Rancho Cucamonga, CA - Minor League Player of the Day – Duke von Schamann (AA) - 7 IP, 2 hits, 0 walks, 2 K's. The Duke (von Schamann) returns to Chattanooga where he finished his 2013 season. The 22-year old 2012 draftee faced only 24 batters in his 7 innings to get the 2-0 victory. The game only took an hour and 59 minutes to complete.
AAA – The Isotopes had a pair of 7 inning games to start their 2014 season in Tacoma as they split the doubleheader with the Rainers (Mariners). Stephen FIfe was the Game 1 starter and even though he gave up 5 runs and 10 hits in 4 innings, he had the second worst pitching line of the game. Steve Smith pitched 1.1 innings and gave up 6 runs and 8 hits. There wasn't much offense for the Isotopes in their 11-1 loss but the Rainers did go 18 for 36 for an impressive .500 average, every Rainer in the lineup had at least 1 hit, five players had 2 hits and two players had 3 hits. Game 2 was a much better game as the Isotopes won 6-3. Yimi Garcia picked up the win, Matt Magill started and pitched a nice 4 innings. Sam Demel got the save. Miguel Olivio went 2-2 and drove in four runs, Joc Pederson hit his first home run of the season.
AA – The Lookouts were led by Duke von Schamann as they defeated the Generals (Mariners) 2-0. Scott Schebler went 1 for 3 and drove in the 2 runs scored in this game. Following von Schamann were Juan Gonzalez and Jarret Martin, Martin picked up the save.
HiA – The Quakes had their second straight first inning deficit as the Giants of San Jose plated 3 runs (on two home runs) to take a lead they would never lose as the Giants won their second straight 3-2. Wins and losses may have taken a back seat in Rancho Cucamonga as the game featured Dodger pitcher, Josh Beckett, making perhaps his only rehab start and the Cal League debut of wunderkind, Julio Urias.
Beckett said that his stuff felt good, even in his eventful first inning. Of his four walks, he thought one of them should have been a strikeout but nonetheless, Beckett said "you can't walk guys no matter what league you are in."
Beckett added "I felt powerful which is big for me right now," "being able not to worry about symptoms coming back." Beckett was not concerned with velocity (Beckett was a steady 91-92 in his 4+ innings) but his finish on the ball. An example would be Beckett's change up, Beckett said if he has power, his change up goes down and in to right handed batters, down and away from the lefties. That was something Beckett worked on in the game.
Beckett said his thumb is feeling a lot better. Beckett exited the game after fielding a bunt and Beckett said he has been dealing with ankle/calf issue for the last few weeks. Beckett said it hasn't really been bothering him too much. On the play, Beckett said his ankle got stuck in the wrong direction and hopefully it will be okay on Saturday.
Beckett didn't know where or when his next start would be, part of that would be determined if he is all right after his start on Friday but Beckett said if his ankle/calf is okay, he's ready for whatever the Dodgers want him to do next, which could be starting for the Dodgers next week.
Julio Urias came in to pitch in the 6th inning and pitched 4 innings, giving up an infield hit but also walking 4 (including the first two batters he faced) and striking out 5 (including 3 strikeouts in the 9th inning).
Matt Herges is the Quakes pitching coach and he said that Urias will be limited this season, that limit will be set by the Dodgers. Herges said "[Urias] is 17, we've got to be careful, we have to protect this kid because he is pretty special. Tonight was the worst I've seen him pitched and held them scoreless."
Herges added "[Urias] is beyond his years, he's super smart, baseball IQ off the charts."
LoA – The TinCaps (Padres) evened the series 1-1 with their 5-2 win. Loon starter 19-year old Zach Bird did not enjoy his 2014 debut as he gave up 6 hits, 4 runs (3 earned) in four innings of work. A bright note was Victor Arano, whose Midwest League debut went well (2 IP, 1 hit, 3 strikeouts) As well as the Loons hit on Opening Day, only Jesmuel Valentin going 2 for 3 with his second double of the season and a RBI did well.
Coming up – Weather permitting, Zach Lee will make his first Isotope start in Tacoma, Chris Reed will make his 2014 debut for the Lookouts. Brian Wilson will start his rehab with an inning appearance for the Quakes, Wilson will be followed by Lindsay Caughel. James Campbell will take the mound for the Loons.