Games Played Thursday
Memphis Redbirds (Triple-A) - thumped by Albuquerque 11-6
Mark Mulder's rehab start at Memphis was similar to his last rehab start by Beale Street. It was rough. The Isotopes jumped Mulder for six runs in the first inning. The southpaw finished in only 3.2 innings allowing 10 hits with three strikeouts and limited the damage to the six.
The Redbirds would chip away at the lead narrowing the gap to 7-6 before the final inning. Albuquerque would strike again with a big inning knocking around Ron Flores for four runs.
Colby Rasmus had a hit and drew a walk extending his on base streak to 29 and his hit streak to 11. Nick Stavinoha put together another multi-hit night with a double and a two-run home run, his tenth of the year. His three RBIs on the night bring his total to 50 in 71 games after driving in only 49 in 139 games in 2007.
RECORD: 38-37, 2nd place, 5.5 games back
Springfield Cardinals (Double-A) - overcomes Arkansas 9-8 in 11
Once again the Springfield bullpen made things interesting. The Cardinals scored early and often putting runs on the board in the second through the fifth. They would not score in the sixth on Jon Jay tripled and would score on an Allen Craig single.
Just like the night before last, the bullpen gave up a late inning lead. Justin Fiske was hurt for two runs without recording an out in the bottom of the ninth. Fernando Salas gave up two runs in two innings of work just as he had on Tuesday.
Allen Craig led off the eleventh with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Jose Martinez. Travelers' pitcher Rafael Rodriguez threw a wild pitch to advance Craig to third and then threw another to allow Craig to score the go ahead run.
Kyle Sadlowski pitched a shaky bottom of the eleventh to seal the Cardinals' victory.
As the two did on Wednesday, Jon Jay (11) and Andrew Brown (3) both homered.
RECORD: 2-0, 1st Place (1st Half Record (36-34)
Palm Beach Cardinals (High-A) - falls to Jupiter 8-5 in 11 innings
The Cardinals were up 3-1 before the Hammerheads knocked around Elvis Hernandez and Kenny Maiques for four runs in the top of the seventh. Down by two in the bottom of the ninth, Antonio DeJesus reached on a fielder's choice. Jim Rapoport walked with two outs to put runners on first and second. A passed ball would advance runners to second and third for Donovan Solano. With the game on the line, Solano singled to score both runners and push the game to extra frames.
The score remained tied until the eleventh when Jupiter rocked Francisco Samuel for three runs. It was Samuel's third rough outing in a row after the Dominican walked three hitters in each of his previous two outings.
Brandon Buckman had two hits including his fourth home run of the season.
RECORD: 42-28, 1st place
Quad Cities River Bandits (A) - tops Cedar Rapids 5-2
The River Bandits came back from the All-Star break with their lumber working, collecting 11 hits on the night.
The bats really came to life in the eighth when the River Bandits plated four runs. Pete Kozma walked with one out and would advance to second on a ground out by Charlie Kingrey. Kozma scored on a Matt Arburr single, who would advance to second on a Rivera single. With two runners on, Pham tripled to clear the bases. Pham would later score on a double by Paul Vasquez.
Rivera finished the night with three hits including two doubles and scored two runs. Pham had three hits as well and stole his eighth base.
RECORD: 33-31, 4th place, 6.5 games back
Batavia Muckdogs (SS) - shutout by Auburn 7-0
The Muckdogs continue to struggle in the early going of the 2008 season. The team had only three hits on the night with Chris Swauger collecting two singles and Colt Sedbrook singling once as well.
Batavia had the bases loaded but was unable to capitalize in the first, the third, and the ninth innings.
Of the four Muckdog pitchers, only George Brown did not allow a run, spinning two shutout innings.
What looked to be a talented lineup has really struggled in the early going. The Muckdogs were swept by the Doubledays losing the three-game set by a combined 17-3. Batavia managed only 11 hits in 27 innings.
RECORD: 0-3, 6th place, 3.0 games back
Johnson City Cardinals (R) - tops Bristol 4-3 in 10 innings
The White Sox were leading 2-0 before the Cardinals got on the board with a run in the sixth. Edgar Lara hit his first home run of the season to pull JC within one. The score remained the same until the top of the ninth. Osvaldo Morales singled to get the Cardinals going. Up next was catcher Ivan Castro who put a Brett Graffy pitch over the left field wall to give Johnson City its first lead of the night.
Cardinal reliever Jon Bravo gave up a triple to Jedon Matthews with one out in the bottom of the inning. Missouri State product Matt Frevert came in to relieve Bravo and promptly gave up a bunt single to tie things up.
In the tenth, third round pick Niko Vasquez singled to center. Paul Cruz would follow with a single to advance Vazquez to second. Lara would walk to load the bases and Jairo Martinez hit a sac fly to right to score Vasquez from third.
Jose Mateo came in to close things out in the bottom of the tenth to notch his first save.
In his professional debut, Niko Vasquez collected two singles. Osvaldo Morales had three hits falling a home run short of the cycle.
Matt North struck out six in his five-inning start. Jon Bravo struck out six as well in 3.1 innings of relief.
This was Johnson City's second extra innings game in only its third game of the season.
RECORD: 2-1, 2nd place, 1.0 games back
Gulf Coast League Cardinals (R) - defeated the Marlins 3-2
The Marlins took the lead with a run in the top of the eighth. The Cardinals answered in the bottom of the inning when Rodriguez hit an RBI single that scored Rosario who had walked earlier in the inning.
In the home part of the ninth, Rosario singled with the bases loaded to score Kleininger Teran.
Adam Prange picked up the win with 1.1 scoreless innings. Rosario led the offense with two hits, two runs, and an RBI.
RECORD: 1-0, 1st Place
VSL Cardinals (R) - winners 5-4 over Mets in 10
Yet another thrilling conclusion to a game in the low minors as reliever Yonathan Gonzalez was knocked around for three runs to allow the Mets to tie the score at four in the top of the ninth.
The offensive star for the Cardinals was Carlos Yegues who singled twice and drove in two runs. The team stole four bases while the Mets stole five.
David Brito picked up his fourth victory of the season to go along with his miniscule ERA of 0.36.
RECORD: 17-15, 5th place, 3.0 games back
DSL Cardinals (R) -defeated Phillies 2-0 Shutout
The game was scoreless until Wader Perez and Alexander Castellano hit back-to-back singles with one out in the sixth. Audris Perez reached on an error to load the bases for Luis Pimentel who walked to put a run on the board.
In the seventh, Juan B Cabrera homered for the first time this season to extend the lead to two. That is all the stingy pitching staff would need.
RECORD: 4-10, 5th place, 6.5 games back
Minor League Pitcher of the Day - Angel Cruz
For a struggling Dominican team, Cruz was dominant on Thursday. In six shutout innings, the Phillies collected only three hits against him while striking out eight times. The 20 year old lowered his ERA to a fantastic 0.43 in 21 innings.
Minor League Player of the Day - Nick Stavinoha
With two more hits Thursday, Stavinoha raised his average to .346 on the season. Stavinoha has already passed his RBI total from 2007 and is only three homers short of his long ball total from a year ago.
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