Toledo Mud Hens 7, Norfolk Tides 2 (box)
Drew VerHagen was excellent for seven innings on Friday and the offense gave him an early an early lead to work with. VerHagen struck out nine and allowed just one a run on six hits and a walk. Kody Eaves and Jake Rogers rapped line drive RBI hits in the second to put the Hens up 3-0, and the pitching staff took it from there. After failing to score for five innings, the Hens put a cap on this one with a four-run ninth. The big blows came courtesy of a Mikie Mahtook solo shot, and later, back-to-back RBI triples from Daz Cameron and Jacob Robson. On the downside, shortstop Willi Castro chalked up another pair of errors in the contest. Not sure what is going on with his defense recently. Errors are an imperfect statistic, but Castro’s 15 errors equals his season total from 2018.
Robson: 2-5, 3B, RBI, SO, SB
Mahtook: 2-3, HR, 2 R, RBI, BB, CS
VerHagen (W, 2-2): 7.0 IP, ER, 6 H, BB, 9 SO
Coming Up Next: Kyle Funkhouser has returned to the Mud Hens and is probable to start on Saturday at 7:05pm ET. It won’t take many solid outings for him to earn his first trip to the majors.
Hartford Yard Goats 5, Erie SeaWolves 3 (box)
Matt Manning fought with his fastball command at times on Friday night, and the Yard Goats took advantage. It was a peculiar outing for Manning in general as he didn’t get many whiffs either. He started the game with five quick groundballs, and then ran into trouble in the third inning. Manning walked the first batter of the inning on four straight pitches, and the Yard Goats made a lot of hard contact the rest of the inning. They put up three runs, and there were a couple of loud outs along the way. Manning and Numata then had a pair of bases stolen against them in the fourth after an Isaac Paredes error, and allowed an unearned run on a single.
The SeaWolves actually scored first, with a Josh Lester solo shot in the second inning gave them an early lead. After Manning’s long third inning, Luke Burch drew a one out walk and eventually scored on an Isaac Paredes’ single in the bottom half of the frame. Unfortunately the SeaWolves never got a rally going, and Frank Schwindel’s solo shot in the eighth accounted for their final run.
Lester: 2-4, HR, R, RBI, SO
Paredes: 1-2, RBI, 3 BB, SO
Manning (L, 5-4): 5.1 IP, 4 R, 3 ER, 5 H, 2 BB, 3 SO
Coming Up Next: The two clubs will get back at it on Saturday at 7:05pm ET.
Lakeland Flying Tigers (idle)
The Florida State League All-Star game goes down on Saturday at 7:05pm ET from Jupiter, Florida. Flying Tigers’ LHP Tarik Skubal and OF Luke Burch will represent the Tigers organization along with utilityman extraordinaire Brady Policelli who is slated to take place in the pre-game Home Run Derby on Saturday as well.
Starter Hugh Smith was knocked around a bit on Friday night and the offense couldn’t pick up the slack. Smith tossed six innings, but a pair of two-run innings against him sank his outing. Ulrich Bojarski stayed hot with an RBI single in the first inning, while Chris Proctor added a solo shot in the third that tied the game at two apiece. Sandel De La Cruz allowed a run in relief, and while Bojarski came through again with a ninth inning solo shot, the rest of the lineup was quiet as a mouse. Bojarski is destined to find his way south before long. The Whitecaps have lost 10 of their last 11 games as they stagger toward the All-Star break.
Bojarski: 2-4, HR, R, 2 RBI, 2 SO
Proctor: 1-4, HR, R, RBI, SO
Smith (L, 0-3): 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 7 H, BB, 5 SO
Coming Up Next: The Whitecaps and Cubs meet up at 7:05pm ET on Saturday.
Lowell Spinners 6, Connecticut Tigers 3 (box)
Carson Lance and and Wes Noble were knocked around in a split start on Friday as New York-Penn League play got underway. Boston Red Sox Steve Pearce made for an imposing Spinners’ lineup as he got reps on a rehab assignment. Outfielder Julio Martinez knocked an RBI single in the second inning to get the Tigers on the board, but they didn’t score again until the seventh when catcher Eliezer Alfonso came through with a two-run single. The only Tigers pitcher to keep the Spinners off the board was converted third baseman Zac Shepherd. The Tigers are in Lowell for a two-game series to kick things off.
Martinez: 2-3, R, RBI, BB, SO
Alfonso: 1-4, 2 RBI, BB
Lance (L, 0-1): 2.0 IP, 2 ER, 4H, BB, 4 SO
Coming Up Next: The two clubs meet up at 5:05pm ET on Saturday.