Dykstra delivers; Darnell six

Kyle Blanks continues the hitting while Mike Ekstrom is solid in a start. Allan Dykstra collects his first professional RBIs. Jeremy McBryde is on point again in a Fort Wayne win. James Darnell drives in six as the merry-go-round spins for Eugene.

Portland (69-70) lost 4-0 to Salt Lake (Angels)

Enrique Gonzalez tossed a pair of relief innings, giving up one hit and striking out a pair while also netting a double play grounder that caused him to face the minimum. The right-hander has posted a 2.67 ERA across his last 12 outings, including four starts. Gonzalez also has notched a 2.84 ERA across 38 innings and 21 relief appearances. Five of his eight double play grounders have come over his last seven appearances.

Joe Thatcher netted two ground outs and a fly out in a scoreless inning of work. He has not allowed a run in six innings, striking out nine over that span. The southpaw has allowed runs in 10 of his 35 appearances with Triple-A Portland this season. He has faced the minimum in an outing 14 times this season, holding the opposition to a .229 average against. Nine of his 33 hits yielded have come in two outings.

San Antonio (32-32, 71-63) won 10-3 over Midland (A's)

The Missions are a half game back of Midland in the Texas League South Division playoff race.

The hit parade for Kyle Blanks continued on Wednesday, as the first baseman reached base five times via four hits and a walk. He notched his 23rd double on the year, plating his 103 run and scored three times. Blanks is tied for third in the league with a .326 average and second in the league with 154 hits. His four-hit night was the sixth time this year he notched four or more this season – four times coming over his last 16 contests.

Craig Cooper had a pair of singles in four trips, driving in a run in the second and plating a pair in the sixth to notch a three-RBI game. Over his last 20 games, Cooper is hitting .353 with nine RBIs. While he is hitting .283 on the season, Cooper is batting .248 with runners in scoring position, including the two hits he had on Wednesday.

Mike Ekstrom picked up his 11th win of the season, putting him second in the Texas League in that category. The right-hander allowed an unearned run on eight hits while fanning three over five frames, seeing nine ground ball outs in an 85-pitch effort. Ekstrom is now 4-4 as a starter and he has not allowed an earned run when he takes the bump to begin a game over his last 12.1 innings. He has a 6.15 ERA as a starter across 14 starts.

Lake Elsinore (36-29, 68-67) won 9-4 over Inland Empire (Dodgers) at PETCO Park

The Storm are ahead by three games in their race for a playoff spot.

By the end of the third inning, eight of the nine Lake Elsinore batters collected a hit and seven of the nine had a run scored. Allan Dykstra had his first hit as a professional, driving in three runs with a bases loaded clearing double in the second while also scoring a run. He was also hit by a pitch. Dykstra has reached base five times in three games with a run scored in each.

Luis Durango provided excitement out of the leadoff spot, reaching base four times via three hits and a walk, plating a run and scoring three times. The outfielder upped his on-base streak to 12 – every game he has played with the Storm – and hitting streak to seven. Durango has eight multi-hit games and has scored at least two runs in five consecutive games with a run scored in seven straight. He has touched home 12 times over that span and has an RBI in eight of the 12 played.

Eric Sogard had a pair of hits, including his California League leading 42nd double (tied for fourth in the entire minors), and drove in two to bring his RBI total to 86 – the fourth highest total in the league. Sogard is also tied for third in the circuit with 55 extra base hits and fourth with a .401 on-base percentage. Sogard has an RBI in seven straight games – plating 13 – and upped his hitting streak to 16. Over his last 25 games, Sogard has 15 doubles and 20 extra base hits.

Fort Wayne (32-33, 69-66) won 7-2 over South Bend (Diamondbacks)

Andrew Parrino drove in the first run with a double that ricocheted off the pitcher in the fourth inning and scored the seventh and final run an inning later, as part of a 2-for-3 game that included a walk and two runs scored. Parrino came into the game with six hits in his previous 37 at-bats, a .162 average. Parrino leads the club with 69 walks drawn and a .369 on-base percentage.

Jeremy McBryde evened his record at 8-8, allowing one run on three hits and three walks while striking out five across five innings. The right-hander also hit a batter and recorded seven outs on the ground, including a double play to end his night. It was the seventh time in eight starts that he has allowed two earned runs or less, as McBryde has gone 7-3 over his last 12 starts.

Bryan Oland made quick work through the ninth inning, shutting down each of the three men he faced. The right-hander has allowed one run over his last 16.2 innings of work while striking out 23. It was the 13th time in 42 appearances that he has faced the minimum in his outing. Oland has held the leadoff hitter of an inning to a .174 on-base percentage for the year and has surrendered five extra base hits in 49 innings.

Eugene (36-33) won 21-4 over Salem-Keizer (Giants)

The Emeralds closed to within two games with seven games to go, including one more against Salem on Thursday, as every player on the team scored a run, seven players notched an RBI and all but one had a hit.

James Darnell capped the shellacking with a three-run homer in the ninth inning – his first as a professional. The third baseman reached base five times, drawing three walks and hammering out a double while driving in six and scoring three times. The California native had four RBIs in his first eight games. Darnell has been on base in each of his first nine contests with Eugene, notching six multi-hit games.

Blake Tekotte touched first base five times, delivering three singles, a double and a walk. The centerfielder had three RBIs, scored three times, and added his seventh stolen base of the season in 11 attempts. Tekotte is hitting .347 over his last 24 games, notching 14 extra base hits, driving in 16 and scoring 30 times. Tekotte has scored a run in seven of his last nine games.

Cole Figueroa pounded out his fifth bomb, smacking a solo shot in the fifth as part of back-to-back jacks. He had three hits on the day with a walk and scored three times. The shortstop has three homers in his last four games and four multi-hit games across his last five. He has been on base 47 times in 25 games with the Emeralds this season.

Matt Clark mashed his fifth homer of the season- a solo shot – in the fifth inning on a night that saw him reach base four times, going 3-for-5 while getting plunked by a pitch. Clark scored twice and drove in three. The first baseman came into the game hitless in his last 16 at-bats but has managed 30 RBIs in 31 games. Clark is hitting .395 with runners in scoring position.

AZL Padres (18-7, 32-21) had a scheduled day off

The AZL Padres are a half game back in the playoff chase for a second half title.

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