Much like the Major League squads, the best players at the Triple-A level gathered for their All-Star Game on Wednesday evening. The Rochester Red Wings had two representatives, Chris Colabello and Andrew Albers, and they both played roles in different parts of the game.
Colabello was the starting first baseman for the International League team and he batted in the third spot in the order. After not hitting any home runs in the Triple-A Home Run Derby, Colabello looked to make some noise with his bat. He actually got the scoring started with an RBI double in the top of the first. He would end the night going 1-for-3.
Albers pitched the fourth inning and things didn't go exactly perfect. The first two batters reached on singles and a passed ball moved both men into scoring position. He coaxed a ground out for the next batter but that meant a run crossed the plate. With a runner on third and one out, Albers struck out the next batter for out number two. The final batter of the inning was able to hit a ball hard but it was right at the center fielder.
New Britain Rock Cats 4, Harrisburg Senators 3
The Rock Cats pounded out 11 hits to squeak out a one-run victory over the Senators. The win brought New Britain to within two games of the .500 mark. Since the All-Star Game last Wednesday, the club has posted a 3-4 record. Tomorrow marks the start of an important eight-game home stand over the next seven days.
DJ Baxendale did admirably on the mound by pitching 5.2 innings and limiting the Senators to two runs. He gave up five hits and struck out two batters while walking one. After starting the year 7-0 with the Miracle, his victory on Wednesday put him with a 3-3 record at Double-A. He's allowed two earned runs or less in his last three outings.
Eddie Rosario has been on a tear lately. He's in the midst of a seven-game hit streak and in his last 10 games he is batting .366/.409/.561. In this afternoon's contest, he went 3-for-5 with half of the team's RBI. Rosario is hitting .306/.374/.494 with 12 extra-base hits in his 31 games since being promoted.
Danny Santana did a good job of setting the table ahead of Rosario. He went 2-for-4 in the game with his 16th double and he scored two runs out of the leadoff spot. Santana has a nice five-game hitting streak of his own so he and Rosario are doing a fine job at the top of the line-up.
Fort Myers Miracle 6, Dunedin Blue Jays 4
Kennys Vargas came up with a big two-run double in the top of the ninth inning to stop the Miracle's losing streak at six games. Recent games had Vargas deep in a 1-for-18 slump and he had already gone 0-2 in the game with two strikeouts. The big hit from Vargas wasn't the only story line to follow from this game.
DJ Hicks, in his Florida State League debut, got the Miracle on the board early with a two-run home run. Byron Buxton helped to add to the lead when he hit a flyball that got lost in the lights. He would end up at third base and he eventually came in to score. Aderlin Mejia, Matt Koch, and JD Williams each added two hits.
Tyler Duffey was excellent on the mound but he ended up with a no decision. He lasted seven innings shutout innings while allowing one hit. Throughout the game, he had to work around four walks but it helped that he was able to strikeout seven men.
The Miracle had been winning in the eighth inning before a rough night from Nelvin Fuentes. He gave up four hits including the go-ahead grand slam. After the Vargas double, Zach Jones game in to earn his tenth save of the season with only one base runner reaching on a walk.
Cedar Rapids Kernels 7, Lake County Captains 6
This game would continue long into the night as neither club could gain the advantage. Both teams managed big four run innings in the early portion of the game before reaching a stalemate in extra-innings.
Christian Powell was on the mound to start the game and he made it through five innings after a rough fourth. Overall, he gave up five runs on seven hits including two long balls. He wouldn't be around for the end of this game as it turned into a battle of the bullpens. Dallas Gallant was asked to record five outs and he did so by striking out all five of those men. There were some wild moments in between as he had a couple of wild pitches and base runners were on in both frames that he worked.
David Hurlbut also struck out five batters and he had to come into a tough situation with a runner at third base. One unearned run was scored against him but he only allowed one hit in over two innings of work. The Kernels struck out 19 men with the help of two strikeouts apiece for Alex Muren and Tim Shibuya in the last two innings.
Jorge Polanco helped to stop what seemed like an endless game. His RBI single in the top of the 12th inning was the first run for the Kernels since the sixth inning. Earlier in the game Jeremias Pineda hit his second home run of the year, a three-run shot. He ended the night 3-for-5 with four runs scored.
GCL Twins 3, GCL Rays 4
The bullpen for the GCL Twins gave up three runs in the final three innings to cough up the lead. The Rays took an early lead by scoring in the bottom of the first. The Twins would come back and score three runs in the fourth and fifth frames to take back the lead. Unfortunately, it wouldn't last and the team dropped one game under .500 and 2.5 games out of first place.
Zach Larson powered the offense with two hits including his fourth home run of the year. Chad Christensen had the only other extra-base hit with a triple and he would come around to score. Alex Swim has a five-game hitting streak after going 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Alex Wimmers continued his comeback from Tommy John surgery. He pitched two innings and gave up one earned run. He was able to strikeout three batters but he did walk a couple of men. Stephen Gonsalves tossed three innings, struck out three, and gave up his first run of the year. Daniel Sattler was charged with the loss after giving up two runs on four hits in one inning.