefties to a slim .167 average and has given up just three extra base hits on the year – all doubles. His 11.43 strikeouts per nine innings are tops on the team.
Sam Carter went 2-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base. The theft was the first of his career. He came into the game 0-for-4 in the stolen base department. While Carter has notched a hit in nine of his last 10 games, he has also whiffed at least once in 10 consecutive, going down to strikes 16 times over that span. Carter was also credited with an outfield assist, throwing a runner out at third base. His three outfield assists are tied for second most in the Midwest League.