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Minor League Report (9/22): Wind Surge Crush Drillers, Advance to Championship Series

Nash Walker

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With a decisive two-game sweep of the Tulsa Drillers, the Wichita Wind Surge are heading to the Championship Series!

Image courtesy of Ed Bailey, Wichita Wind Surge


Saints 4, Guardians 6
Box Score

The Saints took one on the chin Thursday. Randy Dobnak started and gave up three earned runs in 2 2/3 innings. Dobnak allowed five hits while walking two and striking out one. Cole Sands was excellent in relief, pitching 2 1/3 scoreless innings with three strikeouts. Evan Sisk also added two scoreless innings, lowering his ERA to a sterling 2.20. 

The Saints tallied 12 hits in an overall strong offensive effort. Michael Helman went 3-for-5 with a double and two runs scored. Cole Sturgeon put the Saints on the board with an RBI single in the first, one of his two hits on the night. Roy Morales went 3-for-3 with two walks out of the cleanup spot. Morales is hitting .295/406/.404 in 42 games for the Saints. 

Nash Knight also notched two hits and Andrew Bechtold drove in two with a double in the eighth. The Saints went 4-for-13 with runners in scoring position but couldn’t quite break through enough for a win. The Saints are 69-75 with five games remaining. 

Wind Surge 11, Drillers 1
Box Score

The Wind Surge clinched their Division Series with a decisive victory Thursday. Now advancing to the Championship Series, the Wind Surge once again relied on their overwhelming offense to complete the sweep. Jair Camargo was absolutely incredible, belting two homers and driving in five. DaShawn Keirsey Jr. also blasted a homer, a solo shot in the fifth. Leobaldo Cabrera made sure to get in on the action with a two-run homer in the eighth. 

Wind Surge starter Daniel Gossett worked around five walks in his four-inning outing. Gossett struck out four and allowed one run on three hits. Cody Laweryson, continuing his outstanding campaign, struck out three over three innings of scoreless relief. Steven Cruz and Alex Phillips each added scoreless innings themselves.

It’s been a special second half for Wichita. The Surge outscored Tulsa 28-2 in the two-game sweep. Next up: the Frisco RoughRiders. Frisco swept San Antonio, setting up a great matchup in the Texas League Championship Series. Game 1 is set for Sunday at 5:05 p.m. CT in Frisco. 

Minor League Hitter of the Day: Jair Camargo (3-for-4, 2 HR, 5 RBI)
Minor League Pitcher of the Day: Cody Laweryson (3 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, 3 K)

#2 Brooks Lee - 0-for-5
#4 Austin Martin - 1-for-4, 2B, BB
#14 Edouard Julien - 1-for-4, 2B, BB
#17 Cole Sands - 2 1/3 IP, H, 0 R/ER, BB, 3 K

Saints - RHP Dereck Rodríguez



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Camargo and Laweryson were great. Keirsey with another HR.

Interesting notes - Lee is DH'ing and Martin playing SS in both playoff games. Not sure if that means anything. Martin seems to be making a lot less errors since being on the IL and getting all healed up. Also, the Wind Surge is deep enough that Holland is coming off the bench as a defensive replacement.

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Nice to have one team that has meaningful games.

Randy Dobnak better invest his earnings from the current contract because he look less and less likely to impact the major league team again.  He had his moment in the sun and it was fun, but I do not expect anything else.

Cole Sands is definitely being groomed as a reliever.  It appears that Wichita has a lot of players to move up after the season - who gets removed?  

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Bullpen thoughts.  Laweryson definitely looks like he could help the Twins sometime next year.  He has had a great year.  I agree with mikelink45 that Sands role in the future is likely in the bullpen, and if he can develop more consistency, he too could help.  Finally, Sisk looked good.  If he can only limit his walks, his stuff looks plenty good enough to get major league hitters out. Hope for the future?

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