Second Verse, Same as the First

Game 2 of the season was a lot like the season opener, an early lead, a mid-game breakdown, but this time, Salem-Keizer used a big seventh inning to put the game away in a 7-4 win.

THE GOOD: The Hawks made a couple solid defensive plays in a tough seventh inning, as Jeimer Candelario made a tough backhanded stab of a line drive for the first out with the bases loaded, then Eduardo Gonzalez made a sliding catch with the sacks full to end the inning.  Rock Shoulders and Willson Contreras each hit home runs – both solo shots.  Starter James Pugliese picked off a runner at first with a stellar third-to-first move that thwarted a rally.

THE BAD: Amaury Paulino was erratic at times in his two innings of work – allowing a run after two outs in the sixth, then hitting a man, walking two, and hurling a wild pitch in the three-run seventh inning that put the game away.  Shawon Dunston Jr. was picked off of first in the eighth inning – with the tying run at the plate.

NOTES: The home run by Shoulders went a long, long, ways – over the right field wall and beyond a 35 foot high protective net, finding its way onto the heavily traveled Interstate 5.   It marked his first professional home run after 14 homers in junior college in 2011.  The Hawks are in both first and last place in the East Division – as S-K, Eugene, Everett, and Vancouver have all improved to 2-0 on the season.

DRAFT NOTES: The Cubs announced the signing of 15 players from the 2012 First-Year Players Draft, including supplemental first-round pick, Paul Blackburn, a high school pitcher from California.  College players that may end up in Boise include pitchers Michael Heesch (8th Round), Corbin Hoffner (14th Round),  and Stephen Perkaslis (21st Round), infielders Stephen Bruno (7th Round), Tim Saunders (32nd Round), Ben Carhart (35th Round), and Jake Rogers (40th Round), catchers Chadd Kirst (9th Round), Carlos Escobar (15th Round, and Lance Rymel (28th Round), and outfielder Izaac Garsez (30th Round) – from The College of Idaho.

AROUND THE MINORS: Josh Vitters went 4-for-4 in Iowa’s 9-1 loss to Albuquerque on Saturday, while Rebel Ridling hit the go-ahead solo homer in the eighth in Tennessee’s 2-1 win over Birmingham, helping the Smokies above the .500 mark.  Austin Kirk got the start for the Northern Division team in the Florida State All-Star Game, tossing a scoreless inning in a 6-3 loss.

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