Triple-A: Norfolk Tides 8, Rochester Red Wings 7
Hopefully Virginia is for offense lovers, because fans got to see 27 hits combined. Aaron Slegers allowed twelve of those hits in five innings, then his “relief,” Kam Mickolio, got tagged for a three-run homer. Mickolio’s pitching was so embarrassing, the Red Wings now use this as his profile picture. Sad!
Kennys Vargas opened the Red Wings’ scoring with a solo dong, and was part of a six-run sixth inning giving Rochester the lead before Mickolio’s entrance. CF Zack Granite and LF babyface Tommy Field had two-hit nights of their own.
Double-A: Birmingham Barons 7, Chattanooga Lookouts 6
Another one-run win for the home team, another sloppy pitching performance by a Twins’ farmhand. In this case it was Wade LeBlanc, gifting six runs on eleven hits. In his AA debut, SG Nick Anderson threw a scoreless two innings with two strikeouts. His ERA at Ft. Myers was 0.89.
CF LaMonte Wade had a hit and walked twice, so I love him again, and 3B T.J. “Hooker” White added two singles. The “Hooker” reference is to an old William Shatner cop show, T.J. Hooker. It has nothing to do with White being born in Las Vegas. Nothing at all. Uber-prospect SS Nick Gordon had a hit and two strikeouts.
High-A: Palm Beach Cardinals 8, Fort Myers Miracle 1
Good grief, pitchers! Were you all facing Albert Pujols? David Fischer gave up a zodiac of runs, six total on six hits and four walks — with zero, 0, nada strikeouts. Andrew Vasquez turned in the only impressive bullpen appearance, although Michael Theofanopoulous has the more impressive name.
What offense there was came courtesy of two hits by LF Zander Wiel, and two more by the Robbinsdale Mullet, CF Max Murphy. 1B Trey (son of Joe) Vavra was 1-4, raising his average to a base-coach-worthy .097.
Low-A: Burlington Bees 4, Cedar Rapids Kernels 3, 10 innings
Finally a decent start, this one from “Muppet” Clark Beeker. He lasted seven innings, which is downright epic for low-A, allowing only two runs on five hits over 99 pitches. The not-so-hard-luck loser was Alex Robinson, who cruised through the ninth before starting his next go-round with walk, strikeout, wild pitch, coaching visit, double.
The Mean Corn actually outhit the Bees, 9-6, with three of these coming from RF Christian Cavaness and two more by 2B Brandon Lopez. But I think I know who was responsible for all the hits but no home runs. It was the Kernels’ hitting coach — you know him, you love him, let’s hear it for the immortal Brian Dinkelman! Dink! Dink! Dink!