Bazzani, Austin plugging along in minors

Anthony Bazzani had his first rough outing as a professional recently. The Heritage High School graduate, in his first season in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, blew a save and was saddled with the loss in the Diamondbacks’ rookie league team’s 7-5 loss to the Whitesox Tuesday.

Bazzani entered the game in the top of the ninth inning with Arizona leading 5-4 and though he walked Jake Jarvis to open the frame, recorded an out on a sacrifice and then struck out Eddy Alvarez. Bazzani couldn’t get out No. 3, though, as Michael Danner’s single scored Jarvis with the tying run for Bazzani’s first blown save in four chances. Michael Suiter followed with the go-ahead single and a walk and throwing error helped the Whitesox add an insurance run and hand Bazzani his first loss.

After picking up the first save of his young career during a pair of perfect appearances to start his stint with Arizona, Bazzani gave up his first run July 4 against the rookie league Giants. He bounced back with three excellent outings, going three innings and allowing just one hit, while striking out four and notching two saves.

Despite Tuesday’s stumbles the right-hander and Eastern Kentucky University graduate still has compiled a 2.57 ERA in seven innings pitched spread out over seven appearances through Wednesday. After not being drafted after his senior season at Eastern Kentucky, Bazzani signed a free agent contract with Arizona in late-June.

The Diamondbacks play the rookie league Angels today at 10 p.m.

Austin improving at the plate

Things have been going much better for Tyler Austin lately. The Heritage product and New York Yankees prospect recently had his first three-hit game of the season, part of a great stretch for the Conyers native.

Austin, playing for the Double-A Trenton Thunder, had an eight-game hitting streak from July 13-July 21 in which he went 13-for-29 (.448 batting average). That included a 3-for-4, 3-RBI night on July 18 in the Thunder’s 6-5 win over Binghamton and the 22-year old finished the four-game series against the New York Mets’ affiliate with eight hits in 15 at bats.

Wednesday was another big night for Austin. In Trenton’s 5-2 victory over New Hampshire, he ripped a two-run double in the first inning and his fifth homerun of the season, a two-run shot in the third.

Austin has struggled for much of the 2014 season, his fifth in the Yankees’ organization, but the recent spell lifted his season average to .265 through the games of July 23.

Trenton opened a weekend series with Binghamton Thursday, which will continue with game two tonight at 7:05 p.m.