Unlike veteran Gwinnett teammates Barbaro Canizares and Wes Timmons, Mike Dunn was appearing in his first Triple-A All-Star Game and the left-handed reliever certainly made the most of the showcase.
After allowing a leadoff hit in the eight inning, Dunn struck out the next three batters and the International League went on to post a 2-1 victory over the Pacific Coast League on Wednesday night before a sellout crowd of 10,000 at Lehigh Valley’s Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa.
After John Lindsay (Albuquerque) singled, putting the tying run on base, Dunn stopped the PCL right there. He fanned Lucas May (Albuquerque) on a called third strike, then got Jay Gibbons (Albuquerque) and Matt Miller (Colorado Springs) swinging.
Dunn, who was selected for the Class AA Eastern League All-Star Game a year ago, threw 16 pitches, 10 of them strikes. The 25-year-old is 2-0 with seven saves and a 1.05 ERA for the G-Braves this season, striking out 56 in 422⁄3 innings.
Canizares, named to his third consecutive Triple-A All-Star game, had a hit as a pinch hitter and Timmons, playing for the second straight year, was hitless in his only at-bat as the IL took a 7-6 lead in the annual event.
The PCL scored a run in the second inning against IL starter Carlos Torres (Charlotte) and that stood up until the sixth inning. Chris Valaika (Louisville) and Chase Lambin (Syracuse) had back-to-back doubles to tie the game and then Elliott Johnson (Durham) put the IL ahead with a RBI single.
Each team had just five hits and there were 16 strikeouts in the game, nine by the IL. Anthony Slama (Rochester) was credited with the win after a scoreless sixth inning and Jonathan Albaladejo got the save with a perfect ninth inning.
Timmons entered the game as a pinch runner in the fifth inning after Andy Tracy (Lehigh Valley) got the IL’s first hit and stayed in the game to play third base. He led off the seventh inning and flied out to the warning track in right field on the first pitch from Mike McClendon (Nashville).
Canizares pinch hit with two out in the eighth inning for the IL and singled off Fernando Salas (Memphis) on a line drive to center field before being replaced by a pinch runner.