Tucson 6 @ Portland 5 in 10 innings
It looked like Mark Freed's recent struggles were continuing when the right hander gave up three first inning runs, and another in the second Friday, but Freed settled down, allowing only those four runs in his five innings of work, and should be able to build upon the outing. Freed received a no decision.
Things continued to look bleak for the Sidewinders, as the bats seemed stuck in slow motion all night. Though they managed to push single runs across in the fourth and sixth innings, the team struck out 13 times on the night, and when Beavers closer Brad Baker came on in the ninth with a three run lead the game seemed out of reach.
But nobody told that to the Sidewinders. Left fielder Conor Jackson lead off the inning with a single to left, and after shortstop Sergio Santos struck out first baseman Corey Myers singled to bring the tying run to the plate. Third baseman Brian Barden flied out for the second out of the inning when catcher Juan Brito strode to the dish.
Brito, who came into the game hitting only .225, and had struck out all three of his previous at bats, lifted a ball high and deep that cleared the left field fence for a game tying home run. It was just the third homer of the year for Brito, who is hitting just .206 with runners in scoring position on the season.
Brandon Medders earned the win with two scoreless inning of relief. Medders hasn't given up an earned run in his last eight outings.
Tennessee 2 @ Montgomery 0
Coming out of the spring Tony Pena was a guy who just missed making the big league roster. Then arm troubles put the young right-hander on the DL, and since his return he's rarely looked like the guy once ranked among the top two or three pitching prospects in the organization.
But he did Friday.
Pena was nearly unhittable, going seven innings of shutout ball while walking only one and striking out five. It was Pena's best outing of the season, got him his first win, and the Smokies hope this can jump start him to a strong second half.
Jarred Ball continues to impress, Friday was his third straight two hit game, as the center fielder doubled twice in four trips to the plate and scoring one of the two Smokies runs on the day. It continues a torrid June for the outfielder, who's hitting nearly .400 on the month.
After last week's signing of Stephen Drew, and Justin Upton being taken #1 overall by the D'Backs, the writing may be on the wall for short stop Jerry Gil. Gil was 0-4 on Friday with two strikeouts, and is hitting only .269 as he rehabs in Tennessee.
Casey Daigle struck out the side in the ninth to earn his fourth save of the year.
Lancaster 13 @ Visalia 3
The JetHawks pounded out 19 hits and 13 runs, making things easy for Garrett Mock who earned his fifth win of the season.
Mock threw six innings and gave up only two earned runs on seven hits, walking three and striking out eight. The three walks were a season high for Mock, but in his last five starts Mock has walked a total of six, and struck out 29.
Miguel Montero and Chris Carter both had big days at the plate. The duo combined to go 7-12 with five RBI, six runs scored, and six extra base hits, including back to back solo homers in the seventh inning. The big days put both JetHawks in the top 10 in home runs, and top 5 in RBI throughout the entire minor leagues.
After his first 0fer game of his D'Backs career Thursday, Stephen Drew follow with his best game since joining the organization. Drew was 3-5 with a double and triple, his first extra base hits of the year, three runs scored and a team high four RBI on the day.
One day after having his 14 game hit streak snapped right fielder Jeff Cook got right back on the horse, going 2-3 with a triple, a run scored, and a pair of walks.
The longer reliever Ryan Coffin goes, the better he is. On Friday Coffin went three innings for the second time this season, giving up only one run on two hits and a walk, while striking out six. In his previous three inning stint back on April 20th, Coffin struck out two and didn't allow a hit.
South Bend 9 @ Quad Cities 1
When A. J. Shappi starts at some point it's got to start to get boring being a relief pitcher for the Silverhawks. Once again Shappi went more than seven innings (7.2 on Friday) and was brilliant, scattering seven hits without walking a batter. He gave up only one run on the day and struck out eight. For Shappi it was the 10th of his 13 starts this season where he has gone at least seven innings, and his fourth without allowing a base on balls. Shappi earned his 10th win of the season, becoming the first pitcher in the D'Backs organization to do so.
In the sixth inning shortstop Mark Reynolds gave the Silverhawks the lead for good with a three run homer, his third homer this month.
By the calendar Cesar Nichols owns by far the longest hitting streak in baseball this season. Of course, that's easy to say when your streak runs nearly two months. Nichols had hit in seven straight games before a broken hand forced him to the disabled list, and Friday continued the streak to 11 games with his third straight two-hit game. One of those two hits was Nichols first home run since returning from the DL, a seventh inning grand slam that was part of a five run frame for the Silverhawks.
Javier Brito extended his hitting streak to five games with a 1-2 night that included an RBI, two runs scored and three walks. Brito has shown excellent command of the strike zone this season, walking 27 times against only 19 Ks on the year.