Huge night from Trei Cruz powers SeaWolves

Bless You Boys

St. Paul Saints 14, Toledo Mud Hens 7 (box)

The first of six in St. Paul started with a pretty wild one. The Hens seized control of the game only for the bullpen to come unraveled, turning this into a rout for the Saints.

Starter Bryan Sammons gave up a solo shot in the second, and another run in third to give them an early lead. However in the third, Justyn-Henry Malloy singled to lead off. Colt Keith went down swinging on three pitches, but Tyler Nevin followed with a single and Joe Rizzo followed with a double to center to score Malloy. Catcher Donny Sands stepped to the dish and went boom.

In the top of the fourth with one out, Parker Meadows singled and Malloy grounded into a force at second. Colt Keith singled and a backpick from catcher Jair Camargo went wide, advancing them to second and third. Nevin lined a single to right and Meadows and Malloy scored to make it 6-2.

Unfortunately, Sammons came unglued a bit in the bottom half, giving up three runs to trim the Hens’ lead to one. Aneurys Zabala took over, but he gave up two runs of his own in the fifth to lose the lead. They briefly tied it in the seventh when Rizzo doubled again and scored on a Grant Witherspoon single.

Relievers Sam Clay and then Matt Wisler then got mauled for six runs in the bottom half of the inning. Braden Bristo took over and went double, strikeout, hit by pitch, hit by pitch, strikeout, and then walked in a run before getting yanked for Rony Garcia. Garcia bailed them out by coming into the bases loaded jam and striking out Mark Contreras to escape.

It mattered little as the Saints cruised to victory from there. Wenceel Perez played second base in his Triple-A debut but went hitless with one strikeout.

Malloy: 2-5, 2 R, 2 SO

Sands: 1-4, R, 3 RBI, HR, BB, SO

Rizzo: 2-5, 2 R, RBI, 2 2B, 3 SO

Sammons: 3.2 IP, 5 ER, 6 H, 5 BB, 3 SO

Coming Up Next: It’s a 2:07 p.m. ET start on Wednesday. LHP Brent Headrick (3-1, 3.76 ERA) starts for the Saints, while the Hens have yet to announce.

Erie SeaWolves 7, Akron RubberDucks 3 (box)

The first bit of news from Erie, besides the arrival of Jace Jung and promotion of Wenceel Perez to Triple-A, was that Wilmer Flores’ injury is a hamstring strain that isn’t expected to keep him out to long. So that’s good news.

On Tuesday they went with a bullpen day and it worked out well. Ace relief prospect Ty Mattison functioned as the opener, tossing a perfect first with a strikeout before Adam Wolf and Tim Naughton took over, combining for five innings of scoreless ball.

Meanwhile the SeaWolves were building a nice lead, largely courtesy of Trei Cruz. He and Andrew Navigato each hit solo shots in the first to stake the bullpen to a lead. In the fifth, Cruz cranked another solo shot, number 12 on the year, to left center field to make it 3-0.

In the sixth, the SeaWolves broke the game open. Jake Holton singled with one out, and after Julio E. Rodriguez popped out, Chris Meyers doubled in Holton. Danny Serretti reached on catcher interference and Ben Malgeri drew a walk to load the bases. Then it was Cruz yet again, this time hitting left-handed and clearing the bases by strafing a triple to right field. 7-0 Erie.

Angel De Jesus took over in the seventh and allowed a run in that inning and another in the eighth on a solo shot. De Jesus got the first out after the solo shot, but then allowed a double and walked the next two hitters. He was lifted for Blake Holub, another of the club’s better relief prospects in the upper minors. Holub took over with the bases loaded and punched out Aaron Bracho swinging, and then carved up Bryce Ball on three pitches to escape the trap. Good work there. Holub allowed a run in the ninth to set himself up to collect a save, and did so.

Cruz: 3-4, 2 R, 5 RBI, 2 HR, 3B, BB

Navigato: 1-2, R, RBI, HR, SO

Wolf (W, 3-2): 2.2 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 2 BB, 4 SO

Coming Up Next: RHP Ross Carver (1-2, 7.62 ERA) starts for the RubberDucks on Wednesday at 12:35 p.m. ET. The SeaWolves have yet to announce.

Fort Wayne TinCaps 4, West Michigan Whitecaps 1 (box)

Spencer Turnbull’s first rehab start went well, and Wilkel Hernandez continued to pile up the strikeouts over five innings of work, but the offense couldn’t get anything much going.

Turnbull struck out one, allowing two hits and no runs over two innings of work. He threw 15 of 23 pitches for strikes. Hernandez, who hasn’t struck out less than a batter per inning since early June, allowed a solo shot, but again issued no walks and struck out eight along the way. In a 1-0 game headed into the ninth, Erick Pinales didn’t do so well, allowing three runs and spoiling a chance at a comeback.

As for the offense, Izaac Pacheco had a pair of singles, but they drew only one walk, and only managed a couple minor scoring chances. Luke Gold did have a hit in his High-A debut, playing second base in place of the promoted Jung. In the ninth, Gage Workman doubled to lead off the bottom half, and an Izaac Pacheco single and a Josh Crouch sac fly scored him, but that was all they’d get.

Pacheco: 3-4

Hernandez (L, 2-7): 5.0 IP, ER, 2 H, 0 BB, 8 SO

Coming Up Next: RHP Angel Reyes (2-2, 4.95 ERA) gets the start on Wednesday at 12:05 p.m. ET. The TinCaps will oppose him with LHP Miguel Cienfuegos (1-2, 2.45 ERA).

Lakeland Flying Tigers 9, Daytona Tortugas 8 (box)

Daytona jumped out to a two run lead in the second inning against starter Edgardo Ibarra, but the southpaw settled back in to go five with no more trouble. He walked two and struck out six, but he didn’t get any run support until the fifth, when Cristian Santana launched a solo shot to left center field.

In the sixth, they seized the lead as Seth Stephenson led off the bottom half with a walk and a rehabbing Ryan Kreidler followed suit. Mike Rothenberg scored them both with a double to right field. However, in the top of the seventh, the Tortugas mauled Chris Mauloni and then Eric Mendez for a five-run inning.

The Flying Tigers’ lineup didn’t take that well. Santana led off the bottom half with a double, Manuel Sequera singled him to third, and Carlos Pelegrin doubled in Santana. A pitching change was only a momentary break for Daytona, as Stephenson greeted the new reliever with a double to left to score them both and get Lakeland back within one.

Quinn Gudaitis shut down Daytona in the top of the eighth, and the offense got right back to work. Abel Bastidas was hit by a pitch with one out and Santana doubled again to move him to third. Manuel Sequera then cranked a three-run shot, only his third on the year, and it was 9-7, and briefly feeling like 2022 when Santana and Sequera were powering the Flying Tigers offense without much assistance. Tough season for both of them, but perhaps starting to turn their way.

Cam Brown took over in the top of the ninth and allowed a two-out solo shot to Ariel Almonte, but picked up the save anyway.

Santana: 3-4, 3 R, RBI, HR, 2 2B

Sequera: 2-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, HR, SO

Ibarra: 5.0 IP, 2 ER, H, 2 BB, 6 SO

Coming Up Next: First pitch on Wednesday evening is set for 6:30 p.m. ET.

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