The Sky Sox have bounced back nicely from their sweep at the hands of Oklahoma City and their four-game losing streak, scoring 26 runs on 31 hits over two games against the Iowa Cubs. Friday night it was Colorado Native Pierce Johnson that was the punching bag for the Sox offense as they jumped on the righty for four runs in the first and never looked back en route to tripling up the Cubbies 15-5. The 18 hit attack was aided in part by the heart of the order going 11-for-18 with 11 of the 14 runs batted in. Brent Suter pitched well and fell an out shy of qualifying for the win, while Jaye Chapman improved to 5-1 with the win out of the pen. Johnson took the loss and fell to 1-4. The game was a long one as the teams combined for 382 pitches with Iowa throwing the lionshare of 239 and the Sox throwing 143 in the 3:30 minute game.
Hitting Notes –
The Sox scored 15 runs on 18 hits and picked up multi-hit games from five of the eight position players in the lineup. They also tallied four stolen bases.
Manny Pina had the most monstrous night for the Sox as he went 4-for-5 with two doubles, four runs scored, a walk and four RBI from the cleanup spot in the lineup. He continues to bolster this offense and is now hitting .355 with 39 RBI. If it weren’t for his two week stint on the disabled list, Pina would be second among all PCL hitters with the high average.
Nate Orf has been slotted int he number three hole in the lineup the last two days and it has paid huge dividends. He reached five times Thursday and backed that up by getting on base four times Friday. The second baseman went 3-for-5 was hit by a pitch and scored four runs in the win. He extended his hitting streak to 9 games and is now hitting .353 with the Sky Sox.
Josmil Pinto extended his hitting streak to 12 games with another two-hit performance. The newly-turned first baseman went 2-for-4 with 2 walks, 2 runs scored, and 3 RBI. Pinto is keeping up appearances with his fellow Killer P Pina and is hitting .367.
Garin Cecchini completed the big night for the heart of the order with a 3-for-4 night that included 2 walks, a run scored, and 4 RBI. Cheech now has his average up to .266.
Eric Young, Jr. went 2-for-6 with an RBI rounding out the five players that picked up multiple-hit games. EY stole a base and drove home a run.
Kyle Wren played table-setter to perfection again with a 1-for-3 night that included three walks and two runs scored. His .396 average is certainly impressive through his first 30 games with the Sox, but his .487 OBP is that much more stellar.
Brent Suter helped his own cause and went 1-for-3 with an RBI single in his 10th start of the season.
Orlando Arcia reached three times on a hit and two walks, but made the most noise with his glove making outstanding play after outstanding play after outstanding play from the six-hole.
Pitching Notes –
Brent Suter was again very good for Colorado Springs, filling the hole in the rotation vacated by Futures Game participant and fellow southpaw Josh Hader. Suter was rolling along and one out shy of completing the fifth inning and qualifying for the win when Rick Sweet yanked him. He went 4 2/3 innings, scattered 6 hits, on which Iowa scored 2 runs, just 1 earned, 1 walk, while striking out 6. He lowered his ERA to 4.03 and threw 73 pitches, 48 for strikes.
Jaye Chapman was the lucky beneficiary of the manager’s decision as the long-haired reliever recorded four ground ball outs in succession and earned the 5th win of his season. He threw 11 pitches, 8 of which went for strikes.
Sam Freeman had the roughest outing for a Sox reliever as he was roughed up to the tune of 3 runs on 3 hits, 2 walks, and 3 strikeouts in his one inning of work.
Play of the Game –
The offense is great and all and usually steals the show, but great defense was on display last night as well. Orlando Arcia was in the middle of it all as he made some fine plays at short, but Nate Orf started this tremendous inning-ending double play in the second with a diving stop and then Arcia’s cannon finished it up…Take a look –
Pregame Interview with Dan Karcher and Manager Rick Sweet, another edition of “Sweet 16” –
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,