Kluber dealing; Venable sparks comeback

Will Venable has a bases clearing triple to propel a seven-run frame. Craig Cooper drives in a run in the ninth but a double play ends much of the threat. Corey Kluber is brilliant and Lance Zawadzki sets a career-high. Blake Tekotte has a four-RBI game and Stiven Osuna is spot on over six.

Portland (7-4) won 8-5 over Fresno (Giants)

Will Venable cleared the bases with a triple in the bottom of the eighth to tie the game at 4-4. He ended the day 2-for-4 with a run scored and the three RBI. It was his third triple of the young season. Venable has been on base in 10 of is 11 games with a hit in nine of those contests. Venable was also credited with an outfield assist when he doubled a runner off first base in the second. He had just three outfield assists a season ago with Portland.

Eliezer Alfonzo capped the scoring by hitting his first homer of the year, a three-run jack to left. It was his lone hit on the day, and he is 4-for-23 in his last six games. The backstop had 10 hits in 36 at-bats with five extra base hits this spring for the Padres. Alfonzo, who played with Fresno last season, hit .310 with the Giants affiliate, smacking five homers and 16 extra base hits in 116 at-bats.

Michael Watt earned a spot start in Portland after beginning the year in Fort Wayne and never pitching above Low-A. The left-hander went three innings, surrendering four runs on six hits and two walks. Three of the hit went for extra bases and he also committed an error. Watt had thrown four innings with Fort Wayne, not allowing a hit and striking out eight. The southpaw came into the year with a 9-4 record and 4.07 ERA in 25 games pitching at the rookie and short-season level.

San Antonio (4-6) lost 2-1 to Tulsa (Rockies)

The Missions scored one run in the ninth by matching their hit total for the previous eight innings. The third and final hit was a Craig Cooper single to cut the deficit to one. With two on and nobody out, San Antonio seemed primed until a double play grounder followed. Cooper was the lone player to record a multi-hit game. The first baseman has collected a hit in 10 of his first 11 games to begin the season with six multi-hit games. He also has notched an RBI in six contests.

Ernesto Frieri labored through four frames despite one run allowed in a loss. He used 76 pitches, allowing five hits and two walks while striking out one and tossing a wild pitch. The right-hander went at least five innings in 19 of his 21 starts across three leagues a season ago. Frieri allowed two runs or less in 11 of his starts.

Derek McDaid tossed a pair of scoreless innings, giving up one hit and a walk while recording four ground ball outs. The right-hander has allowed runs in three of his first six Double-A appearances. McDaid has a 2.17 ground out to fly out ratio to begin the year. He came into the season with a 4.74 ERA across 150 innings and two leagues but has yielded more hits than innings pitched with a .289 average against.

Lake Elsinore (5-6) won 5-1 over Bakersfield (Rangers) Corey Kluber allowed just one hit over seven innings, pitching to one over the minimum. That one batter came around to score after a double. Kluber went on to retire the next 12 hitters and struck out seven on the day. The right-hander has given up just seven hits across his first 18 innings of work this season. Kluber surrendered two runs or less in six of his final 10 outings a year ago after giving up four or more in 10 of his first 16 starts.

Lance Zawadzki, batting leadoff, reached base in all five of his plate appearances. The shortstop had three singles and drew a pair of walks while scoring once. He also stole three bases, swiping second twice and taking third another time. Zawadzki last swiped three bases on July 14, 2008. He had never reached base five times in a single game, reaching four times several times last season with Fort Wayne. He did have six games with three or more hits.

Felix Carrasco reached base three times, drawing a walk and going 2-for-4. His big hit came in the fifth – a three-run homer, his first of the season, that broke a 1-1 tie. The first baseman hit 16 bombs in the Midwest League last year, hitting 12 in the first half but just four after winning the Home Run Derby at the All-Star game. Carrasco had three games with three or more RBI and eight of his 16 bombs came with men on base.

Fort Wayne (10-0) won 14-2 over Dayton (Reds) in rain shortened game (one out in top of seventh)

The TinCaps reached base 21 times with 11 walks and 10 hits. Eight of the nine players scored a run, collected a hit, and notched an RBI, and six of the nine drew a walk. Five of their runs a seven-run second came with two outs.

Blake Tekotte led the offensive assault with two hits and a walk, three runs scored and four RBI. The center fielder hit his first homer of the season, a two-run blast in the fifth, while adding a two-run single in the second. Tekotte came into the game hitting .189 with one extra base hit through his first nine games and pushed his RBI total from 2 to 6. Last season, Tekotte collected 21 extra base hits, including six dingers, in 47 games with Eugene. He drove in 27 while hitting .285.

Stiven Osuna earned the win, yielding five singles over six scoreless frames. The right-hander did not walk a batter and struck out a half dozen while recording eight ground ball outs. Osuna has allowed a single earned run over 11 innings to begin the season without walking a batter. He allowed two runs or less in each of his last 11 starts with the AZL Padres en route to a 7-3 season with a 2.18 ERA.

Allan Dykstra reached base three times with a pair of walks and a single. He scored twice and drove in a pair. The first baseman has reached base in nine straight games, posting a .471 on-base percentage over that stretch by reaching base 16 times. Dykstra has scored a run in six straight and has an RBI in four of his past five.

Talk about this story on our subscriber-only message boards

MadFriars Top Stories