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Rochester Red Wings: The Red Wings fell to the Louisville Bats on Friday, 6-2. Scott Baker got the start for the Wings and did not have his best stuff as the Bats ripped him to the tune of six runs (five earned) in five innings of work. He let up seven hits while walking three and striking out three. After starting off the year great, Baker had a terrible June, going 0-4 with a 4.18 ERA. This is not the way he wanted to start off July, but with a 3.18 ERA overall, he is not having a bad year. Batters are hitting .243 off of him despite his 2-6 record but he has not won since May 20. Henry Bonilla came on and worked two scoreless innings. He has not let up a run in his last three appearances, and has thrown scoreless frames in six of his last seven outings. Beau Kemp worked the final two frames, allowing one hit and striking two. He now has at least one strikeout in 14 of his last 16 appearances, and in his last 15, has only allowed an earned run twice. In June, he was 1-1 but had a minuscule 1.65 ERA and held batters to a .175 batting average.
Terry Tiffee and Garrett Jones both hit solo home runs, but that was all the Wings would muster on Friday night. Tiffee’s shot came in the second inning, for his seventh of the season. Tiffee has now driven in a run in three straight contests and the home run extended his hitting streak to six. In the past two weeks, Tiffee has hit safely in 12 of his last 13 games, raising his batting average from .196 to .245. Jones, who is tied for ninth in the International League in home runs, has now hit safely in eight of his last nine games. Todd Dunwoody and Rob Bowen had two hits each for the Wings in the game. The Red Wings welcome Scranton/Wilkes Barre to town on Saturday, the start of a two-game weekend series.
New Britain Rock Cats: The Rock Cats continued their losing ways on Friday, falling to Bowie 6-4 at home. Levale Speigner fell to 2-7 by going seven innings, allowing six earned runs and striking out six. He had four walks and the Baysox ripped ten hits off him. Speigner, who lost for the first time since May 20, has now struck out five or more batters in seven of his 13 starts. The six earned runs were a season-high for a guy who has a respectable 3.86 ERA, and his four walks were also the highest total he’s had in a start this season. Justin Olson threw two shutout innings to end the game for the Rock Cats. It was the third time in his last four appearances that he failed to allow a run to score. With his single strikeout, Olson has now struck out at least one batter in every game he has been in except one. After starting the year in the rotation and going 3-6 with a 4.97 ERA, Olson is adjusting just fine to the bullpen with an ERA of 3.10 and a record of 3-1.
All-Star Daniel Matienzo drove in two of the Cats four runs on Friday, as he inches closer and closer to the league lead. It was his fourth straight game with an RBI, and he has driven in a run in seven of his last eight games. Matienzo also extended his hitting streak to four games in the loss. Denard Span continued his hot-hitting with a 2-3 game on Friday. Span, playing in only his seventh game since his call-up, is now five for his last six and has hit safely in every game but one. In three of his last four games he has had two or more hits and he has scored a run in every game during that span. Felix Molina drove in his fourth run in the last four games and Luis Jimenez ran his hitting streak to seven games, going 1-4 with an RBI. Game two of this three game set takes place on Saturday.
Fort Myers Miracle: Scott Tyler had a rough outing, going 4.2 innings and allowing three earned runs on eight hits, as the Miracle got shutout by Tampa 4-0 on Friday. Tyler, who had not lost since May 18, was coming off an incredible June where he was 2-0 with a 1.04 ERA. Tyler continues to struggle in the first and fifth innings, where he has a 5.40 ERA and 7.71 ERA respectively. In all other innings, his highest ERA is 3.00. Joshua Gray threw 2.1 innings allowing only one hit and striking out one. The left-hander has now gone three straight appearances without allowing a run and looks to stay in the pen where he has a 1.95 ERA. As a starter, Gray is 0-1 with a 9.72 ERA. Jay Sawatski threw the final two inning, allowing one unearned run while striking out one. He has been great at home this season, with a 2.65 ERA to go along with five saves and a 1-0 record.
It is safe to say that the Fort Myers offense has seen better days. They only mustered four base hits, one less than Yankee OF Erold Andrus had on his own during his 5-5 day. Matt Moses ran his hitting streak to four games and Kyle Phillips picked up a base hit to extend his own hitting streak to five games. Scott Whitrock got a base hit but also struck out, giving him at least one strikeout in every game this year but ten. Consecutively, he has struck out in his last 11 games and before his single K last night, he had struck out twice in nine straight games. Justin Arneson had the other hit for the Miracle who open up a series with the Sarasota Reds on Saturday. Justin Jones (0-1, 6.75) will take the ball for Fort Myers in the opener.
Beloit Snappers: Beloit jumped all over Dayton pitching, scoring 13 in the first four innings, in their 14-5 win on Friday night. Anthony Swarzak picked up his first win since June 12, throwing five innings and allowing four runs (three earned) on four hits while striking out seven. He has now struck out seven or more in six of his 16 starts, as he rebounded from his last start where he gave up eight earned in 3.2 innings. With the game pretty much won, the Snappers inserted Angel Garcia in to throw an inning. He gave up a home run but managed to strike out two and get out of the inning. Garcia has struck out at least one batter in every game he has pitched but one. Joshua Hill, who began the year with Fort Myers, tossed the final three innings, allowing only one hit and struck out four. The former starter has now struck out at least one batter in every game he has appeared in for Beloit and has a 2.46 ERA since being moved to the bullpen.
David Winfree was unbelievable on Friday, falling just a triple shy of the cycle and driving in seven runs. He now has 12 RBI in his last five games and he hit a home run for the second consecutive Friday. With his three hits on Friday, Winfree has hit safely in five consecutive games and in nine of his last ten. He continues to love home cooking, as he is batting .302 at home with seven of his nine home runs. Deacon Burns had his second multi-hit game in as many day and now has three walks in that span. Chris Brown blasted a fourth inning home run, his first in the last two weeks. The game was Brown’s first start since June 25 and he got right back on track with the home run. Landon Burt had a nice day, with two hits, three runs, and an RBI and Jeremy Pickrel drove in a run for the first time in four days. Dwayne White drove in the other run for Beloit, his first RBI in six games. Beloit takes on Dayton again on Saturday, game three of a four game set.
Elizabethton Twins:Game two of this three-game series was postponed on Friday. The E-Town Twins will take on Kingsport on Saturday for a double-header to get the series completed. With the loss on Thursday to Kingsport, the Twins will look to take both games Saturday for the series win.
GCL Twins: The GCL Twins got beaten soundly by the GCL Reds on Friday, 15-2. It seemed like whoever the Twins brought out to the mound, the Reds would just tee off. Patrick Bryant got the start but was ineffective. In taking the loss, Bryant threw three innings, allowing five runs (three earned) on three hits with three walks. Batters are hitting .321 off the right-hander in his two starts and his ERA is 7.36. Jose Cordero was next for the Twins and he let up two runs in two innings in his professional debut. Nathan Crawford took the ball from Cordero and got lit up in his own right. He gave up five runs (four earned) in 1.1 innings of relief. He did pick up his first two strikeouts but he now has given up five walks in his last four innings of work. Walter Patton was next in line and he gave up three earned runs in 1.2 innings of work. He has let up at least one run in all three appearances this year, and for the second time he walked three batters. Omar Burgos was the only Twin pitcher who did not give up a run on Friday. He worked a scoreless ninth, walking one. He has let up only one hit in his two appearances this year, with batters hitting .167 against him.
The offense was just as anemic as the pitching on Friday, scoring two runs on five hits. Richard Sojo went 2-3, with a double and a triple for his second straight multi-hit game. He now has three multi-hit games in five career starts. Danny Santiesteban went 1-3, with a double and a run scored. He has now hit safely in six of his first seven professional games and the double was his second of the season. Miguel Barrientos picked up his first RBI of the season but failed to get a hit for the first time in the three games he has appeared. The Twins take on the Reds again on Saturday but this time on the road.