04 June 2009

Royals on the Farm 6/3

Good lord, this season has gone from looking optimistic to swirling the bowl fast. Somebody make it stop! Without the acquisition of Braves castoffs....why can't we swing a deal for the Braves good prospects like Gorkys Hernandez, other of course than the fact we have no Nate McLouth to give? We just get Dayton's pets the Braves don't want anymore.

AAA - Omaha: Round Rock 2, O-Royals 1

DH House 2-4, 2B (7), RBI (23) -- .304
1B Ka'aihue 0-3, BB, RS -- .281
CF Raines 0-3, BB, K -- .000
3B Metcalf 0-3, 3 K -- .238, ejected in 8th
SS Lisson 0-3, K -- .182
* C Matt Tupman had a pickoff at first and his 3rd error.

Duckworth 8 IP, 4 H, 3 BB, 6 K -- 4.75 ERA, another Omaha bullpen special
Marte IP, 2 UER, 2 H, K -- BS, 1, L, 0-1, 2.25 ERA

*** The O-Royals had a tenuous 1-0 lead going into the 9th until 2 2-out errors helped things fall apart. The loss ruined a great start by Brandon Duckworth as he stranded 2 in the 2nd and J.R. House drove in the Royals' only run with an RBI double that inning. Duckworth retired 11 in a row into the 8th but Round Rock starter Josh Muecke retired 12 in a row at one point to keep the Express in the game. Victor Marte took over in the 9th and got the first 2 outs before Tommy Murphy, who had taken over for Travis Metcalf at third in the 8th after Metcalf was ejected for arguing balls/strikes, made a throwing error and Matt Tupman made a throwing error on a stolen base soon after. Express 3B Chris Johnson tied the game with an RBI triple and scored on a single by DH John Gall to swing the lead Round Rock's way. The Royals got the tying run to second in the 9th but couldn't get it home as RP Brendan Donnelly got his 2nd save. RP Casey Daigle got the win with a scoreless 8th to move to 2-0 with a 1.99 ERA. Muecke allowed an ER on 2 hits and 2 walks with 7 Ks over 7 IP to move his ERA to 7.03. Johnson was 3-4 with his 4th double, 2nd triple and 8th RBI with the RS to move to .301 and RF Reggie Abercrombie had 2 hits, including his 15th double.

The Royals are 23-30 and 6 1/2 games back. Game 3 of the series is tonight as Lenny DiNardo (4-1, 3.29) faces PCL K's leader Express righty Bud Norris (2-4, 2.75, 62 Ks in 59 IP). Incidentally, Bruce Chen is second. Omaha leads the PCL with 5 losses when leading after 8. IF Tug Hulett is headed back to Omaha after picking up a whopping 4 ABs with KC. It's tough to crack such an imposing lineup.

AA - NW Arkansas: Midland 16, Naturals 8

RF Parraz 4-5, 2B (11), RBI (27), RS -- .351, nice night
2B Mertins 3-5, BB, RBI (23), K, RS -- .291
CF Duarte 3-5, BB, 3 RS, CS (4) -- .265, nice return to AA
1B C. Smith 2-5, HR (10), RBI (36), RS -- .250
C Howell 2-5, 2B (6), RS, picked off a runner -- .289
LF Strait 1-5, 2 RBI (14), K -- .308
DH McFall 0-2, 3 BB, RBI (35), RS -- .274
SS McConnell 0-5, K -- .237
* The Naturals stranded 12.

Kniginyzky 1/3 IP, 6 ER, 4 H, 2 BB, HRA -- L, 1-6, 6.54 ERA
Cevette 2 1/3 IP, 4 ER, 5 H, 3 BB, K, HRA -- 5.54 ERA
Sencion 2 1/3 IP, 3 ER, 2 H, 4 BB, 4 K -- 4.97 ERA
de la Vara 2 IP, 3 ER, 4 H, BB, K -- 5.00 ERA
Holland IP, H, BB -- 2.49 ERA

*** The Naturals actually had a good offensive night, but Midland's offense was much better as Matt Kniginyzky didn't survive the 1st and three NWA relievers also had problems. NWA stranded 2 in the 1st and here's how Kniginyzky's outing went: single, single, walk, bases-loaded walk, RBI single, forceout at home, grand slam by LF Matt Spencer (his 1st homer of the season), pulled for Dan Cevette. Cevette promptly gave up a homer to 3B Alex Valdez (his 2nd) to make it 7-0 Midland. Cevette left the bases full in the 2nd and NW Arkansas got on the scoreboard in the 3rd with a Kurt Mertins RBI single before also leaving the bases loaded. Midland responded with 3 runs on 4 hits and a walk off Cevette and Carlos Sencion to make it 10-1 in the 3rd. Mertins singled home a run in the 4th and Corey Smith led off the 5th with his team-leading 10th homer to cut it to 10-3. Sencion, however, doled out 4 walks and a hit for 3 runs in the 5th to further extend Midland's lead. The Nats' big inning was the 6th when they scored 4 runs on a bases-loaded Brian McFall walk, a 2-run Cody Strait single and run-scoring wild pitch to trim the lead to 13-7. Jordan Parraz had an RBI double in the 7th to cut the lead to 5 but Midland put it away with a 3-run 7th inning rally off Gilbert de la Vara. RockHounds SP Carlos Hernandez got the win with 3 ER allowed on 11 hits and 2 walks with 3 Ks over 5 IP to move to 3-0 with a 4.50 ERA. Five 'Hounds had multi-hit games. Spencer's 4 RBI gave him 11 on the season and 4 other 'Hounds had multiple RBI. 2B Adrian Cardenas was 2-5 with 3 RBI (33), 2 K and 2 RS to move to .374. CF Archie Gilbert and SS Josh Horton had 3 hits and 3 RS each. Gilbert also stole his 14th base.

The Naturals are 24-26 and 5 games back. Game 2 is tonight as Blake Wood (2-3, 6.31) faces RockHounds righty Jason Fernandez (5-4, 4.37).

A-Adv. - Wilmington: Blue Rocks 4, Kinston 2

RF Walton 2-3, K, picked off -- .290
SS Bianchi 1-4, HR (4), 2 RBI (24), RS -- .319
LF Lough 1-4, 2B (12), RBI (23), 3 K -- .329
DH C. Robinson 1-4, HR (7), RBI (30), RS -- .296
CF Ortiz 0-4, 3 K -- .255, something about that leadoff spot for him...
3B Moustakas 1-4, K, RS -- .263
2B Giavotella 1-4, 2B (7), RS -- .220

Teaford 6 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 3 BB, 7 K -- W, 6-1, 2.68 ERA, 6th straight QS
Villa 2 IP, 3 H -- 3.27 ERA
Swaggerty IP, 2 K -- SV, 1, 1.86 ERA, nice to see a bullpen do its job

*** Everett Teaford continued a strong 2009 run and the Rocks took 2 of 3 from the Indians. Jeff Bianchi had an RBI groundout in the 1st and David Lough doubled home a run to give Teaford a 2-0 lead to work with. He needed the cushion as Kinston scored 2 in the 2nd on 4 hits and a walk, but Teaford wouldn't allow another hit through 6. He stranded 2 in the 3rd and Clint Robinson teed off for his 7th homer of the season in the 4th to make it 3-2 Wilmington. Bianchi went long in the 6th for his 4th homer and Kelvin Villa and Ben Swaggerty took it from there, as Swaggerty pitched a perfect 9th for his 1st 2009 save. Kinston SP Paolo Espino (former Royals farmhand Damaso Espino's cousin) took the loss with 6 IP of 4 ER allowed on 6 hits with 7 Ks to drop to 1-2 with a 2.10 ERA. 1B Nate Recknagel was 2-4 with his 3rd double and 5th RBI to move to .222. 3B Lonnie Chisenhall was 1-4 with his 17th error and a K to drop to .303.

The Rocks are 27-25 and 8 games back. They can crawl closer in the race as a 4-game home set versus the division leading Lynchburg Hillcats (35-17, A-Adv. Pirates) starts tonight with Alex Caldera (1-2, 6.00) taking on Hillcats righty Ronald Uviedo (2-3, 3.81). Top Buccos prospect 3B Pedro Alvarez is still with Lynchburg and is up to hitting .240 with a .792 OPS, 11 E, 9 HR, 41 RBI, 31 BB/54 K in 50 G/183 ABs. The Rocks lead the league by having turned 53 DPs.

A - Burlington: off day

The Bees are 21-30. The set with Quad Cities continues tonight as Bryan Casey (4-4, 2.74) faces River Bandits lefty Hector Cardenas (3-2, 3.63).

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