Bats Win in 11

Cody Puckett has maintained a good power stroke while advancing through the Reds system. Questions over his glove in the middle infield prompted the Reds to move him to left field this season where more offense is expected. Thus far his bat has answered the call. He moved back to second last night before he stroked three hits in his AAA debut.

Louisville scored two runs in the top of the eleventh inning to win 4-2 at Rochester yesterday. The rally was started by a single from Cody Purckett. It was the third hit of the game in his AAA debut. Miguel Rojas and Corky Miller also added two hits each. Brett Tomko turned in a quality start allowing two runs on five hits over six innings. The veteran struck out five while walking two. Jordan Smith came in to end the bottom of the tenth and picked up his first win.

Puckett came into the Cincinnati organization out of California State University Dominguez Hills when he was selected in the eighth round of the 2008 draft. The second baseman began that season in the rookie leagues by hitting .270 with a .379 OB/.444 SLG. He showed good power in 2009 when he hit 19 homers at Dayton and sustained it at high-A Lynchburg the next year. He continued to maintain that power stroke with 15 HR last season at AA Carolina and led Pensacola with seven in 37 games before he was promoted this year.

Thus far Puckett's glove has made him an enigma. His offensive production is very attractive for a middle infielder. However he's had less range at second that one would expect from someone with his athletic ability and committed 40 errors in 299 games at that position. That prompted the Reds to move him to left field where most of his action has been this season. Of course more offense is expected from corner positions, but moving around can improve his value as a utility player with decent power. He maintains good selectivity at the plate and his OB% has been almost 100' higher than his batting average since arriving at AA. Thus far this season his bat has responded to the call with a .380 OB% while slugging almost .500. He was at second base for his first game with the Bats and it will be interesting to watch where he plays as he nears the MLB level.

Other News from the Farm:

Pensacola tied their game at five in the top of the ninth before giving up a three-run homer in the bottom of the inning to lose 8-5 at Jacksonville. Didi Gregorius, Joel Guzman, and P.J. Phillips each had two hits for the Wahoo attack. J.C. Sulbaran had his worst start of the season when he allowed five runs before leaving after four innings. Curtis Parch allowed the game winner and was charged with his third loss.

Bakersfield opened their road trip with a 3-2 loss at Lake Elsinore. Devin Lohman, Bryson Smith, and Theo Bowe each had two hits for the Blaze. Josh Smith had a strong outing by throwing six innings of three hit ball and allowing only one run. He left a tie game after striking out nine and walking only one. Jamie Walczak finished the game and picked up his first loss.

Billy Hamilton Theft Watch:

Hamilton reached base once last night on an error and stole second base. He now has 39 steals in 37 games.

Dayton's comeback attempt in the ninth fell one run short when they lost 5-4 at Bowling Green. Yovan Gonzalez had two hits for the Dragons including his third home run. The catcher is now batting .301. Jacob Johnson made his first start of the season and allowed one run on three hits before leaving with a lead after five innings. James Allen blew the save and was charged with his second loss.

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