Matt Magill Shines as the Chihuahuas Devour the River Cats

Credit: E.Killian/EVT News

Credit: E.Killian/EVT News


Matt Magill pitched six shutout innings against the Sacramento River Cats on Tuesday night, allowing two hits, while collecting four strikeouts.

Magill showed off his athleticism on the first play, a broken bat ground ball to first baseman, Christian Villanueva. Villanueva fielded the ball and tossed it to Magill, who beat Sacramento’s Orlando Calixte to the bag by a fraction of a second. Magill would go on to face the minimum number of hitters possible until Ali Castillo doubled with one out in the sixth. That was the second hit allowed by Magill in the game. The first baserunner had been eliminated with a double play in the 3rd inning.

On the offensive side, El Paso was more dominant than the score would indicate.

The leadoff hitter reached safely in each of the first five innings. Jose Rondon hit a double leading off the third inning and his first Triple-A home run of the season to start the fifth. Scoring runs proved to be somewhat difficult for the Chihuahuas. In each of the first two innings, three players reached base but none went on to score. But in the fifth inning, following Rondon’s lead-off home run, the Dogs were able to string together hits and Nick Buss and Diego Goris knocked in a run each.

The 6’9 Texan, Brad Wieck, made his Triple-A debut when he came in for Magill in the 7th. He got off to a rocky start, walking Jarrett Parker and allowing a single to Mac Williamson. He seemed to settle down and he looked really good against the 3rd hitter, Chris Shaw. He struck Shaw out with his fastball reaching 95. The next hitter, Juan Ciriaco, singled, driving in Parker. But after Williamson stole third, Trevor Brown grounded into a double play, ending the threat.

Carter Capps pitched the 8th inning and no illegal pitches were called.

There was one odd play where it appeared the hitter, Ali Castillo, had fouled off a ball, but he went down to the ground in obvious pain. MiLB Gameday initially ruled it as a hit-by-pitch and the scoreboard didn’t reflect an out even though he went to the dugout and no one went to first base. After the next hitter was retired it became clear that Castillo had struck out in the pitch that hit him and the ball that was deflected was off his arm and not his bat. Just see below. Ali Castillo would remain in the game.

Jason Jester allowed one run in the 9th, and that was the ball game. Diego Goris and Jabari Blash both fielded their positions exceptionally well today, especially Diego, who had several hard-hit balls in his direction and made more than a couple of plays moving towards second base and throwing across his body.

Game Notes:

  • Jose Rondon started at 2B yesterday, but was back at SS with Dusty Coleman on the bench today
  • Coach Keith Werman was nowhere to be seen today and players coached first base
  • Christian Bethancourt pinch-hit for Wieck in the 7th and grounded out
  • Manny Margot was activated from the DL by the San Diego Padres, ending his rehab stint with El Paso
  • Trevor Cahill was sent to El Paso on a rehab assignment
  • Nick Buss went 2-for-4, bringing his batting average back up to .380.
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Eric Killian on Twitter
Eric Killian
I’m Eric. I’m a lifetime baseball fan, recreational fantasy baseball player and serious baseball collector. Unlike most of the team, it’s my love of collecting that got me into prospecting. I just moved to El Paso, home of the San Diego Padres Triple-A club, the El Paso Chihuahuas. I was able to watch a few Padres prospects in the Arizona Fall League this November. Beyond that I hadn’t seen Padres minor league baseball since 2007. The San Antonio Missions had just become affiliated with the Padres and the team was named the Baseball America Minor League Team of the Year. They had guys like Will Venable, Chase Headley, Wade LeBlanc, Dirk Hayhurst, Nick Hundley, and the everlasting Chad Huffman. I say “everlasting” because Huffman is still in the minors battling for a job and will attend spring training with the Cardinals this year.

I’m in the Army which is what brought me to El Paso. I’m originally from Texas and at heart I’m a Reds fan, but my situation makes it much more sensible for me to cover the Padres. I have a girlfriend, two cats and about a million baseball cards and books. Moving to a city with a AAA baseball team is very exciting and I plan on attending several games throughout the season. I’m on Twitter at @USKillian.

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