Minor League Roundup: Offense at Upper Levels, Pitching at Lower Levels

Bradenton was rained out, while everybody else was in action on Saturday:

-P- Indianapolis scored six in the first and cruised to an 8-3 win over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Henricus VandenHurk didn't have his best game, but took advantage of the offense to up his record to 6-0. He lasted five, giving up three runs on six hits and a walk, and fanning five. Kris Johnson followed with three hitless innings, in which he struck out four. Duke Welker walked two in the 9th but escaped without damage. Starling Marte led the offense with his best game in a while, going 3-5 with his 6th HR. Brandon Boggs added his 6th HR.

-P- Altoona also had a six-run inning, this one in the second after a two-run first, and put a 13-5 drubbing on Akron. For some reason, the recent promotions from Bradenton seem to have sparked an offensive turnaround for the Curve. Stefan Welch went 2-3 with two doubles and two walks, and is now hitting 391/464/609 in AA. Drew Maggi went 2-4 with a walk and is hitting .389 for the Curve. Evan Chambers went hitless but still has an .888 OPS in AA. The hitting star in this game, though, was Brock Holt, who went 2-5 with a double, a triple and four RBIs. Matt Curry went 2-4 with his 3rd HR and Ramon Cabrera went 2-5. Shairon Martis got the win despite allowing five runs in six innings. Nate Baker, who seems to have pitched himself out of the rotation, threw two scoreless innings in relief and Vic Black threw one.

-P- Ryan Hafner once again couldn't throw strikes and West Virginia lost to Lexington, 5-3. Hafner allowed three runs in three innings, walking five. He gave up two hits and struck out two. Alen Hanson went 2-3 with a triple and two walks. Gregory Polanco went 1-2 with a double and two walks.

-P- State College got a good start from Jason Creasy and hammered Mahoning Valley, 9-2. Creasy went four innings and allowed a run on three hits and a walk, with four strikeouts. Dalton Friend followed with a much better outing than his first one, going 1.2 IP and giving up an unearned run on two hits and a walk, with two strikeouts. D.J. Crumlich went 3-4, and Jacob Stallings and Ryan Hornback each went 2-4 with a double. Samuel Gonzalez went 2-2 with a double.

-P- Five shutout innings from Colten Brewer led the GCL Pirates to a 1-0 win over the Braves. Brewer allowed just two hits and didn't walk a batter, while fanning four. Elvis Escobar scored the only run after leading off the bottom of the first with a double. Escobar is hitting 333/462/429, which isn't bad for a 17-year-old. Wyatt Mathisen, still serving as DH, went 1-3.

-P- The DSL Pirates1 clubbed the Marlins, 8-2. Left-hander Mervin Del Rosario gave up one run over five innings, on five hits and two walks. He fanned five. Ulises Montilla, an infielder who seems to be mired in the DSL despite putting up huge numbers last year, went 2-4. Dennis Hurtarte, a big firstbaseman who was the Pirates' first signing out of Guatemala, went 2-5 with a double. Carlos Esqueda, an infielder who had a big year in 2010 and missed most of 2011 with a broken ankle, went 1-3 with a triple. Danny Arribas, a catcher who signed for six figures before last season, went 1-3 with two walks.

-P- The box score for the DSL Pirates2 had not been posted as of 11:45pm.

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