High Class A Playoff Dish

California League

Lake Elsinore 10, Inland Empire 5 (Game Suspended Due to Power, Game 1 Best-of-3 Series)

Lake Elsinore and Inland Empire opened their best-of-three series at San Bernardino on Wednesday night. Unfortunately, they will have to complete game one of the series Thursday night at Lake Elsinore. Game one was suspended with Cedric Hunter (2-for-4, 2 BB) on second and two outs in the top of the ninth. In a bizarre affair the 66ers lights went out just after Hunter’s two out double. They then came back for three pitches to 66ers 2B Eric Sogard before going out again, causing umpires to call the game. Prior to that the 66ers crowd was treated to offensive show by visiting Lake Elsinore. The aptly named Storm came out of the box hot scoring three runs in the first.  The 66ers fought back scoring once in each of the next three innings to tie the game at three. Catcher Mitch Canham had a big night with two doubles in a 3 for 4 night at the plate. The storm took control for good, scoring three in the eighth, led by 3B Brian Joynt’s (2-for-5, 3 RBI) 2-RBI double. That is where the game stands as they head to Lake Elsinore. The game will be completed at 6:05 PST at Lake Elsinore, with Game Two of the Series following immediately afterwards. 

Modesto 6, Stockton 5 (10 Innings) (Modesto leads best-of-3 series 1-0)

Modesto took game one of their Cali League playoff series with Stockton thanks to an unexpected gift. Daniel Mayora scored the winning run when Stockton 1B Matthew Spencer threw wild in an attempt to pick off Mayora as he rounded third a bit too far on a fielder’s choice in the bottom of the tenth. The game started with everything going the Nuts way as they scored two in both the first and second innings. With a 4-0 lead and Minor League Pitcher of the Year Candidate Jhoulys Chacin on the hill the Nuts looked to be in control.  That was the case until the 6th when Cali League Rookie of the Year Chris Carter homered to left (40th HR on the season) to lead off the inning. The Ports would add two more runs in the inning to cut Modesto’s lead to 5-4. Chacin finished the game going just 5.2 allowing eighth hits and four runs in one of his worst outings of the year.  The Ports would tie the game in the eighth as 1B Matthew Spencer smacked just his second triple of the season to start the inning and scored on a Corey Brown sac fly later in the inning. Stockton got an excellent relief outing from Pat Currin who went two innings striking out three to send it to extra innings. Sam Demel (0-1) took the loss for the Ports and Jon George (1-0) got the win for Modesto. The series resumes tonight at 7:05 PST in Stockton.   

Carolina League

Potomac 2, Wilmington 1 (15 innings) (Potomac leads best-of-five series 1-0)

After 15 innings of stellar pitching, game one of the Potomac-Wilmington series was decided by a wild pitch.  Boomer Whiting scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the fifteenth to lead the Nationals over the Blue Rocks.  Matt Kniginyzky started the game for the Rocks and pitched a solid 6.2 scattering six hits, while allowing only one run.  The bullpen then continued to keep the game in check going eight innings allowing no runs on five hits before the run scored in the fifteenth.  Nats starter Luis Atilano was outstanding as well, going 6 allowing just three runners.  The Nats bullpen surrendered a run in the seventh but held on to get the win.  The Nats got an outstanding four inning effort from Dan Leatherman (1-0) who got the win.  Russell Haltiwanger (0-1) took the loss for the Blue Rocks. The series will continue at 7:05 EST Thursday night at Potomac.   

Myrtle Beach 6, Winston-Salem 4 (Myrtle Beach leads best-of-five series 1-0)

Myrtle Beach took game one of their Carolina League playoff series with Winston-Salem behind the strong left arm of staff ace Scott Diamond (1-0). Diamond went seven allowing only one run and striking out four. The offense was supplied by star center-fielder Gorkys Hernandez who went 2 for 4 with a big three-run homer in the third. The Pelicans smacked around Warthog starter Matt Long (0-1) for five runs (four earned) and six hits in just 4.1.  The Warthogs got solid offensive showings from Sergio Miranda and Brett Bonvechio who both went 3 for 4 in the losing effort. Game 2 is scheduled for Thursday night at 7:05 EST at Myrtle Beach.        


Daytona 10, Palm Beach 9 (Daytona leads best-of-three series 1-0)

Daytona came from behind with a six-run eighth inning to pull ahead by one and they would hold on for a game one victory at Palm Beach in the opening game of their Florida State League playoff series. All six of the Cubs runs off reliever Pete Parise (0-1) were unearned thanks to two errors and a passed ball to begin the inning. Neither teams pitching was stellar, but Cardinals starter Nicholas Additon did go five innings only allowing two runs despite seven hits. Offensively the Cards were paced by rightfielder Luke Gorsett who went 2 for 3 with 3 RBI’s on the night. Daytona got big nights from Darwin Barney, Jonathan Mota, and Steve Clevenger who all collected three hits in the game. Blake Parker (1-0) got the win for the Cubs despite allowing a run in his 1/3 of an inning. The series continues tonight at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in Daytona at 7:05 EST. 

Fort Myers 3, Dunedin 1 (Fort Myers wins the best-of-three series 2-0)

Dunedin dominated the second half of the FSL regular season with an amazing .706 winning percentage. Fort Myers limped into the playoffs with a .478 second half percentage. The Miracle proved that all those numbers just do not matter. The Miracle completed a two game sweep of the FSL Playoffs to advance to the finals for the first time since 1995. Fort Myers was led by an outstanding pitching performance from Alex Burnett (1-0). Burnett shut down the FSL’s most productive offense with six innings of two hit ball. He then handed the ball to his bullpen which secured the victory. Anthony Slama got his second save of the series to finish off Dunedin after struggling in his first outing in the series. Dunedin got a solid outing on the mound from Reidier Gonzalez (0-1) who went six allowing only two runs, but it was not enough to get past the red-hot Miracle. Fort Myers now must wait on the winner of the Daytona versus Palm Beach series.