Piggy Back Starters Shut Down Hounds

By Bob Hards / Midland RockHounds | May 1, 2013 4:32 AM ET


The Houston Astros are employing "piggy-back" starts with their Double-A club (and throughout their minor league system) in Corpus Christi, meaning two pitchers are designated "starters" for each game. It's an unusual practice at the higher levels of the minors, but it sure worked out fine Tuesday night.

Jake Buchanan, Carlos Quevedo, and Alex Sogard combined to shout out the RockHounds, 1-0, at Whataburger Field in the opener of a four-game series.  

The Hooks scored the game's only run in the third inning, when Erik Castro drew a walk (after getting down in the count, 0-2). With two outs, Ben Orloff and Rene Garcia singles, back-to-back, with Garcia's hit driving in what would be the game's only run.

The 'Hounds had one great opportunity in the eighth, with leadoff singles from Jake Goebbert and Miles Head putting runners at first and second with no outs. On a fly ball to deep left, Goebbert attempted to tag and get to third, but a nice catch-and-tag by Hooks third baseman Jonathan Myers turned the play into a critical double play, and the scoring chance was denied.

The RockHounds also had two on with two out in the ninth, and Goebbert (who played in Corpus Christi in each of the last two seasons) at bat, but Sogard induced a game-ending ground out.  

RockHounds' starter Murphy Smith was equally outstanding, allowing one run on five hits and two walks while striking out five. Despite falling to 3-3, "Murph" lowered his season ERA to 2.04.

South Division  

All four teams in the South … Corpus Christi, Frisco, San Antonio and the RockHounds … entered Tuesday games at 13-11.

Corpus and Frisco posted wins Tuesday, moving to 14-11, with the RockHounds and San Antonio one game back at 13-12.

Kibbles & Bits  

- The RockHounds face the Hooks in Corpus Christi Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, with game time set for 7:05 each evening.

- RockHounds Radio Voice Bob Hards was back after a four-day battle with laryngitis, but the station lost its "voice" just before game time, due to a power outage (the game aired only on the Internet). Power was restored, ironically enough, shortly after the game concluded. So Bob, News-Talk 500, and the 'Hounds plan to ALL be back Wednesday.

Line Score R   H   E LOB

RockHounds    0   6   1   6

Corpus Christi Hooks   1     5   0     4


WP Jake Buchanan (2-0, 1.47)

LP Murphy Smith (3-3, 2.04)

Sv Alex Sogard (2, 0.00)  


HR None


Next Game

vs. Corpus Christi Hooks (Houston Astros' AA Affiliate)

Wednesday, May 1 7:05 p.m. Radio at 6:58 p.m.

Whataburger Field Corpus Christi, TX


Probable Starters

Corpus Christi (RH) Nick Tropeano (0-2, 2.16)

RockHounds (RH) Zach Neal (2-0, 2.25)


This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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