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White Sox Minor League Update: April 22, 2019

White Sox affiliates ride reliable pitching to a 2-1 day

Slamming the door: Reliever Alec Hansen struck out five of the seven batters he faced in Winston-Salem’s 3-1 win.
Winston-Salem Dash

Jackson Generals 5, Birmingham Barons 2

Bernardo Flores (SP): 5 IP, 5 R (4 ER), 4 H, 3 BB, 4 K, 2.14 ERA
Ramon Torres (2B): 1-3, 3B, RBI, .333 AVG, .949 OPS *co-MVP*
Ti’Quan Forbes (3B): 2-3, .227 AVG, .700 OPS *co-MVP*
Blake Rutherford (RF): 1-3, 2B, RBI, .105 AVG, .311 OPS
Micker Adolfo (DH): 1-4, 2B, .203 AVG, .638 OPS
Joel Booker (CF): 1-4, .377 AVG, .898 OPS

The Generals jumped on Barons starter Bernardo Flores in the second inning, scoring three runs on a Jeffrey Baez home run. Flores walked the first two batters he faced that inning, and those came around to score on the homer.

The Barons got one back in their half of the second on a Blake Rutherford double to drive in Micker Adolfo, but the Generals answered immediately. Flores fell victim to the long ball again, as he allowed a two-run homer to Jamie Westbrook in the third. Facing a 5-1 deficit, Ramon Torres drove in Ti’Quan Forbes with a triple.

However, the Barons could not get on the board after that, as they only managed three hits the rest of the way.

On a positive note, though Flores had a rough night, he is still off to a solid start to the season. This is his first start of the season in which he allowed more than one run. In addition, the bullpen had a great afternoon. Matt Foster, Danny Dopico, and Mauricio Cabrera combined for four shutout innings, only allowing two hits.

The loss dropped the Barons record to 9-9. They will play the Generals again tomorrow at 7:05 CST, with Felix Paulino on the bump.

Winston-Salem Dash 3, Wilmington Blue Rocks 1

Blake Battenfield (SP): 6 IP, 1 R (0 ER), 6 H, 1 BB, 6 K, 2.74 ERA *MVP*
Alec Hansen (RP): 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 5 K, 0.00 ERA
Nick Madrigal (2B): 1-4, 2 RBI, .281 AVG, .705 OPS
Zach Remilliard (SS): 2-4, RBI, .261 AVG, .662 OPS
Carlos Perez (C): 1-3, BB, .293 AVG, .776 OPS

Runs were hard to come by in this one, as pitching was solid on both sides. Starter Blake Battenfield (who made a recent appearance on our Top 100 Prospects list) had an outstanding game, only allowing one unearned run. Battenfield kept his pitch count fairly low, as he needed just 95 pitches to get through those six innings. 61 of those 95 pitches (64%) were strikes, as his control was adequate.

Perhaps even more dominant, albeit as a reliever, was Alec Hansen. He was nearly untouchable in his two innings of relief. He allowed one hit but retired the other six hitters he faced, striking out five of them. Of his 31 pitches, 10 resulted in swinging strikes. Not too shabby! Outings like these are quite encouraging for someone in need of a bounce-back season.

The offense took a while to get a rally going, which is not so surprising given that Luis Robert was out of the lineup with a sore hand. But, they finally put up a big, crooked number in the eighth. With the bases loaded and one out, Nick Madrigal singled up the middle to drive in a pair.

Madrigal’s single gave the Dash a lead they would not relinquish. Zach Remilliard added an insurance run with a single of his own with two outs to wrap up the scoring for both sides. Though the Dash had no extra-base hits in the game, they got base knocks when they needed them, and that made the difference in this one.

The win improved the W-S record to 9-10 on the season. The Dash will face the Blue Rocks again tomorrow at 5:30 CST, and Kyle Kubat is their probable starting pitcher.

Kannapolis Intimidators 7, Charleston RiverDogs 1

Jonathan Stiever (SP): 6 IP, 1 R (1 ER), 5 H, 1 BB, 5 K, 4.50 ERA *co-MVP*
Zack Burdi (RP): 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB, 3 K, 0.00 ERA
Gunnar Troutwine (C): 2-4, HR, BB, 3 RBI, .379 AVG, 1.100 OPS *co-MVP*
Steele Walker (RF): 2-5, 2B, .340 AVG, .967 OPS
Luis Curbelo (3B): 1-3, 2B, HBP, 3 RBI, .131 AVG, .447 OPS
Ian Dawkins (LF): 1-3, BB, HBP, RBI, .281 AVG, .727 OPS
Luis Alexander Basabe (CF): 0-5, .000 AVG, .000 OPS (season debut)

The Intimidators got to RiverDogs starter Alexander Vizcaino early and often, as Gunnar Troutwine hit a three-run shot in the first. Troutwine’s first home run of the season gave the Intimidators a 3-0 lead, and it was a lead they never gave up. In the second, Ian Dawkins added an RBI single to push the Intimidators lead to four.

That was more than enough support for starter Jonathan Stiever, who executed his pitches nicely in a quality start. His only major mistake was the solo home run in the second inning, but he recovered and was nearly lights-out from that point onward.

Luis Curbelo needed something to break out of his slump, and perhaps he got the spark he needed with a bases-clearing double to blow the game open in the seventh.

The win improved the Intimidators record to 6-10. They take on the RiverDogs again tomorrow at 6:05 CST as they seek their third consecutive victory.