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Salt Lake Bees still in funk while Aces cruise

Published: Saturday, June 23 2012 11:05 p.m. MDT

SALT LAKE CITY — Not even the green jerseys could help salvage a win for the Bees, and a three-game skid has Salt Lake manager Keith Johnson searching for a solution.

"We've got to find a way to play better than the other team," said Johnson, simplifying what needs to be done to get back on the wining side of things.

Saturday night was a dismal outing for the Bees, who came off their last road trip to Colorado Springs with just one victory in four nights.

Brad Mills took the mound for Salt Lake after being activated from the disabled list on Saturday, and was poised to make a solid start after recovering from shoulder inflammation. Through just three innings, Mills gave up four hits and three runs before being asked to call it a night.

"(Mills) looked good out there, but obviously there is some rust that he needs to shake off," Johnson said. "He wasn't as sharp as he ordinarily is for us, but the biggest concern was his health, and he is feeling good right now."

Salt Lake has really seen the sour side of things since these teams last met 55 games ago. Back then the Aces were eight games under .500, last place in the division and were eight games out of first place. Things were looking good for the Bees, who were eight games over .500, and atop the Northern Division. Since then, Reno has gone 40-16 and has taken a nine game lead in the division. Salt Lake on the other hand, has gone 22-34 and is now in third place in the division.

"Right now we are going through a funk, it's that simple," said Johnson, adding that it's no different than any other slide this team has been through during the 2012 season.

"Hopefully we will be able to go out and prepare, get some good work in and finish ballgames."

NOTEBOOK: Doug Deeds made the most of being at the top of the batting order by going 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles. Ed Lucas slugged a solo home run, and finished the night 1-for-2 with an RBI.

GRAND THIEVERY: Kole Calhoun picked up his eighth stolen base on the year after stealing second in Saturday night's game. As a team, the Bees now have 73 stolen bases on the season, which is second in the PCL behind Las Vegas.

ANGEL WATCH: Former Bees slugger Mike Trout continued to add to an already solid start to his MLB career. The 20-year-old stole second Friday night to become the American League stolen base leader with 20.

ATTENDANCE: About 8,250 baseball fans braved a sizzling 100 degree start at first pitch, and supported the Bees through a tough loss at Spring Mobile Ballpark.

email: cjohnson@desnews.com

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