Nick Maronde, the Angels’ No. 10 prospect according to Baseball America, was activated by the 66ers off the disabled list after Friday night’s game.
Maronde, 0-1 with a 2.83 ERA in six starts with the Sixers this season, had been sidelined since May 4 with left lat strain.
He had pitched three times in a rehab appearance in the rookie-level Arizona League. He was 0-1 with a 1.13 ERA in eight innings. He will rejoin the Sixers rotation, but it is not known exactly when.
To make room for Maronde, the Sixers released reliever Kevin Nabors. Nabors was just activated from the disabled list on Thursday. In addition, reliever Baudlio Lopez, on the DL with a left quad strain, is going to rookie-level Orem.
With the score tied 2-2 in the seventh inning and the go-ahead run on third with one out, the 66ers chose to intentionally walk Matt Kemp. The move worked out: C.J. Retherford grounded into a double play and the Sixers went on to score 2 in the bottom of the seventh of a 4-2 victory over the Quakes before 4,661 at San Manuel Stadium.
It was a rare sight: an intentional walk to a rehabbing major leaguer. It surprised Kemp and Quakes manager Juan Bustabad. Sixers manager Bill Haselman was surprised they were surprised.
- Intentional walks are rare in the California League, and Bustabad said he would want his pitcher to pitch to the big leaguer. “I would never do it,” he said.
- “Have you ever seen that?” Kemp wondered. “Intentionally walk a rehab guy?”
- Here is Haselman’s defense, if he needs one. They hadn’t pitched around Kemp at all during his time in the Cal League. It was his first walk in the 3-game series against the Sixers. The first two pitches weren’t intentional. But Kemp didn’t chase those and down 2-0 and in that situation, Haselman wasn’t going to let Kemp beat him. “I would expect them to do the same thing,” Haselman said.
By the way, Kemp was 1 for 3 with the walk and two strikeouts and is expected to join Triple-A Albuquerque today.
Class act? Matt Kemp is doing at least 1 thing to prove he’s a class act in his time in the minor leagues.
The Dodgers all-star outfielder, in his third game of a rehabilitation assignment with the Quakes, went 1 for 4 with a single and an RBI groundout as the 66ers downed the Quakes 5-2 at San Manuel Stadium in San Bernardino on Thursday night.
But Kemp is doing his best to endear himself to the Sixers. Big leaguers, when they rehab in the minors, are expected to buy the postgame spread.
But Kemp not only bought Outback Steakhouse buffet for the clubhouse for his own team, but for the Sixers as well.
I can’t remember anyone doing it in this league, buying for both teams. (Manny Ramirez wouldn’t even do it for his own team). Sixers broadcaster Sam Farber hadn’t seen it anywhere he broadcasted. Quakes broadcaster Mike Lindskog only recalls it in the Texas League with Cardinals pitchers Adam Waindright and Chris Carpenter.
“These guys have to eat too,” Kemp said. “I remember when I was coming up it was a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and Top Ramen.”
There are few times during the course of a season when the Quakes could use more seats. Tuesday was one of those times.
Quakes president Brent Miles said he thought they could’ve sold “about 2,000″ more tickets. Instead, they had to settle for a sell-out crowd of 6,516 to watch the Quakes defeat High Desert 4-2.
The reason for the extra demand was two words: Matt Kemp. Kemp, the Dodgers’ all-star outfielder and MVP candidate, began a rehab stint with the Quakes as he works his way back from a hamstring injury.
While the Quakes were holding on to win in Lancaster, 8-7 on Friday night, the 66ers’ comeback came up short at High Desert, falling 15-12 to the Mavericks.
The Quakes improved to 3-6 in the second half, while the Sixers dropped to 2-7.
The game had a playoff feel, with 3,275 fans in attendance on a Monday night.
The Quakes held the early 5-2 lead, but couldn’t hold it, despite a 5 for 5 performance by C.J. Retherford.
Poor pitching and poor defense led to six runs in the fifth and sixth inning and the High Desert Mavericks downed the Quakes 8-5.
The win gave the Mavericks the first-half South Division title in the game that served as a one-game tiebreaker with the Quakes.
Brad Miller’s single in the sixth inning tied the score 5-5, and John Hicks followed with a two-run single to give the Mavericks the lead for good.
The Mavericks scored six runs in the fifth and sixth, thanks to nine hits, one hit batter, two wild pitches, one error (and another hit that should’ve been an error) and a missed cutoff man.
The Quakes’ best chance to rally came in the eighth when Austin Gallagher and Bobby Coyle drew leadoff walks.
But Scott Wingo and pinch-hitter Chris Jacobs struck out and Leon Landry hit into a fielder’s choice to end the threat.
Neither the 66ers nor the Quakes rewarded their home fans with a win at the end of a long game on Saturday night.
In a game that lasted nearly 3 1/2 hours, the 66ers lost their eighth straight, falling 6-4 to High Desert at San Manuel Stadium.
When the Quakes won on Thursday, they knew they had 3 chances to win 1 game against the High Desert Mavericks to win the first-half South Division title.
The first chance came on Friday, and they lost on Mickey Wiswall’s 11th-inning home run 9-7 after tying the score in the ninth.
On Saturday, they had the tying runs on base with one out in the 9th, but fell in again on the road in Adelanto, falling 5-2.
Needing a win in 1 of their last 2 games of the first half to clinch the first-half title, the Quakes came up short in their first chance, losing 9-7 in 11 innings at High Desert on Friday night.
The Quakes lead the Mavericks by 1 game in the South Division first half with 1 to play. Should the Mavericks win on Saturday night in Adelanto, they would tie the Quakes for the first-half title. The teams would then have a 1-game playoff in the next scheduled meeting of the second half. That game is Monday, June 25 at High Desert.
Lancaster and Lake Elsinore are also 1 game back of the Quakes with one to play. But those two teams lose any tiebreaker scenarios and cannot win the first half.
I try not to criticize managerial moves, but I will in this case with Quakes manager Juan Bustabad.
Last year, the Quakes seemed destined from the first-half title from pretty early in the season.
This year, they weren’t on the first-half title radar until the last couple of weeks. Funny how a 10-1 stretch can change things.
Now, after Thursday’s 5-3 come-from-behind win at High Desert, the Quakes are 1 win away from a first-half South Division title for the second year in a row.
The Quakes (37-31) lead High Desert, Lake Elsinore (which lost to Bakersfield late Thursday) and Lancaster (all 35-33) all by two games with two to play.
As I understand it, even though all 4 of those teams, or 3 of those teams could finish the first half in a tie, only the Quakes and High Desert can win the first-half title. That’s because Lake Elsinore and Lancaster both lose on any tiebreaker scenarios, whether they are involved in a 3-way or 4-way tie.
So, if High Desert wins the next two games, the Quakes and High Desert would have a one-game playoff in the first game in the second half between the teams. That game is June 25 at High Desert. Of course, the Quakes can eliminate any tiebreaker scenarios just by winning Friday or Saturday at High Desert.