Salt Lake had Wednesday night off. They open a four game series in Sacramento Thursday.
Arkansas ripped by Drillers
A brutal first inning and ineffective offense cost the Travelers their fourth straight contest as Tulsa downed them 7-2, pushing them into last place in the North Division.
Starter Chris Saenz, 25, struggled through the worst start of his professional career. The righty, pitching this year for the first time since 2004, gave up six earned runs over just two-thirds of an inning. Saenz allowed only two hits, but walked four and hit a batter before giving way to Miguel Gonzalez. Saenz has now given up 14 free passes in 13 innings on the season and opponents are hitting .326 against him.
The Travs offense managed only two hits on the night and scored both their runs on a Tulsa error in the fourth. One of the hits belonged to Freddy Sandoval, who knocked a single against lefty Zack Parker to open the frame. It was the switch-hitting third baseman’s first hit in 10 at-bats from the right side this year. He’s hitting .291 with a .391 OBP from the left side. Sandoval is one of only two Travs to appear in each of the club’s first 19 games.
Quakes top High Desert 8-3
Rancho Cucamonga used a balanced hitting attack and strong starting pitching to roll to an 8-3 victory.
Robert Mosebach rebounded from his last start to go seven scoreless innings, giving up just three hits and a walk in the process. The righty hit two batters and, with three in 21 innings this year, is on a pace to blow by the 13 hitters he plunked last season. His five strikeouts were a game high for this season. He topped that total in nine of his 28 starts last season.
Jordan Renz had an RBI double as part of the Quakes’ three-run first inning to extend his hitting streak to six games. Perhaps as important, he avoided striking out for the first time in nine contests. While his average – now .317 - is up nearly 100 points from last season, he is still striking out more than once every three at-bats. Renz continues to struggle with the bases empty, hitting just .222 with 19 strikeouts in 45 at-bats. When runners are on, however, he’s lethal, posting a .556/.565/.778 line.
Nate Sutton snapped out of his recent cold streak, going 2-for-3 with a walk and a pair of runs scored. He had been 1-for-26 over his previous seven games. After a hot start, the recent slide had pulled his average down 140 points to .246 entering Wednesday’s contest.
Cedar Rapids had the night off
The Kernels had an extra day to stew over Tuesday’s late-inning loss to Great Lakes as the Midwest League was completely idle. Cedar Rapids opens a six-game homestand on Thursday against 12-and-three Lansing.