It was a rough night in the KC Royals minor league system, as all four teams lost.
Triple-A Omaha lost their third straight in Colorado Springs, this time losing 11-2. The Storm Chasers did collect seven hits, but committed three errors.
Josh Staumont‘s Triple-A debut was a clunker, as he allowed a solo home run to the second batter he faced. A wild 2nd inning (two errors and two wild pitches) led to two more runs. Staumont got out of a two on, one out jam in the third, but allowed another solo homer in the fourth and left with the bases loaded.
Veteran Bobby Parnell allowed all three runs to score on a two out double and then allowed a run of his own before getting out of the 4th inning. Yender Caramo threw just five balls (36 pitches, 31 strikes) over 2.1 innings, but allowed three runs (two earned) on three hits.
Whit Merrifield got his second start at second base and drove in a run with a sac fly in the 3rd inning (he also doubled). Ramon Torres went 2-for-4 with an 8th inning solo home run.
Double-A NW Arkansas lost their home series to San Antonio with a 5-3 loss in the finale.
Naturals lefty Sam Selman loaded the bases to start the top of the ninth and in came Ashton Goudeau, who allowed a bases clearing double to the first batter he faced. That came after the Naturals had just tied the game in the bottom of the eighth on Donnie Dewees solo homer.
The Naturals strung together two straight singles to start the bottom of the ninth and even scored a run on a wild pitch, but three straight strikeouts ended the game. They only had six hits total, including two from Zane Evans.
Kyle Zimmer got the start and struck out six over four innings. He did allow a run on six hits, but did not walk a batter. Miguel Almonte followed and allowed a solo homer over 2.2 innings (two strikeouts).
High-A Wilmington lost their first game of the season, 4-3 in 12 innings to Potomac. The Blue Rocks had their chances in the ninth and 11th (two on and two out both times) but could not come up with the big hit. “Both teams played great. It was just one bad pitch that got us,” said Blue Rocks manager Jamie Quirk after the loss.
In the top of the 12th inning, P-Nats shortstop Edwin Lora took a 3-2 pitch from Andres Machado and deposited it over the left field fence to break the 3-3 tie. Machado was pumping gas, but hung an 85 mph offspeed pitch (2IP, H, R, 0BB, 3K).
Saturday night was all about the pitching, especially the bullpens. The P-Nats bullpen struck out nine and allowed six hits. The Blue Rocks bullpen struck out ten and allowed just two hits.
Scott Blewett was solid in his first High-A start. He allowed three runs on five hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out three. Lefty Colin Rodgers followed and was completely different from last season. He struck out four in 2.2 scoreless innings. The only base runner to reach was on a wild pitch strikeout. Quirk said after the game that Rodgers lost some weight this offseason and was pitching well during spring training.
Then the Blue Rocks relievers started throwing gas. Yunior Marte struck out three in 2.1 scoreless innings (he topped at 95 mph) and I already mentioned Machado.
The Blue Rocks got their first run in the second, as Brandon Downes led off the inning with a triple (2-for-6, but with four strikeouts, including his last three ABs) and scored on a Wander Franco double. In the third, Colton Frabasilio led off with a solo home run (2-for-3 with a walk). The Blue Rocks tied the game at 3-3 in the fifth, as DJ Burt scored from second base on an infield single (“all instinct” said Quirk after the game).
*I hope to have some pictures from tonight’s game up on my Facebook page either tomorrow or Monday.
Low-A Lexington lost their second straight in Charleston, losing 6-4. The Legends held a 4-1 lead until the RiverDogs scored five runs in the bottom of the seventh. RiverDogs pitching struck out four straight (across two innings) to end the game.
Legends reliever Julio Pinto induced two ground outs to start the 7th inning, but then a double, a walk, and an RBI single followed. After another walk loaded the bases, in came Vance Tatum, who walked in a run before a two-run single and an RBI single followed.
Two of the Legends runs scored with two outs. In the top of the first, Chris DeVito singled in a run (2-for-5). In the fifth, Kort Peterson singled in a run (2-for-5).
In the sixth, Angelo Castellano drove in two with a double (2-for-4).
The bullpen implosion for the second straight night negated the solid start by Gerson Garabito. He allowed a run on two hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out five and induced eight ground outs. The RiverDogs collected their first hit with one out in the fifth and their second was an RBI single in the same inning.