Koehler stymies Express, Z's win sixth straight
Tom Koehler is showing why he tied for the Minor League Baseball lead with 16 wins for Class AA Jacksonville a year ago.
Koehler shut out the Round Rock Express on three hits over six innings, and the New Orleans Zephyrs extended their winning streak to six games with a 4-0 blanking of their division rivals before a crowd of 10,768 in the Zephyrs' home opener.
The Z's have now won six in a row for the first time since July 12-21, 2008.
Only one batter reached third base in Koehler's six innings, after Chad Tracy doubled with one out in the fourth and advanced to third on a ground out. Koehler (1-0) then got Brad Nelson to bounce out to first to end the threat.
The Zephyrs' right-hander struck out the side in the second, and finished with five strikeouts.
New Orleans got all the offensive support they needed via a pair of home runs. Josh Kroeger belted a one-out solo homer in the second, and Bryan Petersen took advantage of back-to-back walks in the seventh by sending a 1-2 offering from Yhency Brazoban over the wall in right field, bumping the lead to 4-0.
Jay Buente fanned four batters in two innings of relief, and Steve Cishek worked around a two-out walk in the ninth to nail down the Zephyrs' second combined shutout of the season.
The Zephyrs pitching staff has a 1.37 ERA over its last five games, allowing just seven earned runs in 46 innings.
New Orleans will look for a seventh consecutive victory on Saturday night, when the series with Round Rock resumes at 6:00 p.m. Right-hander Adalberto Mendez (1-0) will face Tanner Scheppers, who will be making his 2011 debut.
• Discuss this story on the Pacific Coast League message board...
Pacific Coast League Stories from April 15, 2011
- Isotopes handcuffed by 'Hawks - Albuquerque Isotopes
- Reno Bighorns Second Round Playoff Tickets to Go on Sale Saturday - Reno Aces
- RedHawks Barrage Supports Nieve in Win - Oklahoma City Dodgers
- Round Rock Express Blanked in Opener at New Orleans 4-0 - Round Rock Express
- Koehler stymies Express, Z's win sixth straight - New Orleans Baby Cakes
- RedHawks Make Roster Moves - Oklahoma City Dodgers
- Round Rock Express Game Notes at New Orleans - Round Rock Express
- I-Cubs Home Opener Rained Out - Iowa Cubs
- I-Cubs Call-Up Snyder - Iowa Cubs
- Kirkman Recalled by Rangers - Round Rock Express
- Junior Grizzlies Begin Another Season at Field of Dreams - Fresno Grizzlies
- Sounds Road Opener Rained Out - Nashville Sounds
- Opening Night Moved to Saturday - Omaha Storm Chasers
- Tucson Padres Announce Homestand Promotions - Tucson Padres
- Grizzlies Come Through in a Pinch - Fresno Grizzlies
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.