WHO: Memphis Redbirds
at New Orleans Zephyrs
WHEN: 7 p.m.
WHERE: Zephyr Field, Metairie
PROBABLE PITCHERS: Zephyrs RH Anthony DeSclafani
(2-3, 2.84 ERA) vs. Redbirds LH Jonathan Cornelius
Outfielder Kyle Jensen is finishing off his first full season in Triple-A with some impressive statistics.
Jensen leads the Zephyrs with 26 home runs (tied for fourth in the PCL), 29 doubles and 88 runs batted in (first) and has 67 runs and 44 walks in 128 games. He is batting .259.
That is an improvement compared with last season in which he played in just 60 games with New Orleans after being promoted from Jacksonville.
With the Zephyrs, he batted .233 but had 12 homers, 15 doubles, 36 RBIs and 31 runs.
The not so good, however, is that this season, Jensen had struck out 143 times. Last season, he fanned 71 times. Although a high number of strikeouts is not uncommon with power hitters, one can point to that as the reason he has batted .300 or better just once (2011, .309) in his pro career.
At age 26 and having shown what he can do in Triple-A, next spring will be huge for Jensen and his future. However, cutting down strikeouts is a must.
Thursday’s game is not being broadcast on WMTI 106.1 FM because the station will carry Tulane’s season-opener at Tulsa. The station will broadcast the Zephyrs the remaining four games of the season. … New Orleans needs to win at least four of the games vs. Memphis to finish with its third consecutive nonlosing season, which has never been done in franchise history. The Zephyrs were eliminated from playoff contention Monday when Memphis beat Fresno.
… The Zephyrs had 144 home runs entering Wednesday night’s game. The franchise records is 153 hit in 2012. … Entering Wednesday night’s games, Memphis held a two-game lead over Nashville in first place in the American Southern Division. Nashville is playing a six-game series at third-place Round Rock, and if it catches the Redbirds has the tie-breaker edge because the Sounds have a better division record. If the Redbirds lose the lead, they may point to an Aug. 11 rainout at Albuquerque, a game that will not be made up. As it stands now, the Sounds will play one more game than the Redbirds, which could make things very interesting on Sept. 1, the final day of the season.