Every Dodger minor league pitcher had a solid performance on Thursday, and the combined starting pitching stats for the 7 teams might have been the best I've seen.
Minor League Player of the Day – Nate Eovaldi - 7 IP, 0 Runs, 2 Hits, 2 BB's, 5 K's. Eovaldi had a great outing on Thursday, and it was actually his 5th game of the year in which he's thrown at least 5 innings and allowed 3 hits or less. His ERA is 2.21 over his last 10 appearances, and his K/9 is 9.73 for the season.
AAA – The Isotope pitching staff combined for a rare two-hitter on Thursday as Albuquerque silenced the Sounds (Brewers) 5 to 1. Randy Keisler started this game and allowed both hits in 6.2 innings while giving up the only run (although it was unearned). Keisler lowered his ERA to 3.62 with the outing, which would rank 2nd in the PCL if he had a few more innings to his credit. Ramon Troncoso was the first reliever out of the bullpen and rebounded nicely from his last appearance with 1.1 perfect frames, then Merkin Velez got the final 3 outs to secure the win. At the plate, Trayvon Robinson had his first multi-hit game and connected on his first homer since the calendar turned to July, while Dee Gordon went 2 for 4 with a triple and a double. In addition, Justin Sellers had a 2 for 2 game for the second day in a row and hit his 9th homer of the season.
AA – The Lookouts and Stars (Brewers) matched each other for 13 innings, but Chattanooga eventually broke the spell as they lost in 14 to Huntsville 3 to 1. The loss wasted an outstanding performance from starter Nate Eovaldi, who allowed just 2 hits over 7 innings. Eovaldi made 91 pitches, walked 2, struck out 5, and lowered his ERA to 2.62 which ranks 2nd in the Southern League. Relievers Scott Rice, Josh Wall, and Cole St. Clair continued the shutout into the 11th, then Josh Lindblom gave up a run in the 12th. An RBI single by Scott Van Slyke got the Lookouts even again in the bottom of the 12th, but in the 14th Ethan Martin gave up the lead for good and picked up the loss. The only other offense in this game came from Alfredo Silvero, who doubled twice, and Brian Cavazos-Galvez who went 2 for 5.
HiA – The Quakes rallied for 2 runs in the top of the 9th, but their rally fell just short for the 2nd day in a row as Rancho extended their losing streak to 3 games with a 6 - 5 loss to Lancaster (Astros). Angelo Songco's 14th homer of the year is what gave the Quakes a glimmer of hope in the 9th, but the rest of the team combined for just 4 hits in this game which wasn't enough for the victory. The rehabbing Rod Barajas actually had 2 of those hits, including a double. Red Patterson started and threw a decent game, allowing just 5 hits and 3 runs over 7 innings. He struck out 5 and walked only 1. Jordan Roberts came into the game in the 8th with the game tied, but he gave up 3 quick runs which resulted in the loss.
LoA – Ryan Christenson threw a brilliant game for the Loons on Thursday as Great Lakes defeated the Silver Hawks (Dbacks) 7 to 1. Christenson actually had a 3 hit shutout going through 8 innings, and while he gave up 3 additional hits and a run in the 9th, he still walked away with a great outing (albeit with only 2 strikeouts). Bret Montgomery cleaned up the mini mess by getting the final 2 outs of the game. Bobby Coyle led the way at the plate with 3 hits (including a double) and 2 RBI's, while Jonathan Garcia crushed his 16 homer of the year (and 4th of the month). Michael Pericht also drove in a couple of runs with a single and a double, but sadly Chris Jacob's hitting streak came to an end.
Rookie Ogden – The Raptors overcame 4 errors to complete a 3-game sweep of the Orem Owls (Angles) with a 8 to 6 victory on Thursday. Joc Pederson provided the highlight of the night as he crushed a grand slam in the 4th inning to put Ogden up for good, and also singled twice. It was the first professional home run for Pederson and it came in his 99th professional at bat. Catcher Andrew Edge also homered, his 5th of the young season, while Scott Schebler stayed hot with 2 hits in 5 at bats. 2011 3rd round pick Pratt Maynard made his professional debut as the DH in this game, and went 1 for 3 with 2 runs scored. Raydel Sanchez started and struck out 7 over 5 innings while giving up 3 runs (2 earned). Joel Lima struggled in relief, but Scott McGough stuck out all 3 batters he faced in the 9th to record his 2nd save.
Rookie Arizona – The Arizona Dodger pitching limited the Angels to just 4 hits which helped the Dodgers pull out a 7 to 5 win. Jose Dominguez started and gave up just 1 hit over 5 innings and struck out 8, although he did allow 3 runs to score. His relievers also did well as they gave up just 2 runs over the final 4 innings. The offense didn't do a whole lot, but it was enough to get the job done as the team also took advantage of 3 Angel errors. Devin Shines had the only multi-hit game as he went 2 for 3 with a double and 2 RBI's. Jesus Valdez's double was the only other extra-base hit, and Alex Santana went 1 for 4 with 3 K's.
DSL – The Dominican Dodgers edged the Yankees 4 to 3 on Thursday behind more outstanding pitching. 21 year old starter Victor Araujo is a bit old for the DSL, but he still threw a brilliant game as he struck out 8 over 5 shutout innings and only allowed 2 hits. Ariel Pena gave up 3 runs in an inning of relief, but then 17 year old Jonathan Martinez came in and struck out 4 over 2 hitless innings. So far in his young minor league career, Martinez has given up just 2 hits and has struck out 7 in 6 scoreless innings. On offense, Leo Rodriguez had a big day as he went 3 for 4 with a double and a homer. Jeffry Rojas also contributed with two hits and drove in a couple of runs.