Wednesday in the minors: Blue Rocks fall, but Schlehuber stays hot

Class A Wilmington’s bullpen allowed five runs in the seventh and eighth innings and the Blue Rocks lost 9-6 at Potomac.

The loss overshadowed designated hitter Jared Schlehuber's big night as he continued his torrid start since joining the Blue Rocks from extended spring training.

Schlehuber was three for four with a double, a three-run homer and he scored a pair of runs. It was the fourth time in five games that Schlehuber had a multi-hit game and his second straight with a home run.

“He was signed after the draft last year out of Oral Roberts,” said J.J. Picollo, the Royals’ assistant general manager in charge of player development. “He’s got good power. He did a pretty decent job at (Rookie Advanced) Idaho Falls. ...

“We had an opening, a chance to get him some at-bats in Wilmington because he has been swinging the bat well at extended spring. We got him out there, and he’s off to a good start. He’s had good at-bats under the lights and done a nice job.”

Shortstop Kenny Diekroeger and center fielder Lane Adams each added two hits for Wilmington, while catcher Parker Morin walked twice and had a two-run homer.

Schlehuber’s three-run homer in the sixth inning put Wilmington ahead 6-2, but the Nationals scored five in the seventh and two in the eighth.

Class AA Northwest Arkansas

Arkansas scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning and broke open a close game, beating Northwest Arkansas 5-1.

Naturals starter Sugar Ray Marimon gave up two runs on five hits in six innings with three walks and seven strikeouts. The Travelers did their damage against Edwin Carl, who gave up the three eighth-inning runs in two-thirds of an inning.

Northwest Arkansas had just four singles in the game, but got two of them in the fourth inning when Rey Navarro’s groundout scored Angel Franco.

Low-A Lexington

First baseman Fred Ford had three hits, including a two-run homer, three RBIs and scored two runs as the Legends beat Kannapolis 9-2.

Catcher Alex Marquez had three hits and two RBIs as Lexington collected 13 hits.

Kannapolis jumped ahead with two in the fourth inning, but in the Legends’ half of the inning, Ford hit his two-run homer.

Lexington took the lead in the sixth when Yowill Espinal walked, took second on an errant pickoff attempt, and came around to score on a wild pitch and a throwing error by the catcher.

Humberto Arteaga then walked and Ford doubled. After an RBI groundout, Marquez brought home Ford with a single to give the Legends a 5-2 lead. Lexington scored one in the seventh and added three in the eighth.

Christian Binford gave up two runs on five hits in six innings with four strikeouts and a walk as his ERA dipped to 3.18.