One of the questions surrounding the Tampa Bay Rays is when Wil Myers will end up being promoted to the majors. While he has had his struggles for Durham this year, he has begun to flash his power bat, hitting his third home run in four games last night as part of a big first inning for the Bulls. If he continues to hit for this type of power and can cut down on the strikeouts, that long awaited promotion may soon be forthcoming. Meanwhile, Andrew Toles had another excellent game for the Bowling Green Hot Rods, stealing three more bases to give him 28 on the season, leading the Midwest League. If he can continue to steal bases as this rate as he climbs the organizational ladder, Toles may end up running his way to Tampa someday.
Durham Bulls 11, Buffalo Bisons (Blue Jays) 7
You could almost forgive the Bulls if they felt that this game was in hand after the first inning. The offense exploded against Ricky Romero, who only managed to record two outs in the Bulls nine run first. Wil Myers began and ended the scoring in the inning, starting things off with a two run home run, and following up with a bases loaded three run double later in the inning. Romero was tagged for eight runs on five hits and three walks. The Bulls tacked on a run in the third to make it 10-0, and it appeared as though starter Alex Torres would be in line for an easy win. However, the Bisons fought back, loading the bases with no one out in the fifth. Moises Sierra cleared the bases with a three run double, and came around to score on a home run by Mauro Gomez. That home run was the end of the night for Torres, who finished two outs short of qualifying for the win, as he gave up five earned runs on six hits and four walks, striking out eight in his 4.1 innings. Durham got another run back in the sixth, as Jason Bourgeois led off with a double, moved to third on a fly ball to right, and scored on a sacrifice fly. Buffalo got two runs back in the seventh, when Luis Jimenez walked and Gomez followed with his second two run home run of the game. The Bisons threatened to score again in the eighth, but were unable to push any further runs across as the Bulls hung on for the 11-7 victory. Steve Geltz picked up the win in relief, allowing two runs on one hit and two walks in 2.1 innings. Myers had a big first inning, and ended up 2-5 with a double, a home run and five RBIs.
Jackson Generals (Mariners) 9, Montgomery Biscuits 3
After spotting the Generals a run in the top of the first, the Biscuits appeared as though they had a big inning in the works, loading the bases with no outs. However, Cameron Seitzer grounded into a double play, which tied the game, but effectively ended the threat. The Biscuits did end up taking the lead in the third, as Seitzer redeemed himself with a two out RBI double, and came around to score on a double by Todd Glaesmann. The Generals came back, getting a run in the fourth and another in the sixth to tie the game at 3-3. Then came the top of the eighth, when Jackson broke the game open. Denny Almonte greeted reliever Marquis Fleming with a lead off home run, and the Generals then loaded the bases with one out. After a base hit drove in a run and left the bases loaded, Fleming was lifted in favor of Austin Hubbard. Hubbard walked the first batter he faced to force in a run, then gave up a two run single to Gabriel Noriega. A groundout scored the final run of the inning, and the Biscuits were unable to threaten as they fell by a score of 9-3. Fleming took the loss, giving up five runs on four hits and a walk while only recording one out. Victor Mateo had a solid start wasted, giving up three runs, two earned, on four hits and two walks in six innings, striking out three batters. Kyeong Kang was 2-3 with a triple and a walk.
Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres) 5, Bowling Green Hot Rods 4
The TinCaps jumped out early on starter Jeff Ames. Leadoff batter Mallex Smith singled, and scored on a triple by Alberth Martinez, who came around to score on a base hit by Maxx Tissenbaum. After a base hit and a sacrifice bunt put runners on second and third, Jeremy Baltz singled to drive in Tissenbaum. Center fielder Andrew Toles made an excellent throw, gunning down Gabriel Quintana at the plate to keep the TinCaps at only three runs. Toles got a run back in the bottom of the inning almost by himself. He led off the inning with a base hit, moved to second on a wild pitch and stole third base before scoring on a sacrifice fly. After the TinCaps added another run in the top of the third, Toles was again in the thick of the action for the Hot Rods. He led off the inning by getting hit with a pitch, and again moved to second on a wild pitch. After Luke Maile walked, they executed a doubel steal, putting the runners at second and third. Toles scored on a groundout, and Maile came around to score on a base hit by Justin O’Conner, cutting the lead to 4-3. The Hot Rods had a golden opportunity to seize control of the game in the fifth, loading the bases with no outs. O’Conner came through with his second RBI single of the game, tying the game and leaving the bases loaded. However, both Patrick Leonard and Justin Reginatto struck out, and Ryan Dunn flew out to center to end the threat. The TinCaps took the lead back in the eighth, as Baltz led off the inning with a single, and moved to second on a double by Brian Adams. Baltz scored on a sacrifice fly by Stephen Carmon to put the TinCaps ahead again. The Hot Rods had one last chance to, at the very least, tie the game as Toles once again led off with a single, and stole second. He moved to third on a groundout, but was left there as Tyler Goeddel flew out to end the game. Marcus Jensen pitched well in relief, but ended up with the loss, giving up one run on four hits in four innings. Toles had an excellent game, going 2-4 with three stolen bases, two runs scored and an outfield assist. O’Conner was 2-4 with two RBIs.