Here is today’s Mariner minor-league report.
You thought the Reds and Phillies played a marathon last night, going 19 innings in Philadelphia before the Phillies prevailed, 5-4?
Well, the Mariners’ Class AA team, the Jackson Generals, topped them on Wednesday in Mobile. They played 25 innings of baseball during a doubleheader that lasted into Thursday morning. Jackson lost the first game, 8-0, in seven innings, and then fell 5-4 in 18 innings in the second game. The Mobile BayBears pushed across a run in the bottom of the 18th while facing Scott Savastano — who began the game as Jackson’s second baseman before getting called into emergency pitching duty for the second time this year. The BayBears won on an unearned run caused by a Carlos Triunfel error at shortstop. Here’s the game account from Jackson’s website.
I saw a quote from Reds manager Dusty Baker today in which he lamented the Ryan Howard homer off Francisco Cordero in the 11th inning that tied the game at 4-all and prolonged the night by what would be eight more innings.
“One of the biggest downers in baseball is the late-inning blown save,” Baker said.
The Generals can relate to that. They scored in the top of the 12th on a Triunfel RBI single, in the 13th on a Rich Poythress homer, and in the 14th on a Triunfel homer, only to have their relievers give up a run in the bottom of the inning each time.
In the opener, Erasmo Ramirez had his roughest start of the season, giving up 10 hits and eight runs (seven earned) in 3 2/3 innings. However, he didn’t walk any to maintain one of the most amazing statistics in minor-league baseball: Ramirez in 55 innings has struck out 39 and walked…wait for it…two. The Mariners are very high on this guy, with farm director Pedro Grifol telling me earlier this week, “He doesn’t just control the baseball; he commands it.”
Tacoma’s game with Nashville was rained out yesterday. They will play a doubleheader today, weather permitting. Each game will be seven innings.
Right-hander Brandon Maurer, who began the season in Clinton, had a strong outing for Class A High Desert in a 9-7 win over Modesto. Maurer blanked Modesto on three hits over eight innings, striking out nine and not walking any. In nine games between Clinton and High Desert, Maurer has 57 strikeouts in 50 innings, with just 14 walks.
Nick Franklin had a big night at the plate in that game, going 5-for-6 with his fourth homer. Dennis Raben hit a grand slam in the 11th for a walkoff win and now has homered in four consecutive games, six of the last seven. Raben has 11 homers and 45 runs batted in.