They are a part of life in the minor leagues, though. A typical minor league game has at least two or three of the miscues in it somewhere, often on the infield. That can be frustrating for fans in the stands who are used to watching major league baseball players make difficult plays look easy, but it is probably more frustrating for minor league pitchers.
Tennessee overcame a rough defensive game to win on Saturday night, but first inning mistakes set Peoria up for a very long evening.
Randy Wells pitched four scoreless innings before putting the Cubs behind with a three run fifth. Daniel Berlind recorded just one out on his way to a four run appearance in the sixth. Manny Corpas, Esmailin Caridad, and Scott Maine then combined for three and two thirds innings of hitless relief.
Brett Jackson and Anthony Rizzo both doubled to lead the Cubs’ anemic offense, though Jackson struck out four times. Ty Wright had two hits. Adrian Cardenas was hitless, but he did reach twice on walks.
Dae-Eun Rhee pitched six solid innings, allowing just three runs on six hits in that span. This was just the second time this season Rhee has gone six or more innings. Alberto Cabrera struggled in relief, but he did hand an intact lead over to Kevin Rhoderick. One run scored on the Smokies’ closer, but he held on for his third save of the season.
At the plate the Smokies scored eight runs on only eight hits, a feat that is explained when we see that they drew nine walks. Justin Bour, James Adduci, Luis Flores, and Rebel Ridling all hit doubles for Tennessee. Bour and Adduci both had two hits on the night.
Frank Del Valle earned his second win of the season with a six inning performance. He allowed just one run, a solo homer, as he scattered six hits. Scott Weismann struck out four in two innings of relief, and Ty’relle Harris survived a rocky ninth.
Daytona had twenty hits in this game. Nelson Perez led the way with a five hits, including a home run. Elieser Bonne and Arismendy Alcantara both had four hits, and both hit a triple. Matthew Szczur had three hits, and two of them were two baggers. Richard Jones also doubled. Bonne and Alcantara both added to their nights with a stolen base apiece.
Gerardo Concepcion is going to get most of the blame for this loss, but that’s not exactly accurate. He did pitch just one inning, and he did give up seven runs (three earned) on six hits and a walk while striking out two, but he had no help from his defense. Twice there were errors that let the inning keep going. Concepcion should have been able to limit the damage after those errors, but it is also true that he should not have been in that position. It wasn’t a good game for Concepcion, but it wasn’t as bad as it looks.
After Concepcion left things did not get any better. Wellington Cruz gave up seven more runs (all earned), Yao-Lin Wang gave up four, and Andrew McKirahan couldn’t find the strike zone on the way to giving up two more runs (despite not allowing a hit) before finally Jeffrey Lorick had a scoreless appearance.
The best Chiefs’ pitcher was first baseman Ryan Cuneo who pitched the ninth. That pretty much summarizes how this game went for Peoria.