Portland won 7-4 over Salt Lake (Angels)
Three of the four runs Brian Sweeney allowed came on the two homers he allowed over seven innings of work. He still got the win, giving up seven hits and a walk while striking out five as he hit 99 pitches on the day with 58 strikes. The right-hander has given up 15 runs over his last three starts spanning 17.2 innings after allowing two runs over his first 13 frames with Triple-A Portland. Sweeney did pickoff a runner at first base in the sixth inning.
Luke Allen hit his fourth homer of the year with Portland, a three-run blast with two outs in the seventh. He has eight total over two leagues and has driven in 21 runs in 26 games with Portland after netting 24 RBI’s in 52 games with the Pawtucket Red Sox. He has six RBI’s in his last three games and all of Allen’s homers have come at home, PGE Park. Allen did commit his second error of the year.
Mobile won 4-0 over Mississippi (Braves)
Mike Ekstrom tossed a complete-game shutout to pick up his first win in Double-A. He allowed eight hits and struck out five while hitting a batter and inducing two double play grounders. He has not allowed an earned run in 15 innings and has given up two runs or less in five of his 12 starts with Mobile, going 0-3 in those games until Sunday. Ekstrom also executed a sacrifice bunt, which led to a run in the fifth inning.
Michael Johnson got his first start since coming back from the disabled list and played first base, going 1-for-4 with an RBI. Johnson had been out the past six weeks after being struck in the face with a ground ball. Johnson, hitting .214 on the season, hasn’t had a multi-hit game since June 19, a span of 19 games and counting. He is hitting .192 over his last 35 games. Johnson is hitting .308 with runners in scoring position.
Lake Elsinore won 5-4 over Visalia (Devil Rays) at PETCO Park
Those expecting to see Ryan Klesko in the lineup on Sunday for the Storm were disappointed as he sat out the game with back stiffness.
What fans did see was Josh Geer pound the strike zone over 6.1 innings before allowing consecutive singles and getting pulled from the game. Matt Varner followed and allowed three straight singles, taking the win away from Geer who was charged with three runs on six hits, walking one and striking out seven. Geer has allowed six earned runs over his last four outings and is 3-0 with a 1.82 ERA. Geer has allowed 13 hits in 69 at bats with runners in scoring position since joining Lake Elsinore.
Sean Kazmar pushed across the four of the Storm’s five runs, adding a sacrifice fly, a two-run homer and a run scoring single in the ninth inning to win the game. The second baseman has homered three times in his last ten games and has driven in seven over his last five. While he has 14 RBI’s over his last 19 games he is hitting .237 over that span. While Kazmar has 54 RBI’s on the season he is hitting .211 with runners in scoring position.
Skip Adams went 2-for-3 with a double, a run scored and an RBI to break out of a 12-for-66 slump, a .182 average over his previous 18 games. The shortstop has at least ten RBI’s in every month this year and is hitting .250 with runners in scoring position. Adams has struck out in 12 straight games. After hitting a season-high on August 5 his average has dropped 12 points.
Fort Wayne lost 15-6 to South Bend (Diamondbacks)
Grant Varnell dropped his tenth game of the year with an inning and a third of relief work and was pulled due to an undisclosed injury. He was pegged for eight runs, six earned, on seven hits, including two long balls, and a walk. It was the second time he has given up two homers in a game but Varnell had not surrendered a bomb since June 25. It is the fifth time this year he has given up six runs or more. Varnell now has a 4.55 ERA in nine relief appearances that span 27.2 innings of work.
Seth Johnston was hitting .304 in July before injury sidelines him for close to three weeks and came into the game with two hits in 24 at bats with nine strikeouts over his last seven games. He broke the hex on Sunday with a 2-for-4 day that included a double and two runs scored. He sits just outside the top five of the Midwest League in two-baggers despite netting his first in a month and his 67 runs scored on the season are five off the top five leaderboard.
Steve Delabar matched his shortest outing of the year, going three innings and allowing two runs on four hits and four walks while striking out seven. He had gone five innings or more in 12 straight starts until Sunday. He walked four straight batters in the second inning and had runners on second and third in the third before striking out the side. It is the tenth time in 11 starts he has walked three or more and 15th time in 25 starts overall. Sunday was the first time he issued a walk with the bases loaded.
Eugene won 7-2 over Spokane (Rangers)
Craig Cooper pounded out four of Eugene’s 14 hits, smacking two doubles, scoring twice and knocking in a run. The first baseman is 10-for-20 over his last five games and has an RBI in each of his last four. Cooper is hitting .311 over his last 17 games and has a .361 mark with runners in scoring position. Cooper also has a .987 fielding percentage on the year.
Michael Campbell went 2-for-5 with a double, a run scored, and two RBI’s. He came into the game with two hits in his last 19 at bats. In 42 at bats with Eugene he has struck out just three times. He is hitting .294 over three different leagues in the Padres’ system. He has three multi-hit games in 12 games for Eugene.
Brooks Dunn picked up his third win of the season with six innings of one-run ball, yielding six hits and walking two while striking out four. Dunn lowered his ERA to 4.62 as a starter and has given up six earned runs over his last three outings, all starts. As a reliever Dunn had given up just two earned runs over 22.1 innings.
AZL Padres lost 12-6 to AZL Angels
Vantroit Medina was pounded for a season-high eight runs on a season-high 11 hits and a walk over four innings. He also uncorked two wild pitches en route to his fifth loss of the year. The right-hander has given up 14 runs, all earned, over his last 6.1 innings and has lost three straight starts. He has four wild pitches in the last three games. Left-handers are hitting .431 off him this season and the opposition has hit .424 off him in his last 14.1 innings.
Matt Handley was on the hook for four runs on four hits, including two homers, over two innings. It was the first two bombs he has surrendered this year. Handley has given up seven runs and all have come in two games – throwing 14 other scoreless outings. He has held the opposition to 11 hits in 71 at bats with seven of those hits coming over those two outings. He has struck out 12 over his last nine innings.
Ray Stokes reached base in each of his four trips to the plate, going 2-for-2 with a double and two walks. He also drove in a run for the second day in a row and third time in four games. Stokes has walked five times in the last two games after drawing five in his first 15 contests. The double was his second in Arizona and third over two leagues and he is hitting .242 over those two leagues.