Columbus 4, Durham 3. This is getting ridiculous. Kevin Witt hit another home run. That is his 29th on the season and about 27 in the last week. Witt is now hitting .294-29-81 with a .963 OPS. Unfortunately Witt is a victim of a numbers game right now. We doubt there is a Devil Rays’ fan out there that wouldn’t rather see Kevin Witt manning first base for the Devil Rays instead of Travis Lee. However there are a couple of factors that are keeping Witt in Durham for the time being. First and foremost, Witt is not on the 40-man roster. If the team decided to promote Witt, the Rays would have to make room for him by either placing somebody on the disabled list or designating somebody for assignment (DFA). The team may not be ready to cut somebody loose and could be waiting for an opening to occur naturally (injury). The other factor is that Travis Lee is a free agent at the end of the season and the Rays may be auditioning him for contenders before the trading deadline. Lee could potentially be serviceable on another team as late-inning, defensive replacement and veteran pinch-hitter. A player like Lee could be worth a low-level minor ‘B’ prospect…B. J. Upton went 2-4 to raise his average to .270. Ben Zobrist went 3-5 and is now hitting .328. Devil Rays fans everywhere are working vigorously with their Casey Fossum and Jae Seo voodoo dolls as J. P. Howell had yet another strong start. Howell went 6 innings, allowing 6 hits, 3 walks, 1 run. He struck out 4 and now has an ERA of 2.11 in 7 Durham starts.
Jacksonville 2, Montgomery 0. The Biscuits managed only 3 hits and now have 8 hits and 0 runs in their past 2 games combined.
Bakersfield 5, Visalia 3. Two more hits for Evan Longoria who is now hitting .371. He also has a ridiculous 1.161 OPS in 23 games. Catcher John Jaso also went 2-4 and is now hitting .323. Patrick Breen added his 21st home run.
SW Michigan 4, Quad Cities 2. Another big start from one of the Big 3. Mike Wlodarczyk pitched 7 innings, allowing only 2 hits, 4 walks and 1 run. He struck out 4.