Playing third base for the third time this year, Chase Headley reached base four times, going 3-for-5 with a walk, a double, a solo blast, and three runs scored. He has homered five times over his last eight games to push his season total to eight. It is also the third time in the last seven games that he has notched multiple extra base hits. He now sits in the top-10 in the PCL in extra base hits with 23.
Will Venable busted out with four hits in five at-bats, hitting a solo homer and three singles while plating three and scoring three times. All four of his homers this season have come over his last eight games. He has a pair of four-hit games this year and four multi-hit games over his last eight. Venable is hitting .382 with runners in scoring position.
Enrique Gonzalez benefited from the offensive outburst to pick up his first win of the campaign. It didn't hurt that the pitcher collected two hits, including a double and two RBIs, on the night with a sacrifice. He worked five innings, giving up three runs on four hits and five walks while striking out a pair. The right-hander has walked three or more in five straight games. He has held lefties to a .210 average on the year while righties are swatting .350.
Michael Barrett cranked out three hits in four at-bats, adding a double, two runs scored and three RBIs. The backstop is 5-for-7 with two doubles and four RBIs in his rehab stint and could be called up earlier than expected with the injury to Josh Bard.
San Antonio (21-24) lost 2-1 to Springfield (Cardinals)
Mike Ekstrom allowed a single run on four hits and two walks over six innings in a no-decision. The right-hander fanned five in what has to be considered his best start of the campaign. Ekstrom had given up 18 runs on 15 hits and four walks over his previous 5.2 innings. Ekstrom had given up six homers in the three games prior to Wednesday's start. While the opposition has a .332 average off him, he has limited them to a .250 mark with runners in scoring position.
Jon Ellis took his third loss of the year, giving up a run on one hit and a walk over an inning of work. The right-hander leads all Mission relievers with six decisions and is tied for second in the Texas League with 21 appearances. He has surrendered runs in eight of his outings with two runs coming over his last 12.1 innings. Right-handers have a .172 average against while lefties are mashing at a .353 clip.
Mike Baxter recorded the lone RBI for San Antonio with a single – his only hit in four at-bats. The outfielder has been on base in 16 of his 19 games with the Missions, boasting a .403 on-base percentage. He struck out twice on the day – matching his total from the previous 18 games. Baxter has seven hits in 14 at-bats with runners in scoring position since joining San Antonio.
Lake Elsinore (21-25) lost 13-6 to Rancho Cucamonga (Angels)
For the third time in as many games, outfielder Cedric Hunter went yard – shipping off a solo shot in the opening frame. It was part of a 3-for-4 night that included a walk and three runs scored. Hunter has three straight multi-hit games, going 7-for-14 with six runs scored and six RBIs. Over his last 16 games, Hunter is 26-for-66 – a .384 average – with 15 runs scored and nine RBIs.
Ernesto Frieri suffered the loss – his third in as many starts – giving up seven runs on seven hits and twa walks while striking out four in 3.2 innings. Three of the hits he allowed left the park and six of the seven went for extra bases. The right-hander had never given up multiple homers in a game over a career that began in 2003 – and he had given up just 10 in 267 innings prior to this season. He has surrendered four through 34 innings of work in 2008.
Jesus Lopez went 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored out of the number nine-hole. The shortstop did, however, commit his seventh error of the year, leading to an unearned run in the seventh. He had gone 19 games without committing an error. Lopez has nine multi-hit games this year but also has 18 games without a hit. He had been in a 5-for-39 slump – a .128 average – over his previous 12 games.
Fort Wayne (21-25) lost 9-6 to Great Lakes (Dodgers)
Justin Baum cranked out three hits in five at-bats, belting his third homer of the year – a two-run shot in the third – with two runs scored. His 10th error of the season, coming in the fourth inning, did, however, lead to an unearned run. it is the second time in four games he has recorded a three-hit game and fourth time all year. Baum is, however, hitting just .194 with runners in scoring position on the year.
Allen Harrington gave up four runs, three earned, on seven hits, a hit batsman and a wild pitch while striking out one. Pitching in his sixth road game of the season, Harrington has a 4.68 ERA away from Fort Wayne and a 2.49 ERA when pitching at the Memorial Coliseum. The left-hander has walked just seven batters this season and only a handful (5) over his last 39.2 innings.
Tyler Davis suffered the loss, his third, after being charged with three runs on four hits and a walk in an inning-plus. He worked to three batters in the seventh and was unable to record an out, seeing all three score, including two after he exited the game. Davis has allowed runs in six of his 18 appearances. He has yielded seven walks this year in 17.2 innings and all have come over his last 7.1 frames.
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