The K Zone

Andy McCullough blogs about the Royals and baseball

Sunday in the minors: Starling has five hits, Ventura wins at Omaha

06/17/2013 10:08 AM

06/17/2013 10:10 AM

Center fielder Bubba Starling broke out of a miserable slump by reaching base six times on Sunday, but Low-A Lexington lost 8-7 at Asheville in 11 innings.

Starling, who had been hitless in 17 at-bats, went five for five with a double, an RBI and a stolen base. He also was hit by a pitch and raised his average 16 points to .213.

Starling, the Royals’ first pick in the 2011 draft, had a two-out RBI single in the second inning that gave the Legends a 2-1 lead. Asheville answered with two in the third, but Lexington regained the lead with a pair in the fourth.

The Tourists tied it at 4-4 in the bottom of the fourth, then scored two in the fifth and one in the sixth for a 7-4 lead. But Lexington scored three in the eighth when shortstop Raul Mondesi hit a two-run single and raced all the way home on an error by the center fielder.

It stayed tied until the bottom of the 11th when Asheville’s Julian Yan opened the inning with a solo homer off Ali Williams, 3-4.

Mondesi had four hits, two RBIs and scored twice, while right fielder Fred Ford had three hits, including a double, and scored twice.

Class AAA Omaha

Yordano Ventura won his first game since being promoted as the Storm Chasers beat Iowa 3-1.

Ventura, 1-1, gave up one run on three hits and one walk in five innings, while striking out five. Will Smith pitched three shutout innings of relief and Francisley Bueno gave up a hit and a walk in the ninth and got the save.

Brett Hayes hit a solo homer in the third inning against Guillermo Moscoso, who pitched briefly for the Royals in spring training before being released.

Quintin Berry added a two-run single in the fourth to finish the scoring. Jarrod Dyson was zero for four as he continued his rehab assignment (high ankle sprain). He is hitting .189 for Omaha.

Class AA Northwest Arkansas

Rey Navarro hit a solo homer with one out in the 13th inning as the Naturals beat Arkansas 3-2.

Navarro also homered in the fourth inning and staked Northwest Arkansas to a 1-0 lead. An inning later, Manny Pina’s solo shot made it 2-0. But Arkansas got two runs against J.C. Sulbaran and tied the game.

First baseman Mitch Canham got the victory as he allowed one hit and two walks in two innings. It was his second appearance as a pitcher this year. He also threw three scoreless innings in the Naturals’ 5-4 win in 20 innings against Springfield on May 11.

Opponents are hitting just .143 against Canham, who is batting .285 with 23 walks in 47 games this season.

Whit Merrifield pitched a perfect 13th for the save.

High-A Wilmington

The Blue Rocks were held to four single in a 7-0 loss to Winston-Salem.

Starter Tyler Sample gave up four runs (three earned) on just two hits over three innings. However, he walked four and struck out four. Reliever Daniel Hernandez allowed three runs on five hits and three walks in three innings.

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