Houston Astros director of player development Quinton McCracken used a six-day visit to the Quad-Cities to get a feel for what has allowed the River Bandits to thrive.
“They are playing the game the way we want it to be played,’’ McCracken said Sunday following a 3-1 loss to Dayton that ended Quad-Cities’ second 12-game win streak of the season.
“The pitching has been good, the defense has been solid and the offense has been timely. It’s just good quality baseball and that is something we always hope to see.’’
The visit to the Quad-Cities was the second of the season for McCracken and part of his regular rounds to watch the Astros’ farm clubs in action.
“I picked a good time to be here. The team is playing very well,’’ he said.
Manager Josh Bonifay appreciates that as well.
“I can’t say enough about the squad and how this group comes out ready to play every day,’’ Bonifay said. “It’s just good, fundamental baseball. To have a team put together one 12-game win streak in a season is outstanding. To accomplish it twice, that’s phenomenal. You just don’t see that.’’
The River Bandits’ twin win streaks — running from April 29-May 11 and July 26-Aug. 8 — are the only winning streaks of more than 10 games in the Midwest League this season.
DRONE DELAY: It’s not unusual for weather and power issues to create delays in Midwest League games, but Peoria had a game delayed last week by a drone.
Play at Dozer Park was halted in the second inning of a Wednesday night game against Lake County when a drone moved over the ballpark and was hovering above the grandstand along the stadium’s first-base line.
Umpires met with managers and halted play until after Chiefs president Rocky Vonachen located the operator of the drone in a nearby parking lot. The individual obliged with Vonachen’s request to take his drone elsewhere and once that happened, play resumed after a nearly 15-minute delay.
FUTURE STARS: Three Astros pitching prospects who are attempting to work their way to the Midwest League had a hand in a combined no-hitter last week for Tri-City.
Kevin McCanna, Ralph Garza and Zac Person, all 2015 draft picks, no-hit Aberdeen 5-0 in New York-Penn League play.
McCanna, a 13th-round pick from Rice, allowed the game’s only baserunner on a fourth-inning walk. A 29th-round pick from Oklahoma, Garza struck out seven batters over four innings and Person, a ninth-round pick from LSU, worked a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
STREAK STOPPED: Matt Pearce’s league-record streak of consecutive innings without allowing a walk ended Friday.
The Peoria pitcher surrendered a walk in the third inning of a game against Fort Wayne, the first walk he had allowed in 54.1 innings dating to a June 8 game.
Pearce, who broke the previous 42-year-old league record of 45 innings, walked two batters in the game but did earn the win in the Chiefs’ 2-0 victory.
Q-C CONNECTIONS: Three former River Bandits are among this week’s players of the week in higher levels of the minor leagues.
J.D. Davis, who homered eight times and hit .303 in 43 games for Quad-Cities last season, was named the California League player of the week after homering in six consecutive games for Lancaster.
On the mound, Mike Hauschild of Fresno in the Pacific Coast League and Michael Feliz of Corpus Christi in the Texas League earned pitcher of the week honors.
Hauschild, 6-1 in 20 outings for the Bandits in 2013, went 2-0 for Fresno and stuck out 13 while allowing two runs in 14 innings. Feliz, 8-6 for Quad-Cities last year, did not allow a run while striking out 13 over 14 innings for Corpus Christi.
In the Midwest League, Cedar Rapids outfielder Tanner English and South Bend pitcher Erick Leal won weekly honors.
BY THE NUMBERS
48: Number of former Quad-Cities players to play in major-league games this season, including 23 position players and 25 pitchers.
14: Shutouts recorded by the River Bandits this season, the most for the Quad-Cities club since recording 14 in 2001. The last time Quad-Cities recorded more was in 1980 when the Quad-City Cubs shut out 17 opponents.
COMING TO Q-C
KODI MEDEIROS: A first-round pick of the Brewers in 2014, the native of Hawaii has won his last two decisions and is 4-2 on the year with a 4.09 ERA. In 20 games over 81.1 innings, including 13 starts, he has struck out 80 batters and walked 33.
DEVIN WILLIAMS: The suburban St. Louis native was a second-round choice of Milwaukee in the 2013 draft. A 6-foot-3, right-handed pitcher, he is 2-7 on the year with a 3.29 ERA. Williams has limited opponents to a .216 batting average in 15 appearances, including 13 starts.
Kyle Barraclough became the seventh former River Bandits player to make his major-league debut this season when he retired all three batters he faced, striking out one, for Miami in the eighth inning of its 6-3 loss Saturday to Atlanta.
The appearance capped a whirlwind two weeks for the 2012 Quad-Cities reliever who was traded by St. Louis to Miami on July 24 for closer Steve Cishek. The deal moved Barraclough from Springfield in the Texas League to the Marlins’ Jacksonville affiliate in the AA Southern League.
A seventh-round draft pick of St. Louis in 2012 from St. Mary’s College in California, Barraclough went 0-2 in 11 relief appearances with the River Bandits in 2012. He struck out 21 batters and walked 13 in 17.1 innings of work for Quad-Cities.
TODAY: at Fort Wayne, 6 p.m.
FRIDAY: at Lake County, 6 p.m.
SATURDAY: at Lake County, 6 p.m.
SUNDAY: at Lake County, 12:30 p.m.
TUESDAY: vs. Wisconsin, 7 p.m., Dew for Tuesday 2-for-1 tickets, $15 all-you-can ride amusements
WEDNESDAY: vs. Wisconsin, 7 p.m., Pay Your Bill Wednesday, IHMVCU BOGO tickets
TODAY: vs. Lansing, 6:30 p.m., Downtown Clinton Night, Thirsty Thursday beverage specials
FRIDAY: vs. Great Lakes, 6:30 p.m., Casey’s LumberKings drawstring bag giveaway, Sauk Valley Night
SATURDAY: vs. Great Lakes, 6:30 p.m., Clinton County Area Solid Waste Agency LumberKings t-shirt giveaway, postgame concert by The Slough Buoys
SUNDAY: vs. Great Lakes, 2 p.m., Fulton/Morrison Day, Children’s Discovery Center Funday Sunday, Family Day, All Faiths Day
TUESDAY: at Burlington, 6:30 p.m.
WEDNESDAY: at Burlington, 6:30 p.m.