Monday, September 10, 2007

Beloit, Clearwater capture wins

Matt Fox

Clinton 0 at Beloit 2

W: A. Craig (2-0, 0.00); L: A. Laughter (0-1, 11.57); SV: A. Slama (2)
HR: None.

If you've been watching the Midwest League playoffs, you might have realized by now that next years starting rotation for the Fort Myers Miracle is looking pretty spectacular. Alex Burnett, Tyler Robertson and Cole Devries have all dominated in their starts.

Now, you can add the name Matt Fox to the growing list. Fox allowed only 3 hit and 3 walks while striking out 4 over 5 innings of worth to help blank the Clinton Lumber Kings and lead the Snappers to a sweep of the Semi-Final round in the playoffs.

Jose Lugo worked 2.2 scoreless innings of relief, allowing only 1 hit and 1 walk while striking out 2. Fireballer Aaron Craig picked up the win in the bottom of the 8th inning, needed to get only 1 out, which he managed with a strike out.

The Clinton pitchng staff was just as stingy though with Kasey Kiker keeping the Snappers off the board for 5.2 innings before giving way to Andrew Laughter.

Steve Singleton used a ground ball to second to get onto base in the 8th. Rene Tosoni, inserted into the game as a pinch hitter, doubled him in and managed to get to 3rd on the throw by Lumber Kings right fielder K.C. Herren. This prompted the Rangers farm team to bring Joshua Lueke to the mound. Chris Parmelee would knock a line drive out to right to bring in Tosoni for the insurance run. Parmelee would steal 2nd, but Lueke got Greg Yersich and former Miracle Matt Betsill to strike out and Danny Santiesteban to ground out to strand the Twins 2006 first round pick at 3rd.

Still, it would be enough as Anthony Slama came in to Slama-the-door shut on Clinton for the win.


The Snappers will not have to wait for an oppenent though as they continue to seek their first championship since 1993. The West Michigan Whitecaps swept their series with the Silver Bend Silverhawks and the MWL finals, which start on Tuesday could be a preview of the next season's FSL West Division Championship battle.

James Skelton delivered a go-ahead two-run double for the Tigers farm team who edged the Silver Hawks 6-5. Trailing, 4-3, in the fourth inning, Brandon Timm reached on a fielder's choice, Audy Ciriaco singled and Gorkys Hernandez walked to load the bases. South Bend starter Chase Christianson uncorked a wild pitch and Timm raced home with the tying run before Skelton ripped a two-run double to put West Michigan on top.

The Whitecaps have captured the Midwest League championship in four of the past 11 seasons. They will host game one of the best-of-5 finals series on Tuesday. Alex Burnett will face West Michigans' Johan Nickerson.

Clearwater 6 at Brevard County 4

W: W. Savage (1-0, 0.00); L: T. Wendte (0-1, 4.15)
HR: BRE: M. Bell (1).

It took 11 innings, but the Threshers took game 2 from the Brevard County Manatees, 6-4 and look to sweep the best-of-5 series when it returns to Clearwater tonight at 7:00 PM

Matt Thayer singled his way onto base off Brevard County's Travis Wendte and moved to 2nd on P.J. Antoniato's sac-bunt. Brian Burgamy walked before Brad Harmon doubled to bring in Thayer, breaking open a 4-4 tie. Jason Donald's ground ball to left brought in Burgamy for the insurance run.

It would then fall to William Savage who struck out 3 and walked 1 in four innings to end the game.

Harmon would go 3-for-6 in the game with 1 run and 2 RBIs for the Threshers, while Matt Thayer was 2-for-3 with 1 run and 2 walks and Clay Harris was 3-for-5 with 1 run and 1 RBI.

Brevard County managed only 4 runs on 4 hits, taking the early lead in the 3rd inning on a pair of doubles by Ned Yost and Cole Gillespie. Mike Bell belted a solo homer, his first of the playoffs, in the sixth.

The Manatees will have to beat Clearwater's ace, right-hander Andrew Carpenter, to avoid the sweep at Brighthouse Networks Field. Carpenter was 17-6 this season with a 3.20 ERA in 163 innings over 27 games including the perfect 7-inning game over the Miracle.

Florida Today

Neither the Eastern League nor the International League played last night as both move into the final rounds of their playoff series.

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