Friday night around Dodgers minors saw three of the four affiliates lose and a one-run win in Tulsa thanks to some solid pitching from a lefty for the Drillers.
Player of the day
John Rooney turned in his best start of the season, tossing five scoreless while holding Northwest Arkansas (Royals) to two hits and one walk, striking out four. It’s the first time Rooney has held an opponent without a run with at least five innings since August 3, 2019.
The lefty has allowed just two runs (one earned) in his last 17 2⁄3 innings over four starts and Friday’s effort lowered his ERA below four (3.90) since the middle of May.
Triple-A Oklahoma City
For the fourth time in five games this series, the winning team scored double digits Friday. It was Las Vegas (Athletics) that came out on top in this one, sending Oklahoma City to a 10-3 loss in front of the home crowd.
Former Dodger Billy McKinney smoked a two-run homer to get the scoring started in the second for the Aviators. Vince Fernandez continued that trend in the third with a two-run shot of his own to give Las Vegas a 4-0 lead early.
Oklahoma City got a run on a Miguel Vargas sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third but Las Vegas broke it open in the fourth, scoring four times to double their run total. Seven of the eight runs were charged to lefty Robbie Erlin in two innings of work.
Friday was the sixth time in their last seven losses that OKC has allowed double-digit run totals to their opponent.
The Drillers homered twice in the second half of the game to hang on and beat Northwest Arkansas 3-2 Friday.
Following Rooney’s outing, the Naturals didn’t climb back into the low-scoring affair until the eighth. A run in the eighth and one in the ninth, brought NW Arkansas within one and they would leave the tying run at first to end the game.
Already up 1-0 in the fifth, Tulsa received a solo shot from catcher Chris Betts to lengthen the lead. When the Naturals scored a run in the bottom of the eighth to cut the lead in half, the Drillers needed some insurance. They got just that when outfielder Jeren Kendall launched one over the wall in right to give Tulsa a 3-1 lead.
Jeren Kendall extended Tulsa's lead to 3-1 in the 9th with a solo shot, his 6th homer of the season pic.twitter.com/xMip95TkkD— Josh Thomas (@jokeylocomotive) July 9, 2022
After giving up singles to two of the first three hitters in the ninth, right-hander Gus Varland allowed a run-scoring sacrifice fly before shutting the door on a strikeout for his first career save.
High-A Great Lakes
Offense was tough to come by Friday night up in Michigan, with the two clubs combining for seven hits and one run. Great Lakes came out on the short end of the score, dropping the game 1-0 to Lansing (Athletics).
Loons’ starter Carlos Duran hit Drew Swift to leadoff the bottom of the third and Swift would come in to score two batters later when Tyler Soderstrom doubled him in. Duran would strike out six and allowed two hits and two walks in three innings. Emmet Sheehan took over for the Loons in the fourth and wouldn’t allow a run in four innings to give the offense a chance.
Great Lakes wouldn’t produce their first hit until the fifth inning when Jose Ramos singled to center. The only other inning with runners on base came in the seventh when Eddys Leonard grounded a single into center with two outs. Imanol Vargas walked to put the tying run in scoring position but Ramos grounded into a force to end the threat.
Low-A Rancho Cucamonga
Rancho had a hard time keeping Inland Empire (Angels) off the board early and they dug a hole too deep to climb out of when they gave up six runs in the fourth inning alone. Three hits wasn’t a good way to mount any kind of a comeback and the Quakes fell 9-2 to drop their third game of the series.
Already behind 3-1, Rancho starter Jerming Rosario walked the first three batters of the fourth before being lifted for Osvanni Gutierrez. The right-hander did no better than Rosario, walking the first hitter to force in a run.
The 66ers would eventually chase Gutierrez from the game before he could get out of the inning, scoring five more times on a two-run single for Alexander Ramirez, a two-run triple for Jeremy Arocho and a wild pitch.
Heisell Bro came on for the Quakes to restore order by striking out six of the eight batters he faced. But the damage was done and Rancho barely put up any fight after Inland Empire’s outburst.
High-A: Great Lakes Loons transferred catcher Max Hewitt to the Development List. Outfielder Harold Restituyo assigned to Great Lakes Loons from ACL Dodgers.
- Las Vegas 10, Oklahoma City 3
- Tulsa 3, NW Arkansas 2
- Lansing 1, Great Lakes 0
- Inland Empire 9, Rancho Cucamonga 2
- 4:05p.m. PT: Great Lakes (Nick Nastrini) at Lansing (Blake Beers)
- 4:05p.m.: Tulsa (Clayton Beeter) at NW Arkansas (Anthony Veneziano)
- 5:05p.m.: Oklahoma City (TBD) vs Las Vegas (Adam Oller)
- 7:05p.m.: Rancho Cucamonga (River Ryan) at Inland Empire (Chase Chaney)