May 15th Minors Recap

Triple-A Omaha beat Tacoma, 4-2.

Whit Merrifield

Whit Merrifield at the plate during a big league spring training game in 2015 (Jen Nevius).

The Rainiers tied the game in the seventh off right-handed reliever Mark Peterson on a ground ball that the Storm Chasers couldn’t turn into a double play (for some reason, third baseman Hunter Dozier elected to throw to second base with the bases loaded rather than home). Whit Merrifield gave Omaha back the lead in the top of the eighth with a solo home run. Dozier hit his first Triple-A homer in the ninth.

Starter Brooks Pounders took the no decision, despite allowing an unearned run on three hits and a walk over six innings. Andrew Edwards earned his first Triple-A save with two scoreless innings of relief. He struck out the final batter of the game.

Jose Martinez continued his hot hitting, going 2-for-4 with a solo home run. He is hitting .333 in May.

*It seems both Brian Duensing and David Huff have exercised their opt-outs, leaving Omaha two pitchers down on their long road trip out west (they do have Wednesday off).

Double-A NW Arkansas lost their series in Springfield, losing Sunday’s finale, 5-2. The Naturals now return home for eight-games (Arkansas and Tulsa).

The Naturals tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the eighth on a Cam Gallagher two out double, only to see the Cardinals score three runs in the bottom of the inning.

Pedro Fernandez (who was supposed to start on Friday) made his Double-A debut as a reliever. He took the loss, as he allowed three straight one out hits after a walk in the 8th inning (after retiring the first seven batters he faced). After a sac fly, he was pulled in favor of lefty Eric Stout, who allowed an RBI single. It could have been worse, but Bubba Starling threw a runner out at the plate to end the inning.

Mike Minor made his second rehab start, this time lasting five innings. He allowed two runs (one earned) on four hits (including a solo homer) and a walk while striking out eight.

The Naturals other run came via Ryan O’Hearn‘s 4th inning home run (his second in Double-A and first since May 4th).

High-A Wilmington lost in Salem, 10-9 despite multiple comebacks. The Blue Rocks cut the deficit to 7-5 in the fifth with a four-run inning and scored four runs in the ninth capped by Wander Franco‘s three-run home run (3-for-4).

The Blue Rocks, who have been short-handed on the pitching side of their roster, were dealt a blow when starter Josh Staumont lasted just 1.2 innings (3H, 7R, 7BB, 4K). That is the second time in three starts Staumont did not complete two innings. They were saved by lefty Tim Hill, who entered with the bases loaded in the second and escaped the jam, and then went on to throw three more scoreless innings.

Lefty Brennan Henry returned from the DL, but allowed two runs on two hits and two walks over 1.2 innings. He left with a runner on base and it scored once Jake Newberry entered (1.1IP, 3H, R, 0BB, K).

legends logoLow-A Lexington walked off against Charleston, scoring five runs in the bottom of the ninth to win 8-7. After splitting the series, the Legends now welcome Hickory to town for three games.

It was a wild bottom of the ninth, with three walks and three wild pitches, one of which tied the game. Xavier Fernandez drove in the game winner with a single to right field (2-for-4, two RBIs).

After Legends starter Emilio Ogando allowed seven runs (six earned) on seven hits and three walks over five innings, the bullpen shut it down. Jake Kalish made his season debut and allowed two hits over two scoreless innings. Julio Pinto earned his first win, as he allowed one hit and walked one over two scoreless innings.

Marten Gasparini, Amalani Fukofuka, and Ben Johnson each had two hits in the win. Gasparini walked twice. Fukofuka drove in two runs. Johnson doubled and drove in a run.

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About Jen Nevius

I first became a KC Royals fan way back in 1995 when I attended my first Wilmington Blue Rocks game. I fell in love with minor league baseball then and began following the Royals as former Blue Rocks clawed their way to the big leagues. 3+ years ago I started covering the Royals for Aerys Sports, but since the site has been shut down, I am going out on my own.
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