The following are updates on local baseball players at the minor league level.
Christian Bergman (St. Francis High, 2006) pitcher, Tulsa Drillers: Leading into and since the Texas League All-Star Game, Bergman has elevated his play.
Since the league showcase June 25, which Bergman qualified for but didn’t appear in after pitching two days before, the former Golden Knight has won two of his last three starts. It’s boosted Bergman’s record to 5-6 and dropped his earned-run average to 2.99.
On the year, Bergman owns the league high in innings pitched (111 1/3), sixth-best ERA, WHIP (1.10) and strikeouts (76).
Bergman won his first start after the all-star game June 29, as he tossed six four-hit, one-run innings in a 3-1 win over the Corpus Christi Hooks. He struck out five and walked one. Six days later, he allowed eight base runners — all hits, two runs and struck out seven in seven innings without factoring into a 4-3 loss to the San Antonio Missions.
Bergman took a 2-0 lead into the eighth inning July 5 before giving up a home run on his first pitch of the frame. It was followed by a single, which led to Drillers Manager Kevin Riggs turning to the bullpen. San Antonio chased home that run and added two more to take a 4-1 lead.
“He was very good,” Riggs told TulsaWorld.com of Bergman’s outing. “He did an admirable job and did what he had to do, but it's unfortunate we came out on the wrong side.
“I felt good about it with Bergman in a good place with his pitch count, so we let him start the eighth, and with the way our bullpen has been pitching. Things just didn't work out for us. Give credit to [the Missions].”
Bergman earned his fifth win in a 12-5 victory over the Arkansas Travelers on Friday. In six innings, he gave up seven hits, one walk, three runs and struck out five.
Tulsa, the double-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies, is six games back in the second half of the league’s North Division with an 8-13 record coming into Saturday’s game with Arkansas. The Drillers won the first half with a 34-34 mark.
Ryan Sherriff (Glendale Community College, 2011) pitcher, Palm Beach Cardinals: After an impressive three-game run at the double-A level with the Springfield Cardinals, Sherriff was optioned back to Palm Beach on June 22.
Sherriff has gone 2-1 in his return to class-A advanced Palm Beach. His best outing at class-A came July 9 when he threw seven two-run, one earned, innings in a 6-2 win over the Bradenton Marauders. He allowed seven hits and struck out two batters in the win.
The victory improved Sherriff’s record to 2-2 with an even 4.00 ERA. He picked up his first win in a 5-4 victory over the Fort Myers Miracle on June 25. The left-hander threw five four-hit, four-run innings and struck out four.
This season, Sherriff has an 18:6 strikeout-to-walk ratio and 1.22 WHIP through 27 innings covering five starts.
Palm Beach, affiliated with the St. Louis Cardinals, entered Saturday in first place in the Florida State League’s South Division at 13-8 in the second half of the season. It went 29-39 in the first half.
Alonzo Gonzalez (Glendale Community College, 2012) pitcher, Lansing Lugnuts: Sophomore struggles have continued for Gonzalez, as he’s lost his last six outings and failed to make it through the fifth inning in his last three outings.
The 6-foot-5 left-hander saw his best outing in his last four appearances come June 16, when he threw five innings in an 8-0 loss to the Bowling Green Hot Rods. Gonzalez gave up seven hits, three runs, one walk and struck out five in the game.
The former Vaquero hasn’t made an appearance since July 5 when he walked six, gave up three hits and two runs through four innings of a 7-3 loss to the Lake County Captains.
Gonzalez’ record and ERA have dropped to 2-9 and 5.59, respectively. He’s struck out 47 and walked 42 batters for a 1.91 WHIP.
Class-A Lansing, affiliated with the Toronto Blue Jays, is 37-43 on the year and 5-16 for last place in the second half of the Midwest League Eastern Division season.