Mario Ramos went five innings, allowing one unearned run on four hits while striking out six. He did hit two batters in taking his first loss of the year. The lefty has an ERA of 2.00 after two starts after posting a 6.42 ERA in seven starts for Sacramento last year. The last time he struck out six batters or more was August 29, 2004 when he whiffed seven. Ramos has pitched in Triple-A for six years, beginning in 2001. He has posted a 5.76 ERA over 266 innings of Pacific Coast League play entering the year.
Brian Sikorski gave up one run on two hits and a walk in two innings of work. Sikorski has pitched two innings in each of his first four innings and has kept the opposition to a .207 batting average but has a 4.50 ERA to show for it. With runners in scoring position, the opposition is hitting .300 off him.
Portland managed just three hits on the night and all came from third baseman Justin Leone who extended his hitting streak to eight games. It is no coincidence that he also scored the only run of the game. Leone is now hitting a ridiculous .517 on the year and reached base all four times he came to bat. With five walks to his credit, his on base percentage sits at .588. Leone did commit his second error of the year.
Mobile won 6-1 over Mississippi (Braves)
Jose Oyervidez gave up a hit to the leadoff hitter and did not allow another until one out in the sixth. Those would be the only two hits surrendered by the right-hander. He ended his night with one unearned run on the board, two walks and seven strikeouts. Oyervidez has been touched for two unearned runs over his first 11.2 innings to begin the year. The opposition is hitting .150 off him with six hits in 40 at bats. Dating back to last year with Mobile, Oyervidez has a streak of 18.2 innings without an earned run crossing the dish.
George Kottaras netted three of the ten walks Mobile batters had on the night. The catcher also went 1-for-2 at the plate with an RBI and two runs scored. Kottaras has walked seven times on the year compared to seven strikeouts and has been on base in all seven BayBear games. Last season, Kottaras' season-high with Mobile for consecutive games that he reached base safely in was eight.
Roger Deago pitched two perfect innings, striking out four. He has whiffed eight over his first 5.1 innings of work. The right-hander pitched in just three games for Mobile last year and posted a 1.38 ERA. He would pitch in just two more games before an elbow strain claimed the rest of his season.
Lake Elsinore won 6-2 over Modesto (Rockies)
Brent Carter surrendered just one run on three hits, not walking a batter, and striking out five to get his first California League win. In 2005, 14 of Carter's 15 starts resulted in two earned runs or less crossing the plate, including his final 11 outings. His ERA last season was 1.71 for the year and he walked just eight in 84 innings.
Colt Morton smashed his sixth and seventh doubles of the year on Thursday and added two RBI's and two runs scored. The catcher is hitting .407 to open the year and sports a six-game hitting streak. He has multi-hit games in four of those games. Of Morton's 11 hits, eight have gone for extra bases. Last year, 41.9 percent of his hits with Lake Elsinore went for extra bases.
Kyle Stutes remained perfect on the year with an inning of scoreless ball. Last season with the Wizards, the left-hander allowed one run over his first 13 outings. Stutes' best attribute last year was keeping the leadoff hitter off the basepaths, as he allowed nine hits in 41 at bats to the leadoff man of an inning.
Skip Adams was plunked by three pitches and Storm batters were hit six times overall on the night with Morton taking his lumps twice as well.
Fort Wayne won 10-6 over Dayton (Reds)
Grant Varnell allowed three runs, two earned, on eight hits, and a walk to pick up his first win as a professional. He entered the game with an 0-4 mark in 23 appearances. After two games, the opposition is hitting .333 off him but has limited the damage by giving up just four hits in 16 at bats with runners in scoring position.
Venable went 2-for-5 with three RBI's, his first multi-RBI game of the season. He recorded his first double of the year to bring in two and added another RBI on a groundout. Venable hit .216 for the Eugene Emeralds last year in 42 games after hitting .322 over 15 games with the Arizona Rookie League Padres. What wasn't in the boxscore was Venable making a terrific slide into second base to break up a double play ball in the eighth inning.
Johnston went 2-for-4 with an RBI on Thursday. Johnston has recorded a hit in six of his seven games this year and has been on base at least once in every game. All eight of Johnston's hits have been singles. Last year, 26 percent of his hits went for extra bases.