Pawtucket Red Sox 6, Toledo Mud Hens 5 (box)
Despite Toledo ace Buck Farmer (3-1 3.94 ERA) regaining control of the strikeout title in the International League with 40 on the year, his performance last night wouldn't be enough to hold off the red hot Pawtucket (18-10) offense. Farmer struck out eight, and allowed two earned runs on four hits, including a drive over the right field wall by Pawtucket's Jackie Bradley Jr. in the third. Pawtucket scored four additional runs off Toledo's relief pitching and gave the Red Sox enough steam to hand Toledo (10-16) its sixth straight loss.
Toledo's offense struck with a strong second inning, tagging Pawtucket's starter Keith Couch for five earned runs off six hits through four innings of work. Singles by Jordan Lennerton, Bryan Holaday and Corey Jones set up Xavier Avery to lace a sharp RBI double for the Mud Hens.
Jones: 2-4, RBI, R, SO
Fields: 2-4, 2 2B, RBI, 2 SO
Avery: 1-4, R, 2B, RBI
Holaday: 1-4, R, RBI
Moya: 0-3, R, BB, 3 SO
Machado: 0-5, 3 SO
Farmer: 5.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, BB, 8 SO
Dolis (L): 1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 SO
COMING UP NEXT: Toledo lefty Kyle Ryan (0-3 5.20 ERA) is slated to lead the Mud Hens into the first of a three-game home series against the Charlotte Knights (14-12) beginning Friday evening at Fifth Third Field.
Trenton Thunder 2, Erie Seawolves 1 (box)
Erie righthander Warwick Saupold (0-1 6.48 ERA) took the hill for the Seawolves (8-18) against Trenton starter Miguel Sulbaran (2-1 2.45 ERA) as the two went head-to-head for six innings at Arm & Hammer Park on Thursday.
The two starters allowed the opposition only three hits apiece. Erie made a push at the plate at the top of the eighth, led off by a single from Wynton Bernard. Bernard continued by stealing his 10th base of the season (second-highest in the league) and rode a drive by Jeff McVaney to score the first run for the Seawolves.
Trenton answered back, courtesy of a shot by Eric Jagielo that cleared the right field wall off Erie reliever Jeff Ferrell. Trenton's Jake Cave sealed the tight race with an RBI single in the ninth to give the go-ahead to the Thunder (13-14). Ryan Robowski (0-1) took the loss for the Seawolves and Erie falls to 8-18.
McVaney: 2-4, 2B RBI
Bernard: 1-4, R, SO
Green, A: 1-3, BB, SO
Harrell: 1-4, SO
Castro: 0-3, SO
Saupold: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 2 SO
Robowski (L): 0.2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO
COMING UP NEXT: Josh Turley (2-2 2.35 ERA) will be back in action as the Seawolves will play host to the visiting Reading Fightin Phils (15-10) in a three-game home stand beginning Friday evening. Turley will face off against Reading lefty Tom Windle (0-1 4.50 ERA).
Lakeland Flying Tigers 6, Dunedin Blue Jays 1 (box)
The Dunedin Blue Jays had dropped back-to-back losses before welcoming the Lakeland Flying Tigers to Florida Auto Exchange Stadium on Thursday, and Lakeland made the most of the opportunity they had been given. Flying Tigers starter Kevin Ziomek (3-3 4.28 ERA) was masterful against the Blue Jays offense, maneuvering through six innings, holding the Blue Jays to one run on four hits while striking out five.
Lakeland took advantage of a trio of two-run innings to capitalize off the opportunity to move ahead of their Northern Division rival. Grayson Greiner led the Flying Tigers with a double and a home run while knocking in a pair of RBI. The Flying Tigers move to 12-15 and gain a game in the division over Dunedin.
Greiner: 2-5, 2 R, 2B, HR, 2 RBI, SO
Betancourt: 1-4, R, BB
Martinez: 1-4, R, 2B, RBI, SO
Borchering: 0-4, R, BB, 3 SO
Ficociello: 1-5, 3B, 2 RBI, SO
Verlander: 0-5, SO
Ziomek (W): 6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 5 SO
COMING UP NEXT: Lakeland will host the Blue Jays in game two of the three-game series tonight at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.
West Michigan Whitecaps 5, Dayton Dragons 3 (box)
To some, 13 games can be viewed as a lofty achievement, but to easy-going West Michigan outfielder Michael Gerber, it's another day at the office. "I'm really not thinking about it too much," Gerber said Thursday evening. "I've been going up to the plate with the same approach."
Gerber went to work again against Dayton (15-13) on Thursday, collecting a pair of hits and knocking in two RBI for West Michigan, extending his hit streak to 13 games. Whitecaps' starter, A.J. Ladwig (2-3 6.00 ERA) battled through seven innings, allowing two earned runs off eight hits.
West Michigan pitching was successful in holding Dayton to three runs, with Whitecaps' reliever Johan Belisario (1-0 0.66 ERA) posting his fourth save for West Michigan this season. The Whitecaps move to 12-16 with the victory, currently positioned five games out of first place in the Eastern Division.
Hill: 1-4, 2 R, SO
Gonzalez: 2-3, R
Kivett: 0-4, R, RBI, SO
Gerber: 2-3, R, 2B, 2 RBI
Pankake: 1-3, RBI, BB, 2 SO
Shepherd: 0-4, SO
Zeile: 0-4, 2 SO
Ladwig (W): 7 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 SO
COMING UP NEXT: West Michigan returns to the Dragons turf Friday evening for the second of their three-game road series in Dayton. West Michigan will look to Trent Szkutnik (2-0, 3.63 ERA) to take the hill to face Dayton starter Wyatt Strahan (3-1, 2.45 ERA).