Let's take a look at the overall standings for our farm teams after tonight; they're doing rather well so far, all seven games above .500 or better. The AAA Aces are at 30-22, just half a game back of the River Cats in the PCL Pacific Northern division. The AA Baybears are a little better, at 32-21, and lead the South division of the Southern League. In Visalia, the High-A Rawhide are 31-24, sitting five back of Bakersfield in the California League North. But the top spot goes to the South Bend Silver Hawks, who have sprinted out to a 34-19 record that's the best in the Eastern division of the Midwest League.
3 Collmenters: Hector Hernandez, South Bend 7 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 9 K, 1 R, 0 ER, W (3-0)
2 Collmenters: Nick Ahmed, Reno 2 for 4, R, 2 DBL, RBI, SB (7)
1 Collmenter: Andrew Velazquez, South Bend 2 for 4, 2 R, BB, SB (14)
0 Collmenters: Didi Gregorius, Reno 0 for 5
Triple-A: Reno 5, Fresno 2. 3B Andy Marte had three hits, including a double, to lead the Aces to their fourth win in a row, and eighth in the last nine games. They scored in each of the first three innings, opening up a 4-1 lead, and kept the Grizzlies at bay the rest of the way. Nick Ahmed had a pair of doubles and stole his 7th base, C Blake Lalli reached base three times, on two hits and a walk. Bo Schultz got the W, improving to 3-4 with six innings of two-run ball, scattering nine hits and two walks, with three strikeouts. Matt Stites picked up his sixth save with a hitless ninth, despite two walks. He hasn't allowed an earned run over his nine innings since being promoted to Reno.
Double-A: Mobile 2/1, Jackson 1/4. The BayBears split a seven-inning double-header with the Generals. In the opener, they fell behind in the fourth, but answered back immediately, C Raywilly Gomez's third home-run of the year, a two-run shot, giving them the lead to stay. 1B Tom Belza had a pair of hits, and the bullpen worked four scoreless innings, Patrick Schuster getting the W. The night-cap saw the roles reverse, a three-run homer off Charles Brewer in the fourth, giving Jackson the lead for good. Mobile were held to four hits in the second game, two of those by SS Mike Freeman.
High-A: Visalia 0, Bakersfield 5. The Rawhide were shutout for the second time this season, managing only four hits and one walk. They had one at-bat all night with a runner in scoring position, and that came with two outs in the ninth, after 3B Brandon Drury doubled for their only extra-base hit. Aaron Blair started off strongly: through four innings, he had allowed only one hit, with six strikeouts. But he lost control in a fifth which included two walks, a hit batter and a wild pitch, as well as two hits. He ended with a line of two runs over 5.2 innings, on seven hits and two walks, with seven strikeouts. J.R. Bradley allowed a run in the eighth, and Enrique Burgos two in the ninth.
Class A: South Bend 8, Lake County 1. A six-run third inning broke a scoreless tie for the Silver Hawks, and they were untroubled thereafter, extending their winning streak to six games. The big frame was highlighted by RF Stryker Trahan's sixth homer of the year, a two-run shot, and 1B Daniel Palka also had a two-run double there. After being sent down, Hector Hernandez had one bad start, but has rebounded: seven innings of two-hit ball tonight, with only an unearned run, one walk and nine strikeouts. Over his last three starts and 19.1 innings, he has allowed one earned run, with a K:BB ratio of 19:5. Maybe he'll be coming back up again!