Minor League Player of the Day – Nick Buss (AAA) - 4 for 4, 1 HR, 1 2B , 2 Runs, 2 RBI's. While Joc Pederson had a pair of homers and Ross Stripling was solid for the Quakes, I'm giving the award to Buss who had a perfect day at the plate in his first start of the season. Nick is a guy who has performed well in hitter friendly environments over the years so I expect him to have a good season for the Isotopes in 2013.
AAA – The Isotopes completed their four-game sweep of the Iowa Cubs on Sunday with a 7 - 3 victory. Several Albuquerque players had notable performances in this contest, but the game ball went to Nick Buss who went 4 for 4 in his first start of the season and fell just a triple shy of the cycle. Scott Van Slyke stayed hot with a double and homer of his own to drive in 3, while Alfredo Amezaga had 3 base knocks. On the mound Javy Guerra's much anticipated return to the rotation was a success as the allowed just one hit over 4 frames (a solo homer). Although he's not really transitioning to a starter but rather just getting stretched out, it was still good to see him pitch well. Angel Castro was the long reliever in this one and he allowed a couple of runs over 4.2 frames, while new comer Steve Smith got the last out of the game to seal the victory.
AA Game 1 – Chattanooga won big in the 1st game of their double header on Sunday as the Lookouts defeated the Huntsville Stars (Brewers) 8 to 0. Joc Pederson collected his first two hits of the year in a big way as he doubled and connected on a 3 run homer to provide most of the offense. Griff Erickson, Chris Jacobs, and C.J. Retherford doubled as well, while Yasiel Puig went 2 for 3 with a pair of RBI's. Starting pitcher Andres Santiago picked up where he left of last year with 5 shutout innings, walking 4 but allowing just 3 hits. Kelvin De La Cruz was excellent in relief as he struck out 5 over the last two frames.
AA Game 1 – The lookouts couldn't complete the double header sweep on Sunday as they lost to the Huntsville Stars (Brewers) 3 to 1 in the nightcap. The Chattanooga offense was actually held to just 1 hit in this seven inning contest, and that was a solo homer by Joc Pederson (his second of the day). On the mound Rob Rasmussen made his first start since joining the organization and was pretty solid over 5.1 innings as he allowed just 2 hits, but he also walked 4 and permitted 2 runs to score. Reliever Yimi Garcia gave up a solo homer in his AA debut, but that was it and he struck out 3 over the final 1.2 innings.
HiA – While both offenses were quiet all night, it was a walk-off single by Darnell Sweeney in the bottom of the 10th that gave the Quakes a 2 - 1 victory over the Lake Elsinore Storm (Padres). Sweeney's hit followed a double by Robbie Garvey to set up the win, and both Garvey and Sweeney had the only multi-hit games for Rancho. Pitching was the real story in the game as starter Ross Stripling was brilliant over his 5 innings of work. The 2013 5th round pick allowed just 1 hit and 1 walk and struck out 4. Raydel Sanchez followed with a pair of shutout innings, and Pedro Baez picked up his first professional win despite allowing 4 base runners over the last two innings of the game.
LoA – The Loons notched their first victory of the season on Sunday with a 8 - 3 win over the Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres). The Great Lakes bats finally came alive as the club crushed 3 homers, including a 2-run bomb from Corey Seager for his first hit of the year. James Baldwin and Paul Hoenecke both went 2 for 4 and accounted for the other two dingers. Starter Carlos Frias was solid in his 2013 debut as he allowed just 3 hits and an unearned run over 5 innings, striking out 5 in the process. Sawil Gonzalez and Luis Meza were great out of the bullpen as well as they combine to finish the game with 3 hitless innings.
Coming up – All four teams are back in action tomorrow, starting with the Isotopes who will use Sean White on the mound. Jarret Martin is the scheduled starter for the Quakes, while youngster Jonathan Martinez will take the mound for the Loons. The Lookouts have yet to announce their pitcher for Monday.
Minor League Transactions – AAA: Steve Ames was placed on the DL with shoulder inflammation, and Steve Smith was placed on the Isotope roster to take his place.