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Memphis Redbirds Game Notes: June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021 - Triple-A East League (AAA East) - Memphis Redbirds News Release

Thursday, June 17th 6:05 p.m CT Memphis Redbirds (15-23) at Indianapolis Indians (20-17) Game 3 of 6

Victory Field / Indianapolis, IN Game #39 of 120 / Away Game #15 of 60

RHP Angel Rondón (0-3, 5.32 ERA) vs. RHP Cody Ponce (0-2, 6.66 ERA)

MiLB First Pitch App: Evan Stockton & Justin Gallanty

Last Time Out: For the second straight night, the Redbirds lost to the Indianapolis Indians (Triple-A affiliate, Pittsburgh Pirates) by a 6-1 final at Victory Field. Beau Sulser was absolutely outstanding for Indy, tossing six scoreless innings with just four hits allowed and five strikeouts. Memphis scored its only run in the eighth on an RBI single from Justin Williams. The outfielder is now 4-11 in four games of an MLB rehab stint with the Redbirds, driving in two runs in the process.

Memphis Starter: Angel Rondón returns to Memphis off a stint with St. Louis tonight. The righthander made two relief appearances with the Cardinals recently (June 6th and 12th), working 2.0 scoreless innings with just one hit allowed. With the Redbirds this season, Rondón has a 5.32 ERA in five appearances (four starts) with 16 strikeouts and seven walks in 23.2 IP. The 23-year-old is considered one of the top 10 prospects in the Cardinals' system.

Indianapolis Starter: Cody Ponce hopes to turn around a tough start to his 2021 season tonight for the Indians. The 6'6, 255 righthanded hurler has posted an ERA of 6.66 in 24.1 IP this season in AAA, racking up 26 strikeouts and 10 walks in six appearances (five starts) with Indy. Ponce also made a spot start with Pittsburgh on May 25th against the Cubs, allowing four runs (all earned) on nine hits in 5.0 innings of work. Ponce made five appearances (three starts) with the Pirates during the 2020, COVID-shortened season, recording an ERA of 3.18 in 17.0 IP (six earned runs) with 12 strikeouts and six walks.

On-Base Machine: Kramer Robertson has been getting on base at an incredible rate over his last nine games. During that stretch, Robertson has walked 11 times, has five hits and has been hit by a pitch. That run has raised Robertson's on-base percentage from .340 to .381 for the season. His on-base percentage in June sits at .429. His 24 walks on the season are the fifth-most in all of Triple-A baseball.

Welcome Back, Lars: Lars Nootbaar returned to the Redbirds' lineup from the injured list on Tuesday. He's picked up right where he left off, reaching base twice on Tuesday (single, walk) followed by another single and walk on Wednesday. The single extended Nootbaar's hit streak to seven games, dating back to before his injury. Over his last 15 games, Nootbaar is 19-54 (.351) with four home runs and 13 RBI. For the season, the 23-year-old has played 18 games and is slashing a very impressive .328/.442/.563, giving him an OPS of 1.004.

Juan's the One: Juan Yepez has reached in each of his last four games, including a double to left field in Wednesday night's game. During that time, the 23-year-old from Venezeuala has gone 3-6 at the plate with three walks and two RBIs. Yepez made his first start of the season at third base on Wednesday night.

Rally Birds: Sunday afternoon marked another comeback win for the Memphis Redbirds. 11 of the 'Birds 15 wins this season have occurred in come-from-behind fashion. Memphis also has ten wins by just one run.

A Welcome Addition: Grant Black has been a very reliable arm for the Redbirds since joining the team on June 6. Black had one tough outing, but in his other three, the 26-year-old has pitched 7.1 scoreless innings and struck out eight batters.

Keeping up with Jones: Connor Jones has authored a very strong stretch out of the Memphis bullpen. Jones has not allowed a run in any of his last three appearances and six of his last seven outings have been scoreless. For the season, Jones has not allowed a run in nine of his 15 outings and has struck out 18 batters in 18.0 innings.

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