Lineups, Notes and Such for August 4

Here’s your entry for the latest information relating to tonight’s Osprey game against the Billings Mustangs. First, the starting lineups:

Billings Mustangs
Second Half: 1-3 Overall: 21-21 Manager: Pat Kelly
Spencer Dickinson CF
Juan Silva LF
Ryan Wright 2B
Robert Maddox 1B
Sean Buckley DH
Kyle Waldrop RF
Junior Arias 3B
Yovan Gonzalez C
Cristobal Rodriguez SS
Tony Cingrani  LHP

Missoula Osprey
Second Half: 2-2 Overall: 27-15 Manager: Hector De La Cruz
Fidel Pena DH
Tom Belza RF
Ryan Court 3B
Jon Griffin 1B
Eric Groff 2B
Stephen Cardullo SS
Roidany Aguila C
Ty Linton LF
Breland Brown CF
Conrad Flynn RHP

The Skinny: The Osprey, winners of the Pioneer League North Division First-Half title, continue their three-game series with the Billings Mustangs tonight. The Osprey have the edge in the season series, 6-5, after taking home a 6-2 win on Wednesday.Last Time Out: Eric Groff waited exactly nine outs and one pitch to extend his current hit streak on Wednesday, hitting a solo home run to left field in the bottom of the second inning as the Missoula Osprey beat the Billings Mustangs, 6-2, in front of 2,448 onlookers at Ogren Park Allegiance Field. Ryan Court added a two-run home run, while Tom Belza and Stephen Cardullo added two hits and a RBI each as the Osprey collected 10 hits in the contest. Ty Linton added a RBI single, snapping a 2-2 tie with his run-scoring safety in the bottom of the sixth inning to give the Osprey the lead for good. Enrique Burgos (4-3) pitched six solid innings, allowing two runs on five hits, to pick up the win. Seth Simmons pitched into the eighth, while DJ Johnson nailed down the final five outs for his fourth save in five chances. Court homered to right field, his fourth roundtripper of the season, with a man on in the seventh to extend the lead to 5-2. Cardullo doubled home Groff in the home half of the eighth, after Johnson induced the second of three double plays the Mustangs would hit into on the night in the top half of the inning to get out of a jam and preserve the lead.

The streak continues … : Eric Groff extended his current hitting streak to 20 straight games with a 2-for-4 night at home on Wednesday. That ties the club record, set by Will Crouch in 2005. During the 20-game streak, Groff is 34-for-82 at the plate (.415), with 11 doubles, a triple, seven home runs and 21 RBIs. Groff has also collected 10 multi-hit games during what is now his longest career hitting streak. Groff put together a 10-game streak from June 23-July 6 earlier this season, and has hit in 32 of the 36 games he has played in this season. By the way, the Pioneer League record is 30, which was set in 2004 by Ricardo Nanita of Great Falls. Groff improved his season batting average to .358, which is currently second in the Pioneer League, and he leads the league in total bases (98), doubles (15), extra-base hits (25) and slugging percentage (.662), while he is also second in total hits (53).

On the Mound Today: Missoula will send out right-hander Conrad Flynn to the mound in search of his fourth win of the season. Flynn (3-1, 4.66) will be making his third start of the season tonight, a role in which he has struggled … to the tune of a 0-1 mark with a 12.92 ERA. The bullpen suits him just fine – he’s 3-0 with a 1.69 ERA in seven relief outings. He has allowed just two hits since coming off his roughest outing in the season. Flynn also likes pitching at home – he’s 3-0 with an 1.88 ERA.

The Mustangs counter tonight with left-hander Tony Cingrani, who is potentially going to pitch into the fifth inning for the first time this season tonight. The Mustangs have watched as Cingrani (0-1, 2.08) has built up his innings over time – only 17 1/3 innings pitched entering his seventh start of the season. He was very solid against the Osprey, striking out four in 2 2/3 innings pitched in his only outing against the Osprey on July 11, a game in which the Mustangs picked up a 5-2 win.

Pitching Probables
Friday, August 5
MIS RHP Dexter Price (1-0, 5.52) vs. BIL RHP Radhames Quezada (1-2, 4.35)

Saturday, August 6
MIS RHP Raymond Hernandez (5-0, 3.15) vs. HEL TBA

Sunday, August 7
MIS RHP Robby Rowland (2-3, 6.41) vs. HEL TBA

Stat of the Day: Only three Osprey players have had a pair of hit streaks of 10 or more games during a season, with Eric Groff at the top of the heap (20 games, 10 games) in the longest streak. The others – Lyle Overbay (1999, 12-game and 10-game) and Andrew Fie (2006, 12-game and 10-game).

By The Numbers:

Current Streak:

W1

Extra Innings:

1-4

Team Hitting:

.284

First Half:

25-13

Lead After 5:

22-3

PL Rank:

3rd

Second Half:

2-2

Tied After 5:

2-3

Team Pitching:

4.54

June:

4-7

Trail After 5:

3-9

PL Rank:

2nd

July:

21-7

One-run games:

8-7

Longest W Streak:

7 games

August:

2-1

Two-run games:

3-0

Longest L Streak

3 games

September:

0-0

Three-run games:

6-3

HR total at home:

23


Coming Soon:

Friday – Jersey Pillow Giveaway, Fly Away Friday.
Saturday – T-shirt Giveaway, Missoula Independent Pre-Game Concert Series (Box Elder), Launch-A-Ball.
Sunday – Kids Day/Kids Club Membership Day, with kids running the bases and playing catch on the field post-game.

Osprey Alumni Update/Minor League Report:
The rookie AZL D-backs (11-24) dropped a 9-0 decision to the AZL Cubs on Wednesday. Victor Acosta (2010) pitched a shutout inning of relief, allowing just a hit while collecting a strikeout. The outing lowered his ERA to 1.96. Next: vs. AZL Athletics.

The rookie DSL D-backs (20-34) had their game with the DSL Padres rained out. Next: at DSL White Sox.

Short-Season A Yakima (3-5, 16-30) picked up a 4-3 win over Everett on Wednesday. Westley Moss (2011) went 2-for-4 with a run, improving his batting average to .279, while Randy Hamrick (2010) notched his first save of the season.  Next: vs. Everett.

Class A South Bend (17-21, 51-56) dropped a 6-1 setback at Lansing on Wednesday. Matt Helm (2009-10) drove in Ender Inciarte (2009) for the lone Silver Hawks’ run.  Inciarte went 1-for-4 on the night. Next: at Lansing.

Class A Advanced Visalia (17-22, 48-61) fell at Stockton on Wednesday, 7-1. Bobby Borchering (2009) was 2-for-4 at the plate for the Rawhide, while David Holmberg (2010) pitched six innings of effective baseball, but received no run support as he took the loss. Next: at Stockton.

Double-A Mobile (28-11, 66-43) managed to get tripped up by Chattanooga, 10-7, on Wednesday. Kyle Greene (2008)  – the last Osprey player to make a run and get close to Crouch’s streak before Groff tied it on Wednesday – went 3-for-3 at the plate, with two runs scored, a home run and two RBIs, while teammate Ollie Linton (2008) posted a 3-for-5 night with a run and a RBI. Next: vs. Chattanooga.

Triple-A Reno (64-47) won a wild game on Wednesday, knocking off Memphis in 13 innings, 8-7. Esmerling Vasquez (2004) pitched a scoreless inning of relief, allowing just a walk but also collected a strikeout. Next: vs. Memphis.

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