Stanford grad Mark Appel finally had the performance that had been missing ever since he was selected with the top overall pick in last year's Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
That effort arrived Tuesday night as Appel had the best start of his Minor League career. He took a one-hitter into the ninth inning and record a career-high 10 strikeouts as Double-A Corpus Christi held off Frisco, 1-0.
"It was one of those games where everything was working," Appel told Kelsie Heneghan of MiLB.com. "I was able to locate fastball, locate off-speed. My mentality was to attack hitters and keep attacking. It was just a matter of execution."
Appel (1-2) allowed a two-out single to Rangers No. 4 prospect Nick Williams in the first, then held the RoughRiders hitless until Hanser Alberto led off the ninth with a double on the Stanford product's 88th and final pitch. The only RoughRider to reach in between was J.T. Wise, who walked with one out in the fifth.
Appel, 23, improved upon his previous personal best of six innings by keeping his pitch count down. He needed three pitches or fewer to record half of his 24 outs.
Appel lowered his ERA to 3.15 in six starts since moving up from Class A Advanced Lancaster. The promotion came as a surprise to some since he went 2-5 with a 9.74 ERA and allowed 74 hits, including nine homers, over 44 1/3 innings in 12 California League starts.
On Wednesday, former Stanford standout Brian Ragira went 5-for-5 with a grand slam and a career-high five RBI as Class-A San Jose romped past host Lake Elsinore, 13-0. Ragira missed hitting for the cycle by a triple.
Ragira is hitting .300 with 14 homers and 42 RBI since the all-star break. In the first half of the season, he batted .224 with five homers, 17 doubles and 36 RBI in 61 games.
Elsewhere, Stanford grad and former Menlo School standout Danny Diekroeger improved his team-record hitting streak to 21 games on Wednesday as his State College Spikes defeated the Williamsport Crosscutters, 6-0, in the New York-Penn League. State College was only a game back of the top seed for the league playoffs, with five games remaining.
SixFifty Lacrosse is currently registering players for its fall lineup of youth and high school after school classes and leagues.
Classes are being offered at Hillview Middle School, La Entrada Middle School, Oak Knoll Elementary, Encinal Elementary and Laurel Elementary.
Additionally, indoor Box Lacrosse leagues are being offered for boys' Under-9, U11, U13 and U15, as well as high school boys and girls at the Sportshouse in Redwood City. Box lacrosse is played on a indoor hockey rink-sized field with six players per side.
Further information can be found at SixFiftyLacrosse.com.
Menlo School senior Victor Pham will continue his career next year at Columbia University, which reached the NCAA Sweet 16 last season.
Pham, a blue-chip recruit, had narrowed his choices down to Princeton, Stanford, Duke, Penn and Harvard. Had he chosen Harvard, Pham would have been reunited by ex-Menlo standout Andrew Ball. Had he selected Stanford, Pham would have followed in the footsteps of former Menlo player Jamin Ball, who graduated this past spring.
Pham, who scored a 2120 on his SAT, said he wanted to be in the New York City area to pursue business endeavors after his tennis career. He's also keeping a family tradition intact since his older brother, Richard, also attends Columbia and was a member of the tennis team.
Fellow Menlo senior Gunther Matta, meanwhile, has decided to attend Cal next fall.