In a move that was somewhat overdue, catcher Michael Perez was sent down to South Bend from Visalia where he has struggled mightily. He made his first start for South Bend last night and promptly went 3 for 3 with 3 doubles. The front office maybe has to take a little heat for this one as some (myself included) thought Visalia was a very aggressive placement for Perez. Granted Perez had a big year in Missoula last year hitting .358 with a .900 OPS. And players that put up those kinds of numbers in rookie ball often get promoted right past South Bend. However, the red flag that should have warned them about Perez was the fact he struck out 72 times in 242 PAs in Missoula, a staggering 30% K rate. He clearly could have benefited from a softer placement in Low A instead of the California League, which is proving to be a very tough placement for pitchers and hitters alike. He struggled badly in Visalia as he struck out at a whopping 41% clip. Hopefully that rude experience won't stunt his growth, and his first game in South Bend seems to indicate it hasn't.
3 Stars: Michael Perez, South Bend 3 for 3, 2 R, 3 DBL
2 Stars: Nick Evans, Mobile 2 for 3, 1 BB, 2 R, 1 DBL, 4 RBI
1 Star: Bo Schultz, Mobile 5 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 5 K, 0 ER, W (2-1)
0 Stars: Stryker Trahan, Missoula 0 for 5, 2 K
Triple A: Reno 3 @ Sacramento 5. Charles Brewer had a decent start allowing 3 runs (2 earned) in 6 innings. But the bullpen (Bryan Woodall specifically) gave up 2 runs in the 8th and the offense couldn't match it. Josh Wilson went 2 for 4 and Chris Owings had a double and an RBI. Owings deserved a Futures Game spot if you ask me, perhaps even over Davidson.
Double A: Mobile 6 @ Mississippi 3. Bo Schultz made another start in his effort to convert from being a reliever to a full-time starter and he had his best outing to date tossing 5 shutout innings. In 20.1 innings as a starter Schultz has allowed 6 runs on 14 hits and 7 walks with 13 Ks. Not bad. His outing was good enough for the win as the offense scored 6 runs, 4 in the 1st inning. Nick Evans had the big stick going 2 for 3 with a double and 4 RBI. Nick Ahmed went 2 for 5 and finished off a much more respectable June with a .789 OPS. That's a huge leap from his sub-.400 OPS totals for April and May.
High A: Visalia 3 Bakersfield 2. Andrew Barbosa evened his record at 5-5 with a solid 6.1 innings allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks. The bullpen was very good keeping the 3-2 score intact as RJ Hively got his first save for Visalia with a perfect 9th. Raul Navarro had a double and 2 RBI, Kevin Medrano went 2 for 2 with a walk, and Tom Belza went 2 for 4 with an RBI.
Low A: Game 1. South Bend 4 Dayton 1. Jesse Darrah had another good start going 6 innings and allowing just a single run on 5 hits and 4 walks to raise his record to 8-4. Michael Perez made his first start for South Bend going 3 for 3 with 3 doubles. Enrique Burgos pitched a perfect 9th with 2 strikeouts for his 7th save.
Low A: Game 2. South Bend 4 Dayton 2. The Silver Hawks completed the doubleheader sweep behind 6+ innings from Blake Perry. Perry allowed 2 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits and 3 walks while striking out 6. Jose Jose got the final 2 outs for his 1st save since his promotion. The offense scored 3 in the 5th courtesy of a walk, 3 passed balls, a wild pitch and a couple of singles. Rudy Flores had 2 of the team's 4 hits.
Short Season A: Hillsboro 3 Salem-Keizer 4. Ross Gerdeman kept the game close allowing 3 runs in 6 innings. But the offense only scored 3 of its own and the bullpen allowed the game-winner in the top of the 9th. Tyler Linton got his 2nd hit of the year, a solo home run. Jordan Parr went 2 for 4 with a home run, his 2nd.
Rookie: Missoula 7 Helena 4. The Osprey offense scored 6 runs early and held on for the 7-4 win. Adam Miller started and went 3 innings allowing 1 run. Bud Jeter followed and went 4 innings allowing 3 runs. Silvino Bracho pitched a perfect 9th with 2 Ks for his 1st save. Justin Bianco reached base 4 times with 3 walks and a double, and drove in 2 runs. Chuck Taylor continued his hot hitting going 2 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI. Daniel Palka went 2 for 2 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored. And Jake Mayers went 2 for 4 with a triple.