Cardinals Minor League Notebook – July 16, 2021

photo: Logan Gragg (Brian Walton/The Cardinal Nation)

Great performances led to a 6-1 Thursday across the Cardinals minor league system. Logan Gragg pitched Peoria to a win and the hitting of Lane Thomas and Todd Lott powered Memphis’ and Palm Beach’s respective victories.

Results from the games played Thursday, July 15th.

Memphis 8 vs. Norfolk 4

Lane Thomas’ tie-breaking grand slam lifted the Redbirds past the Tides at AutoZone Park, 8-4.  Memphis (26-36) currently rides a five-game winning streak including the first three of this six-game set.

Thomas’ bomb was off a new Norfolk hurler, breaking a 3-3 tie and came with Evan Mendoza, Clint Coulter and Scott Hurst on base.  All three Redbirds reached via walks, representing three of eight free passes issued by Tides pitchers.  Thomas worked two of those walks in his 1-for-3 performance with a run scored and four RBI.

Lane Thomas

Coulter was one of two Memphis players with two hits each. The left fielder went 2-for-3 with a base-on-balls and two-run blast comprising one of his two runs scored and two of his three knocked in.  Conner Capel also went 2-for-3 with a walk, adding an RBI but was caught stealing once and picked off first another time.  Memphis had nine hits in total.

The main damage inflicted on Tommy Parsons during his four innings on the mound were two solo shots, two of four hits and four walks yielded.  The righty allowed three tallies in all with five strikeouts.

Austin Warner (W, 2-0) retired all six batters faced and was the pitcher of record when Thomas went yard.  Kodi Whitley surrendered a home run with the bases empty, the only hit permitted in two frames.  Connor Jones faced the minimum in the ninth.

Friday’s game:  vs. Norfolk (24-35) (BAL), 7:10 pm CT, Matthew Liberatore (3-5, 5.07)

Springfield 3 at Frisco 9

Six early RoughRiders scores created an insurmountable obstacle in the S-Cards’ 9-4 defeat at Frisco.  Springfield (23-40) has claimed one of the initial three games of the road series.

Kevin McGovern (L, 1-1) allowed six tallies, five earned, before recording six outs. The lefty fanned eight over 5 2/3 innings with 10 hits and a walk permitted.  One of the 10 hits was a two-run long ball.

Frisco greeted new arrival Johan Quezada by scoring three runs on three hits, a base-on-balls and a hit batsman against three batters retired.  It was the right-hander’s first official appearance since being activated from Memphis’ Injured List and reassigned to Springfield.  Quezada stranded an inherited runner.

Another new arrival on Springfield’s roster was Alex FaGalde, who likewise was activated off Memphis’ IL and reassigned to Springfield.  In his Double-A return, FaGalde recorded the last four outs, plunking one batter and leaving three inherited runners aboard.

Alex FaGalde

The Tides’ starter no-hit Springfield’s offense during his five-plus frames on the bump.  The S-Cards did not break through until a reliever entered the contest after a Justin Toerner plunking at the sixth’s onset.

Springfield scored all three tallies that frame, with the first on a passed ball bringing Toerner across home.  Luken Baker’s single up the middle drove in Nick Plummer (walk) and Ivan Herrera (single).  Baker had two of the team’s four hits, all singles.

One of those four hits belonged to Malcom Nunez, who reached base three times, going 1-for-2 with two free passes issued.  Plummer swiped his sixth bag of 2021.

Friday’s game:  at Frisco (39-24) (TEX), 7:05 pm CT, Tyler Pike (1-2, 6.31)

Peoria 4 vs. Wisconsin 3

Strong starting pitching and three big bombs lifted the Chiefs over the Timber Rattlers at Dozer Park, 4-3, snapping an eight-game losing slide.  Peoria (23-40) trails in the six-game set, one game to two.

Tyler Reichenborn and Matt Chamberlain went yard in the second, the latter with Cristhian Longa (single) on base.

Chandler Redmond followed with a bomb to open the fourth.  It was each player’s only hit of the night. Reichenborn went 1-for-3 with a walk but was caught stealing once and the other two were 1-for-4.

Peoria mustered 10 hits in all, led by Longa and Francisco Hernandez, who each went 2-for-4.  Longa added his first double while Hernandez tripled for the second time this season.  The latter swiped a bag as well.

Logan Gragg

Player of the Day Logan Gragg (W, 1-2) tossed his best effort this season to date, limiting Wisconsin to a single tally on three hits and a base-on-balls over six strong frames.  It was the first A-Advanced victory for the 22-year-old.

A trio of Chiefs hurlers split pitching duties the rest of the way.   Jacob Schlesener was touched for a run on two hits and a base-on-balls against three outs recorded.  Fabian Blanco retired two batters on strikeouts but yielded a double and walk.  Freddy Pacheco (S, 5) ended the threat with a 5-3 ground out but was tagged for a run on two hits the next frame.

Friday’s game:  vs. Wisconsin (30-32) (MIL), 6:35 pm CT, Nick Trogrlic-Iverson (3-3, 5.19)

Palm Beach 5 vs. St. Lucie 4

Todd Lott’s three-hit night gave the Beach Birds a 5-4 walk-off win over the Mets at Roger Dean Stadium.  It was the first series victory in three tries for Palm Beach (24-38) with three games on tap.

Acting as the designated hitter, Lott went 3-for-5 with a double and three driven in.  His most impactful hit was a ninth-inning single bringing Carlos Soto across home plate after the latter worked his third base-on-balls of the game and sending the team home happy.

Todd Lott

Left fielder Patrick Romeri was a perfect 3-for-3 with a base-on-balls, two doubles and a run scored, batting right behind Lott.  Second baseman Donivan Williams launched his first bomb of 2021, a solo shot tying the game at four all after six.  L.J. Jones accumulated two hits in four at bats, worked a free pass and touched home once.  Palm Beach had nine hits in all.

Beach Birds pitching duties were shared nearly evenly among three hurlers.  Starter Jose Moreno lasted just 2 2/3 innings, permitting three tallies on two hits and three base-on-balls.  Luis Ortiz fanned five over 3 1/3 frames, yielding a run on four hits and a walk while leaving Moreno’s last two base runners aboard.

The best effort, however, belonged to Edgar Manzo.  Manzo (W, 4-2) blanked the Mets on two hits and a free pass issued over the last three innings with four strikeouts.

Friday’s game: vs. St. Lucie (33-30) (NYM), 6:30 pm ET, TBA

FCL Cardinals 8 vs. FCL Nationals 5

The Florida Complex League Cardinals (5-7) rallied for an 8-5 victory over the FCL Nationals at home.

Trailing 3-1 through six, the home team scored seven times over the next two frames for a commanding 8-3 lead.  The balanced offensive attack included eight of nine starters either garnering a hit or scoring.

Left fielder Joerlin De Los Santos and third baseman Ramon Mendoza each had two of the team’s nine hits. De Los Santos singled twice in two at bats with two walks, three runs scored and a stolen base.  Mendoza’s double and triple in three at bats were the only Florida Cardinals’ hits to go for extra bases. The 20-year-old worked a free pass, touched home twice with two RBI.

Joerlin De Los Santos

Reinys Portillo tossed the first four innings, yielding three runs on two hits, two walks and three plunked batters.  Two of the three tallies were generated by one home run.  Portillo fanned five.

Ben Baird took the mound for the fifth but departed without facing a batter.  Roy Garcia (W, 1-0) shut down his opponents on two hits over the next three frames.  Omar Sanchez worked around his own fielding error for a clean eighth but gave up two ninth-inning scores on a hit and two walks. The save was the first for the 19-year-old rookie southpaw.

Friday’s game:  off

DSL Cardinals Blue 2 at DSL Angels 1 (7)

A quartet of C-Blue pitchers held their opponents to one unearned tally as the Dominican Summer League Cardinals Blue (1-2) slipped past the DSL Angels1 squad, 2-1.

Right-hander Juan Salas retired eight batters in his maiden professional effort, permitting an unearned run on four hits and a walk while striking out four.  The Mexico native hit one batter.

Juan Salas

Uriel Curvelo got the ball with two gone and Salas’ last runner at first but the game got interesting before the righty recorded the fourth’s last out.  The Venezuelan allowed a single to his first professional batter then saw the sacks jammed via second baseman Adari Grant’s fielding error.  But Curvelo induced a 6-3 ground out to end the threat.

Alexander Beltre threw two scoreless innings, yielding a hit and two walks for his first professional victory in two decisions.  Esteban Contreras’ (S, 1) first taste of pro ball was a successful one, as the right-hander tossed a one-two-three seventh with two K’s.

The visitors managed just two hits to go with five walks but one of the hits was a solo shot by catcher Juan Sanchez.  The bomb knotted the game at 1-1 after four innings.

Number two hitter Maycol Justo was issued a free pass to kick off the fifth.  The shortstop stole his first bag, advancing to third on one passed ball and scoring what proved to be the winning tally on another passed ball.

Friday’s game:  vs. DSL Angels (0-3), 10:30 am ET, TBA

DSL Cardinals Red 3 vs. DSL Mets2 0 (7)

A fine pitching effort by three C-Red hurlers resulted in a 3-0 shutout of the DSL Mets2 at home.

Diorys Guerrero (W, 1-0) struck out seven during his five-inning stint.  The lefty allowed three hits and did not issue a free pass.

Diorys Guerrero

Right-handers Juan Severino and Augusto Calderon retired three batters apiece.  Severino plunked a batter in his first pro action before Calderon (S, 1) issued a free pass then erased the runner on a double play.

Offense was in short supply on both sides as the Cardinals Red (2-1) generated just four hits, touching home once in the first, third and sixth frames.  Second baseman Lizandro Espinoza singled once in three at bats, crossing home on a first-inning passed ball.  The 18-year-old stole a base.

Right fielder Jeremy Ramos and third baseman Raul Guzman both reached base twice, as each player garnered a hit in two at bats with a base-on-balls.  Ramos’ walk opened the third, bringing about a pitching change.  Left fielder Feliz Taveras’ two-out single advanced Ramos to second prior to the lead runner stealing third.  Ramos raced home on a wild pitch.  Guzman also scored a run but it was much more straight forward.  The 18-year-old rookie launched his first professional long ball.

Friday’s game:  at DSL Mets2 (2-1), 10:30 am ET, TBA

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