Minor League Opening Day Thread

***UPDATE*** The Halos' affiliates swept the opposition. Awesomeness.

Cedar Rapids Kernel Austin Wood looked dominant, blowing 97 mph FB's (98 mph according to the stadium gun) past the opposition. Kaleb Cowart led the offensive attack with four hits, including a triple and a double, while playing rock solid defense at third. Chevy Clarke also made a highlight reel grab at the centerfield wall, in addition to getting on base three times. On the other hand, the team K'd 13 times collectively, a trend that may continue for the contact-challenged club. Mike Clevinger takes the ball tonight. MILBTV will carry the game.

Jermone Williams looked pretty human in the California League, coughing up two runs against the Dodger's A-Ball affiliate and putting the 66'ers behind early. The bullpen came up nails though, with Buddy Boshers, Ryan Chaffee and Dakota Robinson combining for four scoreless innings. Travis Witherspoon homered in the sixth to help spark the comeback, and shortstop Rolando Gomez worked his third walk of the game in the top of the 11th inning to force in the winning run. Groundball machine Don Roach pitches tonight.

In the Texas League, AJ Schugel walked three and struggled with his command through five innings, but escaped unscathed due to five timely K's. Not bad for a guy who threw just 19+ innings in High A last year. Jean Segura, batting in the three-spot, knocked in the game's only run with a line drive to left in the sixth. Steven Geltz, Drew Taylor, and Kevin Johnson combined to shut the door, striking out five in the game's final four innings. John Hellweg goes tonight.

Garrett Richards was dominant for Salt Lake, fanning seven through seven innings while making his case to claim the big league club's last open rotation slot. He's looked really good of late, doing a fantastic job of burying his slider to induce swing and misses while reintroducing his curveball to further befuddle the opposition. I still think he's going to be a good one. Trout DH'd, but racked up three hits out of the leadoff spot. Matt Shoemaker pitches tonight another MILBTV distributed game.

Things look especially good for the Kernels so far. 2011 sixth round draft pick Austin Wood is cruising, touching 98 mph with a wicked tailing fastball. He's K'd four in two innings.

Oops, make that five K's in two and a third innings.

2010 14th rounder Kevin Moesquit -- he of the booming spring training HR -- is leading off, and has gotten on base twice already through three innings. Kaleb Cowart, Frazier Hall, and Abel Baker have all added RBI doubles.

Meanwhile, AJ Schugel, who made a surprise jump all the way to Arkansas despite having pitched full time for only the past two years, has treaded water over two innings, K'ing four but with a couple of walks and a hit allowed.

I have to go wrangle babies now, so won't be back on the thread for awhile, but feel free to post/comment below. I'll jump back on later tonight if anyone wants to chat prospects.

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