Clinton, IA - With his parents sitting in the first row and scores of Texas Rangers fans listening in, right-hander Blake Beavan was as advertised in his first professional start, scattering three hits over six shutout innings in Clinton's 4-2 win over Great Lakes.
The 19-year-old first-round pick by the Rangers, Beavan (1-0) was dominant from his first pitch of the game - a called strike to Jovanny Rosario - to his last out in the sixth, a ground-out by Erik Kanaby. In between were three strikeouts, two double-plays and no walks in just 73 pitches.
The LumberKings backed him with offense early as fellow prospect Engel Beltre led off the game with a scorching drive over the right-field wall for his first home run of 2008. Tim Smith added an RBI double in the third to give the Kings a 2-0 lead.
Renny Osuna finished off the scoring, driving a two-run homer to the berm in left off Loons starter Steve Johnson, effectively ending his night after just four innings. Osuna's first blast of the season put Clinton on top 4-0.
Right-hander Fabio Castillo finished off the final 3.0 innings, giving up a pair of runs on the lone offensive highlight for the Loons. With two outs and Rosario at third, Jaime Ortiz hit a towering blast down the right-field line that just hooked fair.
Still, Castillo (S, 1) induced Travis Vetters into a game-ending ground-out to preserve the win for Beavan.
Johnson (L, 2-1) had been stellar for Great Lakes, entering with a 1.75 ERA, but gave up a total of four runs, three earned to raise his ERA to 2.55. Right-hander Matt Sartor worked three scoreless innings and Loons closer Miguel Ramirez tossed a scoreless frame as well.
Smith recorded three of Clinton's seven hits on the night, going 3-for-4 with his 18th RBI of the season. Osuna drove home two runs on his homer and scored two runs as well, finishing 1-for-4. The Kings' defense turned a season-high four double-plays on the night.
The LumberKings (17-5), winners of three straight, finish off the series with Great Lakes (11-13) tomorrow night. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 PM. Listen to the game on AM 1340 KROS in Clinton or live on the web at www.lumberkings.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.