After being considered a top prospect for the Kansas City Royals as recently as a couple years ago, Mike Montgomery was essentially a throw-in in the deal that sent Wil Myers to Tampa. As another reclamation project, Montgomery has had his moments this season for Durham, and has generally been solid. Last night, however, was not one of those nights, as the PawSox rocked Montgomery almost from the start.
Pawtucket Red Sox 9, Durham Bulls 7
The Bulls were in trouble almost from the start, as the PawSox exploded for six runs in the top of the second off starter Mike Montgomery. Mark Hamilton led off the inning with a walk, and Dan Butler hit a one out, three run homer as Pawtucket began to pull away. Will Middlebrooks capped the scoring with a two run double, as the PawSox took a 6-0 lead. Butler added an RBI single in the top of the third to extend the lead, but the Bulls began the arduous task of climbing back into the game in the bottom of the inning. After loading the bases with no outs, Shelley Duncan hit a two run double, and a sacrifice fly by Leslie Anderson pulled the Bulls within four. Another sacrifice fly in the fourth trimmed the lead to 7-4, but the PawSox added on in the seventh. Alex Hassan had an RBI double, and came around to score on a base hit by Jonathan Diaz to take a 9-4 lead. Durham came back yet again in the eighth, scoring three more times, highlighted by an RBI double by Vince Belnome. However, they were unable to complete the comeback, falling to the PawSox 9-7. Montgomery was hammered as he took the loss, giving up seven runs on six hits and four walks in 3.1 innings. Belnome continued to swing a hot bat, going 2-3 with a double, an RBI, two runs scored and two walks.
Mobile BayBears (Diamondbacks) 4, Montgomery Biscuits 3
The Biscuits were not doomed by a big inning, but by a lot of little ones. Mobile scored a run in the first when Ender Inciarte led off the bottom of the first with a double, stole third and scored on a groundout. That would set the tone for the BayBears offense. In the second, Raywilly Gomez doubled with two out, and scored on a base hit by Mike Freeman, and they added another run on a bases loaded walk in the third. After Nick Evans homered to lead off the sixth, the BayBears were in front 4-0, and with the way that Mobile starter Mark Cerrano was holding the Biscuits in check, that appeared as though it may be more than enough. However, Montgomery began to come back against reliever Eric Smith. After a walk and a single with one out, Robi Estrada belted a three run homer to pull the Biscuits within one. Montgomery had a chance to tie the game, or take the lead, in the top of the ninth, putting runners on first and second with two outs. Unfortunately, Robby Price grounded out to end the game, and the BayBears escaped with a 4-3 victory. Jacob Thompson took the loss, giving up four runs, three earned, on five hits and two walks over six innings. Hector Guevara was 2-3 with a run scored.
Charlotte Stone Crabs v. Daytona Cubs – suspended
Tied at 0-0 through six, heavy rains forced the matchup between the Stone Crabs and the Cubs to be suspended, with the game to finish tomorrow. That was unfortunate, as Charlotte starter Felipe Rivero was putting together a gem, holding the Cubs to one hit and one walk over six innings. Hopefully, Charlotte will be able to continue the pitching momentum tomorrow.
Bowling Green Hot Rods 7, Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (Brewers) 0
The Hot Rods raced out against the Timber Rattlers, as Andrew Toles led off the bottom of the first with a triple, and scored on a groundout. Patrick Leonard had an RBI double in the second, and scored on a sacrifice fly to give the Hot Rods a 3-0 lead. The runs kept coming in the fourth. Tyler Goeddel had an RBI triple, and scored on a base hit by Luke Maile. Meanwhile, Bowling Green starter Reinaldo Lopez was working out of trouble, and keeping Wisconsin off the board. The Hot Rods tacked on two more runs in the seventh, and coasted to a relatively easy 7-0 victory. Lopez picked up the win, giving up eight hits and a walk over seven shutout innings. Joey Rickard was 3-4 with a double and a run scored.
Williamsport Crosscutters (Phillies) 4, Hudson Valley Renegades 2
The Crosscutters got on the board first, as Dylan Cozens hit a two out, two run double to give Williamsport an early lead. The Renegades tied the game back up in the top of the second, when Granden Goetzman hit a two run homer with two outs. From that point, both starters settled in, as the game remained tied heading into the bottom of the eighth. With one out, Cozens singled to right, and Gabriel Lino followed with a two run home run of his own to give the Crosscutters a 4-2 lead. Despite a walk, the Renegades were unable to mount a comeback, snapping their six game winning streak as they fell by that 4-2 margin. Andrew Hanse took the loss in relief, giving up two runs on seven hits and a walk over three innings of work. Julian Ridings was 2-3 with a run scored in the loss.
Greeneville Astros 2, Princeton Rays 1
Rays starter D.J. Slaton and Astros starter Frederick Tiburcio engaged in a pitcher’s duel last night, but neither pitcher ended up factoring in the decision. The Astros got to Slaton in the first, as Tyler White hit a two out RBI double to put Greeneville on the board. That score held up until the Rays finally got a scoring opportunity in the sixth, as Elias Torres had an infield hit, stole second, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt, and finally scored on a base hit by Bralin Jackson to tie the game. It now became a matter of which bullpen would crack first, and the Rays blinked in the eighth. With one out, White homered to give the Astros a lead they would not relinquish, as Gonzalo Sanudo struck out the side in the top of the ninth to send Princeton to the 2-1 defeat. Hunter Wood took the loss, giving up the home run and a walk in three innings while striking out two. Torres and Jackson each had two hits in the loss.
GCL Orioles 3, GCL Rays 2 (Eleven Innings)
After spotting the Orioles a 1-0 lead in through three innings, the Rays came out swinging in the fourth. Riley Unroe walked to lead off the inning, and scored on a double by Nick Ciuffo. Ciuffo came around to score on a one out double by Hector Montes, and the Rays had taken a 2-1 lead. The orioles tied the game back up in the bottom of the inning, as Jonah Heim walked with one out. Heim took second on a wild pitch, moved to third on a balk, and scored on a passed ball in what was an utterly forgettable sequence for reliever Yomelbin Almonte. Both bullpens settled in from that point, and the game remained tied heading into the bottom of the eleventh. Ronarsy Ledesma led off the inning with a single, moved to second on a bunt, and scored the game winning run on a base hit by Eric Thames. Eric Fredrick took the loss, giving up a run on two hits and three walks in 2.1 innings. Alexander Simon was 1-2 with three walks.