Tom Dodd's hits usually produce runs for the Calgary Cannons.
A three-run homer that triggered Calgary's 5-4 victory over Tacoma Thursday gave the Cannon designated hitter 13 runs batted in in nine games. The spurt raised Dodd's Class AAA-leading RBI total to 96 on 107 hits in 102 games.
Dodd, 31, a former University of Oregon star in his 11th professional season, signed with Calgary in April. He is following in the footsteps of another Oregonian, Jim Wilson, who drove in 133 runs for the Cannons last year.
Calgary first baseman Tino Martinez, who was rated the Pacific Coast League's best batting prospect in a poll of PCL managers, also has a shot at 100 RBI. Martinez, who is hitting .328, had 77 RBI after an eight-game stretch in which he was 16 for 34 with three home runs and 10 RBI.
Seven other Mariner farmhands, including Martinez's Calgary teammate, Bill McGuire, also were named league ``bests'' in a Baseball America poll of minor-league managers.
McGuire was named the PCL's best defensive catcher. Others honored:
Williamsport (Class AA) - Mike Gardiner, Eastern League pitcher with best control; Chris Howard, best defensive catcher; outfielder Ted Williams (now with Calgary), best and fastest base runner.
San Bernardino (Class A) - Frank Bolick, California League's best defensive third baseman; outfielder Ellerton Maynard, fastest base runner.
Peninsula (Class A) - Rick Balabon (now with Williamsport), Carolina League pitcher with best control.
When it was mentioned that Howard had been named the EL's top defensive catcher, Williamsport Manager Rich Morales said: ``He is. He had more saves Wednesday night than an NHL goalie gets in a month.'' He was referring to Howard's blocks of pitches in the dirt in a 13-inning, 5-3 victory over Hagerstown.
Gardiner (8-5), who leads the Eastern League with a 1.73 earned-run average and 106 strikeouts, demonstrated his control in a 5-3 victory over Canton Thursday night. He struck out 10 in seven innings. His only walk was intentional.
San Bernardino's Bolick, obtained from the Milwaukee organization June 6 in the Mickey Brantley trade, not only plays outstanding defense, but also leads the California league in hitting (.323) and RBI (80).
ON THE MOVE
- Three left-handed pitchers, all collegians drafted last month, were promoted from the Bellingham Mariners. Kevin King (3-2, 4.78 ERA), drafted in the seventh round out of Oklahoma, was sent to Peninsula. John Cummings (1-1, 2.12), an eighth-round pick from USC, and Dave McDonald (1-0, 1.13), a 29th-round selection from Brandeis University, went to the San Bernardino Spirit.
- The Spirit lost outfielder Mark Merchant and right-hander Mike Goff to the disabled list. Merchant is scheduled for shoulder surgery Friday. Goff, who has been sidelined much of the season, will undergo elbow surgery.
- John Hoffman, 21, former Ballard High School catcher who has missed most of two seasons and undergone two operations because of shoulder problems, played for the first time this year Friday night, starting behind the plate for Bellingham in a 4-3 victory over Spokane.
AROUND THE FARMS
- A broken wrist that sidelined Ruben Gonzalez for more than three months didn't hurt his hitting. The California League's 1989 Triple Crown winner batted .500 - 18 for 36 - in his first 10 games with San Bernardino.
- Right-hander Jeff Nelson, who returned to active duty recently after a long stretch on the disabled list, pitched a four-hitter, striking out seven and walking four, in Peninsula's 4-0 Carolina League victory over Frederick Wednesday night. He struggled in the first four innings but ``was in complete command'' the last five innings, Pilot Manager Jim Nettles said. Peninsula lefty Mark Czarkowsi gave up only two unearned runs - on his own error - in a 3-2 win over Winston-Salem last weekend.
- Calgary left-hander Vance Lovelace (4-4, 3.74) hasn't allowed an earned run in his past nine relief outings (14 innings) and has given up only one in 14 appearances, a span of 20 innings.
- San Bernardino shut out Modesto two nights in a row, with Roger Salkeld (7-5, 3.57 ERA) striking out 13 in seven innings in a 5-0 win Tuesday and Dave Evans whiffing 10 in 7 1/3 innings as the Spirit won 2-0 Wednesday.
- Outstanding catches by outfielders Brian Stephens and Willie Romay and second baseman Ruben Santana, who caught a fly on the right-field foul line, helped Bellingham beat Spokane 2-1 Thursday night.
BEST OF REST
BATTING (minimum 70 at-bats) - Manahan (San Bernardino, A) 54/150, .360; Brundage (Williamsport, AA) 33/99, .333; Newfield (Tempe, Rookie) 27/81, .333; Bolick (Stockton-SB) 103/319, .323; Clark (SB) 81/251, .323, (W) 32/132, .242; Jones (SB) 63/201 .313; Brannon (T) 22/71, .310; Stephens (B) 33/108, .306; Merchant (San Bernardino, A) 31/102, .314, (Williamsport AA) 28/156, .179; Turang (SB) 108/361, .299, Lennon (W) 44/149, .295; (SB) 47/163, .288, Pirkl (SB) 61/207, .295.
Doubles - Clark (SB-W) 22, Bolick (Stock-SB) 20, Stargell (SB) 16, Turang (SB) 15, Keitges (SB) 15, Bowie (W) 14, Campanis (Peninsula, A) 14, McDonald (W) 13.
Triples - Lennon (SB-W) 6, Maynard (SB) 5, Turang (SB) 4, Bolick (Stock-SB) 4, Pennington (W) 3, McDonald (W) 3, Pezzoni (P) 3, Pilkinton (P) 3.
Home runs - Bolick (Stock-SB) 16, Clark (SB) 12, Stargell (SB) 12, Lennon (SB-W) 12, Turang (SB) 11, Jones (SB) 10, Bailey (P) 7, Keitges (SB) 7, Manahan (SB) 6.
RBI - Bolick (Stock-SB) 80, Stargell (SB) 72, Clark (SB-W) 62, Turang (SB) 55, Lennon (SB-W) 49, Keitges (SB) 42, Bowie (W) 38, Jones (SB) 38, Howard (W) 34, Campanis (P) 34, Pilkinton (P) 34, Pennington (W) 33.
Stolen bases - Maynard (SB) 70, T. Williams (W) 34, Tavarez (P) 22, Turang (SB) 21, Pezzoni (P) 19, Stargell (SB) 17, Lennon (SB-W) 15, Twitty (B) 14.
Earned-run average (minimum 35 innings pitched) - Czarkowski (P) 1.60 (73 ip), Gardiner (W) 1.73 (130 1/3 ip), Delucia (W) 2.25 (96 ip), (SB) 2.05 (30 2/3 ip); Balabon (P) 2.65 (102 ip), (W) 2.90 (31 ip); Ridenour (W) 2.67 (54 ip), Converse (B) 2.80 (35 1/3 ip), Woodson (SB) 2.96 (124 2/3 ip), Nelson (P) 3.09 (35 ip), Fleming (SB) 3.13 (37 1/3 ip), Evers (W) 3.26 (113 1/3 ip), Jones (SB) 3.28 (57 2/3 ip).
Winning pct. (minimum 4 decisions) - Fleming (SB) 4-1, .800; Perkins (T) 4-1, .800; Pitcher (SB) 3-1, .750; Jones (SB) 5-2, .714; DeLucia (SB-W) 10-6, .625; Czarkowski (P) 5-3, .625; Gardiner (W) 8-5, .615; King (B) 3-2, .600; Rivera (P) 3-2, .600; Evans (SB) 10-7, .588, Salkeld (SB) 7-5, .583; Balabon (P-W) 8-6, .571; Wiggs (SB) 6-5, .545; Taylor (SB) 7-6, .538.
Saves - Newlin (SB) 12, Poissant (P) 9, Wiggs (SB) 8, Rojas (W) 6, Ridenour (W) 5, Figueroa (W) 4, Loe (P) 4, Rivas (P) 4.
Strikeouts - Balabon (P-W) 131, Salkeld (SB) 124, Woodson (SB) 119, Gardiner (W) 106, Evans (SB) 104, Delucia (SB-W) 94.