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Cannonballs coming: West Virginia gets a shutout

— Indianapolis (16-16) had 14 hits but lost to Columbus, 8-6. Clay Holmes struggled for the third straight start, giving up seven runs, five earned, on eight hits and four walks in four and a third innings. He struck out four. Holmes now has a 5.33 ERA and has walked 16 in 25.1 IP. Tyler Eppler threw shutout ball over the last four innings, giving up just a hit and a walk, and striking out four. Kevin Newman was 3-5 and Chris Bostick hit his first home run of the season. Jordan Luplow was 2-4 with a double and a walk. He now has 14 hits in his last 27 ABs and his season’s numbers are up to 283/385/489.

Austin Meadows: 1-5, 2B
Kevin Kramer: 2-5
Jacob Stallings: 2-4

— Altoona (17-15) also came up short despite some good offense in a 9-8 loss to Reading. Jason Martin and Christian Kelley each went 3-4 with a walk. Martin also had a double and three runs scored, and is batting 330/387/570. Logan Hill added his fourth home run and Will Craig had two doubles in five times up. The Curve had a 7-4 lead going into the bottom of the eighth, but Tate Scioneaux and Geoff Hartlieb combined to allow five runs in the inning. Starter Pedro Vasquez gave up four runs on six hits in five innings.

Cole Tucker: 0-5
Ke’Bryan Hayes: 2-5, 2B

— Luis Escobar struggled for the third time in his last four starts as Bradenton (19-16) lost to Palm Beach, 6-4. Escobar gave up five runs on seven hits in five and two-thirds innings. He walked two and struck out three. Tyler Gaffney went 2-4 with his third home run and Jason Delay hit his first longball of the year.

— Sergio Cubilete (pictured) made his first appearance in nearly a month and threw five shutout innings as West Virginia (20-13) blanked Hagerstown, 2-0. Cubilete was hit in the head with a line drive back in mid-April, but in this game allowed just a hit and two walks. He struck out three. He was helped by several line outs, including a nice, diving grab by first baseman Kyle Watson, who conveniently landed on the bag with the runner leading off for a double play.

Ike Schlabach and Blake Weiman each threw two innings to finish up. Schlabach gave up four hit, but Dylan Busby started a nice, around-the-horn double play to rescue him from a first-and-third situation. Weiman had some 2-0 counts, but recovered each time and finished with four strikeouts while not walking anybody.

Oneil Cruz continued to reign in the strikeouts, going 2-4 with a triple. He did not show the swing-and-miss that’s generally been his trademark. The triple was a laser into the alley in left-center on which Cruz showed some very good wheels. Cruz’ slash line is now up to 265/351/504 and he won’t be 20 until October. He had only routine plays in the field, but showed a strong arm.

Much to my annoyance, the Power went with a Sunday lineup that did not include Lolo Sanchez, Deon Stafford or Mason Martin. Cal Mitchell had a double in four trips, with one of the outs being a deep liner that the center fielder ran down. He did fumble a routine single, putting the batter on second. Rodolfo Castro had an infield hit in four times up. Dylan Busby was 1-4 with three strikeouts.