13 April 2007

Royals on the Farm 4/12

AAA -- Omaha: Round Rock 9, O-Royals 2

LF Butler 1-3, BB -- .290
CF Gathright 2-5, 2B (2), RBI (3) -- .219
SS Blanco 1-3, SF, RBI (4), K -- .111
DH Costa 0-4, CS -- .071
3B Aviles 1-4 -- .370
RF Maier 1-4, RS -- .226
2B Cortez 1-3, BB, K, RS -- .350
C Tupman 1-2, 2 BB, 2B, PB -- .312

Lumsden 3 1/3 IP, 7 ER, 8 H, 3 BB, K -- L, 1-1, 7.56 ERA, not good
Shiell 1 2/3 IP, 3 H -- 1.59 ERA
Hoelscher 2 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, K -- 9.00 ERA
Giron IP, BB, 2 K -- 4.50 ERA

Tyler Lumsden had a second start equally as bad as his first start of the year was good Thursday as the O-Royals finished the set with Round Rock by dropping 3 of 4. Joey Gathright bunt grounded out to lead off the game to mark the second game in a row with a Gathright bunt out to start an inning. Not that that's an asinine play for manager Mike Jirschele with Gathright's speed, but wouldn't you rather have him just chop at the ball and beat out a high hopper rather than bunting? I haven't seem him get a bunt single yet, although he has hit a couple of "soft grounders" to first for hits in the early going. Those could have been bunt singles for all I know. I'm rambling. Anyway, Lumsden stranded 2 base runners for Round Rock in the bottom of the 1st but gave up 3 straight singles to load the bases to start the 2nd. He then gave up a 2-out bases loaded walk and 2-run single to score 3 runs and give the Express the lead. The Express added a run in the 3rd and got 2 hits and a walk off Lumsden in the 4th to knock him out of the game. Jason Shiell came in and gave up a 2-run double to the first batter he faced to make it 7-0 RR. Omaha loaded the bases with 1 out in the 5th and a Gathright force out brought home a run to get the Royals on the board. The Express got back the run with interest in the 6th on a sac fly and RBI double off Nate Hoelscher to make it 9-1. An Andres Blanco sac fly in the 7th accounted for Omaha's other run and the Royals went down without much fight in the 8th and 9th to end it. The Royals are 2-6 but still only 3 games back of first. Express RF Hunter Pence was 3-4 with a double, 3 RBI (7) and 2 RS to move to .259, 2B Brooks Conrad was 1-3 with his 2nd double and 3 RBI (6) along with his 1st E of the season to move to .240 and five other players had 2-hit games for Round Rock. Express starter Phil Barzilla got the win with an ER on 2 hits and 4 walks with 3 K over 5 IP to move to 1-0 with a 1.12 ERA. RP Jared Gothreaux got a 4-inning save.

Omaha returns home to start a 4-game set vs. the Albuquerque Isotopes (4-3, AAA Marlins) tonight. Pitchers: Isotopes LH Paul Mildren (1-0, 3.60) vs. Omaha RH Dewon Brazelton (0-1, 6.75). Omaha was 1-3 against the 'Topes in the season opening set.

AA -- Wichita: Wranglers 4, Corpus Christi 1

RF Joseph 1-3, BB, 2B, 2 RBI (3), K, RS -- .333
DH Brazell 1-3, BB, HR (2), RBI (3), 2 RS -- .350
1B Stodolka 0-4, RBI (3), 2 K -- .278
LF Lubanski 1-3, BB, RS -- .300
2B Falu 1-4, K, SB (1) -- .182
CF Greenberg 0-3, BB, K, picked off, E (fielding) -- .150

Hochevar 3 IP, ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 5 K, WP -- ND, 6.14 ERA, pitch count was reason for pull, worrisome control, again overshadowed by Troy Patton
Atencio 3 2/3 IP, H, BB, 2 K, WP -- W, 1-0, 0.00 ERA
Cedeno IP, K -- 2.45 ERA
Plummer 1 1/3 IP, H, 2 K -- SV, 2, 2.25 ERA

Wichita couldn't touch Hooks SP Troy Patton but, luckily, they could hit the Corpus Christi pen as a late rally got the Wranglers a 4-1 win. Wichita SP Luke Hochevar gave up 2 walks and a wild pitch in the 1st but emerged unscathed thanks to striking out the side along the way. While Patton was perfect through 3 2/3 IP, Hochevar ran into trouble in the 3rd with a leadoff walk and a single that moved the lead runner to third on an Adam Greenberg error in CF. Two more singles scored 1 run before Hochevar struck out a couple more batters to end the threat. Wichita drew walks off Patton in the 4th, 5th, and 6th, but didn't notch a hit off the lefty. RP Jeff Wigdahl replaced Patton for the 7th and, quickly, Wichita went to work. With the bases loaded and no outs thanks to 2 Hooks errors, Onil Joseph doubled home 2 runs to give Wichita a 2-1 lead and Mike Stodolka added an RBI ground out to make it 3-1. Irving Falu was thrown out at home in the 8th to end the inning but Craig Brazell got the insurance run with a longball in the 9th for his 2nd of the season to make it 4-1 Wichita. RPs Greg Atencio, Juan Cedeno and Jarod Plummer got into only minor trouble at worst in pitching 6 innings of scoreless relief to lock down the victory. The Wranglers are 4-2 and 1 1/2 games up on first. Hooks 3B Drew Sutton was 2-4 with his 2nd E to move to .263 while 1B Neil Sellers was 1-4 with his 2nd RBI to move to .421. Patton went 6 IP and allowed only 3 BB with 5 Ks and a pickoff to get the no-decision and lower his ERA to 0.75. Wigdahl picked up the blown save and loss, even though 2 of the 3 runs he allowed were unearned.

The series resumes with game 2 tonight in Texas. Pitchers: Wichita lefty Dan Christensen (0-0, 2.25 ERA) vs. Hooks righty Josh Miller (0-1, 3.60 ERA).

A-Adv. -- Wilmington: Blue Rocks 4, Kinston 3

3B Lisson 5-5 (!), 2B (3), 3B, RBI (3), SB -- .286, HR short of cycle, great night, tied a franchise record for hits in game
C Clark 2-4, 2 2B, RBI, K -- .300
RF McFall 2-4, BB, 2B, 2 RS, picked off, OF assist at third -- .160
DH Thibault 2-5, 2 2B -- .333
LF Bigler 1-4, RBI (2), SB -- .136
2B Johnson 1-5, RBI (2) -- .154
SS Arce 1-4, 2B (3), 2 RS -- .150
*Rocks left 11 on base. 1B Kila Kaaihue made his 2nd E, CF Jose Duarte had an OF assist at home.

Nicoll 4 IP, ER, 4 H, 2 BB, 5 K, HRA -- ND, 4.50 ERA
Oliveros 3 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 2 BB, K, HRA -- 3.00 ERA
de la Vara 2 IP, H, 2 BB -- W, 1-0, 0.00 ERA

The dormant Blue Rock offense broke out of the slump Thursday as Wilmington had 14 hits and a late run got them a 4-3 victory to split the 4-game set with Kinston. SP Chris Nicoll gave up a homer to the first batter he faced -- RF Jose Constanza (his first of '07) -- and Kinston took a quick 1-0 lead. Nicoll walked two other batters in the inning but got out without any more damage. Brian McFall led off the 2nd with a double and scored on a Cody Clark double to tie the game for Wilmington. Kinston RP Chris Niesel replaced starter David Huff in the 5th and an error and wild pitch set up a Mario Lisson RBI double for his 3rd hit of the game and a 2-1 Blue Rocks lead. The same thing happened in the bottom of the frame as Rayner Oliveros replaced Nicoll and gave up a walk, 1-out single and RBI double to tie the game. Jose Duarte threw out a runner at home via relay man Valentino Arce to stop a second run from scoring on the play. Brett Bigler singled home a run in the 6th to make it 3-2 Wilmington but Oliveros gave up a homer to Constanza (his 2nd of the game) in the 7th to tie it up at 3. RP Gilbert de la Vara walked the first two batters for Kinston in the 8th and a Kila Kaaihue error loaded the bases with no outs. Luckily, de la Vara got a 5-2-3 double play and ground out to kill the rally. Arce doubled to lead off the 9th and advanced to third on a wild pitch before Josh Johnson drove him home with a single to center to make it 4-3 Blue Rocks. The Rocks stranded the bases loaded, but de la Vara got out of the 9th without much trouble to end the game. Wilmington is 3-5 and 3 games back of Potomac. Constanza was 3-5 with a double and 2 HR along with his first 2 RBI and 3 RS to move to .259, CF John Drennen was 2-5 with 2 doubles and his first RBI of the season to move to .200 and 1B Jerad Head was 1-2 with 2 BB to move to .250. RP James Deters picked up the loss for Kinston to drop to 0-1, 2.08 ERA.

The Blue Rocks play their first home game as a reborn Royals affiliate tonight to start a 3-game set vs. the Salem Avalanche (2-4, A-Adv. Astros). Pitchers: Rocks righty Julio Pimentel (0-0, 0.00) vs. Salem lefty and one of the 'Stros top prospects, Brian Bogusevic (0-0, 3.60 ERA). Besides Bogusevic, Salem's roster also features prospect OFs Eli Iorg and Mitch Einertson. Wilmington's team BA rose 30 points to .187 from .157 in Thursday's win.

A -- Burlington: double snowout

The Bees' scheduled twinbill vs. Cedar Rapids was postponed, so the teams will make up the games during a series in early June. Burlington will start a 2-game set tonight at the Peoria Chiefs (3-2, A Cubs). Angelo Morales is still set to pitch for Burlington vs. Peoria SP Jose Pina (0-0, 0.00). The Bees are 0-2 vs. Peoria thus far this season and 2-2 overall.

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