|04-14-2011, 05:52 PM||#1|
Lover of Trivialities
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Portland, OR (West Chester, OH)
Weekly Minor League Roundup #1: 4/7-4/13
From Jamie Ramsey at Better Off Red comes this PDF organizational depth chart, current to 4-4-11.
AAA Louisville Bats
This week: 6-1.
OMG SEASON PREVIEW!
Official team blog
"Returning" a "core"? In Triple-A? This writer must be new to this.
4/7: Louisville hosted Toledo (DET) at Louisville Slugger Field for opening night. 26-year-old righthander Scott Carroll (1-2, 2.10 in 5 G/4 GS for Lynchburg, ,3-9, 3.68 in 20 GS for Carolina in 2010) opposed lefty Andrew Oliver, who made both the big leagues (0-4, 7,36 in 5 GS) as well as the Futures Game in his first full pro season. Carroll started well, keeping the Mud Hens off the board until the fifth, when they picked up the game’s first two runs. 3B Todd Frazier tied the score in the sixth with a two-out, two-run single (2-for-4, R, 3B). Carroll (5.2 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 94 pitches/61 strikes) yielded to Jerry Gil in the sixth, but Gil and Danny Herrera served up two more Hens runs in the seventh. Again the Bats tied the score- solo homers by C Devin Mesoraco (2-for-4, 2B) and 1B Danny Dorn (2-for-4, 2 RBI) made it 4-4 heading to the eighth.
And… that’s where it fell apart.
Toledo Top of the 8th
• Scott Thorman walks.
• Danny Worth doubles (2) on a line drive to left fielder Yonder Alonso. Scott Thorman scores.
• Clete Thomas grounds out, shortstop Zack Cozart to first baseman Daniel Dorn. Danny Worth to 3rd.
Pitcher Change: Carlos Fisher replaces Daniel Ray Herrera.
• Cale Iorg doubles (1) on a line drive to right fielder Jeremy Hermida. Danny Worth scores.
• John Murrian grounds out, second baseman Chris Valaika to first baseman Daniel Dorn. Cale Iorg to 3rd.
• Scott Sizemore reaches on fielding error by right fielder Jeremy Hermida. Cale Iorg scores. Scott Sizemore to 2nd.
Pitcher Change: Joseph Krebs replaces Carlos Fisher.
• Timo Perez singles on a line drive to right fielder Jeremy Hermida. Scott Sizemore scores.
Offensive Substitution: Pinch runner Clay Timpner replaces Timo Perez.
• Andy Dirks singles on a line drive to right fielder Jeremy Hermida. Clay Timpner to 2nd.
• Ryan Strieby homers (1) on a fly ball to left field. Clay Timpner scores. Andy Dirks scores.
• Scott Thorman grounds out, second baseman Chris Valaika to first baseman Daniel Dorn.
Once the carnage cleared, Toledo led 11-4. Louisville got two of those back when Frazier tripled and scored on RF Jeremy Hermida’s single, followed by hits from 2B Chris Valaika and Dorn. Three of the seven Toledo runs in the eighth were charged to Herrera, who got the loss. Three more went to fellow lefty Joe Krebs.
4/8: Things went a little better in Batland in game two. Righty Matt Klinker kept the Mud Hens from the big inning (W, 6 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 1 HR, 90 pitches/56 strikes) and Dorn (RBI double, 3-for-4 overall), Hermida (solo homer, 2-for-4, 2 R overall), DH Brian Barton (RBI triple), and CF Dave Sappelt (RBI double, 2-for-4) each drove in runs to rally Louisville from a 3-1 fifth-inning deficit. New acquisition Kyle McCulloch, a 26-year-old righthander (and former first-round draft pick picked up by the Reds after he was released by the White Sox in the spring), fired two scoreless innings in relief and Carlos Fisher stranded two in the ninth for the save of a 5-3 win. 2B Kris Negron, promoted to AAA for good after a strong 2010 (.272/.361/.409, 34-43 SB) in Carolina, was 1-for-2 with a walk, two runs scored and a stolen base.
4/9: The two runs Louisville scored in the first inning off Mud Hens starter Charlie Furbush turned out to be all they needed, as Chad Reineke (W, 5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K) teamed up with lefty Jeremy Horst (3 IP, 1 H, 2 K) and Jerry Gil (S 1, 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K) to pull out a 2-1 six-hitter. Sappelt got that first inning started with a line-drive single and a steal of second. He then advanced to third when SS Zach Cozart’s strikeout required a throw to first and scored on a wild pitch. 3B Todd Frazier had reached on that wild pitch after his own strikeout; he then stole second and scored on Hermida’s double. Impressive baserunning by the Bats in that inning. Sappelt finished 3-for-4 (6-for-12 in the three games so far).
4/10: Three straight wins over always-tough Toledo, as Dontrelle Willis shut his former organization down on three hits over six shutout innings (W, 1 BB, 5 K, 70 pitches/47 strikes) in a 5-1 decision. It’s a little surprising to see Willis starting in Louisville, since he worked exclusively from the bullpen in spring training. Homers from Mesoraco (#2), Frazier, and a two-run bomb from Negron provided most of what the Bats needed. 28-year-old righty David Johnson, a free-agent signee this offseason, gave up one run in two innings and Danny Herrera finished up.
4/11: Rained out; to be made up on the 12th.
4/12: MAKEUP MADNESS! The Reds really seem to like prototypical Crafty Lefty Tom Cochran, as he’s back for his third season in the Reds organization since being signed out of indy ball in mid-2009. He improved last year, too, chopping his Carolina ERA from 3.17 to 2.69, making the Southern League All-Star squad, and raising his groundball rate from 0.9 to 1.3. This earned him a start in Louisville this year. And other than a pair of solo homers one out apart in the second, he held Columbus (CLE) nicely in five innings (W, 4 H, 2 BB, 3 K, 93 pitches/54 strikes). The Bats rebounded for three in the fourth with the help of a throwing error, a run-scoring wild pitch, a Danny Dorn sacrifice fly, and an E-9 that scored Jeremy Hermida with the go-ahead run. Hermida then smashed his second homer of 2011 in the sixth to provide an insurance run; Bats take game one, 4-2, as Danny Herrera (1 IP, 1 K) and Carlos Fisher (S 2, 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K) locked it down. Hermida ended up 3-for-3 (7-for-15 start).
The Clippers got to Scott Carroll quickly in the nightcap, piling up three in the first with the help of prospect Lonnie Chisenhall’s two-run double. Lefty David Huff held Louisville to one hit through three (a Chris Valaika single). SS Zach Cozart, off to a slow start, led off the Louisville fourth with a base hit, just his second in eighteen ABs so far. Huff then Rudied Hermida on a 2-2 pitch, bringing up Frazier. He flew out to short right, but Cozart promptly swiped third base (#2) on the first pitch to Valaika. Chris then came up big, smacking a single up the middle to put Louisville on the board. The Clippers chased Carroll in the seventh (6 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 88 pitches/53 strikes) and got a run in off Krebs, his reliever. We headed to the bottom of the seventh and final inning with the Bats down 4-1. Dorn led off with a base hit. C Corky Miller and Sappelt both walked, loading the bases with no one out. Cozart then greeted new pitcher Jensen Lewis with a RBI single! A wild pitch plated pinch-runner Kris Negron to make it 4-3! Lewis got Hermida to pop out, then intentionally walked Frazier. Up stepped Valaika to deliver a game-tying single! Chris finished 3-for-4 with two RBI for the game (.333). Mike Griffin’s pop fly was allowed to drop on the edge of the outfield grass so the Clippers could force Cozart at the plate, then Brian Barton whiffed to send the game to extras. Krebs whipped through the eighth with three grounders, then Devin Mesoraco stepped up to lead off the Bats eighth. THERE IT GOES! Game-winning homer (#3), Louisville sweeps! Krebs picked up the victory (2 IP, 1 H, 2 K). Dorn and Cozart both finished 2-for-4 (.529 and .150, respectively).
4/13: Louisville finishes a 6-1 first week of International League play, rolling up five runs in the first and cruising past Indianapolis (PIT), 10-4. Again Matt Klinker was a little more hittable than he’d like, but again he notched the win (2-0, 4.91, 5 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 90 pitches/59 strikes). Kyle McCulloch turned in another nice middle-relief stint (2.2 IP, 3 H, 1 K) and Jerry Gil finished up (5.40, 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 K). Mesoraco didn’t hit a homer this game, but he did drive in five runs with a two-run single and three-run double (.318/.375/.818 in 7 G to date). Dorn hit homer #2 and went 2-for-5. Sappelt also homered (#1) and finished 3-for-5 with three runs scored. (11-for-23, .423/.500/.615).
Transactnotes: RHS Justin Lehr and LHR Phil Valiquette started the season on the disabled list with Tommy John rehab and a back muscle strain, respectively.
Around the league: Colorado released C Brandon Yarbrough (2010, Carolina), 1B Logan Parker (2006-2010, Billings through Carolina), and OF Gabe “Moonlight Graham” Suarez (one legendary game in 2007 at Sarasota). Florida jettisoned OF DeWayne Wise (2006-2007, Louisville/Reds); Toronto signed him up before he could even get a pouch fastened to a twig. San Francisco cut 1B Andy D’Alessio, originally a Reds’ pick in the 10th round in 2003 (he went to Clemson instead). Washington cut 41-year-old LHR Ron “Big Rig” Villone in what might be his final hurrah (1999-2000, Reds).
AA Carolina Mudcats
This week: 1-5.
OMG SEASON PREVIEW!
4/7: Five County Stadium in Zebulon, NC, was the site of the Mudcats’ first game of 2011. They hosted the Mobile BayBears (ARI). Daryl Thompson started for the Mudcats, surprising considering the oft-injured righthander was supposed to be bullpen-bound following his Arizona Fall League stint of same. Nevertheless, he pitched well, permitting just a solo homer in the first inning through five (4 H, 1 BB, 4 K, 77 pitches, 49 strikes). Carolina picked up three runs in the second when 3B Mike Costanzo led off with a triple and scored on 2B Cody Puckett’s bloop hit. LF David Cook, a six-year free agent signee this offseason, stepped up and golfed a two-run homer. The Mudcats made it 3-1 in the sixth when RF Felix Perez bunted his way aboard, went to third on 1B Neftali Soto’s sharp single and scored on Costanzo’s double. (The veteran finished 3-for-3 with a walk, two doubles and a triple.) Soto was left at third after a popup, an intentional walk and a pair of strikeouts. Righty Brad Boxberger, who struggled so badly in the second half out of the Mudcat bullpen last season, came on to whiff four over two scoreless innings. Justin Freeman allowed one in the eighth, so lefty Donnie Joseph (the reigning Reds’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year) came on in the ninth for the save opportunity.
Mobile Top of the 9th
Pitcher Change: Donnie Joseph replaces Justin Freeman, batting 9th.
• Taylor Harbin singles on a ground ball to shortstop Miguel Rojas.
• Jacob Elmore singles on a sharp ground ball to center fielder Denis Phipps. Taylor Harbin to 2nd.
Offensive Substitution: Pinch hitter Mark Hallberg replaces Kyler Newby.
• Mark Hallberg doubles (1) on a sharp fly ball to center fielder Denis Phipps. Taylor Harbin scores. Jacob Elmore scores.
• A. J. Pollock grounds out, second baseman Cody Puckett to first baseman Neftali Soto.
• Evan Frey singles on a bunt ground ball to pitcher Donnie Joseph. Mark Hallberg to 3rd.
• Paul Goldschmidt homers (2) on a fly ball to left center field. Mark Hallberg scores. Evan Frey scores.
• Josh Ford strikes out swinging.
• Marc Krauss strikes out swinging.
Mobile takes it, 7-4. A depressing way to start the season.
4/8: The Mudcats came back to tie the BayBears at 2 in the second inning after Mobile got two in the first off starter James Avery (L, 6 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 81 pitches/50 strikes)- but that was all the denting they’d do for the day. Mobile wins again, 5-2. Righty Nick Christiani got his Double-A career off to a good start by whiffing four in two shutout innings, although Ruben Medina served up a pair of homers late. CF Denis Phipps turned in a pair of outfield assists, one at second base and one at third.
4/9: Righty Dallas Buck (the last remaining asset from the 2008 Adam Dunn trade now that Wilkin Castillo is in the Atlanta organization and Micah Owings headed back to the Diamondbacks) looked excellent through five innings- but a five-spot in the sixth, the first runs of the game, doomed both Dallas (L, 5.2 IP, 4 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 4 K, 82 pitches/45 strikes) and the Mudcats. Lefty Lee Tabor allowed both of his inherited runners to score, inflating Buck’s ending line. Carolina got three of those back in the bottom of the sixth, but the game was stopped early due to rain in the seventh and that’s how it ended. Buck has made just 22 appearances in the Reds organization in two-plus seasons due to arm problems, so 2011 is pretty much his make-or-break year.
4/10: Lefty Travis Webb had his moments with the Mudcats in 2010 (6-10, 4.93, 23 GS) but his first start of 2011 wasn’t a good one. He was mauled for seven earned runs in 3.2 innings (L, 5 H, 4 BB, 1 K). Mobile beat on Jeff Jeffords in his Southern League debut as well (1.1 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 2 ER) and cruised to a 11-3 victory. 1B Neftali Soto’s 2-for-4 put him at a .313 start; along with Cook (3-for-10, 3 BB), there are few offensive highlights to this point from the Carolina hitters.
4/11: Day game at Five County Stadium! Righty Jordan Hotchkiss, one of the organization’s biggest pitching breakouts last year (10-4, 2.30 in 31 G/15 GS at Lynchburg, 3.38 ERA in 3 GS at Carolina) took the hill. Carolina got a quick run in the first on a Costanzo sacrifice fly, but Mobile came back to take a 2-1 lead with single runs in the third and fourth. Finally the Mudcat bats broke out in the bottom of the fourth, tallying seven runs! SS Jose Castro doubled in two of those, 2B Jake Kahauleilo was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to score the third, and Costanzo launched a grand slam homer on a two-strike pitch to finish things off. This was off righthander Jarrod Parker, the best pitching prospect in the Arizona organization, in his first start back from Tommy John surgery that caused him to miss all of 2010. Soto doubled in run #9 in the bottom of the fifth. Hotchkiss left after battling through five (10 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 80 pitches/54 strikes) and Tabor came on to throw a scoreless sixth. Costanzo pounded a second homer in the bottom of the sixth, giving him six RBI. Jose Arredondo threw a 1-2-3 seventh with a pair of strikeouts to kick off his Reds career officially and Christiani took care of the eighth without incident. Donnie Joseph came on to attempt to atone for the ugly blown save from his first appearance. The first man he faced hit a vicious liner, but Castro (3-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI) gloved it. Joseph struck out the next batter, but the following two each singled. Luckily, the lefty came through by ringing up the BayBears’ Evan Frey looking to end the game and give Carolina its first win of the season. Hotchkiss got the win despite being a little less than dominating, and kudos to the veteran Costanzo for coming up big in his team’s time of need.
4/12: Off- travel day as the Mudcats are set to open a road trip in Huntsville (MIL) on Wednesday.
4/13: The Mudcats fought back hard after falling behind 5-0 in the first inning, but pinch-hitter Kevin Coddington struck out to end the game with Cody Puckett, the tying run, on second. Huntsville takes it, 6-5. Puckett had a great game, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored, a double, and a RBI. Neftali Soto hit his first Double-A homer and Kahauleilo drove in three with a single and double. Daryl Thompson did manage to notch three scoreless after the first-inning mess (L 0-1, 4 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 5 K). Jeff Jeffords gave up one run in his inning, but Boxberger (0.00, 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K) and Arredondo (1 IP, 3 K) were spotless. Neither CF Denis Phipps (.125) nor RF Felix Perez (.091), the #1 and #2 batters in the Mudcat lineup, are hitting much in this first week.
Transactnotes: RHS Mark Serrano started the season on the DL with a lower back injury. (He was replaced by RHR Jeff Jeffords.) LHS Matt Fairel will miss most or all of 2011 after arm surgery, and RHR Derrik Lutz is still listed on the DL as well. SS Miguel Rojas was also placed on the DL on 4/9 with a wrist issue. (He was replaced by OF Kyle Day.) C Chris Denove is out with an undisclosed injury. INF Shane Carlson, who spent most of 2010 at High-A Lynchburg, is on the reserve list. 4/11: RHR Jose Arredondo added to the roster for what amounts to a rehab assignment- although I believe Arredondo has options remaining, so it may not actually be under the rehab banner.
High-A Bakersfield Blaze
This week: 4-3
OMG SEASON PREVIEW!
4/7: Manager Ken Griffey Sr. (How’d I miss that?) and his charges faced the Visalia Rawhide (ARI) to open 2011. (The Blaze open the season with a seven-game road trip.) The Rawhide have most of the prospects of interest in the Diamondbacks system- infielders Bobby Borchering, Matt Davidson, and Chris Owings (Micah’s kid brother) and LHS Tyler Skaggs, who was scheduled to start this game. Taking the hill for the Blaze was 23-year-old righthander Pedro Villareal (4-7, 3.84 in 26 G/14 GS for Dayton, 0-3, 6.86 in 6 G/5 GS for Lynchburg in 2010).
...however, the game was rained out. They’d try again the next day.
4/8: Villareal may have had to wait an extra day to make his California League debut, but it was worth it (W, 5.2 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K) as Bakersfield whipped the Rawhide, 4-1. Scott Gaffney (back from TJ surgery; 1 IP, 1 BB, 3 K), Mace Thurman (also back from arm surgery; 1.1 IP, 2 BB, 1 K) and Doug Salinas (S, 1 IP, 1 BB, 3 K) closed it out. SS Brodie Greene didn’t make an out at the plate on the night (2-for-2, 2B, RBI, 2 BB) although he was caught stealing twice on the bases. C Yasmani Grandal’s full-season Reds debut saw him go 1-for-3 with a pair of strikeouts; he was also picked off first.
4/9: This time it was the bats that carried the Blaze, as they hacked out 18 hits in a 12-9 victory. LF Josh Fellhauer, repeating High-A after a tough 2010 at Lynchburg, was 4-for-6 with four RBI (and he threw a runner out at home). Greene was 3-for-4 with four runs scored 3B Eric Campbell, a 25-year-old released by the Atlanta organization just before the season started, was 4-for-5 with four runs scored, two RBI, and two doubles in his Reds system debut. Campbell was originally a second-round pick in 2004 and spent 2010 in Double-A, batting just .241/.308/.331 in 104 games. RF Andrew Means was 2-for-4 with two runs scored, two RBI, and two stolen bases (giving him three in two games). Righty Curtis Partch, repeating High-A like Fellhauer after his own tough year (7-11, 4.98, 165 H in 132 IP at Lynchburg), struck out five in 4.1 innings but gave up ten hits (4 ER, 1 BB, 1 HR). Lefty Drew Bowman got the victory despite walking three in one inning. Righthander Tyree Hayes, son of ex-big leaguer Charlie and a spring signee after being released by Tampa, pitched 1.2 hitless innings. Chase Ware struggled in his outing (3 H, 3 R, 2 ER in 1.2 IP) but Salinas got the last out for his second save in two ballgames.
4/10: Three games, three wins! Another slugfest, as the Blaze top the day before with twenty hits and thirteen runs in a game shortened to seven innings due to our old friend MAKEUP MADNESS. Every Bakersfield hitter had at least two knocks except for DH and #9 batter Carlos Mendez (who was 1-for-4). Greene drove in four runs and 1B Chris Richburg three. Means had a triple, two runs scored, and stolen base #4. Righty Juan Carlos Sulbaran, moving up a level after spending both 2009 and 2010 in Dayton, pitched five for the win (W, 5 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR). Lefty Tzu-Kai Chiu gave up five hits (two homers) in two innings.
Visalia finally stopped the bleeding in game two of the doubleheader, 7-5. Four Blaze errors led to five unearned runs, two off starter Clayton Shunick (4 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 2 HR). Gaffney was tagged with the loss despite allowing no actual hits in 1.2 innings (3 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 K). Fellhauer did hit his first home run (2-for-3, 2 R) and Means thieved bag #5 in four games (1-for-3, R, RBI).
4/11: The Blaze headed another couple hours north to Modesto to face the Nuts (COL). Righty Lance Janke, another High-A repeater (3-9, 6.44 in 88 IP at Lynchburg) started for Bakersfield. Little went right in this one from the start, though, as the Nuts crushed Janke for three in the first, then pasted both Lance (5.1 IP, 9 H, 8 R, 7 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, two throwing errors) and Chase Ware (1.2 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 BB) for five runs in the sixth and four more in the seventh to make it a 12-2 cruise. Campbell did have a pair of doubles (.500) and Grandal doubled and scored in four at-bats.
4/12: Righty Josh Ravin took the hill for the Blaze- and, outside of a first-inning Nuts run, was excellent for five innings (2 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 8 K). He departed with a 3-1 lead thanks to a Mark Fleury RBI single and a two-run triple from Means. Alas, things went bad for the bullpen, as Mace Thurman was reached for two in the sixth and Scott Gaffney two more in the seventh (L 0-2, BS 1, 1.1 IP, 5 H, 2 ER). Modesto picked up the 5-3 comeback win. The Blaze put runners on in three of the last four innings, but couldn’t get anyone past second. Fellhauer continued his hot hitting, doubling twice in four at-bats (.458). Campbell, SS Henry Rodriguez (.400), and Means (.348) were also 2-for-4.
4/13: The Blaze scored in each of the game’s first four innings, pacing Pedro Villareal (W 2-0, 6.1 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR) to his second straight win, 7-3. Campbell was 2-for-4 with a homer and Means, Fellhauer, and Mendez each added a pair of hits. Means also swiped bag #6; he and the Dragons’ Billy Hamilton will be fun to watch compete for the organizational stolen-base title. Tzu-Kai Chiu (0.2 IP, 2 BB) and Drew Bowman (5.40, 2 IP, 1 BB, 1 K) both provided scoreless relief.
Transactnotes: 4/9: RHR Jeff Jeffords was originally set to start the season with the Blaze, but he was promoted to Double-A to cover for injuries to the Carolina roster. RHS Josh Ravin is the only player who began the season on the DL. 4/12: Ravin activated, RHR Tyree Hayes moved to the Billings roster.
I’ve also noticed that INF Didi Gregorius is not shown on the Bakersfield roster even though if you search on his name at minorleaguebaseball.com he comes up as a Blaze(r). Not sure what the deal is with him at the moment. The organizational chart linked at the top of this report shows him on the Billings roster- so maybe he’s in extended spring training dealing with an injury issue or something.
Low-A Dayton Dragons
This week: 2-5.
OMG SEASON PREVIEW!
OMG SEASON PREVIEW 2: ELECTRIC BOOGALOO In eight parts! The link is to part eight- so be crazy and work backwards. Links on the right side of the page.
Even more information, some of which may be slightly redundant.
4/7: The Dragons kicked off 2011 by hosting Bowling Green (TB) at lovely Fifth Third Field (easily accessible from Interstate 75 and also next to this bar where my buddy from college used to work). Righty Josh Smith got the ball for the Dragons. Smith, 23, was a 21st-round pick last year out of Lipscomb University- and appeared exclusively out of the bullpen for Billings (1-2, 2.14, 12 G, 21 IP, 10 BB, 28 K) and Dayton (1-1, 2.13, 7 G, 12.2 IP, 6 BB, 15 K) after signing. He’d oppose a pitcher with a much greater prospect cachet, lefty Enny Romero. Smith kept the Hot Rods off the board for a while, but they managed single runs in the fourth and fifth. Josh whiffed nine in six excellent innings overall (L, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K, 1 HR). Righty Tim Crabbe (set to work out of the pen full-time this season after walking 55 batters in 82 innings primarily as a starter in 2010) struck out five more in his two innings of scoreless work. Meanwhile, the Dragons could get next to nothing off Romero, who allowed one hit and one walk in five innings, or his bullpen. Bowling Green takes the shutout win, 4-0. Dayton finished with three hits, singles by SS Billy Hamilton, CF Yorman Rodriguez, and C Tucker Barnhart. Both Hamilton and Rodriguez notched their first stolen bases.
4/8: Bowling Green managed to score in every single inning save the first and the ninth, whooping the Dragons 12-5. Daniel Corcino (4 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 2 K) started and lost. Some bright spots, though- SS Billy Hamilton was 2-for-5 with a pair of doubles, two RBI, and a steal of third (#2). He did also make two errors. Rodriguez homered in the first inning and stole his second base. DH Dominic D’Anna was 3-for-5 with a RBI.
4/9: The Dragons came back from a 4-2 deficit with a run in the sixth and two in the seventh to nip the Hot Rods, 5-4! 1B Donald Lutz’ single and RF Juan Duran’s triple brought home the tying and winning runs, respectively. Duran added that three-bagger to a RBI single earlier on to finish 2-for-4 with two RBI. Lutz was also 2-for-4 (2 R, 2B). Hamilton had two more hits and steal #3. D’Anna didn’t make an out, going 1-for-1 officially with three walks, two runs, and a steal of his own. Starter Tanner Robles worked five (5 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 3 K) but it was Pat Doyle who got the win (3 IP, 2 H, 4 K). Lefty Blaine Howell stranded the tying run for the save.
4/10: DEAL ALERT! It’s all about branding, folks. And cheeseburgers. And BASEBALLLLLLL! Unfortunately, this one ended a little depressingly. Dayton built a 6-0 lead through four, but BG got three back in the fifth, then hammered the Dragons bullpen for a seven-spot in the seventh. A three-run ninth-inning rally wasn’t enough and Dayton dropped its third of four, 12-9. Starter Dan Tuttle looked very solid (6 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K). Tim Crabbe failed to retire any of the five batters he saw, however, with all five eventually scoring (2 H, 5 R, 2 ER, 2 BB). Porfirio Martinez was charged with four runs in his two innings of work. Lutz did go 3-for-4 with a home run and two runs scored (.467). LF Jaren Matthews also homered (2-for-4, 2 RBI, 2 R) and D’Anna was 2-for-4 with his own bomb. Rodriguez was 2-for-5 with a pair of RBI and Hamilton swiped two more bags (#4 and #5) while committing error #3 as well. Barnhart was 2-for-3 with a double, run scored, RBI, and walk from the #9 spot in the order.
4/11: Wow. Despite denting the scoreboard in the third when RF Juan Duran walked and later scored thanks to a steal of third and a couple of wild pitches, the Dragons never managed a single hit off three Lake County (CLE) pitchers. The Captains win, 3-1, beating righty Daniel Renken in his first pro start (5 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 8 K, 3 WP).
4/12: The Dragons haven’t been hitting terribly well through five games, so Josh Smith took matters into his own hands and one-hit the Captains for six innings (2 BB, 6 K). Hamilton dealt with the offensive problem in the Dragons’ first, slapping a single and stealing second (#6) and scoring on successive infield outs by LF Kurtis Muller and Rodriguez. The newly-engaged Blaine Howell (see below) took care of the seventh and eighth, and Dayton added an insurance run when Matthews singled, moved to second on 2B Devin Lohman’s sacrifice and scored on a base hit by Barnhart. In came 22-year-old righty Pat Doyle (three scoreless in 2011, 31.2 IP of 2.84 ERA/39 K ball in Billings last season) to close it out. He caught the first batter looking but walked the second. Another K put LC down to their final out, but a single and run-scoring double put them on the board. Luckily Doyle whiffed C Alex Monsalve to end the game and notch the save.
4/13: The less said about this one, the better. Lake County romped, 13-1, as the Dragons had three errors to match their three hits. Daniel Corcino (L 0-2, 3.2 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR) is struggling early. Tim Crabbe did pitch decently in middle relief (5.06, 3.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K) but Porfirio Martinez, so effective in Billings last season (1.67 ERA in 27 IP, 29 K) has given up eleven runs, all earned, in four MWL innings. And only two walks; it’s all hittin’. I must also note Hamilton’s swiping of two more bags; this was in the first inning after he struck out but reached on a wild pitch. He nabbed second as Muller was failing to get a bunt down, then took third as Rodriguez was drawing a walk (!!!). Sadly, D’Anna bounced into a double play to end the threat.
Transactnotes: No one started the season on the DL, if you can believe it. Before the season started, the Reds released 2010 Dragons RHP Ricky Bowen, OF Cam Satterwhite, and OF Alex Oliveras. 3B Miguel Chacoa played in the DSL in 2008 and 2009. 3B Oliver Santos started for Billings in 2010.
If you didn’t see it earlier- nice article on the on-field marriage proposal delivered by LHR Blaine Howell.