Sox Scribbles: Gagnon, Making Spot Start, Looks to Tame High-Powered Chihuahuas Tonight at Security Service Field

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Michael McKenry has been on a tear with the Sky Sox and has tallied five hits in three games with Colorado Springs. (Bobby Stevens/MiLB.com)

Colorado Springs and El Paso played the second of this four-game series last night at Security Service Field and it was the Chihuahuas that brought home the victory 5-3. Aaron Wilkerson pitched a beauty and limited the high-potent offense to three runs on six hits over six innings and struck out 10 in a quality start. Daniel McCutchen brought home the win with six innings of solid baseball himself. El Paso took the lead for good with two runs in the seventh inning, one on a Luis Sardinas double and another on a single-E9 off the bat of Carlos Asuaje, both against lefty Sam Freeman. The Sox scoring got started in the second inning when Garrett Cooper launched a solo homer to left field and Wilkerson followed a few batters later with an RBI infield single. Michael McKenry capped off the scoring for Colorado Springs with an RBI infield single in the 6th.

Tonight, the Sky Sox and Chihuahuas continue the four-game set with game three at Security Service Field. This is the first time in two years, and the second time as a Padres Affiliate that the Puppies are in town. This will be the lone series between the two teams with the unbalanced schedule in the Pacific Coast League. The Sky Sox enter play looking to return to their winning ways and come into Thursday’s tilt with a home record of 37-27. They are back to three games under .500 at 59-62 and sit in second place, but now are 10 games in back of the Dodgers. In hopes of gaining more ground on or keeping pace with OKC, Colorado Springs will send righty Drew Gagnon to the hill in a spot start situation against right-hander Bryan Rodriguez of the Chihuahuas. Gagnon has made 28 appearances and one start with the Sox to the tune of a 1-1 record and 6.48 ERA, while Rodriguez is 4-5 with a 4.41 ERA in the PCL this season.  The Sox are 1-1 against the Chihuahuas here in 2016 and have compiled a 4-6 all-time record against them and are 1-5 at Security Service Field.

Today’s Game Notes / Listen Live at 6:00 MDT / Lineups

Colorado Springs Sky Sox (59-62) vs. El Paso Chihuahuas (66-59) – 6:35 p.m. – Security Service Field – Colorado Springs, Colorado

Pitching Matchup: RHP Drew Gagnon (1-1, 6.48) vs. RHP Bryan Rodriguez (4-5, 4.41)

Sky Sox Pitcher: Righty Drew Gagnon is slated to get his second start with Sky Sox and will make his 29th Triple-A appearance of the year tonight at Security Service Field. Gagnon went three innings in his first start on July 25th against Round Rock. Overall he is 1-1 with a 6.48 ERA in 27 bullpen outings and the one start. Across 55 innings pitched, the righty has allowed 32 runs, 30 earned on 51 hits, 17 walks, and 38 strikeouts. Opponents in the PCL are hitting .307 against the California native. Gagnon picked up the win against Iowa on June 14th at home and took the loss against New Orleans at home on July 3. He has also made 5 appearances with Biloxi, including one start and went 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA down in Double-A. Gagnon was selected by the Brewers in the 3rd round of the 2011 draft out of Long Beach State University. In six pro seasons he is 29-38 with two saves and a 4.69 ERA in 146 games, 107 of which have been starts.

Last Time Out: 8/12/16 vs. Albuquerque – Gagnon came out of the pen in relief of Aaron Wilkerson and turned in two innings of scoreless baseball. He scattered three hits, walked one, and struck out two, throwing 42 pitches, 26 for strikes.

Last 10 Games for Gagnon:

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Chihuahuas Pitcher: Right-hander Bryan Rodriguez gets the call to start for the 13th time with El Paso and the 23rd time overall tonight in Colorado Springs. With El Paso he is 4-5 with a 4.41 ERA allowing 33 runs (32 earned) on 83 hits, 5 homers, 23 walks and 39 strikeouts in 65 1/3 innings. Opponents are hitting .318 against the righty here in the PCL and he is getting nearly two ground balls per fly-ball out with a 1.96 GO/AO ratio. Overall in 2016 he is 7-10 with a 3.98 ERA in 22 starts combined between Double-A San Antonio and Triple-A El Paso. He was signed as a non-drafted free agent in April 2010 out of San Pedro de Macoris in the Dominican Republic and has spent the entirety of his career within the Friars organization. This will mark the first start of his career against the Sky Sox. In six professional seasons, the Rodriguez has compiled a 31-48 record with a 4.25 ERA in 118 career appearances, 100 of which have been starts.

Last Time Out: 8/13/16 at Oklahoma City – Rodriguez turned in a beauty of an outing his last time out against the Dodgers. He went six innings and limited the high-powered OKC lineup to an unearned run on 9 hits and 1 walk. He did not record a strikeout. He did not factor into the decision and threw 90 pitches, 56 for strikes in a game the Chihuahuas lost 4-2.

Last 10 Games for Rodriguez –

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Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 27th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he and I will have the call of tonight’s game from Security Service Field at 6:35 p.m. Sky Sox Warmup  will get off the ground and running at 6:00 MDT on XTRA Sports 1300.

Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,

Dan

@Dan_Acheson

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