The Colorado Springs Sky Sox love to play at home, there is no doubt about that at all. That trend continued in the form of a 7-3 win to round out the series against the Dodgers last night. The win upped their home record to 34-20 through the first 54 games at Security Service Field. The new guy, Lewis Brinson, did nothing but go 4-for-4 with three singles, a double, three runs scored, an RBI and a stolen base. Ho hum. Garrett Cooper and Garin Cecchini followed suit with two hits each and the trio combined to go 8-for-2 with 6 runs scored, 4 XBHs, and 6 RBI. Oh, and Brent Suter tossed seven scoreless innings on the hill. He earned the win scattering six hits and striking out six Dodgers. He lowered his ERA to 3.31, good enough for fifth in the PCL.
Before we dive into tonight’s tilt, the Brewers and Sky Sox have announced the following transactions –
ADD: C Josmil Pinto activated from the disabled list
DEL: C Parker Berberet placed on the disabled list (retro 8/1)
Tonight, the Sky Sox welcome in the Nashville Sounds for the first of four and start the second series fo the eight-game homestand tonight at Security Service Field. The Sky Sox continue to play well at the friendly confines of SSF where they are 34-20 in 54 games. They enter play a game under .500 at 53-54 and still in second place now just 8 games in back of the Dodgers. In hopes of continuing its winning ways and gaining more ground on OKC, Colorado Springs will send electric southpaw Josh Hader to the hill, while the Sounds will counter with veteran right-hander Chris Smith. Hader is 0-3 with a 6.05 ERA in eight starts with the Sky Sox, while Smith is 6-8 with a 4.11 ERA in 21 starts with the Sounds. In 2016 the Sky Sox are 6-6 against the Sounds, they hold an all-time record of 74-84 against them and are 33-47 between the lines at Security Service Field.
Colorado Springs Sky Sox (53-54) vs. Nashville Sounds (64-48) – 7:05 p.m. – Security Service Field – Colorado Springs, Colorado
Pitching Matchup: LHP Josh Hader (0-3, 6.05) vs. RHP Chris Smith (6-8, 4.11)
Sky Sox Pitcher: Josh Hader is set to make his ninth Triple-A start, his fifth away from Security Service Field, and his 20th overall between Double-A Biloxi and the Sky Sox. Hader has dropped three of his first eight Triple-A starts which have come against Omaha, Memphis (2x), Round Rock (2x), New Orleans, Reno, and Nashville. Last time out the lefty gave up a pair in the first, but finished with four scoreless. He is 0-3 with a 6.05 ERA allowing 28 runs on 39 hits, 23 walks, and 49 strikeouts in Triple-A. PCL opponents are hitting .267 against him. He allowed 2 runs on 1 hit, 4 walks, and a season-high 9 strikeouts against Memphis in his Triple-A debut on June 12 and tossed five scoreless against the Express on June 27. In 19 starts combined, Hader is 2-4 with a 3.01 ERA and has allowed 35 runs (32 earned) on 77 hits, 42 walks, and 122 strikeouts in 95 2/3 innings of work. He made an appearance in the MLB Futures Game and recorded a strikeout of Josh Naylor of the Marlins system with a 96-MPH fastball. The 22-year old is in his 5th professional season after originally being selected by the Orioles in the 19th round of the 2012 draft out of Old Mill High School in Millersville, Maryland. The Astros sent RHP Bud Norris to the Orioles in exchange for Hader in July 2013 and the Brewers acquired him from the ‘Stros in the Jul 30, 2015 deal that sent Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers to Houston for Hader, Adrian Houser, Brett Phillips, and Domingo Santana. What a haul that trade garnered the BrewCrew. The lefty is 23-20 with five saves and a 2.96 ERA in 109 career outings, 77 of which have been starts in four-plus professional seasons.
Last Time Out: 7/29/16 at Nashville – Hader was roughed up for a pair of runs in the first inning, but for the second straight start didn’t allow a run after the first inning. He went five frames, allowed the 2 runs on 3 hits, walked 3, and struck out 9 in a games the Sox won 3-2. He threw 88 pitches, 56 for strikes.
Last 10 Games for Hader:
Sounds Pitcher: The Nashville Sounds will counter with righty Chris Smith in the first game of this four-game set. In 21 games with the Sounds, the righty has accrued a 6-8 record with a 4.11 ERA allowing 64 runs (57 earned) on 115 hits, 11 homers, 2 hit batters, 44 walks, and 117 strikeouts. Opponents in the Pacific Coast League are hitting .241 against the righty from California. Smith has faced the Sox once twice season, both coming at First Tennessee Park and he is 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in 12 innings of work, he’s allowed 4 runs on 8 hits, 1 homer, 1 walk, and 7 strikeouts. He allowed the homer to Alex Presley. Smith has had decent success pitching on the road going 3-3 with a 4.14 ERA 8 games. The righty was originally selected by the Red Sox in the 4th round of the 2002 draft and has pitched in the Boston, Milwaukee, Seattle, San Diego, and Oakland systems. He has made 50 appearances in the Bigs and is 1-0 with a 5.19 ERA in 67 2/3 innings, but has not pitched at that level since 2010. Over his lengthy minor-league career the righty is 54-55 with 61 saves and a 3.93 ERA in 300 career appearances.
Last Time Out: 7/28/16 vs. Arkansas – Smith picked up the win against the Sky Sox his last trip to the mound. He limited Colorado Springs to a run on 3 hits, 1 walk and 3 strikeouts. He threw 79 pitches, 53 for strikes in a game the Sounds won 2-1.
Last 10 games for Smith –
Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 27th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he and I will have the call of today’s game from Security Service Field at 7:05 p.m. Sky Sox Warmup will liftoff at 6:30 MDT on XTRA Sports 1300.
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,