Padres Prospect Report: May 27, 2009

Will Venable hammers two balls out of the yard and Craig Stansberry goes deep for the third straight game but Portland loses. Craig Cooper has three more RBI but Ernesto Frieri has his worst start to date. Wynn Pelzer does not like pitching to High Desert. Stiven Osuna is pummeled – recording just four outs in a thrashing.

Portland (24-23) lost 9-8 to Memphis (Cardinals)

Will Venable cracked a pair of homers, hitting a two-run blast in the opening frame and adding a solo shot in the fifth as part of a three-hit night that included three runs scored. It is the second time this season he has gone yard multiple times in a game and gave him nine for the season. Venable is, however, hitting .238 over his last 26 games. The outfielder has struck out once every four at-bats.

Craig Stansberry went yard for the third time in as many games, hitting a solo shot in the fifth as the front half of back-to-back jacks with Venable. He had three hits on the day, drew a walk, scored twice and stole his first base of the year. Stansberry is 9-for-17 over his last four games with two walks, six runs scored and four RBI. The infielder had just 13 hits, four runs scored and five RBI over his first 27 games.

Jon Ellis took the loss, giving up four runs – all earned – on three hits and a walk over one-third of an inning. He struck out one but saw two balls leave the park for homers. The right-hander has allowed runs in three straight appearances for the first time this season and has allowed runs in 10 of 21 overall. Prior to his recent stretch, Ellis had thrown scoreless ball over 9.2 innings.

San Antonio (22-23) lost 10-6 to Springfield (Cardinals)

Ernesto Frieri was pummeled to the tune of eight runs, seven earned, on eight hits and two walks across 4.1 innings. He gave up three extra base hits, including a solo homer, dropping to 5-2. Frieri had allowed seven runs over his previous seven outings. Frieri has held the leadoff hitter of an inning to six hits in 41 at-bats – a .146 average. He has given up two first inning runs in eight starts – one of those coming on Wednesday.

Luis Durango reached base three times via a walk, getting plunked by a pitch, and a single – scoring each time. He also swiped his Texas League leading 22nd bag of the season; he has been caught nine times. Durango is tied for fourth in the circuit with 32 runs scored, touching home multiple times on eight occasions. He has scored 10 times in his last six games. Ten of the runs he has scored have come in the opening frame – where he is hitting .450.

Craig Cooper was charged with two fielding errors, the first of which allowed an unearned run to score. Cooper did, however, collect three hits at the dish, driving in a run with a single in the third and plating two with a single in the sixth. Cooper leads the entire minors in hits with 67 and his .385 average ranks third in the minors and is tops in the Texas League. Cooper is now 3-for-5 with the bases loaded and has extended his RBI streak to five games where he has driven in 12.

Lake Elsinore (25-21) lost 6-5 to High Desert (Mariners)

Brad Chalk atoned for a first inning fielding error by notching a pair of outfield assists. Chalk gunned down a runner at home to end the first inning, preventing run number five from crossing. He also pegged a runner at second base trying to stretch a single in the fourth. His seven outfield assists are tied for the California League lead. At the plate, Chalk went 1-for-4 and did not figure into the scoring.

Wynn Pelzer is lifted after 3.1 innings with six runs in on seven hits and four walks. He recorded six ground ball outs and struck out two but also gave up three extra base hits and was helped by Chalk from further damage. Pelzer has now given up 14 runs on 17 hits and eight walks across 12.1 innings versus High Desert this season. The right-hander has allowed 12 runs across 36.2 innings to the rest of the league – a 2.95 ERA. He has walked three or more in three of his nine starts.

Beamer Weems hit his first homer of the season and as a professional, a two-run shot to bring the Storm within one. It came one batter after Felix Carrasco was thrown out trying to go from first to third on a single. Weems also added a double and scored two runs scored. He has been on base in 12 straight games with 10 walks and 11 hits. The shortstop had, however, gone 13 games without an extra base hit. This is the first time he has ever collected multiple extra base hits in a game.

Fort Wayne (29-17) lost 12-3 to Cedar Rapids (Angels)

Stiven Osuna was knocked around for 10 runs, six earned, on four hits and a career-high five walks in just an inning and one-third. Osuna also committed his first error of the season. It was the third time this season he has given up five runs or more; he has allowed two runs or less in five of his other six starts. Osuna has seen the leadoff hitter of an inning reach base at a .488 clip.

Catcher Robert Lara came on to work the final inning of the blowout. The backstop walked a pair but also struck out the side. It is the second time this season that Lara has come from behind the plate to pitch. He has not allowed a run and has recorded five of his six outs by way of the strikeout. Lara did not pitch in a single game last season for the AZL Padres.

Matt Clark plated all three TinCaps runs with a double in the first frame after Fort Wayne fell behind by four in the top half. He also added an RBI single in the fifth before coming out of the game. The first baseman has plated nine across his last five games and has notched 12 multiple RBI games. Clark sits second in the Midwest League in the category, despite hitting .265 with runners in scoring position. His 21 extra base hits are tied for fifth and his 16 doubles are third.

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