Geer gets Cal League win; Smitherman a hero
Yordany Ramirez
Yordany Ramirez

Posted Jul 9, 2006


John Hudgins left his start early due to injury. Stephen Smitherman connects and adds another in the 11th frame. Tim Brown adds a homer and double to his resume while Josh Geer picks up win number one. Will Venable continues to rake and sits atop the leaderboard. Orlando Lara pitched well but Jon Kirby was rocked.

Portland lost 6-1 to Tacoma (Mariners)

John Hudgins was on the hook for four unearned runs on four hits and a walk before leaving the game with soreness in his elbow after an inning and two-thirds. Hudgins is now 1-1 with Portland and six of the eight runs he has allowed have been unearned. He has a 2.70 ERA through two Portland outings but a 5.40 ERA in Pacific Coast League play, as he allowed 13 runs in 18.1 innings with Oklahoma earlier this year. He also gave up his fourth homer in 25 innings.

Jack Cust’s ninth inning homer was the only run of the night for Portland as their error total of three nearly matched their hit total of five. Cust has 15 homers on the season but matched his homer total of the previous 19 games with his blast on Saturday. The outfielder came into the game with three hits in his last 21 at bats and was 0-for-11 over his last four after reaching a season-high in batting average at .296.

Mobile won 4-2 over Mississippi (Braves) in 11 innings

Stephen Smitherman, who will get plenty of playing time with Michael Johnson on the disabled list, ended up as the only BayBear with a multiple hit night, hitting a solo homer in the fourth and lining a single that pushed across the go ahead run. He also scored two runs, putting him in on the scoring of all but one run scored on the night. His 2-for-5 night broke a 2-for-21 slump and snapped a nine game skid without an extra base hit, his longest of the year.

Jack Cassel didn’t allow a run over his first six innings of work although there was a runner on in every frame. He began the seventh and allowed two hits before being replaced and ended up being charged with both to make his line two runs on seven hits and two walks in a no-decision. He also made a fielding error and threw two wild pitches but found a friend in 12 ground ball outs, including a double play to end a bases loaded threat in the first. Cassel has given up three runs in his first 12 innings of Double-A ball this year but does not have a win to show for it.

Lake Elsinore won 5-1 over High Desert (Royals)

Tim Brown went 3-for-4 with a double, a homer, two RBI’s and three runs scored to pace the Storm. It snapped a 1-for-16 skid for the first baseman. After hitting .344 in May, Brown is batting .244 over June and July. In the three games he has batted seventh in the order, as he did on Saturday, Brown is 7-for-11 with two doubles and two homers. He is hitting just .205 when he bats sixth and .218 when he bats fifth.

Josh Geer pounded the strike zone for six frames, allowing one run on five hits and a walk while striking out four to pick up his first California League win. The right-hander had dropped three straight after winning his final three games with the Wizards. Geer has given up one run or less in five of his last seven starts and two runs or less in eight of 16 overall. He has given up four or more in the other eight outings but has thrown shutout ball in five games.

Yordany Ramirez topped the .200 batting average mark with three hits in four at bats, including a double and two RBI’s. After hitting .087 in April and ending up on the disabled list, Ramirez is hitting .231 over June and July. It was, however, his first multi-hit game since June 16 and it was also the first multi-RBI game of the season for Ramirez, coming in game 34. He has three multi-hit campaigns this year.

Fort Wayne won 4-3 over Kane County (A’s)

While David Freese reached base three times and drove in two, it was Will Venable who set the table with a 3-for-4 night, an RBI and two runs scored to break out of a 1-for-15 slump. The outfielder also swiped his 14th bag of the year in 16 attempts to lead the system. Venable has knocked in a run in ten of his last 13 games and 19 over that span. He is batting .333 since the start of June and his .325 average leads the Midwest League.

Nathan Staggs came on with two inherited runners and nobody out and stranded both and went on to pitch two innings of no run, no hit ball while walking one and striking out three. Staggs has given up two runs in his last 15.2 innings. After posting a 5.40 ERA during the month of May, the right-hander has posted a 3.13 mark over June and early July.

Jon Link worked the ninth inning in place of normal closer John Madden and picked up his second save in a one-run game. Link came into the game having allowed runs in three of his last four games but walked one during his scoreless inning. His last and only other save came on June 13. Link, who is tied for second amongst relievers in the Midwest League with 34 appearances, has allowed runs in 14 of his games.

Eugene lost 8-1 to Everett (Mariners)

Orlando Lara allowed two singles and a hit batsman over his first four innings and walked a man in the fifth who was sacrificed to second. Lara was then pulled from the game with four strikeouts to his name. He would be charged with one run over 4.1 innings to lower his ERA as a starter to 5.14. He had given up seven runs in his first 9.2 innings of work. Over his last two outings, spanning seven innings, Lara has given up four hits in 24 at bats. The fifth inning walk was just his third and first in 10.2 innings.

Jon Kirby replaced Lara and promptly served up a triple. He would give up two more hits, a walk, and a wild pitch, without recording an out. Kirby was charged with four runs and took the loss, his first as a professional. Kirby had given up one run in four innings with Eugene and three over 7.2 innings between two leagues. His 2.50 ERA for the year skyrocketed to 7.50.

Chad Huffman tabbed two doubles in four at bats to give him six on the year. Nine of his 14 hits have gone for extra bases, including each of his last four. Huffman ranked tenth in the nation in slugging percentage with a 0.742 mark during his time at TCU. Huffman is hitting .400 off left-handed pitching but just .222 off righties.

AZL Padres had the day off



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