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Cannonballs coming: big days for Kingham, Tucker and Hightower

MLB: Spring Training-Pittsburgh Pirates at New York Yankees Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

One news item: Austin Meadows has been out with a minor oblique injury (sub. req’d). He’s expected to return soon.

Bradenton was off.

— Nick Kingham got within one out of his second nine-inning complete game in Indianapolis’ (70-57) 6-1 win over Louisville. Kingham gave up a run-scoring double with two outs in the ninth, then gave way to Angel Sanchez, who struck out the last batter. Kingham allowed six hits in all, walked only one and struck out five. He threw 73 of 110 pitches for strikes. In his last six starts, he has an ERA of 1.19 and has gone at least seven innings in five; he went six in the other. Jacob Stallings had a double, his fourth HR and three RBIs. On the season, Stallings is batting a respectable 274/340/417, with a BB:K ratio that’s gone from 1:6 last year to 1:1.7 this year. Danny Ortiz added two doubles and Erich Weiss his fourth HR.

Kevin Newman: 1-4, 2B
Jordan Luplow: 1-4
Chris Bostick: 2-4

— Brandon Waddell threw six shutout innings and Cole Tucker hit his first AA HR as Altoona (66-60) blanked Hartford, 2-0. Waddell allowed four hits, walked none and struck out four. Luis Heredia, Yeudy Garcia and Tate Scioneaux combined to fan five over the last three innings. Tucker finished 3-4, as did Jerrick Suiter.

Wyatt Mathisen: 0-4
Jin-De Jhang: 0-4

— West Virginia (60-63) rallied for two in the ninth to tie their game with Greenville, but lost, 8-7, on a wild throw in the bottom of the ninth. Starter Luis Escobar began with four shutout innings, but got knocked out with two outs in the fifth. He was charged with four runs on five hits and three walks. He fanned six. The Power had four HRs in the game: Ryan Nagle (2), Victor Fernandez (1), Yoel Gonzalez (5) and Brent Gibbs (3). They also, however, fanned 14 times.

Adrian Valerio: 0-4, SF tied the game in the ninth
Oneil Cruz: 0-4, 4 K

— Morgantown (34-25) took a 2-0 lead into the ninth, but Joel Cesar and Hector Garcia got torched for seven runs and the Black Bears lost to Mahoning Valley, 7-2. All the runs scored with two outs and resulted mainly from five walks and a hit batsman. The collapse wasted a great effort by Scooter Hightower, who threw eight shutout innings and allowed just four hits and a walk, while striking out eight. Lucas Tancas had two hits.

Jared Oliva: 1-3, BB
Deon Stafford: 0-3, BB
Dylan Busby: 1-4
Tristan Gray: 0-4
Bligh Madris: 0-3

— After winning yesterday, Bristol (12-44) reverted to form with a 16-0 fiasco at the hands of Greeneville. Starter Hunter Stratton lasted only an inning and a third, and Chris McDonald and Miguel Hernandez both got bombed in relief. Melvin Jimenez went 3-4, as the Pirates had nine hits but went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position.

Edison Lantigua: 0-4
Jason Delay: 0-3, BB

— The GCL Pirates (19-29) beat the Blue Jays, 7-6. Second-round pick Calvin Mitchell, who’s scuffled a bit so far, went 4-4 with two doubles and a walk. Cody Bolton threw two and two-thirds innings, allowing no runs on one hit and two walks. He struck out three. Barrett Barnes continued his rehab, going 2-3. There appears to be some sort of trouble with the GCL team. The manager was fired over the weekend (sub. req’d), which isn’t something that happens in-season a lot, especially not at that level. Today, a pitcher played the entire game at DH and another pitcher played most of the game at first. An injured player was replaced by Jesse Medrano, who’s recovering from an injury himself. Several of the team’s best prospects didn’t play.

— The DSL Pirates (34-32) lost to the Astros Orange, 2-1. Luis Arrieta gave up a run on five hits over six innings. He walked none and struck out four. The Pirates had only four hits.

Jean Eusebio: 1-4
Francisco Acuna: 1-4, 2B
Sherten Apostel: 0-2, 2 BB