Just five games on the D-backs stateside minor-league schedule on Wednesday, as both Visalia and the AZL squad had the day off. There weren't many big performances in the system, as the best starters at work on Wednesday weren't at their sharpest, while the system's hitting depth has been drained recently by the promotions of Paul Goldschmidt and Collin Cowgill. With Visalia having the day off and A.J. Pollock, Ryan Wheeler, and Adam Eaton all having so-so days, the best performance on the farm wound up being from a different sort of familiar face:
Snakelet of the Day:
Juan Miranda (Triple-A): 1-3, HR, 2 R, RBI, 2 BB
Triple-A: Reno 9, Nashville 11. (66-52) Left-hander Zach Kroenke Houdini'd his way through six shutout innings, walking the bases loaded in the first inning with nobody out and getting out of it. He ended his day with a 4:4 K:BB ratio and five hits allowed, posting a 5:3 GO:AO ratio. The bullpen is really what blew this game, particularly the ex-big-league duo of Esmerling Vasquez and Kam Mickolio. Esmerling was his own worst enemy after coming on to begin the seventh inning, allowing one hit, two walks, and hitting a batter while recording just a single out.
All four of Vasquez's baserunners would be allowed to score, mostly because Mickolio subsequently let them score. Mickolio faced five Nashville hitters, but yet failed to retire a single one of them, giving up four hits and a walk, with all four baserunners also subsequently scoring. A pair of extra runs allowed by Jeff Bennett and Ryan Cook were the deciding runs in the game. Offensively, the Aces received a pair of home runs, one apiece from Juan Miranda and Angel Berroa. Miranda also drew a pair of walks, Mark Hallberg went 3-5 with a double and a walk, Evan Frey singled and drew a pair of walks, and Ryan Langerhans singled twice and walked.
Double-A: Mobile 4, Mississippi 5. (68-47) Lefty Patrick Corbin was on the mound, and didn't have his best swing-and-miss stuff or control. In 5.1 innings on the mound, Corbin struck out just three batters, while walking two and hitting another batter, surrendering two runs. The BayBears offense received some pop from Ed Easley, who homered, and Jacob Elmore, who tripled. Easley added a walk to reach base twice, while Adam Eaton had two singles and a walk. A pair of unearned runs allowed by Bryan Woodall proved to be the difference in the game, as the one run allowed by Clay Zavada in his two innings of pitching broke a 4-4 tie and gave Mississippi the win.
Hi-A: Visalia had the night off, picking up again tomorrow.
Low-A: South Bend 5, Lansing 4. (55-59) Young right-handed fireballer Tyler Green had one of the better starts he has had as of late, posting a 5:2 K:BB ratio in five innings on the mound while racking up six ground-ball outs and giving up just two runs. Three good innings of relief from Christopher Odegaard closed out a solid overall pitching day that was only briefly interrupted by a wobbly inning from Randy Hamrick. The Silver Hawks offense was driven by doubles, receiving two from Ramon Castillo, and one apiece from Roberto Ortiz and Matt Helm. Helm reached base three times on two hits and a walk, while David Narodowski had three singles.
Short-Season-A: Yakima 11, Vancouver 5. (18-35) Whoa... 11 runs from the Yakima Bears offense??!! Well, that was unexpected. Perhaps even more surprising was that Yakima only notched three extra-base hits, a home run from Justin Hilt and doubles from Carter Bell and Jimmy Comerota. The Bears had just 17 baserunners in this game, which makes it shocking that so many runs scored despite the lack of pop. That was more than enough to cover for the shortcomings of starter Yiomar Camacho, who lasted just three innings in his outing. Camacho put up a 1:3 K:BB ratio and allowed two runs on four hits, raising his ERA with the Bears to a still-impressive 2.81 in three starts.
Advanced-Rookie: Missoula 4, Helena 9. (31-18) Missoula shot itself in the foot in a big way on Wednesday, as starter Taylor Siemens gave up five runs in five innings with a 5:1 K:BB ratio, but all five runs were unearned. Reliever Dexter Price didn't make things any better, allowing four runs in two innings on four hits, including a home run. Fidel Pena provided the biggest pop for the Osprey, hitting his third home run of the year while also drawing a walk. Eric Groff and Tom Belza each added doubles, with Groff reaching base three times.
Low-Rookie: The AZL D-backs were also off on Wednesday.