Game Recaps (4/9/05)
Tacoma 6, Fresno 0 (SF)
The M’s sent RHP Cha Seung Baek (0.00, W) to the minors to gain some consistency, and he’s already off to a solid start. In tonight’s game he went six frames, one-hitting Fresno and striking out six. Next up was RHP Jeff Heaverlo (0.00), coming back from an armpit injury, who gave up just a hit and a walk in the next inning. RHP Chris Buglovsky (0.00) pitched an uneventful eighth, then RHP Brett Evert (0.00) closed things out giving up just a hit in the ninth. There were a couple of two-hit performances on the night, one from new Rainier outfielder CF Abraham Nunez (2B, R, RBI, CS, .667) and one from SS Michael Morse (2B, R, RBI, .375), but really, the story tonight was all about the pitching. Speaking of pitching, which the M’s seem to have great need for, RHP Joel Piniero will be making a rehab start tomorrow.Corpus Christi 0 (HOU), San Antonio 4
LHP Thom Oldham (0.00) also had a good start to his season, but unfortunately, he got stuck with a no decision despite six strong innings in which he allowed three hits, a walk, and struck out four. The win went to LHP Tim Rall (0.00), who allowed two hits in two innings, though four of his six outs came via the strikeout. RHP Sean Green (0.00) took over a non-save situation in the ninth, gave up a hit, and struck out a batter. RF T.J. Bohn (2 R, RBI, .167) started swinging that bat again tonight, getting two hits, one in the seventh, one in the eighth, and scoring on each of them. LF Jon Nelson (2B, RBI, HBP, CS, .33) and 2B Ismael Castro (2B, R, RBI, .182) both added their first doubles of the season. Newcomer LHP Nick Bourgeois will take the mound tomorrow.Bakersfield 5 (TEX), Inland Empire 3
RHP Brandon Moorhead (3.00) didn’t pitch all that well, but kept the Sixers in range over the first six frames, allowing a couple of runs on six hits (HR) and a walk while he struck out four. Unfortunately, RHP Austin Bilke (81.00) had a terrible outing today, going just one-third of an inning (getting that out on a K) and allowing three runs on three hits (HR) and a walk. RHP Aaron Trolia (0.00) came in and cleaned up the inning without allowing any more runs to score, walking one of the batters he faced, but striking out the other two. LHP Miguel Martinez (0.00) closed out the last two innings outdoing even Rall’s show for the Missions, allowing a hit and a couple of walks, but striking out five and getting the last out on a pickoff. The Sixers couldn’t overcome the deficit though, despite two-hit performances from 2B Michael Garciaparra (2 R, .375) and 3B Erick Monzon (2 RBI, E, .417). I haven’t seen it in the papers yet, but Monday night's start will probably go to either RHP Greg Wear or LHP Jason Mackintosh on slightly shortened rest.Peoria 4 (CHC), Wisconsin 9
RHP Jason Snyder (6.00, W) didn’t exactly have the debut I expected, but he got the job done in six innings of work, giving up four runs on a six hits and a walk while striking out three. RHP Cibney Bello (0.00) went the next two innings, and despite some wildness in the form of two hits and three walks, he managed to get out of it unscathed and even struck out a batter. The ninth went to RHP Craig James (0.00), who kept it perfect and seems as good a candidate as any to be closer for the T-Rats, though this wasn’t the right situation. 2B Yung-Chi Chen (R, 2 RBI, .333), 1B Brandon Green (R, RBI, .429), and C Brian Schweiger (R, 2 RBI, .667) each had two hits for the Rattlers, who managed to score all of their runs without a single extra-base hit or [successful] stolen base. LHP Casey Abrams gets the start tomorrow.
Tacoma Rainiers: 2-1, .667, 1 GB in PCL Pacific
San Antonio Missions: 3-0, 1.000, T-1st in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 1-2, .333, 1 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 2-1, .667, 1 GB in MWL West
Organizational Record: 8-4, .667
Game Recaps (4/8/05)
It was an odd night for the system tonight, as each of the teams in some way suffered from some serious defensive miscues, thirteen total between the four teams, fifteen if you count the M’s. I’d propose 27-out drills for everyone, but if I did the few players I have contact with would probably drop me from their lists.Tacoma 0, Fresno 2 (SF)
RHP Felix Hernandez (0.00, L) did not have a very happy birthday, getting the loss on a mere unearned run despite six innings of five-hit, one-walk, four-K ball. LHP Jared Thomas (0.00) took the seventh, giving up a duo of unearned runs after two more hits and a walk. LHP Scott Mullen (0.00) pitched an inning after that, walking one and striking out two. The offense couldn’t put it together tonight, despite two-hit contributions from C Wiki Gonzalez (2B, .250) and LF Shin-soo Choo (2B, CS, .333) and two walks plus a hit from SS Mike Morse (.250). However, in the end, the Rainiers could not overcome the four errors they committed. RHP Cha Seung Baek tomorrow. I’ll also add as a note, that 3B Justin Leone may be headed for a cup of coffee in Seattle in exchange for LHP Bobby Madritsch going on the DL. Leone will probably stay until Pineiro comes back, so he’ll have to try to make the most of what should be limited time.Corpus Christi 2 (HOU), San Antonio 3 (eleven innings)
RHP Juan Sandoval (3.00, PO, E) pitched well enough to get a win on most days, but he had to settle for the no decision tonight as by the time he left the game after the sixth, the Hooks were leading 2-0 despite Sandoval giving up only four hits. LHP Ryan Rowland-Smith (0.00), who I had pegged for a starter and has left me confused as to the rotation makeup, was perfect through a couple of innings and struck out one. It could just be that he’s the fifth starter and they wanted to get him some work in due to the approaching off day. RHP Jeff Harris (0.00, W) picked up the win while pitching the last three frames and giving up just a hit and a walk. The bats didn’t have much to show for the game (hitless until the seventh, when 2B Ismael Castro (RBI, .143) singled), but the little things they did put the Missions over the top, so I’m giving a gold star to DH Jesse Hoorelbeke (HR, 2 R, .125), who hit a home run to tie the game in the ninth, and LF Jon Nelson (RBI, .333), who drove in CF Jaime Bubela (R, .125) in the bottom of the eleventh for his second game-winning hit in as many nights. LHP Thom Oldham, who we can now officially use the “Texas” Oldham nickname on, will take the mound tomorrow night.Bakersfield 6 (TEX), Inland Empire 1
LHP Ryan Feierabend (2.25, L) got the ball for the Sixers tonight and clearly wasn’t all that sharp, though he did control some of the damage, giving up three runs (one earned) in four innings of work after eight hits, a walk, and three strikeouts. RHP Nibaldo Acosta (6.75), pitching out of the ‘pen from now on, gave up three runs, all of them earned, on six hits and four walks with a trio of strikeouts in the next four innings. RHP Mike Steele (0.00) took on a meaningless ninth, struck out one and walked another. As I hinted last night was a possibility (should’ve knocked on wood), the Sixers didn’t get that much offense in the game. DH Matt Rogelstad (R, .500) and 3B Erick Monzon (2B, .429) were both in the two-hit club, and 1B Bryan Lahair (RBI, .571) went 1-2 with a walk. RHP Brandon Moorhead takes the mound tomorrow.Peoria 9 (CHC), Wisconsin 1
RHP Aaron Jensen (2.25, E, L) had some trouble being aggressive tonight, but let’s face it, how aggressive can you be when the defense behind you isn’t holding up? Thus, it was a strange night for the T-Rats, with four team errors, quite unusual for a team that was expected to be rather slick with the glovework. Jensen himself made one of those errors, and two more came behind him during the four innings he pitched, leading to six runs (only one earned) during his four innings of work, in which he also gave up five hits, three walks, and struck out four. RHP Roman Martinez (0.00, E) stepped in for the next two and gave up an unearned run on his own error, but recovered to notch three strikeouts. RHP Stephen Grasley (9.00) wasn’t quite as lucky, going the two innings that followed and allowing a couple of runs after four hits (HR) and a couple of strikeouts. LHP Kendall Bergdall (0.00) pitched the ninth, gave up a hit, and struck out a batter. 2B Oswaldo Navarro (2B, RBI, .375) was seemingly the only guy hitting and playing defense on the field, logging two hits in the game and turning in a few fine plays along the way. RHP Jason Snyder tomorrow, so tune in.
Tacoma Rainiers: 1-1, .500, 1 GB in PCL Pacific
San Antonio Missions: 2-0, 1.000, T-1st in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 1-1, .500, 1 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 1-1, .500, 1 GB in MWL West
Organizational Record: 5-3, .625
Opening Day 2005
Still working on the processes here. How am I getting the box scores? Poking around and changing a few letters here and there on the web addresses of the few boxes I do have and hoping for the best, as blogger continues to delay, crash, etc (seriously, this was supposed to go up six and a half hours ago).Tacoma 6, Fresno 2 (SF)
RHP Jorge Campillo (1.35, W) took the mound in Tacoma's opener and thoroughly embarrassed Fresno, giving up a leadoff hit, then retiring the next eighteen straight batters, striking out four along the way. But by the time the seventh inning came around, he ran into a little bit of trouble, giving up two more hits and a walk. They brought RHP Masao Kida (0.00) in to try to put out the fire, but you can imagine how successful that was, and he walked in a run before getting the final out of the inning, and another two in the eighth. LHP George Sherrill (6.75, S) had a little bit of trouble at first, giving up a run on a couple of hits and a walk, but by the end of the ninth he had settled down and earned the save, striking out three along the way. CF Jamal Strong (2 R, SB, .600) had a nice day from the leadoff spot, going 3-5, but DH Kit Pellow (2B, R, RBI, .667) and 1B Aaron Rifkin (RBI, .500) also chipped in two hits and 3B Justin Leone (HR, .333) contributed his first bomb of the season, in addition to walking twice. Hopefully that on-base trend will continue and we'll see a return to the Leone of 2003. RHP Felix Hernandez takes the mound tonight.Corpus Christi 2 (HOU), San Antonio 3
LHP Bobby Livingston (1.50) also had a fine start to his season, getting through six innings just allowing a run on five hits as he rung up six. RHP Emiliano Fruto (9.00) came in for the seventh, and gave up a jack to Michael Rodriguez, in addition to two other hits that fortunately didn't amount to anything and a strikeout. LHP Cesar Jimenez (0.00) held it close in the eighth, despite allowing a couple of hits and a walk. No doubt the strike he got helped him as well. In the ninth, it was LHP Melvin Pizarro (0.00, W) pitching without any note, aside from the win, and who could complain about that? Of course, Pizarro didn't know he was going to get the win until LF Jon Nelson (HR, 2 RBI, .500) hit one out of the park in the ninth with a runner on to end the game, 3-2. Prior to that, the only scoring for the Missions had been the solo shot by 1B Nate Espy (2R, HR, .500), though SS Yuniesky Betancourt (.333) was a respectable 1-3 with a walk in his U.S. debut. RHP Juan Sandoval continues the series tonight.Bakersfield 9 (TEX), Inland Empire 13
RHP Kevin Olore (15.43) didn't exactly get the soft landing one would hope for returning from labrum surgery, struggling his way through two and a third innings and allowing four runs on four hits (2 HR!) and four walks while striking out three. Along the way, he bounced a few pitches, threw a few more to the backstop, and by the time he was pulled it seemed as if his shoulder was acting up yet again. LHP Jason Mackintosh (0.00), originally scheduled to be the fourth starter, stepped in during this emergency situation and was spectacular, holding the Blaze to a hit and a walk with one strikeout over the next two and two-thirds. LHP Chris Key (9.00, W) wasn't exactly able to do the same, going a couple innings and giving up six hits along the way, hits that would translate into a couple of runs in the sixth, though nothing in the seventh. By that time, he had settled down a bit and logged a couple of Ks. RHP Brian Stitt (16.20), who has been in and out of the rotation and now seems to be back in the 'pen, went the five outs after that (two of them Ks) and gave up three runs on a combination of three hits and a couple of walks. LHP Miguel Martinez (0.00), he of the wacky arm angles, got the final out of the game on a strikeout. On the offensive end of things, 1B Bryan Lahair (2 R, 2 RBI, .600) and C Chris Collins (2B, HR, 3 R, 4 RBI, .600) both had three hits, though from the looks of it, you'd think that their positions were reversed. DH Juan Gonzalez (2B, R, 3 RBI, SB, .500), SS Adam Jones (HR, 2 R, RBI, .400), and RF Chris Colton (2B, R, .500) also had two hits apiece, though I couldn't get through this without also noting the clever baserunning of 2B Michael Garciaparra (3B, R, .250) on his triple and the almost predictable, but no less entertaining hitting antics of CF Wladimir Balentien (HR, 2 RBI, .200), who gave the first pitch he saw a free ride out of the park then proceeded to strike out twice. If you were looking at the roster setup at the beginning of this season and wondering how they'd get any runs to the plate, you weren't the only one, but now I'm just hoping that they haven't already filled their quota for the next five games. LHP Ryan Feierabend is hoping for some offense too tonight.Peoria 1 (CHC), Wisconsin 3
Getting moved into the rotation after some relief work in Everett, RHP Mark Lowe (0.00, W) started this one and did an impressive job of keeping the ball down, so much so that only one ball was hit hard enough for a double. The rest of his line reads six innings, a couple of singles, a couple of walks, and six Ks. He does have a bit of a reputation as a wild pitcher, but hey, can't complain about this one. RHP Chad Fillinger (4.50) stepped in for two innings after that, giving up a run on a couple of hits and a walk while K'ing three. In a positive, but somewhat depressing note, LHP Eric O'Flaherty (0.00, S) logged his first professional save after a walk and a strikeout, but they are planning on keeping him in the 'pen for the time being to help alleviate the back issues that plagued him all of last season. Can't say I like it, but here's to hoping that he can eventually figure out some way to fix that and get in the rotation. The Wisconsin lineup, which should be fun this year, produced a trio of two-hit days out of 2B Asdrubal Cabrera (2B, R, .667), 3B Yung-Chi Chen (2B, R, RBI, SB, .500), and SS Matt Tuiasosopo (2B, 2 RBI, SB, .500), though on another
injury watch note, Asdrubal was trying to advance from second on a pop up late in the game and thought better of it before his body could catch up, and ended up twisting his left ankle and falling in a heap on the field. PR-2B Jack Arroyo (R, N/A) replaced him on the field, and we might be seeing a lot more of Arroyo over the next few games. RHP Aaron Jensen continues the season tonight.
Tacoma Rainiers: 1-0, 1.000, T-1st in PCL Pacific
San Antonio Missions: 1-0, 1.000, T-1st in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 1-0, 1.000, T-1st in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 1-0, 1.000, T-1st in MWL West
Organizational Record: 4-0, 1.000
Before you guys start clamoring for recaps, I should make a few things clear.
At this point in time, the official Minor League Baseball site is still in its infancy, SportsNetwork is a shell, and my only resources for box scores are Baseball America, which will switch from day to day, and the papers for the local affiliates if I'm really lucky. I am working to get the recaps together, but because of all those factors, they may not be up until morning, or midday tomorrow if I can't get to it before lunch (entirely likely). The recaps WILL get done, and I do have a solid amount of data and commentary on opening day's system sweep (listened to all of Wisconsin game and most of Inland), but be patient because the other resources are lacking at the moment. Also, Blogger continues to update maybe if it feels like it.
'Roids, and other unpleasant issues
I don't like writing about this. I don't imagine that anyone does, but like so many things in the world, we have to confront it, discouraging though it may be.
Major League Baseball has suspended 38 minor leaguers
for failing their drug tests during the Cactus League season (all except one Cardinals prospect, who was caught in offseason testing). Eight of them were Mariners prospects. The list runs as follows, with level denoting where they played last year and not where they were scheduled to play this year...
LHP Troy Cate (AA/A+)
C Ryan Christianson (AA/AAA)
RHP Renee Cortez (AA)
C Omar Falcon (SS-A)
3B Jesus Guzman (A+)
3B Billy Hogan (R/SS-A, Padres)
LHP Damian Moss (AAA/MLB, D-Rays)
RHP Darwin Soto (A+)
It's an odd list, comprised of names I didn't necessarily expect. Cate, for one, doesn't seem like the type. But a number of these guys were injured or missed parts of last season, so I'm wondering whether or not they were taking something illegal or if it was something over the counter that showed up in trace amounts in a test. On a similar note, I have to wonder whether or not Cortez and Guzman might have gotten something that was improperly labeled while they were playing winter ball in Venezuela. Whatever the reasons, each player will have to serve fifteen game suspension at the start of the minor league season, with the exception of Soto, who was released and bailed for the Winnipeg Goldeyes
If I were trying to spin this thing in the M's favor, I would point out that only Cate, Christianson, Cortez, and Guzman were players who started their careers with the M's, along with LHP Nate Sevier who is now with the Padres. Soto and Falcon also came from the Padres prior to being Rule 5'ed a year ago. One could say that diffuses the blame a bit, but it doesn't change the fact that the M's didn't catch these issues this spring and that something is rotten in the Peoria Sports Complex.
In additional bad news, Jose Lopez will have to go surgery to repair the hamate bone in his left hand
, which will keep him out for 4-6 weeks, and the Mariners have announced that they are releasing LHP Ryan Anderson and RHP Rett Johnson
. The Anderson move has been years in the making, but the Johnson move catches me off-guard, seeing how as recently as yesterday, the San Antonio Express-News was under the impression that Rett would be in the starting rotation
. Something must have happened in the past day or so that pushed things over the edge. What, exactly, may remain unknown and considering what Rett had to deal with last season, that may be for the best.
In much, much lighter news, the minor league baseball season is starting on Thursday. At this moment, I only have a copy of Inland Empire's roster
, though I have season some press releases concerning how the Wisconsin roster is going to be shaped and I have to say that Timber Rattler's fans are going to be in for a treat this season, provided that half the team isn't promoted by midseason. I'm planning on switching the sidebar links to rosters as well, and since the new Minor League Baseball site
doesn't have that in order, I'm thinking I may start linking to the InsideThePark.com rosters, since one of the staffers or I will be regularly updating those and the information isn't likely to get stale. Speaking of which, I think team previews may be in order soon.