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Link Report for Games of Tuesday, July 31st

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Tuesday's Daily Menu:


All times Central; pitchers subject to change --


Nashville: RHP Mark DiFelice at home vs. Sacramento (A's), 6:45 PM pre-game; 7:00 gametime


Audio link:



Huntsville: LHP Steve Hammond at home vs. Chattanooga (Reds), 6:50 PM pre-game; 7:05 gametime


Audio link:



Brevard County: TBD at St. Lucie (Mets), 5:50 PM pre-game, 6:00 gametime


Audio link (game will also archive at this link):



West Virginia: RHP Shawn Ferguson at Columbus (Devil Rays), 5:50 PM pre-game, 6:00 gametime


Audio link (game will also archive at this link):



Helena: RHP Chad Robinson makes his first pro start and third appearance overall at home vs. Missoula (Diamondbacks), 7:50 PM pre-game, 8:05 gametime


Audio link (game will also archive at this link):



Arizona: TBD at the A's complex in Scottsdale, 7:00 PM local time in Arizona, 9:00 Central; never any audio for Arizona Rookie League games

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Follow Tuesday's action as it happens:

Here's what you do, right click on each of the links below and choose "Open in New Window". Open the Nashville Gameday. For the others, choose "Log". While you're listening to your minor league game of choice (or watching/listening to the big league Crew when they are playing), simply refresh your game log browsers every so often.










Brevard County:




West Virginia:











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These links will be included in each daily report when the Nashville Sounds and/or Huntsville Stars are scheduled to play. Normally they are updated an hour or two prior to gametime, with Nashville's usually earlier:


Nashville Media Notes (Adobe .pdf format):




Huntsville Media Notes (Adobe .pdf format):



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Standings through Monday's action:

 Pacific Coast League (AAA) - PCL American North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Nashville 66 43 .606 - 36-17 30-26 W1 Iowa 60 50 .545 6.5 34-22 26-28 L1 Omaha 54 56 .491 12.5 33-18 21-38 W2 Memphis 46 64 .418 20.5 26-33 20-31 W2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Southern League (AA) - SOU North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Huntsville 22 16 .579 - 12-6 10-10 W2 Chattanooga 21 17 .553 1.0 11-9 10-8 L2 Tennessee 19 19 .500 3.0 14-6 5-13 L1 Carolina 18 20 .474 4.0 10-8 8-12 W1 West Tenn 16 22 .421 6.0 9-14 7-8 W1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Florida State League (A+) - FSL East Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Brevard County 20 16 .556 - 10-7 10-9 L2 Jupiter 17 18 .486 2.5 9-6 8-12 L3 Palm Beach 17 19 .472 3.0 9-12 8-7 W2 Daytona 16 21 .432 4.5 8-11 8-10 L1 St. Lucie 15 22 .405 5.5 6-12 9-10 W1 Vero Beach 10 25 .286 9.5 5-13 5-12 W2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- South Atlantic League (A) - SAL Northern Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hickory 23 14 .622 - 15-9 8-5 L2 Lake County 19 17 .528 3.5 8-9 11-8 L1 Lakewood 19 17 .528 3.5 10-6 9-11 L1 Lexington 18 20 .474 5.5 12-10 6-10 L2 West Virginia 18 20 .474 5.5 10-9 8-11 L1 Delmarva 17 19 .472 5.5 5-11 12-8 W1 Greensboro 17 20 .459 6.0 12-7 5-13 L1 Hagerstown 11 26 .297 12.0 6-11 5-15 W1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Pioneer League (R+) - PIO North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Billings 1 0 1.000 - 1-0 0-0 W1 Helena 1 0 1.000 - 1-0 0-0 W1 Great Falls 0 1 .000 1.0 0-0 0-1 L1 Missoula 0 1 .000 1.0 0-0 0-1 L1

Arizona League Standings:



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Brevard County at St, Lucie, postponed, rain


Manatees GM Buck Rogers:


Manatees fans, tonight's game at St Lucie was rained out. It will be made up as part of a Doubleheader on Monday, August 20th, at Tradition Field. Tomorrow night's game will begin at 7:00 PM (6:00 Central) and is not a doubleheader as Pedro Martinez will face the Manatees. The game will be televised in the NY City area, for those fans that live there. Check your local listings for the channel.


The storms continue to roll thru Florida and all the FSL teams are scrambling to get their games in while sticking to the Minor League Baseball regulations of no more than two DHs played in a row and no more than three DHs played in a seven day period. That means that when the Manatees are rained out on the road we have to be playing very close attention as not to have DHs scheduled too close together. This can get hair-raising down the stretch as all GMs try to get all of their games scheduled.


Currently we have DHs scheduled at Vero Beach on Friday, the 17th, and at St Lucie on Monday, the 20th. That doesn't allow much wiggle room for us to add our own DH in the event of a rain out. Now you know why we sit until the late hours some nights trying to get games in and other nights realize it's futile and get out the door and back the next day for a DH. The schedule, with all of it's playoff implications, is a beast to deal with in mid-August.

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Final: Columbus (Devil Rays) 4, West Virginia 0


West Virginia Site Game Summary:




The Columbus Catfish scored all of their runs in the first inning of Tuesday night?s game at Golden Park and held the Power to just three hits as they tossed their seventh shutout of the season, defeating the Power 4-0 to take the second game of the series.


In the first inning, Desmond Jennings doubled down the left field line and scored on a single from Cesar Suarez. Later in the inning Ryan Royster hit a three-run homer, his 16th of the season, to cap the four-run frame.


West Virginia had four baserunners the entire game. Andrew Lefave went 3-for-3 and recorded every Power hit, while Taylor Green reached on a walk to begin the second. The Power had just one runner in scoring position through the entire contest.


Heath Rollins (12-4) pitched seven scoreless innings of three-hit ball and struck out five to get the win while Chris Toneguzzi (4-2) got the loss. Toneguzzi was pulled after the third inning. Though he gave up four runs on three hits in the first inning, Toneguzzi settled down allowing just one hit the rest of the way. Jared Sutton, Luis Ramirez and J.T. King combined to toss five scoreless innings of one-hit ball out of the bullpen.


The Power fell to 66-41 overall and 18-21 in the second half, and the Catfish improved to 63-44 overall and 22-15 in the second half with the win.


The Power will continue the four game series against Columbus Wednesday night. The Power will start right hander Donovan Hand (1-0, 1.80) and the Catfish will counter with right hander Will Kline (0-1, 2.57). The first pitch is scheduled for 7:00 PM (6:00 Central).


West Virginia Box Score:

Andrew Lefave is a machine...




West Virginia Game Log:



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if you are bored, check out hernan iribarren's splits...he's just dying against lefties this year...


wow, those are so bad that you'd think they'd just tell him to try hitting right-handed vs lefties. Can it be worse?

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Final: Nashville 2, Sacramento (A's) 0


Nashville Site Game Summary:

Link for Mike Rivera action photo, text follows --




Sounds Blank River Cats Again, 2-0


NASHVILLE ? The Nashville Sounds closed out their homestand with their second straight shutout victory over visiting Sacramento, blanking the River Cats in a 2-0 contest on Tuesday evening at Greer Stadium.


Three Sounds hurlers combined on a two-hitter, which was the club?s Pacific Coast League-leading eighth shutout of the season. Nashville (67-43) finished its homestand with a 5-3 record and earned a split of the four-game series with the River Cats.


The Sounds' lead in the PCL American Conference Northern Division increased to 7 1/2 games with their win and an Iowa loss in Salt Lake.


Nashville starter Mark DiFelice (2-0) earned the win after he worked five hitless innings to open the contest before departing after throwing 72 pitches. His ERA as a starter dropped to 0.89 this season (4 ER / 40.1 IP) through seven starts between Nashville and Double-A Huntsville.


Including Tuesday?s outing, DiFelice has worked 13 consecutive scoreless innings for the Sounds dating back to his start on July 20 at Iowa. He set a Huntsville franchise record with 36 consecutive scoreless frames for the Stars earlier this season in a separate streak.


Recently-acquired reliever Seth McClung followed on the hill and worked three scoreless innings, his longest outing of the year. The fireballer allowed two hits and struck out three batters.


Mitch Stetter came on to work a flawless ninth to notch his first save of the year. The left-hander became the ninth different Sounds hurler to earn a save in 2007.


Sounds catcher Mike Rivera broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the fourth inning when he belted a mammoth two-out solo homer off the guitar-shaped scoreboard in left-center. The blast, which came against Sacramento starter Dan Meyer, was the backstop?s 13th homer of the year. He received his third Copley guitar of the season after the game as a reward.


AUDIO: Rivera Homers Off The Guitar --




The Sounds added an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth inning against the River Cats bullpen. Tony Gwynn led off the frame with a single, moved to second on a throwing error on a pickoff attempt by Ron Flores, stole third, then scored in unearned fashion with two outs when Sacramento shortstop Gregorio Petit fielded Vinny Rottino?s grounder cleanly but threw wide of first base for the visitors? second error of the inning.


Gwynn went 4-for-4 with a pair of stolen bases for the Sounds but left the contest early after suffering a leg cramp during a steal of third in the bottom of the eighth inning.


Meyer (6-2) absorbed a tough-luck loss for Sacramento after allowing one run on seven hits and striking out seven batters in his seven innings of action.


The Sounds head to the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday to open an eight-game road trip that includes stops in Portland, Oregon and Tacoma, Washington.


Right-hander Elmer Dessens (1-0, 1.54) makes his fourth rehab start for the Sounds in Wednesday?s 9:05 p.m. CT series opener at PGE Park in Portland. He?ll face Beavers right-hander Mike Thompson (3-9, 6.46).


Baseball returns to Greer Stadium on Friday, August 10, when the Sounds open another eight-game homestand.


Nashville Box Score:

Pettyjohn, DiFelice, Dickey, Gulin -- could the Brewers have done any better with their reclamation projects this year? Exciting outing for Seth McClung...




Nashville Game Log:



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Final: Chattanooga (Reds) 5, Huntsville 4


Huntsville Site Game Summary:

Link, text follows --




Late Rally Leads Lookouts to Victory


Luis Bolivar?s two-out, two-run opposite field single in the eighth inning turned out to be the game-winning hit in Chattanooga?s 5-4 comeback win over the Stars Tuesday night in the fourth of a five-game set at Joe Davis Stadium. The Lookouts improved to 22-17 in the second half and pulled back into a first place tie in the North Division with the Stars, who fell to 22-17 in the second half and had a modest two-game win streak snapped. The Stars lost for just a fourth time in 51 games when leading after seven innings.


David Johnson retired the first two hitters in the eighth before Caonobe Cosme singled and Adam Rosales walked to force a pitching change. Luis Pena walked Drew Anderson on four pitches to load the bases before Bolivar delivered his decisive blow into right field on a 3-2 offering from the Stars? closer, who blew a save chance for a second time in seven opportunities. Carlos Guevara took over in the ninth for Chattanooga and walked leadoff man Michael Brantley and yielded a one-out single to Adam Heether. However, the Lookouts closer slammed the door by striking out pinch-hitter Lou Palmisano and Steve Moss to end the game.


Heether?s two-run home run in the fourth, his eighth of the season, gave the Stars a 2-1 and his two-run double in the fifth extended the home team?s edge to 4-1. Heether finished a triple shy of hitting for the cycle for a second time this month, both against the Lookouts, and matched a season-high with his four runs batted in.


Stars? starter Steve Hammond allowed one run, on a Craig Tatum home run, over five innings and was replaced by E.J. Shanks, who opened the sixth by walking Mike Griffin and Shaun Cumberland and allowing a single to Tatum to load the bases with nobody out. Cosme then chopped a ground ball that was gloved by a diving Steve Sollmann at first base but his throw to second base was errant, allowing Griffin and Tatum to score to draw the visitors to within 4-3. Johnson took over and walked Rosales before Anderson grounded into a double play to end the inning. Johnson suffered his first loss of the season after yielding two runs on two hits and three walks over 2 1/3 innings.


The series wraps up Wednesday evening with left-hander Sam Narron taking the hill against Lookouts? southpaw Matt Maloney, who was just acquired by the Reds in the deal that sent veteran pitcher Kyle Lohse to Philadelphia. Coverage of the game begins at 6:50 p.m. central time and can be heard locally on SportsRadio 730 WUMP and through the internet at www.huntsvillestars.com.


Huntsville Box Score:

So proud of Adam Heether after last year's struggles; this game appeared to have nearly as much drama as the parent club's affair...




Huntsville Game Log:



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Suspended Game: Arizona A's 3, Arizona Brewers 0, first inning -- lightning, then rain


Partial Box Score:




The A-Crew's only other visit to the Athletics' complex is August 20th, but with no attendance implications, I imagine this one could be made up in Maryvale on the 22nd as well. Go with the 20th until told otherwise.

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Final: Missoula (Diamondbacks) 11, Helena 0


Helena Site Game Summary:


Helena Bats Silenced at Home


HELENA ? Helena's newest addition Matt LaPorta started in the field for the first time in his young professional career, but Missoula pitcher Tom Layne stifled him as well as the rest of the Brewer hitters.


The Brewers collected just five hits and no Helena runners advanced past first base in an 11-0 loss. Layne pitched eight innings and did not walk a batter to earn the win.


Brewer pitcher Chad Robinson made his first professional start in just his third appearance of the season. Robinson had previously thrown three innings in two appearances out of the bullpen. The right-hander went three and two-thirds innings and allowed three runs on three hits.


Missoula added eight more runs to its 3-0 lead in the seventh inning for an 11-0 advantage. Gus Bustamante hit a home run on the first pitch of the inning to start the Osprey rally. Taylor Harbin and Chance Wheeless also provided big hits for Missoula; each provided their team with a two-run double.


For the Brewers Eric Farris had two hits on the night and reached on a walk as well. Eric Fryer, Curt Rindal, and Zelous Wheeler each collected a hit in the loss. Reliever Craig Langille paced the pitching staff by throwing one and one-thirds innings of scoreless baseball; he allowed one hit and struck out two.


The win snaps a nine-game losing streak for the Missoula Osprey. The Brewers (27-13, 1-1) and Osprey (15-25, 1-1) play the rubber match of a three-game series Wednesday at 7:05 PM (8:05 Central).


Helena Box Score:

Brewers drew only one walk too; 6th rounder Dan Merklinger of Seton Hall with a forgettable night...




Helena Game Log:



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Merklinger and Kjeldgaard together have been sporadic at best.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."

- Plato

"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."

- Plato

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Osprey stomp Brewers

By CURT SYNNESS, Helena Independent Record Sports Writer


When you're hot, you're hot. And when you're not, you ought to be.


Going into Tuesday night's Pioneer League contest at Kindrick Legion Field, the Helena Brewers had been on a hot streak over the last few weeks, while the visiting Missoula Osprey were suffering through a nine-game losing streak.


But, the Osprey rapped the Brewers 11-0, behind the stellar pitching of Tom Layne, and the awakened offense of the visitors.


Layne hurled eight sparkling innings, permitting four hits and a walk while striking out five. He did not allow a Brewer baserunner past first base. The Missoula lefty faced but 28 men - only four over the minimum - with the help of an errorless defense behind him, which also turned two double plays.


Luke Prehoda closed in the ninth, preserving the shutout for Layne while surrendering a single.


Meanwhile the Missoula hitters pounded out 15 hits off of four Helena pitchers, helping their club to its first win in 10 games. Tom Clifford, Jimmie Principie and Gerardo Bustamante each homered for the Garden City group, all three taters being solo shots. Principie's blast actually cleared the netting high above the left field wall.


Missoula's big inning was the seventh, when they tallied eight runs.


Collecting two hits apiece on the night for the Osprey were Eli Rumler, Taylor Harbin, Bustamante and Reynaldo Navarro. Harbin posted three runs batted in.


Eric Farris' two singles and a walk led the Brewers at the plate, with Zelous Wheeler, Curt Rindal and Eric Fryer each stroked base knocks. Defensively, outfielders Lee Haydel and Caleb Gindl both made difficult running catches on long fly balls near the warning track.


Chad Robinson started on the bump for the home team and received the loss. Robinson went 3.2 innings, giving up three hits and three runs. Helena's relievers consisted of Craig Langille, Dan Merklinger and Brock Kjeldgaard.


Manager Jeff Isom's Helena club is now 27-13 overall and 1-1 for the second half. Missoula is 15-25 and 1-1. The two clubs engage each other again tonight at 7:05 PM (8:05 Central) at Kindrick Field.


Eliza Wiley, Helena Independent Record Staff Photographer - Helena Brewer Dan Merklinger fires from the mound Tuesday night during a smokey and disappointing loss to the Missoula Osprey. Missoula won the game 11-0 for the Brewers? first loss of the second half of the Pioneer League season.



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David Weiser's






Adam Heether finished a red-hot July (33 hits, eight doubles, five HRs, .359) hitting for 3/4 of the cycle and driving in four runs, but E.J. Shanks and Luis Pena combined to shred a 4-1, and later a 4-3 lead to place the Stars back in a tie for 1st place on the eve of the anniversary of the Stars' greatest comeback in history.


A ton of pitches were thrown in this molasses-paced game on this final, steamy night in July....... Steve Hammond gave up a hit in every inning, but was successful in holding the Lookouts to just a run -- a first pitch homer to Craig Tatum to the right of and past the flagpole in left field in the 4th inning. Hammond, however, never got through an inning without throwing less than 16 pitches on this 89° night, and was gone after throwing 95, 57 for strikes (60%) in five innings.


But Hammond already had a 4-1 lead, thanks to a two-run HR by Heether in the bottom of the 4th, that didn't get the distance, but was hit in the same direction, off the top wall in left (the Corr Wireless sign), and a two-run, one-out double down the right field line in the 5th...... After a walk to Brendan Katin and a hit batter loaded the bases, however, Alcides Escobar grounded out to Drew Anderson to end the inning........ Steve Sollmann (0, 7, .235 in July), a .233 hitter vs. Chattanooga, set the 4th up with a hard liner to right for a single, then reached base again in the 5th on a botched double play attempt by Luis Bolivar to Anderson...... That was all the scoring Huntsville fans would see from their team, as they watched the Lookouts' bullpen outperform the Stars'.


Fans got their first look at submariner E.J. Shanks, a former independent league pitcher (6-1, 1.78 in the Golden League a year ago), whose curious delivery is remindful of Kent Tekulve and Chad Bradford....... It didn't win much confidence from fans, though, after going 3-and-0 on Mike Griffin before he came back at 3-and-2 to walk him, then 1-and-0 on Craig Tatum before he singled through the right side, and 3-and-0 again on former Montgomery Biscuit Shaun Cumberland, who also walked to load the bases........ Fortunately, Marland Williams became an easy out for Shanks. With a strikeout rate of 42.4%, higher than that of Brendan Katin's 35.6%, he struck out swinging at 73 mph junk........ Williams struck out swinging four times tonight, and now is 8-for-56 against the Stars with 29 strikeouts (.517). It's hard to believe now that he once hit for the cycle on an inclement April night in 2005 in a 14-13 Stars victory........ With one out, Caonabo Cosme chopped a 3-2 pitch to Steve Sollmann. Sollmann dived to stop the ball, but threw wildly to shortstop Alcides Escobar, allowing Griffing and Tatum to score, closing the Lookouts' gap to one run.


Dave Johnson (0-1, 5.82 in July) came in to relieve Shanks and walked Adam Rosales on a 3-2 pitch, but Escobar got him out of the inning on a grounder that was headed up the middle. He swiftly cut the ball off on top of the bag, hopped to avoid the runner, then threw in the same motion to Sollmann to complete the double play to get Johnson out of the inning.


Johnson was one out away from getting out of the 8th inning, still protecting a 4-3 lead, when Cosme lined a single to left. After walking Rosales, manager Don Money called for his closer, Luis Pena, the fireballer whose heater will either hit its mark or not........ This time, it didn't......... He walked Drew Anderson to fill the bases before Luis Bolivar's opposite-field single to right scored Cosme and Rosales for the game-decider.


Home plate ump Jason Dunn was hit in the mask by a foul tip off the bat of Steve Sollmann on Carlos Guevara's first pitch to him in the 9th....... Dunn was knocked backwards and knocked out for a moment, causing some tense moments, especially in the wake of Mike Coolbaugh's fateful accident which also came in the 9th inning of a Tulsa-Arkansas game in Little Rock, ten days ago...... Both trainers came out of their respective dugouts, and after a few minutes to recover, Dunn was able to continue the game.


It takes great hand-eye coordination to be the fine third baseman Heether is, but he is proving it in the clubhouse as well as the unofficial ping-pong champ. It seems they have a round-robin tournament going down there, and no one can seem to touch him.


Since this series began on Saturday, the Lookouts have been a busy team on the transaction wire....... Pitchers Brock Till (1-0, 9.82 vs. Huntsville) and Tyler Pelland (1-0, 3.18 vs. Huntsville) were promoted to Louisville, Carlos Bohorquez and Pedro Viola were called up from Sarasota, outfielder Shaun Cumberland was acquired from the Biscuits, 6'8" Australian righthander Dushan Ruzic was added to the roster tonight, and Wednesday, Matt Maloney, acquired from the Phillies for pitcher Kyle Lohse, will make his debut for the Lookouts to start against Sam Narron........ Narron had his best month in July with a 2-0 record in five starts and a 3.14 ERA. He has given up just four runs (three earned) in 19 2/3 innings in his last three starts....... Maloney was 9-7 with a 3.94 ERA for the Class AA-Reading (East.) Phillies and 6-3, 3.34 in his last ten starts. He was a 3rd round pick by the Phillies in 2005.


Some instruction is starting to pay off, as Hernan Iribarren is starting to go with the pitch a lot more. He pulled a one-hopper to right for a hit in the 3rd, but he is still having a hard time hitting left-handers. He was 13-for-84 (.155) going into the game......... Huntsville catchers Lou Palmisano and Carlos Corporan have allowed just four passed balls all season, tying Huntsville for the fewest in the league. (Max St. Pierre, who started the season as Lou's backup, had none). The all-time season low for the Stars is 11 by the 1987, 1992, and 2006 teams.


Nashville pitcher Mark DiFelice and two relievers, Seth McClung and Mitch Stetter, held the Sacramento River Cats to two hits Tuesday night, as the Sounds won 2-0 at Greer Stadium. DiFelice, who threw 24 scoreless innings for the Stars in June, threw five innings of no-hit ball. Gregorio Petit broke up the no-hitter with a leadoff single off McClung in the 6th......... Huntsville and Chattanooga supplied the Southern League with the players-of-the-week for this week. Despite losing 4-of-5 to the Jacksonville Suns, and losing the opener to the Lookouts, Derek Miller was named pitcher-of-the-week with a 2-0, 2.13 record that included the lone victory against the Suns....... Caonabo Cosme, the Lookouts' shortstop, hit .414 (12-for-29), and was instrumental in three victories for Chattanooga.


Milwaukee's #1 pitck in June, Matt LaPorta, made his pro debut for Helena Monday night, and homered in his first at-bat....... Brewers' 2nd baseman Rickie Weeks, nursing a sore wrist and hitting just .212, has been sent down to Nashville. The Brewers, to fill his spot on the roster, called up Joe Dillon, the 32-year old former Carolina Mudcat, who was hitting .320 for the Sounds.

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Dillon promoted, Sounds earn win

Veteran gets his dream call: A chance to play in a big-league pennant race

BY NATE RAU, Nashville City Paper Sports Correspondent


Pennant chases are nice and all, but at the Triple A level guys are hoping for one thing ? a promotion to the big leagues. Nashville?s Joe Dillon got the call every minor leaguer hopes for after the Sounds? 2-0 win over Sacramento on Tuesday. Dillon was promoted to the majors by the Milwaukee Brewers.


It is an especially satisfying promotion for Dillon because at 31-years old, a player never knows if a call-up will happen. Dillon was up once before for a cup of coffee with Florida two years ago. Since then, Dillon spent last season in Japan and then asked to be released by the Marlins during spring training this year. But by hitting .317 with 20 homers and 72 RBIs ? all Sounds bests ? Dillon was promoted. He also joins a team in a pennant race as the Brewers are currently in first in the National League Central.


?Obviously I?m happy,? Dillon said. ?That?s what all our goals are, is to get up there. I?m just looking forward to getting up there and doing whatever I can do to contribute to the team.?


The first-place Sounds (65-46) picked up the win thanks to outstanding pitching by starter Mark DiFelice and a solo shot by catcher Mike Rivera. DiFelice threw five hitless innings, before being replaced ? to his chagrin ? because other relievers needed extra work.


Rivera ended a scoreless tie in the fourth with a solo homer that ricocheted off the guitar scoreboard in left. It was the third time this season Rivera hit a homer off the scoreboard this season. Every Sounds player who hits a homer off the scoreboard wins a guitar courtesy of Copley.


DiFelice threw five hitless innings before giving way to Seth McClung, who was acquired last week from the Tampa Bay organization. DiFelice came out of the game after throwing 78 pitches. The Brewers wanted to see McClung throw two innings, which is why DiFelice was removed during the no-hit bid.


McClung gave up a single to the first batter he faced to end the Sounds? no-hit bid.


After allowing the hit to Danny Putnam, McClung did the job out of the pen. He threw three scoreless innings for Nashville.


Nashville added an insurance run in the eighth inning that came courtesy of two throwing errors by the River Cats. Mitch Stetter threw a perfect ninth to earn the save for Nashville.


Tony Gwynn played well in his second game since returning to the Sounds. He went 4-for-4, including a triple and two stolen bases. The only negative for Gwynn was that his right leg cramped up following his steal of third in the eighth inning and he had to be replaced by Charles Thomas.


Mark DiFelice had a 36 2/3-inning scoreless streak for Double-Huntsville earlier this year. (Photo by Tom Priddy/MLB.com)



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Sounds pitchers combine to shut out Sacramento


Tennessean Staff Writer


Mark DiFelice and the Nashville Sounds bullpen teamed up for the team's eighth shutout of the season ? a Pacific Coast League high ? in a 2-0 victory Tuesday night over visiting Sacramento.


DiFelice, lifted after five innings of no-hit ball, was backed up by Seth McClung and Mitch Stetter as Nashville salvaged a split of the four-game series with its second shutout in as many nights. The Sounds won 4-0 on Monday night.


"He looks a lot different than he did a couple of years ago in New Orleans," Nashville Manager Frank Kremblas said of DiFelice, 2-0 since his July 11 callup from Double-A Huntsville. "He makes pitches, he keeps the ball down. He's doing a great job for us."


DiFelice, who spent the last half of the 2005 season and all of 2006 in the independent Atlantic League after the Washington Nationals released him, has now won his last six decisions, dating back to June 4.


DiFelice, who put together a streak of 36 scoreless innings there before arriving in Nashville on July 11, now has a 13-inning streak with the Sounds.


Sacramento spoiled the Sounds' no-hit bid as Gregorio Petit led off the sixth with a single off Nashville reliever Seth McClung. In seven starts this season ?three at Huntsville and four with the Sounds ?DiFelice has an 0.89 ERA.


Meanwhile, the rare hook in the middle of a no-hitter was necessitated by an inactive bullpen. Adam Pettyjohn went the distance for the Sounds in Monday's win.


"We needed to get some guys some work," Kremblas said. "McClung has to leave for a couple of days (due to family issues), and Stetter hadn't thrown in three or four days."


Before his three-inning, two-hit effort, the right-handed McClung had not pitched more than two innings in a game this season.


Nashville took a 1-0 lead on Mike Rivera's solo home run in the fourth inning off Sacramento starter Dan Meyer, then added a run in the eighth inning when a two-out throwing error allowed pinch-runner Charles Thomas to score from third base.


The Sounds, now 11-3 in home series finales, head to the West Coast for an eight-game trip against Portland and Tacoma.


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Brewers call up hot-hitting Dillon to help offense


Tennessean Staff Writer


Nashville Sounds veteran infielder Joe Dillon was called up by the Milwaukee Brewers following Tuesday's 2-0 win over Sacramento.


Dillon, who spent the 2006 season with the Yomiuri Giants in Japan, was added to the Brewers' 40-man roster last month after establishing himself as one of the Sounds' top offensive performers. Entering Tuesday night's play, the 31-year-old was hitting .320 with 20 home runs and 73 RBIs ? leading the team in the latter two categories and ranking eighth in the Pacific Coast League in the former.


Primarily a third baseman, where he has played 54 games this season, Dillon has also played 10 games at first base, two at second base and 17 in the outfield. In his only other major league appearance, played 27 games with the Marlins during the 2005 season (.167, 1 HR, 1 RBI).


The Brewers had not announced their roster move to make room for Dillon at press time. However, speculation has centered on second baseman Rickie Weeks being optioned out.


Weeks, who spent the first 2 ½ months of the 2005 season with the Sounds, has hit .212 with five home runs and 19 RBIs in 74 games this season.


Saving up: Mitch Stetter worked a perfect ninth inning to earn the save. He is the ninth different Nashville pitcher with at least one save this season. Luther Hackman leads the team ? and is tied for fifth in the PCL ? with 14.


Making music: Sounds catcher Mike Rivera hit his 14th homer of the season in the fourth, a solo shot off the guitar-shaped scoreboard beyond the left-field fence.


As part of a promotion with Nashville-based Copley Guitars, any Sounds player that homers off the scoreboard is presented a guitar. It was Rivera's third guitar shot of the season, following blasts on May 6 and on May 20, and his fifth in three seasons.


For the year, the Sounds have hit nine guitar-winning homers.

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A bullpen blowup

Stars' relievers waste Heether's power hitting in 5-4 loss to Lookouts


For The Huntsville Times


With every scratch of his head and squirm from his perch atop the dugout steps, Stars manager Don Money agonized over his relievers' inability to throw strikes.


First, it was E.J. Shanks who couldn't find the zone. Then, David Johnson worked from behind in the count before allowing several key hits.

Finally, with two outs and two on and a one-run lead in the eighth, Money called on closer Luis Pena.


He walked a Chattanooga player to load the bases before shortstop Luis Bolivar guided a two-run, game-winning single into right field.


What had been unraveling in front of Money and a nice midweek crowd of 2,480 at Joe Davis Stadium became reality: Lookouts 5, Stars 4.


A 4-1 lead wasted away at the hands of a normally reliable bullpen, and so did the Southern League North division lead. The Stars and Lookouts are now tied with 22-17 records.


After Chattanooga went ahead in the eighth, however, the Stars had two chances to at least tie in the final two innings.


They put two runners on with two outs in the eighth, but Hernan Iribarren grounded deep in the hole between first and second and was thrown out to end the threat.


But the one that really hurt was the ninth, when Huntsville failed at the situational hitting it thrived on just one night before.


Michael Brantley led off with a walk, but Steve Sollmann failed in trying to bunt him over, popping out to the pitcher.


After an Adam Heether single, pinch hitter Lou Palmisano struck out, and defensive replacement Steve Moss struck out looking to end the 3-hour, 42-minute marathon.


Heether was brilliant all night at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a home run and four RBIs.


It appeared he would be the hero in helping the Stars build a 4-1 lead before the bullpen collapse.


After Lookouts catcher Craig Tatum gave Chattanooga a 1-0 lead in the fourth, Heether followed by blasting a go-ahead two-run homer over the left-field wall.


Then, he strode to the plate the next inning, reached out and guided an outside pitch down the right-field line for a two-run double.


It seems not to matter where the opposition throws the ball when Heether is at the plate lately.


After a ridiculous stretch where he was 28-for-56, Heether has cooled a little, but he is still hitting .368 during his last 27 games.


Starter Steve Hammond continued his second-half resurgence as well. The lefty gave the Stars their second strong five-inning performance in a row.


He allowed one run off five hits, and deserved a better fate than he received.


Instead, the bullpen folded to drop the Stars into a first-place tie.


All of that was insignificant for a few moments in the bottom of the ninth.


A very scary moment took place when Sollmann squared to bunt. He fouled it off, and it hit home plate umpire Jason Dunn underneath the mask. Dunn stayed down for several minutes before regrouping to finish the game.


Too bad the Stars bullpen couldn't finish the win.

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