The Kane County Cougars are 6-2, mostly behind strong pitching from some of the pitching prospects there. As impressive as Jon Duplantier has been in 2 starts, Sam McWilliams has been equally as impressive. Initially acquired after the 2015 season from the Phillies for Jeremy Hellickson, the tall and lanky sinker baller had a solid season in Kane County last year. This year, he’s started off with a pair of scoring outings.
3 Stars: Kane County RHP Sam McWilliams 5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 8 K, W (2-0), GS 76
2 Stars: Kane County CF Marcus Wilson 2 for 4, leadoff HR (2), 2 R
1 Star: Mobile LHP Josh Taylor 5 IP, 4 H , 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 2 K, L (1-1), GS 54
0 Stars: Kane County 2B Paxton De La Garza 0 for 4, 4 K
Reno Aces 0, Albuquerque Isotopes 0: After the first two hitters reached on hits and a fielding error in right field, the game was suspended due to snow. A double header will be played tonight as the first game is resumed from where it was suspended.
Jackson Generals 1, Mobile Baybears 2: The Generals found themselves on the wrong end of a pitcher’s duel as Osmer Rosales was slightly better than Josh Taylor. Taylor allowed 2 runs in 5 innings, striking out 2 and walking 2. However, the offense couldn’t get runs across the board, despite picking up 7 hits and 2 walks. Victor Reyes paced the offense with a 3 for 4 game with an RBI. However, the Generals made too many mistakes with an error on a pickoff and a caught stealing.
Visalia 5, Inland Empire 4: The Rawhide quickly plated 2 runs in the first and Jose Almonte was cruising in the early going. However, trouble found him in the 5th inning, which was why he was unable to complete the 5 innings necessary for the win. He struck out 9 and walked 5 in 4 2⁄3 innings. Nick Baker ended up vulturing the win, although he himself struggled in the 7th inning, giving up 3 runs, and had to be replaced by Mason McCullough, who struck out 4 of the 5 hitters he faced to take the game to the 9th inning. The Rawhide tacked on an insurance run thanks to a wild pitch with a runner at 3rd on a strikeout. That proved to be critical as Cody Clark allowed a 9th inning run on a double by former Arizona Wildcat great Zach Gibbons, but ultimately recorded the save.
Kane County Cougars 5, Cedar Rapids Kernels 1: The Cougars took the lead on the 2nd pitch of the game as Marcus Wilson clubbed a leadoff homer to center field. Scoring 4 runs in the first 3 innings, the Cougars never looked back and cruised behind the strong pitching of Sam McWilliams. McWilliams allowed only 1 baserunner over 5 innings, striking out 8 and walking none. His effort has the highest game score of the season at 76, better than Jon Duplantier’s mark of 72 on April 8th. Manny Jefferson hit a 2-run homer in the 2nd and Kyle Smith added a 9th inning homer. Even though the 8th inning was a bit shaky, with closer Tommy Eveld having to come into a bases loaded, no out situation. Eveld ended up getting out of it with only 1 run scoring, striking out 5 in two quality innings to pick up his 2nd save of the year.