10 September 2005

Royals on the Farm 9/9 -- done for the summer

High-A: High Desert's batters, and more specifically OF Chris Lubanski, came to play in the 3-game series with Lancaster but the pitching staff couldn't get the job done as the Mavs' season ended Friday with a 9-8 11-inning loss to Lancaster after HD had an early 7-1 lead. SP Billy Buckner gave up a run in the top of the 1st but the Mavs scored 5 in the bottom of the inning on a 2-run triple by Lubanski, RBI single by 1B Kila Kaaihue and RBI singles by 3B Michael Gaffney and 2B Walter Sevilla for a 5-1 lead. The Mavs tacked on 2 in the 2nd on RBI doubles by Lubanski and RF Bernard Stephens for a 7-1 lead. Lancaster scored a run in both the 3rd and 6th to cut the lead to 4 but HD scored again in the 7th on a Lubanski solo homer (his 3rd of the series) for an 8-3 lead. RP Chad Blackwell gave up a run in the 8th and 2 in the 9th before getting pulled in favor of RP Gabe DeHoyos with the score 8-6. DeHoyos gave up a game-tying 2-run homer to the first batter he faced before getting the three outs in quick order. Lubanski singled to complete the cycle in the 9th but the Mavs couldn't get him home. Lancaster scored in the top of the 11th off RP Brian Steffek and, in the bottom of the inning, Lubanski walked and Kaaihue singled to put 2 runners on with 1 out. Stephens struck out before DH Alan Moye grounded into a season-ending force out. Buckner went 7 IP and allowed 3 R (2 ER) on 7 hits and 2 walks with 3 Ks to make his ERA 2.57; Blackwell went an inning and allowed 4 ER on 4 hits to make his playoff ERA 22.50 -- maybe they should have let him stay in Burlington....it was a weird time to give someone his first shot at pitching in the Cal League; DeHoyos blew his 1st save with an IP of 1 ER on a hit with a K to finish the series with a disappointing 6.75 ERA; RP Eric Ackerman pitched a hitless inning with 3 Ks to keep his ERA at 0.00; and Steffek took the loss with an IP of an ER on 3 hits with a K to finish with an ERA of 9.00. LF Pete Maestrales was 2-6 to finish at .267; SS Angel Sanchez was 2-6 with 2 RS to finish at .429; Lubanski was 4-5 with a walk, double, triple, HR, 4 RBI and 3 RS to finish at an amazing .867; Kaaihue was 3-6 with an RBI to finish at .357; Moye was 0-4 with 2 walks to finish at .154; C Adam Donachie was 0-5 to finish at .071; Sevilla was 3-5 with an RBI to finish at .556; and Gaffney was 2-4 with an RBI to finish at .444.

High Desert finished the second half at 39-31. Overall the Mavs finished 75-65. The Cal League is hard on pitchers, which the Mavs found out throughout the season and in the playoffs. It's too bad, because this team could have won the league.

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