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Oakland A’s Minor League Notebook: Murphy’s law

Sean Murphy, Paul Blackburn, Grant Holmes, Angel Duno, Dalton Sawyer and Matt Chapman were among the Oakland A’s prospects who had memorable performances on Sunday. We have that news, plus information on the debuts of several A’s “July 2nd” signings, in this edition of Oakland A’s Minor League Notebook.

Sean Murphy / Photo by Chris Lockard
Sean Murphy hit two homeruns on Sunday for Stockton. / Photo by Chris Lockard

Murphy powers Stockton to win over Storm

The Stockton Ports’ offense was limited to two big flies off of the bat of Sean Murphy on Sunday, but his two homeruns were enough in the Ports’ 3-2 win over the Lake Elsinore Storm. The homers were Murphy’s sixth and seventh on the season and his third in two games.

Murphy got the game going with a two-run homer in the first. Lake Elsinore answered with a solo homer of their own in the second, but Murphy put the Ports up 3-1 with a solo blast in the fourth. Angel Duno would work into the sixth inning, allowing just one run before Will Gilbert took over with two outs in the sixth. He allowed a run in the eighth, but Cody Stull worked a scoreless 1.1 innings to close out the 3-2 win.

Murphy was the only Ports’ hitter to record a multi-hit game. He is five-for-his-last-eight and is now batting .305/.368/.562 on the season. Since returning from a wrist injury on May 17, he is batting .417. Tyler Ramirez had a hit and a walk to extend his hitting streak to 11 games.

Duno struck-out a season-high nine and didn’t walk a batter in 5.2 innings. He has 39 strike-outs over his last 42.2 innings against 11 walks. Stull extended his scoreless innings streak to 8.1 innings since being sent back to Stockton from Double-A Midland. The lefty has seven strike-outs and no walks for the Ports.

Lazarito among debuts in DSL A’s opening win

On Saturday, the Dominican Summer League opened its 2017 season, and several A’s high-profile prospects made their official professional debuts in the A’s 4-2 win over the DSL Dodgers 1.

Outfielder Lazaro “Lazarito” Armenteros had two walks and two strike-outs in his professional regular season debut. He also stole a base. Enrry Pantoja, a native of Cuba who signed with the A’s in February, went 3-for-3 with two RBI. He also scored a run. George BellYerdel Vargas and Marcos Brito also made their professional debuts. None of the trio collected a hit, but Brito walked twice.

Angello Infante worked five innings, allowing two runs on seven hits. Manuel Manzanillo got the win with three scoreless innings in relief in his professional debut. Jorge Martinez got the save with a scoreless ninth.

The DSL had no games on their schedule for Sunday.

Blackburn shines against old organization

Former Chicago Cubs’ prospect Paul Blackburn threw seven shutout innings in the Nashville Sounds’ 6-0 win over the Iowa Cubs. Blackburn allowed just two hits and he struck-out four. Tyler Sturdevant and Tucker Healy worked scoreless innings to complete the shutout.

Matt Chapman continued his recent onslaught against Pacific Coast League pitching with another two-hit game that included his 13th homer of the season. Chapman has homered in two straight games and he is batting .306 over his last 10 games. He has a 922 OPS on the season. Ryan Lavarnway and Matt McBride each chipped in two-hit games. One of McBride’s hits was his second homer of the season.

The game was knotted at 0 until Chapman doubled home Melvin Mercedes with the game’s first run in the sixth. The Sounds would score one more in the seventh, three in the eighth and one in the ninth to turn the pitcher’s duel into a rout.

Blackburn, who was traded by the Cubs to the Seattle Mariners organization last season in the Mike Montgomery deal, lowered his ERA to 3.24 on the season. He has thrown scoreless outings in three of his last four starts.

Midland splits “double-header”

The Midland RockHounds lost the continuation of Saturday’s rain suspended game, 9-5, but rallied for a win in Sunday’s regularly scheduled contest, 8-2, over the Northwest Arkansas Naturals.

Grant Holmes was the star of Sunday’s official game, as he worked six strong innings, allowing two runs on seven hits and one walk. He struck-out nine. Holmes has worked at least into the sixth inning in each of his last three starts. Joel Seddon, who returned from Nashville on Sunday, earned the save with three scoreless innings.

Beau Taylor and Tyler Marincov both homered in the Sunday game. Taylor’s homer was his first since coming back from suspension. He has hit safely in all five games he has played this season and is batting an even .500. Marincov homered in both Saturday’s game and Sunday’s contest. He now has nine homers on the year. Yairo Munoz had two hits in both the Saturday and Sunday games and is now carrying a seven-game hitting streak. In those seven games, he has had more than one hit in all but one. Munoz is now batting .308 on the season.

Snappers work overtime to win Saturday’s game, but lose Sunday’s contest

Like Midland, the Beloit Snappers had to complete a game on Sunday that began on Saturday. The Snappers won their continuation game, but they had to work hard to do it. The game, which was suspended in the fourth inning on Saturday, went 13 innings and resulted in a 4-3 Snappers’ win. Beloit would lose the regularly scheduled Sunday game, 2-0.

In the “Saturday” game, Beloit scored a run on a wild pitch and another on a passed ball in the eighth to tie the game at 3. The game would remain knotted at 3 until the 13th, when Trace Loehr knocked home Luke Persico to give the Snappers the lead. Heath Bowers got the win with three scoreless innings in relief. He is now 5-0 with a 2.48 ERA. Jean Carlo Rodriguez hit his first homer of the season for Beloit and had three hits while playing three different positions in the Saturday game.

In the “Sunday” game, Dalton Sawyer threw a six-inning complete game, but he was hung with the tough-luck loss. He allowed only two runs on five hits and two walks. The lefty struck-out six. He saw his ERA go from 2.16 to 2.25.

The Snappers managed just four hits and three of them came from Eric Marinez, who is now batting .280 on the year and .306 over his last 10 games.

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