Padres Prospect Report: June 27, 2009

Will Inman is hammered again. Mike DeMark allows an earned run – the first since April 30. Manny Ramirez takes Nick Schmidt deep in a loss. Fort Wayne rolls behind Dan Robertson, Cole Figueroa and Erik Davis. Eugene gets help from Edinson Rincon, Vincent Belnome and Erik Davis. The DSL Padres lose, as Pedro Martinez scuffles.

Portland (36-40) lost 8-3 to Colorado Springs (Rockies)

Will Inman was pulled after four innings with seven runs in, six earned, on six hits and a half-dozen walks during a 100-pitch outing. The right-hander has given up at least five runs in four straight starts and in five of his last six. His six walks were three more than he had surrendered in any start this season across two leagues. In 43.1 innings, Inman has allowed 75 base runners.

Val Pascucci made his Portland debut on Saturday after being signed as a free agent. He went 2-for-4 with a double. Pascucci hit .207 with eight doubles, one triple, eight home runs, 29 RBI, 34 walks and 31 runs scored in 60 games with Triple-A Albuquerque in the Dodgers organization before being released June 18. Pascucci split the 2008 season between Triple-A Lehigh Valley in the Philadelphia Phillies system and Triple-A New Orleans in the New York Mets chain, combining to hit .280 with 25 doubles, 28 homers, 88 RBIs, 95 walks and 76 runs scored in 139 games.

San Antonio (1-3, 40-34) lost 6-4 to Midland (A's)

Nathan Culp fired seven strong, giving up two runs, one earned, on eight hits while fanning two. He induced 13 ground outs – including one double play turned but received a no-decision. It was the fourth time in his last five starts that he has given up one earned or less and two runs or less – this coming around a nine-run game last time out. Culp has not walked a batter in nine of his 15 starts.

Mike DeMark's earned run free streak ended on Saturday. The right-hander gave up three runs on two hits and a walk across one-third of an inning – leaving with two men on. DeMark had not allowed an earned run since April 30 against Frisco, tossing 26.2 innings without yielding an earned run. Even with the outing, DeMark is sporting a 1.83 ERA for the season. He has held the leadoff batter of an inning to a .139 average.

Evan Scribner was tagged with a blown save, as the closer entered the game with two men on and saw both come across to score. He also allowed one run of his own, giving up two hits while striking out two in two-thirds of an inning. Scribner has given up runs in eight of his 30 appearances and is 12-for-14 in save opportunities. He had stranded the only other two runners he has inherited on the year.

Lake Elsinore (2-1, 41-32) lost 7-4 to Inland Empire (Dodgers)

Nick Schmidt made his first California League start and was welcomed by leadoff homer by Manny Ramirez to begin the game. Ramirez would go 2-for-2 with a walk and two runs scored off Schmidt. The left-hander ended his night with four runs marked on his ledger across six innings on six hits and two walks while fanning five. Schmidt allowed two runs or less while going five innings or more in five straight to close out his Midwest League career.

Keoni Ruth notched his eighth double and second triple, scoring a run and driving in two while batting cleanup. Ruth now has 10 RBI in 12 games when he bats fourth in the lineup. The infielder came into the game with three hits in his previous 24 at-bats, seeing his average drop from .303 to .271. His last four hits, however, have gone for extra bases. Ruth is hitting .295 with runners in scoring position in California League play.

Fort Wayne (3-0, 48-25) won 7-2 over South Bend (Diamondbacks)

Cole Figueroa deposited a 3-1 fastball into the left-center field gap with the bases loaded to score all three during a four-run fifth. Figueroa also drew a walk and was hit by a pitch. He did, however, commit his first error in Midwest League play. Figueroa has reached base in all 11 of his games with Fort Wayne and has an eight-game hitting streak. Seven of his 15 hits with the TinCaps have gone for extra bases.

"I was looking for a fastball in the middle of the plate," Figueroa said. "I was looking for something up since he was throwing a sinker. I was looking for something up I could drive. I hit it hard and luckily it found a hole."

"It is always nice to jump out first," manager Doug Dascenzo said of his team scoring two in the bottom of the first. "It makes it a little bit easier. This game is built on momentum."

"The offense has been rolling well and the pitchers have been throwing strikes and getting outs," Justin Baum said. "That is a pretty good recipe for wins."

"I think Dougie and Torni have really preached getting on the other club early," outfielder Dan Robertson said. "With the kind of pitching staff we have - you give them an early lead and they are lights out."

"We are scoring a lot of runs with two outs and that has made a big difference," hitting coach Tom Tornicasa said. Four of their runs on Saturday came with two outs.

Dan Robertson smacked a 2-1 pitch out and over the left field fence for a solo homer to open the bottom of the seventh – his fifth. Robertson had three hits on the night, scoring each time he reached. The outfielder also had two RBI but did ground into a double play. Robertson has an RBI in five straight games and seven multi-hit games across his last 10. Robertson has knocked in 17 runs in his last 19.

"he has to make sure he takes a line drive approach," Dascenzo said of Robertson. "As long as he does that, he will be fine."

"They were throwing a lot of two-seamers," Robertson said. "Torni told me to back up a little (in the batter's box) to get my arms extended. My third AB, I felt comfortable with. I was looking for something to sink down. It felt good when I got it. I thought it was a double."

Erik Davis tossed 91 pitches across 5.2 innings, allowing one run on five hits and a walk while striking out four and hitting a batter. The right-hander induced a pair of double play grounders after netting just one in his first 46 innings of work. Davis has given up two runs or less in four of his six starts and eight of the 16 earned runs he has allowed came during his last outing.

"He ran into one bad inning last time out," Dascenzo said. "He had good command of his fastball and was throwing his breaking ball for strikes. He has to paint the ball on the corners and did that today."

"Those double play grounders were huge," Davis said. "I was able to mix up all my pitches. Robert (Lara) called a really good game. I can only think of two or three pitches that I shook off. When you are in sync with your catcher, it makes things a lot easier."

"He pitched well," pitching coach Tom Bradley said. "He mixed his pitches well. His breaking ball was pretty good. The other day he threw a lot of fastballs and made an adjustment to the offspeed stuff. It was an impressive outing."

Eugene (2-6) won 9-1 over Yakima (Diamondbacks)

Edinson Rincon hit his first homer since July 19, 2007 while playing with the DSL Padres, sending a ball over the fence in the fifth. The third baseman also delivered his first triple of the year, falling a single shy of the cycle while scoring twice and adding a walk. Rincon has three extra base hits in his last two and has reached base 12 times through five games.

Vince Belnome pushed his RBI total to nine with three more on Saturday – plating one on a ground out in the opening frame and two more on a double in the fifth. He now sits second in the Northwest League in that category. The infielder has been on base in each game this season and sports a .484 on-base percentage. He also has three multi-RBI games through his first seven.

Matt Jackson worked 3.1 scoreless, giving up two hits while fanning one to pick up his first win. He also stranded a pair of inherited runners. Jackson has run his scoreless streak to 5.1 innings to begin his professional career. Jackson posted a 5-4 record with a 5.33 ERA in 13 starts for South Alabama. He led the team with 74.1 innings pitched and struck out 64 against just 27 walks. He was named Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Week after limiting Mercer to just two hits in 7.1 innings in his debut with the Jags on Feb. 20, and again after limiting New Orleans to three hits in 7.0 innings on March 20.

AZL Padres (0-5) vs AZL Rangers suspended due to power issues in sixth – AZL Padres down 7-4

DSL Padres (11-13) lost 8-3 to DSL Tigers

Manuel Nuno notched a pair of hits in four at-bats, including a double, adding a walk and two RBI. Nuno came into the game in a five hits in his last 38 at-bats, striking out 18 times over that span. That slump dropped his average from .346 to .219 coming into play. Nuno does, however, have 21 RBI on the season and has notched six multi-RBI games through 24 overall.

Pedro Martinez saw his record evened up at 1-1 after allowing seven runs, three earned, on four hits and four walks while fanning four across 2.2 innings. Martinez also hit a pair. The left-hander had given up five runs across his first four starts. Martinez had issued just five walks before giving up a season-high four on Saturday.

Jean Corpas worked four scoreless frames, giving up three hits and a walk while striking out three. The Panama native had given up eight runs on 12 hits and two walks across his previous 7.2 innings of action. Corpas did deliver a wild pitch for the fourth straight game. He has held the leadoff hitter of an inning to a .200 on-base percentage.

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