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Rays down on the farm June 1: Starters dominate

Starting pitching across an organization doesn't get much better than it did Saturday

Alex Colome's 5.2 innings was a season high in 2014
Alex Colome's 5.2 innings was a season high in 2014

Alex Colome's performance is probably the most encouraging.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (34-23)

Strong pitching and a late offensive outburst helped Durham to a 10-0 win over Lehigh Valley.  Alex Colome was back with the Bulls, and he baffled the IronPigs lineup.  For the first five innings, the teams trading scoreless frames, and even though Colome allowed a runner to reach base every inning, he was never in trouble.  He lasted 5.2 innings, allowing just three hits and three walks with nine strikeouts.  Merrill Kelly pitched the final 3.1 innings to complete the shutout.

Wilson Betemit's single in the sixth finally got Durham on the board, and they added two more runs later in the inning on a Mike Fontenot single.  In the seventh, they sent 10 men to the plate, scoring six more runs.  After an error that would have made the second out of the inning allowed the first run of the inning to score, Jerry Sands made them pay for their mistake with a three run homer.  A Mayo Acosta single with two outs drove in two more runs, and Justin Christian hit an eighth inning home run to extend the lead to 10.  Christian had four hits and was a triple away from the cycle.

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (28-28)

An eight run second inning was nearly not enough in a rain-shortened 8-6 win over Mississippi.  It looked like the Barves would get out of it with no trouble at all by recording the first two outs, but the Biscuit hit parade would not be denied.  10 straight batters reached base, eight of which did so with hits.  The biggest hit of the inning was Ryan Brett's bases clearing double, and Jeremy Moore and Jeff Malm each drove in two runs with singles.  After that, only three batters reached base while Mississippi staged their comeback.

That comeback started immediately in the following half inning.  After Grayson Garvin struck out two in another two inning start, Jared Mortensen was roughed up.  Two of those runs were unearned due to a Ryan Brett error, but Mortensen still allowed five hits and walked a batter as Mississippi pulled within three.  He allowed their sixth run on a solo home run two innings later.  Jim Patterson struck out three over the final two innings before the game was called because of rain.

Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (26-27)

Charlotte's pitching staff threw a nice game in their 3-2 win over Brevard County.  Both Manatee runs were unearned, and the three pitchers didn't walk any batters.  Austin Pruitt turned in his best start of the season, allowing just an unearned run on five hits in six innings with five strikeouts.  Parker Markel was tagged with a blown save, but his run was also unearned.  Ryan Garton threw the last inning and was credited with a win.

After losing a 2-0 lead, the Stone Crabs was set up for a walkoff win in the ninth.  With the bases loaded and the only out of the inning recorded on a sac bunt, Jonathan Quinonez delivered a single to win the game.  Charlotte only picked up six hits, but they drew five walks too.  Marty Gantt reached base three times and scored the first run of the game on a Tommy Coyle single, and Patrick Leonard's eighth home run of the season gave them a 2-0 lead an inning later.

Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (26-29)

Bowling Green went ahead early and added a lot of insurance late in their 10-1 win over South Bend.  The story for the Hot Rods was once again a strong start from Chris Kirsch.  For the second straight start, he threw seven scoreless innings, and he's only allowed one earned run in his last three starts, totaling 20 innings.  He only struck out two, but he got 13 groundouts and only allowed three hits and one walk.

Johnny Field's two out double in the second innings scored the first two Hot Rod runs, but like Durham, they did most of their damage late in the game.  Up 3-1 in the sixth, they scored seven more runs over the next three innings, including a four run eighth.  They started the inning with three straight singles, and South Bend conceded a run on a Kean Wong groundout.  Granden Goetzman and Ty Young would also knock in runs with singles, and the 10th scored on a wild pitch.  Six Hot Rods had multi-hit games in the 16 hit outburst, led by Yoel Araujo with three.  It was his first game this season with three hits.


Star of the day- No starter allowed an earned run, although Garvin only had to pitch two innings.

Goat of the day- The last place team in the American League.

Today's games (probables courtesy of

Durham v. Lehigh Valley 5:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Enny Romero (2-5, 6.08) v. Sean O'Sullivan (2-4, 4.19)

Montgomery v. Mississippi 6:35 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Victor Mateo (6-4, 4.03) v. Ryan Weber (1-0, 3.48)

Charlotte v. Brevard County 5 PM (Radio stream)
Reinaldo Lopez (3-2, 3.98) v. Jorge Lopez (6-2, 3.17)

Bowling Green @ South Bend 2:05 PM (Radio stream)
Ryne Stanek (1-2, 2.95) v. TBA

*Listed as TBA on

Scouting the opposition

Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Philadelphia)
29-27 (5th in IL North)
Offense: 232 R (8th) .711 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 4.12 ERA (10th) 1.41 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Maikel Franco (1), RHP Ethan Martin (10), C Cameron Rupp (13), RHP Ken Giles (18)

Mississippi Braves
32-23 (2nd in SL South)
Offense: 233 R (6th) .711 OPS (4th)
Pitching: 3.51 ERA (3rd) 1.27 WHIP (3rd)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP J.R. Graham (3), RHP Jason Hursh (4), 3B Kyle Kubitza (22), OF Matt Lipka (24), RHP Aaron Northcraft (25), OF Robby Hefflinger (29), RHP James Hoyt (30)

Brevard County Manatees (Milwaukee)
28-26 (3rd in FSL North)
Offense: 200 R (10th) .671 OPS (8th)
Pitching: 2.66 ERA (2nd) 1.14 WHIP (2nd)
Top 30 Prospects: OF Tyrone Taylor (2), OF Victor Roache (5), SS Orlando Arcia (7), 3B Nick Delmonico (12), SS Yadiel Rivera (13), RHP Tyler Wagner (16), RHP Kevin Shackelford (21), RHP Damien Magnificio (23), RHP Jorge Lopez (24)

South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona)
34-21 (1st in MWL East)
Offense: 299 R (2nd) .751 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 3.72 ERA (6th) 1.35 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Jose Martinez (6), OF Stryker Trahan (8), 1B Daniel Palka (17), C Michael Perez (20), LHP Daniel Gibson (21), RHP Geordy Parra (22), SS Joe Munoz (26), 2B Jamie Westbrook (27), 2B Andrew Velasquez (28)