3 Stars: Reno 1B Christian Walker 3 for 5, 2B, HR (21), 2 RBI, 2 R
2 Stars: Hillsboro RHP Riley Smith 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, GS 69, L (2-2)
1 Star: Reno RF Zach Borenstein 2 for 5, 2B, HR (13), 5 RBI, R
0 Stars: Mobile RHP Joel Payamps 3 1⁄3 IP, 11 H, 8 R (8 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, GS 14, L (3-3)
Reno Aces 9, Tacoma Rainiers 7: Jake Buchanan, who recently signed as a minor league free agent, pitched the front 4 innings, allowing 3 runs on 6 hits. Frank Duncan went the next 4 innings, giving up 4 runs in a shaky 5th inning that saw a 6-3 lead become a 7-6 deficit. Fortunately, the game was at Reno and the Aces still have a puncher’s chance. A 3-run homer by Zach Borenstein gave the Aces a 9-7 lead. Silvino Bracho pitched the 9th and had a drama-free inning for save #4. Christian Walker fell a triple short of the cycle, which he seems to do at least once a week it seems.
Jackson Generals 2, Birmingham Barons 9: A 6-run 4th inning sunk any chances of a victory as starter Joel Payamps got hit hard for 11 hits and 8 runs in 3 1⁄3 innings. Dawel Lugo tried his best to make things happen with a pair of doubles and his 3rd consecutive game drew a walk. Jamie Westbrook added a homer to the tally, but the bad starting pitching put them in too big a hole to come out of.
Visalia Rawhide 0, Modesto Nuts 3: The Rawhide were shut out for the 2nd night in a row, this time Nick Neidert doing the deed to them. Offensive opportunities were very few for the Rawhide, with only 3 AB with RISP (0 for 3) and hitting into 3 double plays. Sergio Alcantara went 2 for 3 with a walk, which could have been more impactful if Marty Herum didn’t ground into 2 double plays behind him. Nick Baker allowed 3 runs in 4 innings and the bullpen pitched well enough to keep them in the game, but the offense never showed up.
Kane County Cougars 3, Quad Cities River Bandits 13: Mack Lemieux got blasted for 9 runs in 3+ innings and the bullpen was equally as bad behind him, which meant the offense had no chance to make this a game. The Cougars batters did their best, but were unable to make a dent in the deficit overall. Ben Walton added his first homer for the Cougars and Marcus Wilson reached base twice.
Hillsboro Hops 1, Spokane Indians 2: Riley Smith pitched 7 innings and allowed 2 runs (1 earned), but deserved a better fate. The offense was non-existent save for an RBI ground out by Bryan Araiza that scored Tim Susnara. Collectively, they recorded only 2 hits, singles by Pavin Smith and Tramayne Holmes.
Missoula Osprey 7, Great Falls Voyagers 5: The Osprey got a solid start for Kai-Wei Lin, who allowed just 2 solo homers over 6 innings. In the 5th inning, both offenses started to catch on fire, with the Voyagers hitting a pair of solo shots against the Osprey’s pair of homers scoring 3. Armed with a 5-2 lead in the 9th, Nestor Ramirez allowed the tying runs to score. The Osprey ended up walking off in the bottom of the 9th on Ernie De La Trinidad’s first pro homer.
AZL Dbacks 4, AZL Cubs 5: The Dbacks got a solid enough start from Kenny Hernandez and picked up a 2-1 lead. However, the bullpen was terrible and continued to bleed runs, making things more difficult for the offense. The offense was up to the challenge, with 11 hits and 4 runs to make it 4-4 in the 7th. Unfortunately in the 9th Bryan Ozuna did his best Fernando Rodney impression and completely lost the strike zone. Buddy Kennedy added a 2 for 3 day to improve his slash to an obscene .360/.448/.600, which is even more obscene when he hasn’t even hit a homer yet.