AAA -- Omaha: O-Royals 3, New Orleans 1
1B Brazell 2-4, HR (17), 2 RBI (33), K, RS -- .312
LF McCarthy 1-3, BB, HR (1), RBI (2), RS -- .300
CF Maier 0-3, HBP -- .283
2B Aviles 0-3, S, K -- .313
C Tupman 0-4 -- .297
Buckner 8 IP, ER, H, 3 BB, 5 K -- W, 6-2, 4.15 ERA, best pro start that I've recorded for Billy, took no-no into the 8th
Braun IP, K -- SV, 4, 2.40 ERA
If Billy Buckner used Wednesday's game as an audition for Scott Elarton's rotation spot, he gave it his best shot with a 1-hit outing as Omaha won the series opener. Buckner stranded 2 on walks in the 2nd and Craig Brazell gave him some run support with a 2-run homer in the 4th for his 17th at Omaha. Buckner hit a batter with a pitch in the 6th but took a no-hitter into the 8th before giving up a leadoff double to 3B David Newhan. Omaha left the bases loaded in the 6th and Newhan's double in the 8th was converted to a run on a ground out to cut the lead to 2-1. Bill McCarthy led off the 9th with his 1st homer as a Royal and RP Ryan Braun pitched a perfect 9th for his 4th save. Omaha is 34-38 and 8 games out. Newhan was 1-2 with a walk and his 5th double to move to .321 and Zephyrs starter Willie Collazo took the loss with 5 2/3 IP of 2 ER on 3 hits, 2 walks and 3 Ks to drop to 1-3 with a 2.63 ERA. Buckner mowed through a solid Zephyrs lineup that included Newhan and Ben Johnson, who have played for the Mets this season, and former major leaguers Sandy Alomar Jr. and Fernando Tatis.
The series continues tonight. Probable starters: Omaha RH Jason Shiell (0-2, 3.76) vs. Zephyrs LH Jason Vargas (5-4, 4.77). Brazell has 24 combined homers at AA and AAA, which ties his career season high. Angel Berroa has batted .077 since being DFA'd and is now hitting .248 at AAA overall.
AA -- Wichita: Tulsa 4, Wranglers 3 (13/completion of Tuesday's game)
The game was resumed tied at 1 in the 12th and Wichita RF Jake Blalock tried to score on a 1-out Damaso Espino single in that inning but was thrown out at the plate. Chris Lubanski cranked a 2-run homer in the 13th for his 9th of the season and RBIs 30 and 31 but, with 2 on and 2 out in the bottom of the inning, P Jason Cromer gave up a walk and then a bases-clearing double to 1B Aaron Rifkin to end it. Wichita started the second half 0-1. Rifkin was 3-6 with his 16th double and 3 RBI (30) to move to .265 and RP Jentry Beckstead got the win with 2 IP of 2 ER on 4 hits and a K to improve to 2-1 with an 8.22 ERA.
Tulsa 2, Wranglers 1 (regular Wed. game)
DH Kaaihue 2-3, BB, RS -- .333
SS Falu 2-3, 3B (4), RBI (16) -- .247
LF Lubanski 1-4, 2 K -- .302
2B Valentin 1-4, picked off -- .300
1B Stodolka 0-3, BB, K, E (5) -- .259
Nunez 5 2/3 IP, H, 3 BB, 5 K -- ND, 0.87 ERA, another very nice start
Rosa 2 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 5 H, BB, 4 K, HRA -- L, 3-5, 5.76 ERA, not getting it done at AA
A slim and late lead was turned into a loss as Wichita's woes continued. Starter Leo Nunez dodged a bullet in the 2nd as a runner tried to score on a pitch that got away from C Damaso Espino but the Wranglers nailed him at the plate to preserve the scoreless tie. Irving Falu tripled in the 5th but was stranded. Kila Kaaihue drew a 2-out walk in the 7th, advanced to third on 2 wild pitches by Franklin Morales and scored on a Falu single to give the Wranglers a 1-0 lead. P Carlos Rosa gave up a leadoff homer to Rifkin in the 7th to tie the game, stranded 2 in the inning and then gave up a run on 3 hits in the 8th to make it 2-1 Tulsa. RP Steven Register pitched the 9th for Tulsa and picked up his 23rd save. Wichita is 0-2 and on an 8-game skid overall. Rifkin finished his big day 2-4 with his 9th homer and 31st RBI to move to .269, LF Matt Miller was 2-4 with his 33rd RBI to move to .260 and RP Juan Morillo got the win with an IP of perfect relief to improve to 4-2 with a 2.34 ERA.
A 4-game set at the Arkansas Travelers (1-1, AA Halos) starts tonight. The Wranglers are 6-10 versus the Travs thus far. No announced starters on the Wranglers' site. The Royals have promoted C/1B Jeff Howell to Wichita after he hit .229 with a .627 OPS, 2 HR and 12 RBI in 19 games at Burlington (A). P Luke Hochevar was named today to the U.S. team in this year's Futures Game set for July 8 in San Francisco.
A-Adv. -- Wilmington: All-star break final day
The Blue Rocks get back into action for the second half tonight with the first of 3 at home versus the Frederick Keys (A-Adv. O's). The Rocks were 4-7 in the first half versus the division champ Keys. No announced starters on Wilmington's site. The team site and Wilmington News Journal seem a little indignant that the Rocks only won 30 games in the first half.
A -- Burlington: All-star break final day
The Bees begin their second-half action tonight with the first of 4 at home versus the Cedar Rapids Kernels (A Angels). Burlington was 2-4 versus the Kernels in the first half. With Howell called up to AA, 3B Luis Castillo has joined the Bees in a move I'm excited to see. Castillo, to refresh your memory, hit .383 with a 1.025 OPS (18 BB/13 Ks) in 27 games at Idaho Falls last season before going down with a shoulder injury. Hopefully he rakes at A ball.
Rookie -- Burlington: Danville 6, B-Royals 4
CF Lough 3-4, 2 2B (2) -- .444
DH Amyx 2-4, K -- .333
RF Tucker 1-4, HR (1), 2 RBI (3), K, RS -- .250, first pro homer
SS Martin 1-4, 2B (1), RBI (2) -- .444
3B Jimenez 1-4, 2B (1), RBI (1), K, RS -- .375
LF Norris 0-3, 2 BB, K, RS -- .250
1B Lane 0-4, 3 K, E (1) -- .143
Arias 5 2/3 IP, 3 R (2 ER), 5 H, 3 BB, 2 K, HRA -- ND, 3.18 ERA
J. Diaz 1 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 3 H, 2 BB, 2 K, 2 HRA -- L, 0-1, 16.20 ERA
Gausman 2/3 IP, nothing -- 0.00 ERA
A 3-1 Burlington lead vanished in the 6th as Danville earned a split of the 2-game set. Danville struck first with a run in the 2nd on a hit and errors by 2B Alwin Perez and 1B Jake Lane. The B-Royals evened it in the 3rd as Patrick Norris drew a 2-out walk and scored on a double by Kyle Martin. Wilson Tucker hit a 2-out, 2-run homer in the 4th to make it 3-1 B-Royals and notch his first career homer. Burlington stranded 2 in the 5th as Perez got picked off for a second time and starter Henry Arias gave up a 2-run homer in the 6th to tie it at 3. RP Jose Diaz gave up a 2-run homer in the 7th to give the D-Braves a 5-3 lead but David Lough scored on an Antonio Jimenez ground out in the 8th to cut it back to 1. Diaz gave up a solo homer in the bottom of the 8th to pad the lead back to 2 but RP Brian Gausman stranded 2 in scoring position in the inning. Burlington got the tying run to the plate in the 9th but couldn't rally. Burlington is 1-1 and a game back. Danville RF Stephen Shults was 2-4 with his 1st homer and 2 RBI (3) to stay at .500, SS Michael Fisher was 2-3 with his 1st pro homer and 2 RBI to move to .429 and RP Nicholas Fellman got the win with 3 IP of an ER on a hit, walk and 3 Ks to improve to 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA.
The B-Royals move on to a 2-game home set with the Greeneville Astros (1-1, Rookie 'Stros) tonight. Greeneville's roster features no highly touted Astros prospects. The highest '07 draft pick on the roster is 17th round RH Mason Roberts. Seven other lower draft picks are on the roster. The Astros have announced tonight's starter as Fernando Abad. No announced starter for Burlington.
Rookie -- Idaho Falls: Chukars 10, Casper 7 (11)
DH Robinson 3-6, 3 RBI (3), K, RS -- .273, nice bounce back from 0-fer in first game
SS Seratelli 2-4, BB, HBP, RBI (1), 3 RS, E (1) -- .625
1B Van De Keere 2-4, BB, HBP, 2 RS -- .400
C Balduf 1-5, BB, 2 RBI (2), K -- .200
RF Gonzalez 1-5, BB, RBI (2), 2 K, RS, SB (1) -- .200
CF Van Stratten 1-4, BB, HBP, RBI (3) -- .300
2B Bionde 1-6, RS, SB (1), E (1), picked off -- .167, pro debut
*11 Chukars were left on base.
Phillips 3 IP, 3 R (1 ER), 4 H, 2 BB, 2 K, HRA -- ND, 3.00 ERA
Snipes IP, ER, 2 H, K -- 9.00 ERA
Denton IP, ER, 2 H, HRA -- 9.00 ERA
Hughes 3 2/3 IP, 2 ER, 2 H, 3 BB, 4 K, HRA -- 4.91 ERA
Cassa 2 1/3 IP, H, BB, 4 K -- W, 1-0, 0.00 ERA
This time it was the Chukars who forced extras before taking the game in extras for the second night in a row. Casper jumped out to a 5-0 lead with 1 in the 1st on a leadoff homer by 3B Shane Lowe on starter Justin Phillips; 2 in the 3rd on 2 hits and errors by O.D. Gonzalez and Anthony Seratelli; 1 run on 2 hits off RP Clegg Snipes in the 4th; and a solo homer off RP Chris Denton in the 5th. IF left 2 in scoring position in the 4th but mounted a comeback in the 6th. Clint Robinson hit an RBI single, Gonzalez hit an RBI single and Todd Balduf hit a 2-run single to cut the lead to 5-4. Casper fought back with 2 in the 7th on a triple, squeeze bunt and solo homer off RP Joe Hughes to take a 7-4 lead. That was the score entering the 9th when Seratelli followed up a Lowe error with an RBI single and Robinson came through in the clutch with a 2-out, 2-run single to tie the game. The Chukars left the bases loaded after another Lowe error and RP Pat Cassa came in for the Chukars with the bases loaded and 2 out in the bottom of the 9th before getting a swinging K to end the threat. In the 11th, a Casper error helped load the bases with none out and Nick Van Stratten put IF ahead with an RBI single. A wild pitch and the Rockies' 5th error of the game scored 2 more runs to make it 10-7. Cassa nailed down the win in the bottom of the 11th. Idaho Falls is 2-0 and already the only undefeated in the league. Lowe was 2-6 for Casper with his 1st homer, 2nd RBI, 4 Ks, a SB (3) and 2 E (3) to move to .455, SS Carlos Martinez was 2-6 with his 1st RBI to move to .333 and RP Jonnathan Aristil took the loss with an IP of 2 ER on 2 walks to drop to 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA.
The series wraps tonight. Probable starters: Chukars' Chris Chavez vs. Rockies' Jose Campos.
Rookie -- AZL: Still no posted roster for the Royals, as their season starts Friday versus the Rangers. The Royals will play morning games in the first half and night games in the second half.
21 June 2007
AAA -- Omaha: O-Royals 3, New Orleans 1