Salt Lake fends off Tucson for 11-9 win (Diamondbacks)
In a matchup between the two top teams in the Pacific Conference, the Bees got homers from four different players to power them to an 11-9 win over the Sidewinders.
Casey Smith extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a double and a solo homer that put the Bees ahead for good. With his double in the fourth inning, the 19th of the year for the Troy State alum, he bettered his previous season high set between two levels in 2004.
For the second time this year, Tommy Murphy made the best of his first game back in Triple-A. Just as he did the first time he returned to Salt Lake, Murphy went 3-for-5, collecting a pair of doubles as the Bees’ leadoff hitter on Friday. The former third round pick was 5-for-21 in his latest stint in the majors.
Arkansas falls to Tulsa 2-1 in 12 innings
Travelers pitchers, beginning with starter Christopher Hunter, held the Drillers scoreless for eight innings, but unfortunately for them, the offense could manage no more than eight singles in regulation and Tulsa finally broke through to win in the 12th inning.
Hunter had his longest and most successful outing of the year, giving up just one run on six hits over eight innings. The 25-year-old, who entered with a 7.34 ERA, had given up at least two runs in all 16 of his starts and had not gotten into the eighth of a game yet. The righty allowed just one walk, but has issued a free pass in every game since his first appearance of the year.
Matt Brown extended his hitting streak to 15 games with a pair of singles on the night, scoring the Travs’ only run. The third baseman from Idaho is hitting .421 in July with 17 runs scored and 18 RBIs. The right-handed slugger is just two hits off the Texas League lead and ranks in the top five in average and extra-base hits.
Quakes down 66’ers 3-2 (Mariners)
Rancho Cucamonga got solid work from Francisco Rodriguez and made a three-run third inning hold up for a victory and win their second straight game.
Rodriguez gave up two runs – just one earned – on four hits in 6.2 innings, in just his second stint that long over his last 13 starts. The righty continued to fight some command issues, walking three to take his total to 24 in the last nine games, but still claimed his second victory in three decisions.
Third baseman Freddy Sandoval drove in a pair of runs with a double and then scored the final Rancho run on a sacrifice fly. The switch-hitter has hit in seven straight to raise his average back to .281 on the year and has crossed the plate 14 times in 19 contests this month.
The Kernels and Swing were rained out and will play a double-header on Saturday.
Owlz down Helena 3-1 (Brewers)
Despite being outhit 7-6 on the night, Orem claimed their second straight victory over the Brewers and pulled back into a tie for first place with Idaho Falls.
Trevor Bell continued his strong debut season, giving up just one run on six hits over six innings of work. The performance was the third quality start for the righty from Los Angeles, the same three contests in which Bell did not walk a batter. He has kept opponents off balance out of the stretch, allowing just a .185 average with runners on.
Chris Pettit put the final run on the board with his second homer of the year, a blast to deep left field. The left fielder has at least one extra-base hit in five of his last six games and has moved his slugging percentage for the month over .500.
Rebounding from a blown save his last time out, Darren O’Day threw a perfect ninth, recording all three outs via strikeout, to claim his seventh save of the year. The righty has kept opponents off the board in 11 of his 14 appearances.
AZL Angels get another 8-5 win over A’s
For the second time in four days, the rookie league Angels affiliate downed the Athletics by a score of 8-5 and now sit just 2.5 games off the league lead in Arizona.
First baseman Seth Loman continued his recent surge, knocking a three-run homer from the left side in the sixth inning. The switch hitter has two homers and three doubles over the last six games and has raised his average 50 points in that span. While playing at Lamar Community College earlier this year, Loman ranked among the top home run hitters in the nation with 16.
Vladimir Veras started for the Angels and collected his fourth victory in his last five games. The righty from the Dominican Republic yielded just two hits, but walked a season high three walks to go with his five strikeouts. He has only given up more than one run once in six appearances in his U.S. debut, but left-handed hitters have figured him out for a .421 average thus far.