One of the seemingly forgotten pieces in the James Shields – Wil Myers trade is Patrick Leonard. Leonard hit for nice power for the Burlington Royals last year, with 14 homers in the short season minors. Last night, he hit his first home run of the year, as he looks to find his power stroke once again.
Rochester Red Wings 11, Durham Bulls 6
After falling behind big early, it would have been hard to fault the Bulls if they were just looking to get the game over and try again tomorrow. However, they fought back, and although they fell short, it was still a good effort.
The Red Wings already had a run on the board when they loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the second for Eric Fryer. Fryer took full advantage, hitting a grand slam to left as Rochester took a 5-0 lead. They extended that lead in the sixth, loading the bases once again, this time with no one out. Antoan Richardson drove in two runs with a base hit, putting Rochester up 7-0. Ray Olmedo followed with an RBI single, to give the Red Wings an 8-0 lead. After an out, Chris Colaberra drove in a run with a double, and the Red Wings scored again on a sacrifice fly. They tacked on another run in the bottom of the seventh, as they held an 11-0 lead going into the eighth.
Then the Bulls came to life.With two outs, Brandon Guyer hit a two run triple to put the Bulls on the board, and came around to score on Tim Beckham‘s double. After a walk, Juan Apodaca hit a two run double, and came around to score on Jason Bourgeois‘ base hit. Unfortunately, Durham was unable to get closer, and fell 11-6.
Jim Pauduch took the loss, allowing five runs on six hits and three walks in five innings. Austin Hubbard was shelled, allowing five runs on four hits and three walks, recording just two outs in relief. Vince Belnome went 3-5 with a double.
Montgomery Biscuits v. Huntsville Stars (Brewers) – Postponed
The series opener between the Montgomery Biscuits and the Huntsville Stars was postponed due to rain, and will be made up as part of a double header on Saturday.
Fort Myers Miracle (Twins) 8, Charlotte Stone Crabs 0
The Miracle entered last night’s game leading the Stone Crabs by 13 games in the South Division in the Florida State League, and had the best record overall. They did nothing to discount that standing in the opener against the Stone Crabs.
Fort Myers took the lead quickly, loading the bases with two outs. Angel Morales cleared the bases with a triple, putting the Miracle ahead 3-0. Stephen Wickens tripled in a run in the second, as Fort Myers expanded their lead. The Miracle blew the game open in the fifth, scoring three more times highlighted by a two run home run from Kennys Vargas.
The Stone Crabs were unable to put anything together against Fort Myers pitching, managing just three hits and two walks against starter D.J. Baxendale. Ryan Carpenter took the loss, giving up seven runs, four earned, in five innings of work. He allowed eight hits and a walk, while striking out one. Ryan Brett was the only Charlotte player to reach base twice, going 1-3 with a walk.
Bowling Green Hot Rods 4, West Michigan Whitecaps (Tigers) 0
Bowling Green had the benefit of a true team effort from te pitching staff, as they managed to shut out the West Michigan Whitecaps 4-0 last night. Sean Bierman came off the disabled list to make the start, and pitched the first 3.1 innings, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out two batters. Brandon Henderson pitched the next four innings to pick up the victory, allowing five hits while striking out two.
The Hot Rods snapped a scoreless tie in the fifth, as Patrick Leonard led off the inning with his first home run of the year. They added two more in the sixth, with Joey Rickard leading off with a triple and scoring on a fielder’s choice. Leonard drove in another run with a two out single. Bowling Green tacked on another run in the top of the ninth, providing the final margin in the 4-0 victory. Leonard was 2-4 with a home run, two RBIs and a run scored. Justin O’Conner also picked up two hits in the victory.