While the Arizona Diamondbacks took a big step backwards Friday night in their quest for the postseason, two of their Minor League teams won their respective league championships while a third is one win away from their crown. One more victory by the Triple A Reno Aces will place the D-Back organization in rarefied air as nearly 50% of their farm system will have claimed titles, a statistic that should have fans giddy for 2013 and beyond.
The Mobile BayBears of the AA Southern League won their second straight title by as score of 1-0 over the Jackson Generals, winning their best-of-five series 3-1. Starting and winning pitcher Mike Bolsinger threw seven shutout innings before yielding to Eury De La Rosa who pitched the next 1 2/3 frames. Bo Shultz then recorded the final out of the series on one pitch. The three hurlers allowed only four runners to reach base all game. Third baseman Matt Davidson, Arizona’s #4 rated prospect and highest ranked position player was named the series MVP. He collected three hits in Game 3 including the game winning two-run homer as Mobile was victorious 4-2 in 10 innings.
The Single A Missoula Osprey did not have as much drama in their clinching game. Missoula defeated the Ogden Raptors 10-0 in the third and deciding game of their Pioneer League Championship Series. The Osprey took control in the first inning by pushing across five runs. Highly regarded outfielder Socrates Brito along with fellow 20 year-old teammate Breland Almadova each drove in two runs in the frame. Infielder Jake Lamb and catcher Yosbel Gutierrez each cracked two-run homers Missoula cranked out 13 hits. This was the third title for Missoula as members of the D-Back organization previously winning in 1999 and 2006.
Triple Crowns do not happen all that often in baseball. Yet, I bet there have been more Triple Crown winners in Major League Baseball than a single organization winning three Minor League Championships in a single season. It may not make for major headlines but it certainly is a remarkable achievement.
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