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Cannonballs coming: Nick Kingham has strong rehab outing

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Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The GCL Pirates were rained out and West Virginia was off.

-- Indianapolis (66-70) gave up 16 hits in an 8-1 loss to Toledo.  Starter Kyle Lobstein, who might or might not be in line for a September callup, got pummeled for nine hits in four innings and allowed four runs.  Drew Hutchison is apparently still working on something, as he gave up another three runs, two earned, on five hits and two walks in three innings.  He struck out one.  The Indians had 11 hits themselves, but went 1-for-12 with RISP.  Alen Hanson was 2-4 and Jose Osuna 3-4.  Each had a double.

Austin Meadows:  0-4 (two hits in last 24 ABs)
Elias Diaz:  1-4
Max Moroff:  2-4

-- Altoona (73-60) bombed Binghamton, 13-1.  Nick Kingham went six innings in his latest rehab start, throwing 84 pitches, 58 for strikes.  He allowed a run on three hits and a walk, and struck out four.  Edwin Espinal went 3-5 with a double, his seventh HR and five RBIs.  Barrett Barnes added his ninth HR, his eighth in the month of August, and drove in three.  Eric Wood was 3-5 with a double and a triple.  Chris Stewart caught until Kingham left and went 0-1 with a walk.

Erich Weiss:  1-3, 2 BB, 3 R
Kevin Newman:  1-4, 3B, BB

-- I saw Bradenton (68-64) lost to Jupiter, 5-3.  Austin Coley, who's mostly struggled since May, gave up four runs in the first inning.  Coley throws a 90-91 mph fastball, a curve and a change.  His best pitch appears to be the curve, which is tight with pretty late break.  He started off throwing all fastballs and couldn't find the strike zone, with everything missing low.  At one point, he missed low seven straight times, none of them a dubious call.  When he finally got a couple pitches up high enough to be strikes, they got ripped.  After six batters, Jupiter had four runs.  At that point, Coley started throwing the curve a lot and eventually got through five innings without allowing any more runs.  He gave up seven hits and two walks total, and fanned four.  The interesting thing was that, once he started mixing in his secondary pitches, mainly the curve, he was able to get the fastball over without it getting hammered.  He even got some swings and misses with it.  It's possible he just couldn't find his release point early, but I have to wonder whether he just lacked confidence in the fastball when he knew the hitters were going to be looking for it.  It's very common at this level for starters to try to get through the order once without using much beyond the fastball.

Anyway, Bradenton never really got its offense untracked.  The Marauders hit as many balls hard as Jupiter, despite being outhit 12-5, but they hit theirs at a higher trajectory and everything died in the humid air.  Cole Tucker, Tito Polo, Kevin Kramer and Michael Suchy all had drives caught at the track.  Kramer hit the ball hard all night, going 2-4 with a double.  Tucker was 0-5, with two strikeouts, and he had an error.

Tito Polo:  1-4
Connor Joe:  0-3, BB

-- Morgantown (32-37) lost to Batavia, 7-5.  Luis Escobar had a rough start, giving up six runs on six hits and a walk in four and a third innings.  He struck out four.  He left with the bases loaded and Cristian Mota let all three runners score.  Ty Moore and Kevin Mahala each went 2-4.  Will Craig was 1-3, with two walks.

-- Bristol (25-40) beat Princeton, 4-2, behind a great start by Nick Economos.  He went six shutout innings, allowing one hit and no walks, while striking out four.  Julio De La Cruz was 2-4 with a double and Yoel Gonzalez 2-3.  Adrian Valerio went 1-4.