Columbus Clippers 7, Gwinnett Braves 6
Box Score · Clippers improve to 33-33
This wasn’t a game, it was a home run derby.
Columbus blasted off for five home runs in their victory over Gwinnett, which finally pushed the team back to the .500 mark. Tyler Naquin went deep as did Richie Shaffer, who hit his org-leading 15th dinger, but they weren’t the story of this game.
Eric Stamets was.
Acquired in a trade for David Murphy, Stamets has been downright insane over the past two months, and yesterday was no different. The normally glove-first shortstop teed off for three leadoff home runs yesterday, already setting a career high for a season with nine and we’re not even halfway done with 2017 yet.
Julian Merryweather had an up and down game, striking out seven over five innings, but he was done in by a rare case of bad command, walking four and, combined with four hits, he allowed five earned runs to cross the board.
In his return to Triple-A, David Speer pitched two scoreless frames of relief to pick up the win.
Akron RubberDucks 5, Portland Sea Dogs 3
Box Score · RubberDucks improve to 31-31
Akron also moved back to .500 for the first time since they were 0-0 on Opening Day, and just like Columbus, they had the long ball to thank.
Eric Haase, Tyler Krieger and Luigi Rodriguez all went deep, and all three players accounted for all of Akron’s runs. Krieger’s home run in particular was impressive as it was a go-ahead inside-the-park homer in the eighth inning.
Of course, they weren’t the only offensive players to have good games as Francisco Mejia went 2-3 with a walk to raise his season batting average to .368 while Bobby Bradley moved his average to a season high .241 by going 1-3 at the dish with a walk.
Starting pitcher Thomas Pannone wasn’t the most efficient, but he was very effective, giving up just two runs in 5.1 innings while striking out six. Cameron Hill earned the save with a 1-2-3 ninth.
Lynchburg Hillcats 5, Frederick Keys 1
Box Score · Hillcats improve to 39-28
Third verse, same as the first. A pair of home runs from Willi Castro and Yonathan Mendoza helped propel Lynchburg to victory. The Hillcats also racked up three doubles and two stolen bases to keep fighters in scoring position consistently.
Starting pitcher Shane Bieber was spectacular, throwing six strong innings while giving up one run on five hits while striking out five and walking one.
Lake County Captains 6, Fort Wayne TinCaps 5
Box Score · Captains improve to 26-41
There were just two multi-hit performances by Captains players, but they were huge multi-hit games. Miguel Eladio went 4-5 at the dish while Todd Isaacs went 2-3 with two doubles and a walk.
In addition, both Gavin Collins and Emmanuel Tapia teed off with home runs. Tapia’s long ball, his 13th of the season, as particularly impressive as it was a go-ahead opposite field blast in the eighth inning.
Starting pitcher Juan Hillman gave up three runs in five innings while striking out four and walking two. Don’t look now, but the southpaw prospect has given up three runs or less in his last six starts.
In his first appearance since 2015 due to Tommy John surgery, reliever Jacob Lee gave up one run in two innings as he works his way back.
DSL Indians 7, DSL Cubs1 3
Box Score · Indians improve to 4-8
Jonathan Lopez, Jhon Torres and Pablo Jimenez all collected multi-hit games for the DSL Indians as the team defeated the DSL Cubs1 handily.
DSL Indians/Brewers 4, DSL Rangers1 3
Box Score · Indians improve to 6-6
The DSL Indians/Brewers were out-hit, they had two errors and they were caught stealing in all three attempts, but they were still victorious thanks to a well-timed three-run home run from 17-year old center field prospect Derian Perez.
Henry Garcia kept his season ERA spotless with a two-inning save as the Indians/Brewers became the third team in the Tribe organization to move back to .500 on the day.