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Austin Sodders strikes out nine in Whitecaps win

Scores, news and notes from around the Tigers’ farm system for April 22-23, 2017.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs 6, Toledo Mud Hens 1 (box) -Saturday

Lehigh Valley jumped all over Mud Hens starter William Cuevas on Saturday. Cuevas walked the first four batters he faced. His defense that booted the ball all over the field en route to allowing a six-run first inning with only one hit allowed by Cuevas before he was mercifully pulled from the game. The Mud Hens bullpen then proceeded to flip the script, dominating the IronPigs the rest of the way. Bruce Rondon allowed a hit and a walk, to go with a pair of strikeouts in his inning of work. 3B Michael Almanzar had the Mud Hens only RBI on the night.

Cuevas: (L, 1-1) 0.0 IP, 6 R, 4 ER, H, 4 BB

Molleken: 1.0 IP, SO

Rondon: 1.0 IP, H, BB, 2 SO

Lehigh Valley 1, Toledo Mud Hens 0 (box) -Sunday

With catcher John Hicks, and RF/1B Jim Adduci both called up to the Tigers, the Mud Hens were strapped for offensive firepower on Sunday, and it showed. Starter Buck Farmer continued his fine start to the season, spinning seven innings and allowing just a solo home run. Unfortunately, former Tigers’ prospect Jake Thompson was even better for the IronPigs, scattering just three hits while punching out seven over his seven innings of work.

Farmer: (L, 0-1) 7.0 IP, ER, 5 H, HR, 2 BB, 5 SO

Holaday: 1-3

Coming Up Next: The Mud Hens will be idle Monday, and then welcome the Charlotte Knights in for the start of a three-game set Tuesday evening. Carson Fulmer (2-1, 4.24 ERA), a former Vanderbilt star and one of the Chicago White Sox top prospects, will start for the Knights, while the Mud Hens have yet to announce a starter.

Erie SeaWolves 5, Binghamton Rumble Ponies 1 (box) -Saturday

The SeaWolves got a solid performance from starter Matt Crouse on Saturday. He went six innings, allowing the Rumble Ponies only run. Sean Donatello and Jeff Ferrell finished this one off in relief. DH Jeff McVaney and 2B Logan Watkins got the key knocks, driving in a combined five runs to power the SeaWolves offense.

Crouse: (W, 2-0), 6.0 IP, ER, 4 H, 3 BB, 3 SO

McVaney: 1-3, R, 2 RBI, 2B

Watkins: 1-4, 3 RBI, 3B, SO

Binghamton Rumble Ponies 2, Erie SeaWolves 1 (box) -Sunday

Starter Anthony Vasquez was good on Sunday, throwing six innings of two run ball, 8.with five strikeouts. Unfortunately, the Rumble Ponies’ hurlers were just a bit better. Josh Turley, Ruben Alaniz and Paul Voelker gave the SeaWolves plenty of chances to take control of this one, with three innings of scoreless relief work. 1B Dominic Ficociello had a good day at the plate, collecting a pair of doubles in a three hit attack. But he didn’t get much help, with Christin Stewart driving in the SeaWolves only run.

Vasquez: (L, 2-1), 6.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 H, BB, 5 SO

Voelker: 1.0 IP, SO

Ficociello: 3-4, 2 2B,

Coming Up Next: The SeaWolves welcome the Altoona Curve in for a three-game series Monday night. Myles Jaye (0-1, 3.38 ERA) will duel the Curve’s Alex McRae (2-0, 2.16 ERA).

Lakeland Flying Tigers 7, Tampa Yankees 2 (box) -Saturday

Starter A.J. Ladwig cruised through the Yankees’ lineup with a quickness on Saturday. Ladwig scattered just four hits across eight innings of work to get the win. Mark Ecker came on to shut the Yankees down in the ninth. 3B Zac Shepherd stayed hot, smoking a three-run shot in the eighth and driving in five runs total to pace the Flying Tigers’ attack.

Ladwig: (W, 2-1), 8.0 IP, 2 R, ER, 4 H, 4 SO

Shepherd: 2-3, 2 R, 5 RBI, HR, BB, SO

Allen: 2-3, 3 R, RBI, HR, BB, SO

Lakeland Flying Tigers 7, Tampa Yankees 3 (box) -Sunday

The Flying Tigers finished off a three-game sweep of the Yankees behind five strong innings from Spencer Turnbull. The sinkerballer scattered five hits and allowed just one earned run. Drew Smith and Jairo Labourt were strong in relief, while Jeff Thompson and Gerson Moreno were not, battling their command and leaking a run apiece. 3B Zac Shepherd and RF Ben Verlander had multi-hit games, while catcher Arvicent Perez drove in a pair of runs.

Turnbull: (W, 1-1), 5.0 IP, ER, 5 H, BB, 2 SO

Labourt: 1.0 IP, H, BB, 2 SO

Smith: (H, 1) 1.2 IP, BB, SO

Moreno: 0.2 IP, ER, H, 3 BB, SO

Shepherd: 2-4, R, 2B, 2 SO

Coming Up Next: Kyle Dowdy (0-1, 1.42 ERA) will get the ball after an off day Monday, as the Flying Tigers travel to take on Justin Dunn (0-1, 6.43 ERA) and the St. Lucie Mets.

West Michigan Whitecaps 3, Lake County Captains 2 (box) -Saturday

Starter Anthony Castro put together a solid outing, going five innings and scattering three hits. He allowed two runs, but neither was earned. Locke St. John and Bryan Garcia were excellent in relief to lock it down, with Garcia, a prospect to watch, getting the win. That win came when the Whitecaps manufactured a run, with RF Jacob Robson getting the walkoff hit to score 2B Will Savage.

Castro: 5.0 IP, 2 R, 3 H, 2 BB, SO

St. John: 3.0 IP, H, BB, 2 SO

Garcia: (W, 1-2), 1.0, H, BB, SO

West Michigan Whitecaps 5, Lake County Captains 2 (box) -Sunday

Starter Austin Sodders, the Detroit Tigers seventh round pick last year, was electric on Sunday. He punched out nine hitters to guide the Whitecaps to their three straight victory. The heart of the order powered the offense, with LF Cam Gibson, RF Jacob Robson and 1B Blaise Salter all having good games at the plate. Robson launched a solo shot in the fourth, before 2B Will Savage batting in the nine spot, kicked off a four run inning that put this one in the books. Savage doubled to leadoff the inning, rode home on Gibson’s triple, and the Whitecaps were off to the races.

Sodders: (W, 1-0), 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 BB, 9 SO

Gibson: 1-3, R, RBI, 3B, BB, SO

Savage: 1-3, R, 2B

Robson: 1-4, 2R, 2 RBI, HR

Coming Up Next: The Whitecaps send Gregory Soto (0-0, 0.00 ERA) to the mound as they welcome in Hansel Rodriguez (0-1, 3.27 ERA) and the Fort Wayne TinCaps on Monday night.