3 Stars: Reno LHP Anthony Banda 6 IP, 4 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 7 K, GS 69
2 Stars: Missoula RHP Luis Madero 7 IP, 4 H, 3 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, GS 62 W (1-0)
1 Star: Reno LF Zach Borenstein 2 for 2, HR (10), 2 BB, 2 RBI, 3 R
0 Stars: Kane County RHP Jeferson Mejia 1 1⁄3 IP, 3 H, 5 R (5 ER), 3 BB, 2 K
Pavin Smith: 3 for 5, 2B, RBI, 2 R
Reno Aces 9, Tacoma Rainiers 5: Anthony Banda had a strong start for the Aces with 2 runs allowed in just 6 innings with no walks and 7 strikeouts. It’s not a question if Banda can hold his own in AAA, the question is if they can put together a string of consistent start, which hasn’t happened yet this year. The Aces took the lead with a 4-run 5th inning, highlighted by Zach Borenstein launching a baseball to Saturn for his 10th homer of the year. Banda was in line for the win until Erik Davis decided to let the Rainiers tie the game and steal the win when the Aces scored 4 in the 8th, including a 3-run homer from Oswaldo Arcia. Jimmie Sherfy made sure history did not repeat itself with a scoreless 9th.
Jackson Generals 3, Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp 1: Joel Payamps out-pitched Marlins pitching prospect Mike Kickham, allowing just 1 run in 6 innings of work. The Generals took a 2-0 lead thanks to a RBI double from Colin Walsh, who would score on a Domingo Leyba single later in the 2nd inning. Dawel Lugo added a solo homer, his 7th of the year, in the 6th for the game’s final tally. From there, the bullpen pitched 3 scoreless innings with Mason McCullough striking out 2 in a scoreless 7th. Keep an eye on McCullough, his stock is rising like helium this year with his upper 90s fastball getting him 62 K in 35 IP. Yuhei Nakaushiro pitched a scoreless 8th and Gabriel Moya finished off the 9th for his 11th save of the year.
Visalia Rawhide 2, San Jose Giants 1: Jose Almonte had a solid outing with just 1 run in 5 innings with 6 strikeouts. The offense did nothing for him while he was on the mound, but better late than never. Marty Herum tied the game in the 6th with a solo homer as part of a 3-XBH game. The Rawhide took the lead in the 7th thanks to small ball and taking advantage of wildness. Speedster Matt McPhearson legged out a potential double play ball with runners on the corners and 1 out. The bullpen was dominant, retiring all 12 hitters with 7 of them going down on strikes. Tommy Eveld had a scoreless 8th inning in his Cal League debut.
Kane County Cougars 5, Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 9: Emilio Vargas didn’t get the memo for the day and gave up 4 runs in 3 innings. He allowed home runs to a rehabbing Ryan Braun and former Arizona Wildcats great Ryan Aguilar. After Vargas’ short outing, professional gasoline can Jeferson Mejia allowed 5 runs in the following 2 innings, getting pulled with 1 out in the 5th. Remember when he was considered a superior prospect to Dbacks starter Zack Godley? On the offensive side of the game, the Cougars made best of their scoring opportunities, but just couldn’t overcome the huge deficit. Marcus Wilson went 1 for 4 with a double and Anfernee Grier drew a walk in 4 plate appearances.
Hillsboro Hops 11, Boise Hawks 3: Connor Grey had a solid outing with 3 runs in 6 innings with 9 strikeouts. The Hops used a 7-run 6th inning to turn a 3-1 deficit to an 8-3 lead. Both Pavin and Kyle Smith had 3-hit games, the latter hitting a 3-run homer in the 8th and driving in 4. Tim Susnara also added his first professional hit, getting the start behind the plate. The bullpen pitched 3 scoreless innings and it was an easy win for the Hops.
Missoula Osprey 5, Great Falls Voyagers 4: The Osprey got a strong start from Luis Madero, who allowed 3 runs (2 earned) in 7 innings. The game was a pitcher’s duel and bad performances from both defenses, although Madero did a good job pitching around those errors. Andy Yerzy picked up a hit and RBI in 4 straight games to start the year. Eduardo Diaz hit two triples and drove in 2 from the leadoff spot to pace the offense.