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OnBaseMachine
04-10-2006, 08:34 AM
Bats get swept away by Ottawa

By Darren Desaulniers
Special to The Courier-Journal

OTTAWA, Ontario Canada has not been kind to the Louisville Bats.

After losing two days to bad weather and frozen fields, the Bats lost a doubleheader yesterday to the Ottawa Lynx, 3-2 and 3-1.

The Bats have started the season 0-3, with all three losses to Ottawa.

"Well, we don't have to come back here, and that's all I can say," Bats manager Rick Sweet said. "We just need to get out of here."

Louisville will start a four-game series in Syracuse tonight.

"I understand it's going to be a little nicer down there where we shouldn't have some of these problems, but (the Lynx) just outplayed us," Sweet said. "That's all there is to it."

The lone error of the game cost the Bats in yesterday's opener.

Louisville took a 1-0 lead in the second when Rob Stratton drew a leadoff walk and scored on a double by Brian Buchanan. Stratton then homered to lead off the fourth, making it 2-0.

The Lynx's comeback started when shortstop Jeff Bannon fumbled a routine grounder by Brandon Fahey to open the sixth inning, allowing Fahey to reach first. Alejandro Freire then singled, and Andy Tracy doubled to score Fahey.

Jake Robbins then relieved Bats starter Mike Gosling. After a pop out, Keith Reed singled to score Freire.

Ottawa scored the winning run in the ninth off reliever Jason Standridge (0-1), when Eddy Garabito singled home Val Majewski, who had doubled to open the inning.

Lynx reliever Eddy Rodriguez (1-0) entered in the eighth and earned the win, throwing two scoreless innings.

In the second game, the Lynx scored twice in the first off starter Elizardo Ramirez (0-1). The Bats scored a run in the sixth, but Tracy homered in the sixth to restore the two-run lead.

"I really thought our pitching did a nice job, our defense was not very good and offensively we did not hit like we will hit," Sweet said.

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060410/SPORTS07/604100415/1036

OnBaseMachine
04-10-2006, 08:37 AM
Lookouts Win Suspended Game Beating Jacksonville, 5-4
Joey Votto Hits Two Home Runs
by Tim Evearitt
posted April 9, 2006

The Lookouts defeated Jacksonville, 5-4, to complete Saturday's suspended game.

Chattanooga (2-1) took the lead for good in the eighth inning on Joey Votto's two-run homer. Votto was 3-for-4 in the game, a double and two home runs. He leads the Southern League in the young season with three homers.

Brad Salmon got the Lookouts out of a jam in the eighth inning by fanning the only hitter he faced.

Closer David Shafer pitched the ninth inning setting the Suns down, 1-2-3.

After a short 30-minute break, Chattanooga and Jacksonville will play a seven inning game. Steve Kelly, who was 12-7 for Chattanooga in 2004, makes the start for the Lookouts in the seven inning contest.

http://www.chattanoogan.com/articles/article_83441.asp





Lookouts Make It Three Straight Beating Jacksonville, 2-0
Three Chattanooga Pitchers Combine On One-Hitter
by Tim Evearitt
posted April 9, 2006

After winning Saturday's rain-suspended game, 5-4, Chattanooga won the regularly scheduled game over Jacksonville, a seven-inning game, 2-0, before 3,653 fans.

Chattanooga's record is now 3-1. The Lookouts will try to make it four straight over the Suns Monday.

Steve Kelly was nearly perfect in five innings pitched, giving up a single to A.J. Zapp.

Aaron Herr knocked in both Chattanooga runs. His fifth inning double drove in Anderson Machado from second.

In the seventh inning, Herr hit a solo home run - his first of the year.

Concerning the home run, Herr had this to say, "I knew he was throwing me changeups, and I picked one I liked."

Brock Till pitched a scoreless sixth inning, and Brad Salmon closed the game setting the Suns down in 1-2-3 order.

* * * * *

The Lookouts face the Suns in the final game of their five-game series Monday. Eddy Perez will start for Chattanooga. Gametime is 11:00 a.m.

Monday's game can be heard at AM radio 1310 or over the Internet at www.lookouts.com. Larry Ward and Mick Gillespie call the play-by-play action.

http://www.chattanoogan.com/articles/article_83444.asp

OnBaseMachine
04-10-2006, 08:38 AM
FLORIDA STATE LEAGUE

Two hits for McCracken, but Sarasota still falls

BY PHIL DENIS CORRESPONDENT

FORT MYERS -- Quinton McCracken couldn't have hoped for a much better beginning to his rehabilitation assignment with the Sarasota Reds than Sunday afternoon's Florida State League performance against the Fort Myers Miracle at William Hammond Stadium.

The 35-year-old McCracken's right ankle sprain, suffered last month at spring-training headquarters in Sarasota while attempting to earn a spot on Cincinnati's 25-man roster, played six strong innings, batted leadoff and played in center field.

"It felt good to get out on the field in a competitive environment," the 12-year major league veteran said after the Minnesota Twins' affiliate completed a season-opening, four-game sweep with an 8-4 victory. "The legs feel fine, the ankle sprain is 100 percent. Hopefully, it will continue."

McCracken grounded out to shortstop in his first at-bat and then lined a single to left with two outs in the top of the third inning. The best effort offensively came in the fifth when the switch-hitting McCracken moved over to the left side and proceeded to beat out a bunt single down the third-base line.

Though he didn't catch any fly balls, McCracken's speed was evident when he was able to easily back up left fielder Jay Garthwaite and right fielder Cody Strait on three Miracle shots in the power alleys.

"I've wanted to get out there to play the game I love," said McCracken. "I'm looking to be here (with Sarasota) for maybe a week, or so. It's been frustrating, but today was good."

McCracken was hitting .356 over 17 exhibition games before being injured.

McCracken's performance was indeed a welcome sight for Sarasota as it again struggled, this time in front of 976 spectators.

Garthwaite, signed last week as a free agent from the Arizona Diamondbacks organization, continued his hot weekend hitting as he smacked a single, double and solo home run to lead a nine-hit offense.

Sarasota, which has struggled defensively, had five errors Sunday, and its four pitchers allowed only two earned runs. The Reds have committed 11 errors in four games.

Sarasota returns to Ed Smith Stadium tonight through Friday for a five-game homestand. The Philadelphia Phillies' Clearwater Threshers will be here tonight at 7 and through Wednesday before the Lakeland Tigers visit Thursday and Friday evenings.

After that, the Reds will head out on an eight-game road trip.

http://www.heraldtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060410/SPORTS/604100454/1006

OnBaseMachine
04-10-2006, 08:41 AM
Dragons eclipsed by Hawks
Gerardo Cabrera drops fly, burnt by bright sun in first shutout
By Marc Katz

Dayton Daily News

DAYTON | Left fielder Gerardo Cabrera stared deep into his locker and wasn't easily placated when told it was only one game, and the sun could get into anyone's eyes.

Then a roving coaching instructor pulled him away for some confidence-boosting talk and Dayton Dragons manager Billy Gardner Jr. said, "There's no one play that determines a game."

Cabrera probably didn't think so after he dropped a line drive through the sun with one on and one out in the ninth inning of a scoreless game.

By the time the South Bend Silver Hawks were done, they stole away from Fifth Third Field with a 7-0 victory Sunday on an otherwise chilly day that left the Dragons 1-3 at the start of the Class A Midwest League season.

"Yes, it was the sun," Cabrera said, barely moving his head before he went into conference.

"He's taking it hard," Gardner said. "Everything kind of unraveled after that. The beautiful part of this game is you get to go out and do everything again tomorrow."

After the dropped fly, leaving runners on second and third, relief pitcher Andy Weimer walked Tory Hendricks intentionally, then Bryan Byrne on a full-count pitch to bring in the game's first and only needed run.

Two singles, a sun-aided double and a dropped pop added to the rest of the runs, while the Dragons suffered their first shutout on only six hits.

A major highlight for the Dragons was the six scoreless innings performed by rookie right-hander Zach Ward, who walked three one intentionally and allowed just two hits.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/sports/content/sports/daily/0410dragons.html





Dragons' pitching solid despite record
By Marc Katz

Dayton Daily News

DAYTON | Just four games into the Class A Midwest League season, it looks like the Dayton Dragons are off to a bad start.

They are if you're only measuring wins and losses, because they stand 1-3.

However, there is a lot to like about this team, and some of it is even pitching, a problem in the recent past in the Reds' chain.

Take Sunday's game, for instance, where Zach Ward made his professional debut, allowing no runs over six innings despite throwing very few first-pitch strikes.

Ward was taken by the Reds in the third round of last year's draft and sent to rookie Billings, Mont., but his arm was a little sore from playing college ball at Gardner-Webb and he was shut down without making it into a game.

That made Sunday a special outing.

"Before the first batter, my blood pressure probably was off the roof," Ward said. "I think I was being a little fine with my pitches."

Ward walked the first batter, but the first of two Dragons' double plays erased him, and it was game on.

"I was happy with Ward," Manager Billy Gardner Jr. said. "It didn't get too far into the count and when he throws that many ground ball outs (10), he's on."

So far, Ward and previous starters Travis Wood, Carlos Fisher and Philippe Valiquette have looked good. Johnny Cueto, as the fifth starter, goes tonight against Lansing, and the Reds think he has a strong arm.

As for the relief pitchers, there have been some extenuating circumstances, but they'll have to be more consistent.

New Reds director of development Johnny Almarazwas in town for the first time since spring training and pledges help if needed. He doesn't want to see the Dragons finish last again. Over the last three seasons, the team was last five of six times in the 70-game half-season format.

Gardner thought he had the eighth inning set up for a run when pinch-hitter Bobby Mosby singled and was sacrificed to second on a bunt by Mike DeJesus. A ground out and foul pop ended the threat.

In their first four games last year, the Dragons were also 1-3 with 10 doubles, no triples and two homers. They struck out 33 times and walked 12 times.

This year, they have collected nine doubles, three triples (all by second baseman Mike Griffin) and two homers. They have struck out 43 times and walked six. That may say more about the South Bend pitching staff than about the Dayton batters.

Contact this reporter at (937) 225-2157 or mkatz@daytondailynews.com

http://www.daytondailynews.com/sports/content/sports/daily/0410dragonsnotes.html