The Midland RockHounds and the Vermont Lake Monsters clinched post-season berths on Monday, giving the Oakland Athletics three minor league affiliates still fighting for a championship.
The RockHounds went into the season’s final day needing either a win or a Corpus Christi loss to earn their fourth-straight post-season berth. Midland didn’t need any help, as they punched their ticket to the playoffs with a 9-3 win over the Frisco RoughRiders.
A day after Grant Holmes worked eight innings to give Midland a key win, Heath Fillmyer also pitched into the eighth inning to guide the RockHounds to victory. Fillmyer allowed three runs on seven hits and no walks in 7.1 innings. He struck-out four. Fillmyer finishes the regular season with an 11-5 record and a 3.49 ERA. He was remarkably consistent all season, posting ERAs between 2.25 and 3.80 in every month but July (4.68). Fillmyer finishes second in the A’s organization in innings pitched with 149.2.
Jorge Mateo led the way at the plate with his first two-homer game as a member of the A’s organization. Mateo went 3-for-5 with four RBI. He finishes his stint with the RockHounds with a .292/.333/.518 line in 30 games.
Max Schrock and Sheldon Neuse also had three-hit games for Midland. Neuse drove-in three. He hit .373/.427/.433 in 18 games with the RockHounds down-the-stretch and was a big part of their post-season push. Schrock’s three hits bumped his average to .321 and left him fourth in the league in batting. Jermaine Curtis and J.P. Sportman also had two-hit games.
Unfortunately, B.J. Boyd went hitless on Monday and saw his average slip to .323. After leading the league in hitting for much of the year, Boyd finishes third. He still had an outstanding season with a .323/.366/.428 line and 16 stolen bases in a team-high 130 games.
Meanwhile, the Vermont Lake Monsters came into Monday needing a win to clinch the Stedler Division (the Lake Monsters still have two more regular season games this week). Thanks to a rainout on Sunday, Vermont had a double-header scheduled. In game one, they lost, 6-5, but in game two, the Lake Monsters earned a 7-4 win over Tri-City.
Greg Deichmann homered in both games, giving him eight on the season. Ryan Gridley and James Terrell each had two-hit games in the first game of the double-header. Gridley added a double in the second game. Jared Costa hit a homer in the fifth inning of game two that was part of a three-run rally that gave Vermont the lead.
In game two, Wyatt Marks struck-out six in 4.2 innings, but he was stuck with the no-decision. He allowed four runs on three homers, but only one run was earned. Logan Salow got the win in the division clincher with 2.1 scoreless, hitless innings. He struck-out two and lowered his ERA to 1.61.
— The Nashville Sounds finished their season on an up note with a 3-0 win over the New Orleans Baby Cakes. They end the season with a 68-71 record. Zach Neal (7 innings), Corey Walter (1 inning) and Felix Doubront (1 inning) combined to five-hit the Baby Cakes. Neal needed just 85 pitches to get through seven innings. Beau Taylor hit his third Triple-A homer of the season and Yairo Munoz had a hit and two walks. Renato Nunez walked twice. He drew 13 walks over his last 10 games and 19 walks over his last 29 games. He finished the season with a career-best 47 walks. His previous career-high was 34.
— A night after clinching the second-half North Division crown, the Stockton Ports cruised to a 7-3 win over the San Jose Giants. They finished the regular season with a 71-69 record. Boomer Biegalski and Joey Wagman threw the first 6.2 innings of the game and they combined to allow just one hit and two walks. Brett Siddall (21), Chris Iriart (10) and Sandber Pimentel (14) all homered for Stockton. Siddall had two hits and finished the season with a .299 average. Pimentel, Eli White, Skye Bolt and Santiago Chavez each had two-hit games, while Branden Cogswell had three hits. The Ports will take on Modesto to start their Cal League semi-final series on Wednesday. They host Game Three on Friday.
— The Beloit Snappers ended their season with a win in a 3-0 victory over the Cedar Rapids Kernels. Seth Martinez (7 innings) and Jesus Zambrano (2 innings) combined on the six-hit shutout. They didn’t walk a batter. Martinez struck-out six and Zambrano K’d three. Mike Martin had two hits to finish the season with a .300 average.
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