Mariner Minors
Saturday, June 11, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/11/05)

Las Vegas 4 (LA), Tacoma 7
RHP Jorge Campillo (2.98) pitched five innings and gave up three runs on eight hits (HR) and a walk with four strikeouts. RHP Michael Bumstead (5.40) blew his debut by giving up a run on a hit and a walk in an inning of work, but LHP Jared Thomas (3.73, W) was happy to get the win after two innings where he had three each of hits and strikeouts. RHP Sean Green (3.60, S) got his first –triple-A save in the ninth after a walk and a strikeout. RF Abraham Nunez (2B, 2 R, .256), C Miguel Olivo (2B, HR, 5 RBI, .179), 2B Ramon Santiago (2B, 3B, R, .232) each had two hits, and LF Shin-soo Choo (2 R, .268) continued his on-base trend by going 1-2 with a couple of walks. Choo also had a couple of assists from the outfield.

Corpus Christi 5 (HOU), San Antonio 4
Well, I guess the Hooks can get a win against the Missions. LHP Bobby Livingston (2.84, E) went seven innings and gave up three runs (one earned) on seven hits (HR) with nine strikeouts. Newcomer RHP R.D. Spiehs (0.00) went the next inning, having a hit and a strikeout to show for his debut, but RHP Renee Cortez (5.60, L) blew it in the ninth after allowing two runs on three hits (HR) and a walk. The offense was being no-hit going into the seventh, so it was impressive enough that they almost pulled this one out. DH Luis Oliveros (RBI, .371) had the first hit and two total, while LF Jaime Bubela (2B, R, .251) and 3B Jesus Guzman (2B, R, 2 RBI, .273) both doubled. RF T.J. Bohn (R, SB, .302) and 1B Nate Espy (.281) both walked twice.

Inland Empire 1, San Jose 5 (HOU)
RHP Brandon Moorhead (4.56) went six innings and allowed five runs (four earned) on eight hits and three walks with four strikeouts. RHP Phil Wilson (0.00) coming down from San Antonio to make room for Spiehs, went the next inning and gave up a hit, and then RHP Aaron Trolia (4.31) had a hit, a walk, and a strikeout in the ninth. The offense was led by LF Carlos Arroyo (2B, RBI, .405) and RF B.J. Garbe (2B, .268), who both had three hits, but they were the only ones hitting tonight. That’s the third consecutive three-hit game for Arroyo. Blarg. Garbe also had an outfield assist to get a runner at second.

Cedar Rapids 5 (ANA), Wisconsin 13
This was the rain suspended game from yesterday. RHP Chad Fillinger (2.29) went two innings and struck out a couple before the game had to be stopped, and RHP Randy Frye (0.00, E, W) took the next three innings and had a hit, two walks, and two strikeouts in his first game since the end of the 2003 season. LHP Kendall Bergdall (3.96) had his walks catch up with him in the next inning, with three runs on a hit and three walks in the sixth, but RHP Stephen Grasley (4.43, S) got through the next three innings only allowing a run on four hits (HR) with one K. Everyone in the lineup was hitting in this one, with DH Marshall Hubbard (2B, R, 2 RBI, .304) leading the pack with four and 2B Asdrubal Cabrera (2B, R, 2 RBI, .333), RF Mike Wilson (HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, .259), and SS Matt Tuiasosopo (HR, 3 R, 2 RBI, .308) flanking him with three each. CF Sebastien Boucher (2B, R, 2 RBI, .319) also had two hits.

Cedar Rapids 7, Wisconsin 5 (seven innings)
RHP Aaron Jensen (5.19, L) took the hill for five innings and allowed seven runs (just two earned) on seven hits (HR), a hit batter, and two walks against a couple of strikeouts. RHP Ivan Blanco (0.00) came in with two runners on and stranded both, going the last two frames with a hit, a wild pitch, a balk, a walk, and three strikeouts. Free Ivan Blanco. CF Sebastien Boucher (2 RBI, .331) was 2-2 with two walks and, thus far, it’s definitely looking like he was worth the seventh round pick a year ago. 1B Marshall Hubbard (HR, 2 RBI, .305) had his seventh home run and a walk. If you’re wondering about those five unearned runs, I’d credit a lot of that to SS Oswaldo Navarro (3 E, .267) and his three gaffes on the night.

I’m getting a 404 on the Aguirre box tonight, but they did lose, sadly.

Today’s Schedule:
Tacoma: RHP Cha Seung Baek, at Tacoma, @ 1:35 pm PT
San Antonio: RHP Juan Sandoval, at San Antonio (VJ Keefe), @ 2:05 pm PT
Inland Empire: LHP Miguel Martinez (?), at San Jose, @ 11:00 am PT
Wisconsin: LHP Julio Santiago, at Appleton, @ 11:05 am PT
Aguirre: Day off

Tacoma Rainiers: 32-29, .525, 1.5 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 32-30, .516, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 28-34, .452, 6.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 35-27, .565, T-1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 11-10, .523, 2 GB in VSL Valencia
Santo Domingo Mariners, 3-2, .600, 1 GB in DSL Santo Domingo Norte
Organizational Record: 141-132, .516

Friday, June 10, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/10/05)

Las Vegas 3 (LA), Tacoma 5
LHP Damian Moss (3.05, PO) had one of his better starts of the season, going seven innings and allowing two runs on five hits (HR) and four walks while he struck out seven. RHP Jeff Heaverlo (7.31) recorded a couple of outs, but let a run score after a pair of walks and a hit. RHP Masao Kida (4.63, S) went for the next four outs, gave up a hit, and struck out three to pick up the save. CF Jamal Strong (2 2B, HR, 2 R, .306) led the team with three hits, but it was an odd game in that a large portion of the scoring, well, okay, all the scoring came via home runs by Strong, RF Chris Snelling (2B, HR, 2 RBi, .390), LF Abraham Nunez (HR, .251), and 1B Aaron Rifkin (HR, .249), who also walked twice. 2B Jose Lopez (2B, .355) also doubled.

San Antonio 10, Frisco 5 (TEX)
RHP Jon Huber (4.88) went six innings and allowed five runs (four earned) on four hits, a hit batter, and four walks against four Ks. RHP Emiliano Fruto (3.35, W) went the next three and gave up four hits and punched out two. RF T.J. Bohn (3 R, SB, .304) was the one with four hits tonight, though it’s not quite as surprising for him. CF Gary Harris (2B, 2 R, RBI, .267) added three, and 3B Jesus Guzman (HR, 2 R, .274), 1B Nate Espy (2B, R, 4 RBI, .284), and C Luis Oliveros (RBI, .355) each had two.

Inland Empire 8, San Jose 0 (SF)
LHP Ryan Feierabend (4.88, PO, W) finally had a good start, going six innings and allowing six hits and two walks while punching out eight. RHP Nibaldo Acosta (4.30, S) went the three innings after that and gave up a hit and two walks while striking out two. LF Carlos Arroyo (2 R, .393) had another three hits and you can just cut and paste my comments from last night on that one. 1B Bryan Lahair (HR, 4 RBI, .287), 3B Erick Monzon (2B, RBI, .301), and RF Chris Colton (2 R, 2 RBI, .231) each had two hits. Since it’s been a popular topic of interest, I’ll add that DH Wladimir Balentien (.290) was back today, but whiffed three out of the four times he was at the plate.

Wisconsin’s game only lasted two innings before it was shut down due to thunderstorms.

Aguirre 1, Cagua 2 (CIN)
RHP Alfredo Venagas (1.02) had another excellent start, going five innings and allowing just two hits and a walk while striking out six. His K rates have increased dramatically this year and he’s a guy I’d keep my eye on. P Carlos Sanchez (2.53, L) was perfect through his first two innings, striking out two, but to open the eighth, he gave up two hits, and RHP Diomny Gaetano (0.00), who allowed two hits as well, along with a hit batter, let both those runs score on his way to finishing the inning. Not much in the way of hitting, and all I can note is SS Cesar Fuentes (2B, .259) doubling in his only at-bat and maybe 3B Deybis Benitez (.154) going 1-3 with a walk.

Today’s Schedule:
Tacoma: RHP Jorge Campillo, at Tacoma, @ 7:05 pm PT
San Antonio: LHP Bobby Livingston, at San Antonio, @ 5:05 pm PT
Inland Empire: RHP Brandon Moorhead, at San Jose, @ 5:00 pm PT
Wisconsin: TBA, at Appleton, @ 2:30 pm PT
Second Game: Following completion of first, seven innings
Aguirre: TBA, at Aguirre, @ 6:30 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 31-29, .517, 2 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 32-29, .525, 4 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 28-33, .459, 5.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 34-26, .567, 1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 11-9, .550, 1 GB in VSL Valencia
Santo Domingo Mariners, 3-2, .600, 1 GB in DSL Santo Domingo Norte
Organizational Record: 139-128, .521

  Game Recaps (6/9/05)

Las Vegas 0 (LA), Tacoma 4
RHP Felix Hernandez (2.53, W) bumped his record up to 7-4 by going five and a third innings and allowing five hits, a balk, and five walks while striking out eight. I heard he didn’t have his fastball location on tonight and no one was swinging at the secondary pitches, and yet, he still got the win. RHP Chris Buglovsky (6.17) gave up a hit and struck out one over the next inning and two-thirds, and RHP Sean Green (4.50) followed with a perfect frame in which he struck out one. RHP Masao Kida (4.26) came out of the ninth unscathed, despite two hits. Kida also struck out a batter. CF Jamal Strong (R, RBI, SB, .296) led the team with three hits on the night, but maybe what was more notable was RF Chris Snelling (2B, .385), who was 1-2 with three walks. That’s 23 walks to 29 strikeouts now. 1B Scott Spiezio (.346) and SS Yuniesky Betancourt (R, RBI, SB, .320) also added two hits, and DH Miguel Olivo (R, 2 SB, .143) might have with his play yesterday, but instead he was tossed after arguing a strikeout call in the fifth, and had to settle for 1-for-3. Though he didn’t do much in this game, 2B Jose Lopez (R, .370) was activated from the DL and had one hit in the game. Greg Jacobs was released to make room for him. It’s kind of getting lost in the shuffle here, but it’s looking like LF Shin-soo Choo (RBI, .265). He’s still getting on base all the time, but his average and power hitting have dropped noticeably in recent weeks.

San Antonio 8, Frisco 9 (TEX)
LHP Ryan Rowland-Smith (4.73) had his longest start to date, going six and two-thirds innings and allowing five runs on ten hits with four strikeouts. That’s like the left-handed Juan Sandoval right there. LHP Cesar Jimenez (3.25) went the next inning and a third and would allow one of the runs to score and two of his own after six hits. But the bad news from the bullpen wasn’t over yet, as RHP Renee Cortez (5.13) scored one of Jimenez’ runs and two of his own after three hits in just a third of an inning. C Luis Oliveros (2B, 2 R, 2 RBI, .346) tried to prove he still had some worth in the organization by going 4-for-5 on the night. The trio of LF Jaime Bubela (R, .254), RF T.J. Bohn (2B, 2 RBI, .294), and 1B Jesse Hoorelbeke (2 R, E, .246) added two hits apiece, and 3B Jesus Guzman (3B, R, 2 RBI, .268) had a triple and a walk.

Inland Empire 5, Stockton 8 (OAK)
RHP Mumba Rivera (11.25, L) got his first loss of the season, going three and third innings and allowing seven runs (five earned) to score on four hits, two wild pitches, a hit batter, and five walks against four strikeouts. RHP Mike Steele (3.38) let one of his three inherited runners to score, but was otherwise good in two and two-thirds innings, having two hits, a balk, a walk, and three strikeouts. RHP Aaron Looper (3.60) had a solo home run, a walk, and a strikeout in the next inning, and LHP Nick Bourgeois (2.25) had a couple of walks and a K in the eighth. LF Carlos Arroyo (3 R, SB, .379 and SS Adam Jones (2 2B, 3 RBI, .306) both had three hits, and Arroyo added two walks to that total. I can only say it so many times; Arroyo belongs in San Antonio. C Chris Collins (2B, RBI, .265) also had two hits.

Cedar Rapids 4 (ANA), Wisconsin 7
LHP Casey Abrams (4.85, E) survived five innings of work, allowing three runs (one earned) five hits, a wild pitch, three hit batters, and three walks against just one K. RHP Ivan Blanco (0.00, PO) followed up with two innings in which he allowed two hits, a wild pitch, and a walk, punched out two, and picked off a batter (which is always impressive coming from a righty). I can’t do my usual campaign because Sherrill’s on the DL at the moment, so Free Ivan Blanco, he of the sub-1.00 WHIP and nice K rates. LHP Eric O’Flaherty (5.33) struggled in the next inning and two-thirds, giving up a run on four hits before RHP Craig James (0.77, S) got the final out. CF Sebastien Boucher (2B, 3B, 2 R, RBI, SB, .318) came up a jack short of the cycle, but I’ve still been nothing but impressed by his play thus far. DH Asdrubal Cabrera (2B, RBI, SB, .325), RF Mike Wilson (2 2B, R, .249), and 3B Yung-Chi Chen (3B, R, 2 RBI, CS, .282) added two hits each.

Aguirre 0, San Joaquin 3 (PIT)
P Gerardo Esparza (1.02, L) gave up his first runs of the season, two of them, on four hits and three walks with four strikeouts in four and third innings. RHP Alejandro Gutierrez (4.02, E) went an inning and a third after that, allowing an unearned run on a hit and three walks, and then LHP Jose Jimenez (5.79) pitched the final two frames, allowing a hit in each. The offense could only muster three hits on the night, so I guess I’ll go with RF Greysom Berroteran (.300), as he was 1-for-2 with a walk.

The Dominican Summer League opened up last Sunday. As you may know, I’ve struggle over the years to get current information or box scores and the like as far as the DSL goes, but I still like to throw out a little info here and there. First of all, despite my original belief that he’d be throwing in at least Peoria this year, it’s looking like LHP Eddy Fernandez has been sent out to utterly destroy the DSL once again. He won his first game, going six inning and allowing three hits and a walk while he punched out four. It’s still possible that he’ll be moved up once the seasons are underway for Peoria and Everett, I guess. Also, to clear up an earlier misconception on my part, the RHP Gregorio Rosario that the Mariners signed some time ago is not related to the other players of the same name who have appeared in the U.S., he was just one of the more notable DSL signings, and seemingly with good reason, as his first start saw him go five innings, allow three hits, and strike out five. Not much else to note, but for curiosity’s sake, I’ll tell you that Nicaraguan outfielder Dwight Britton has been moved from the VSL to the DSL for this season. It also appears that OF Jairo Hernandez, RHP Carlos Colon, and maybe P Sterling Soto have earned their tickets off the island, but the rest of the players I’m not so sure about, so I’ll update once I get the short-season rosters in my hands.

Today’s Schedule:
Tacoma: RHP Jorge Campillo, at Tacoma, @ 7:05 pm PT
San Antonio: RHP Jon Huber, at Frisco, @ 5:00 pm PT
Inland Empire: LHP Ryan Feierabend, at San Jose, @ 7:05 pm PT
Wisconsin: RHP Chad Fillinger, at Appleton, @ 5:05 pm PT
Aguirre: TBA, at Cagua, @ 8:00 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 30-29, .508, 2 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 31-29, .517, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 27-33, .450, 6.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 34-26, .567, 1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 11-8, .579, 1 GB in VSL Valencia
Santo Domingo Mariners, 3-2, .600, 1 GB in DSL Santo Domingo Norte
Organizational Record: 136-127, .517

Thursday, June 09, 2005
  Valdez = Gone

Wilson Valdez was traded today to... wait for it... (drumroll)... the Padres. For a couple of unimpressive triple-A relievers. Yeah, Bavasi really milked that one. It's all in RotoWorld right now, but hasn't quite gotten to other sources just yet.

Valdez, 27, only spent four at-bats with the Rainiers before being sent on his way. Before that, he was pretty nice with the glove but inept with the bat in Seattle, but I probably don't need to remind you of that. Suffice to say the projections of him were pretty accurate.

R.D. Spiehs, 25, has split his career between the Padres and the Giants. His numbers this year have been ugly, but prior to that he was decent, posting a career K/BB of about 2.40 and a WHIP of 1.34, and an ERA of 3.47. He's never made a career start though, and guys who are career relievers in the minors generally don't amount to much.

Michael Bumstead, 27, has been as erratic as assignments to various minor league teams. He's averaged about two teams per year, and has ended up in the Cal League every year of his career thus far except this one. When he's on, he can string together some impressive performances, and when he's off, he's just bad. Have a look for yourself, but there isn't much else I can think of to say about this guy at the moment.

I still don't know how this is going to affect the rosters yet, but I'll mention it if I find anything.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/8/05)

San Antonio 0, Frisco 13 (TEX)
Defense let this one get really out of hand, but really, it’s not like the offense impressed anyone tonight. LHP Thom Oldham (4.05, PO, L) went four and two-thirds innings tonight and gave up ten runs (only five earned) on ten hits (HR) and a walk against four Ks. RHP Phil Wilson (5.79) let two of those runs to score and added three of his own to the total as he gave up four hits, a wild pitch, three walks, and three Ks in two and a third innings of work. LHP Tim Rall (33.2) gave up a hit and a strikeout in the ninth. The offense was so bad the closest thing I can come to a highlight is RF T.J. Bohn (.290) going 1-2 before being pulled, probably because he doesn’t get rested all that often and the game was getting far out of hand.

On the plus side, the Texas League All-Star Team was announced and 3B Jesus Guzman will be starting for the Western Division team and LHP Bobby Livingston will be pitching as well. SS Yuniesky Betancourt and RHP Sean Green were also named to the team, but have been promoted to triple-A already.

Inland Empire 3, Stockton 9 (OAK)
LHP Jason Mackintosh (3.91, L) went five and two-thirds innings and gave up five runs (three earned) on six hits, two hit batters, and five walks against three Ks. RHP Aaron Trolia (4.39) went the next one and a third and gave up a walk. In the ninth, RHP Greg Wear (3.68) allowed four runs (three earned) on two hits and two walks with one K over the first two outs, and then RHP Oliver Arias (5.87) made an appearance for the final out. For the offense, 2B Michael Garciaparra (2 2B, R, 2 E, .319), 1B Bryan Lahair (.291), and LF Carlos Arroyo (RBI, E, .360) each had two hits.

Edit: 10:52 pm
In T-Rats news, seven Wisconsin players were named to the All-Star team, but, oddly enough, none of them as starters. The Western Division team will include RHP Cibney Bello, IF Asdrubal Cabrera, IF Yung-Chi Chen, RHP Chad Fillinger, C Rob Johnson, SS Matt Tuiasosopo, and OF Josh Womack. RHP Mumba Rivera would have been on the team as well, but he’s in the Cal League right now. On the injury front, I’ve heard that RHP Mark Lowe is headed to the DL with a broken bone in his pitching hand from getting hit by a line drive a while back. I’m crossing my fingers that RHP Ivan Blanco steps into the rotation now. RHP Randall Frye was promoted to take Lowe's spot on the roster. Frye was a 4th round pick in the 2002 draft and missed all of last season for shoulder injury reasons.

Tronconero #2 1 (NYM), Aguirre 6
RHP Ronald Uviedo (1.53, W) went five innings and gave up just one run on two hits, a wild pitch, a hit batter, two walks, and three Ks. RHP Kelvin Alarcon (1.80) went the next three frames, and allowed three hits and a walk while striking out two, and then P Carlos Sanchez (1.04) took the ninth and was perfect in the inning. 2B Cesar Fuentes (2 R, .264), C Franklin Tua (R, 2 RBI, .351), and 1B William Ortiz (R, .240) all had two hits, and CF Edzul Robles (2B, 2 R, .244) and SS Deybis Benitez (2B, RBI, .130) doubled.

Tomorrow’s Schedule:
Tacoma: RHP Felix Hernandez, at Tacoma, @ 7:05 pm PT
San Antonio: LHP Ryan Rowland-Smith, at Frisco, @ 5:00 pm PT
Inland Empire: RHP Mumba Rivera, at Stockton, @ 7:05 pm PT
Wisconsin: LHP Casey Abrams, at Appleton, @ 5:05 pm PT
Aguirre: TBA, at San Joaquin, @ 8:00 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 29-29, .500, 1.5 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 31-28, .525, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 27-32, .458, 6.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 33-26, .559, 1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 11-7, .611, 1 GB in VSL Valencia
Organizational Record: 131-122, .518

Tuesday, June 07, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/7/05)

The rest of the system didn’t take a holiday and I can’t either. But tomorrow, it'll be close to it.

Tacoma 6, Portland 3 (SD)
LHP Andrew Lorraine (5.56, W) went six innings and gave up a couple of runs on five hits (HR) and a walk against five Ks. RHP Jeff Harris (1.59) pitched the rest of the game and allowed a run on three hits (HR) with two strikeouts. 1B Scott Spiezio (2B, HR, 3 R, .318) had three hits in his rehab game. LF Abraham Nunez (2B, R, 2 RBI, .251) and 3B Hunter Brown (2B, R, RBI, .266) had two, with Brown also walking twice. Your new Rainiers shortstop is SS Wilson Valdez (E, .000) who went 0-4 tonight. Betancourt should still be with the team, splitting time with him, I guess. If you’re wondering, Luis Valbuena went to Peoria to make room.

San Antonio 7, Frisco 4 (TEX)
RHP Juan Sandoval (4.07, E) had what is becoming a typical start for him, going five and a third innings and allowing four runs on nine hits and two walks with two strikeouts. LHP Tim Rall (3.50) finished up that inning without allowing any of Sandoval’s runs to score as he quickly induced a double play, but he gave up two hits to open the seventh and was pulled for RHP Emiliano Fruto (3.60), who went the next three frames and allowed two hits, a wild pitch, a walk, and two strikeouts. LHP Chris Key (1.23, W) had a hit and a strikeout in the tenth, and then RHP Renee Cortez (4.50, S) had a perfect ninth to get the save. The Missions had two hits each from RF T.J. Bohn (R, SB, .288), 1B Nate Espy (2 R, .289), CF Gary Harris (2 R, .261), 2B Ismael Castro (3B, R, 2 RBI, .228), and C Brian Moon (R, 2 RBI, .225), and Harris, Castro, and Moon were all involved in the scoring in the eleventh.

Inland Empire 3, Stockton 6 (OAK)
LHP Miguel Martinez (6.32) went five innings tonight and allowed four runs on three hits (HR) and five walks with three Ks. Get well soon, Shawn Nottingham. RHP Nibaldo Acosta (4.67) went the final three and gave up a couple of runs (one earned) on four hits (HR) and a walk against four Ks. 2B Michael Garciaparra (.309) and 3B Matt Rogelstad (R, .316) both had two hits, and 1B Bryan Lahair (2B, R, .287) and CF Michael Nesbit (2B, RBI, .282) had doubles.

Edit: 11:18 pm 6/9
Southwest Michigan 4 (TB), Wisconsin 10
Revenge. RHP Jason Snyder (3.64, W) gave up just three runs despite eight hits (HR), a walk, and five strikeouts in five and two-thirds innings. RHP Ivan Blanco (0.00) went for the next four outs, stranding the runners from Snyder and giving up a hit and a walk and striking out a batter. And yet, Abrams is still starting Thursday. RHP Cibney Bello (4.15) pitched an inning and rebounded from yesterday’s disaster, walking one, throwing a wild pitch, and striking out one. RHP Craig James (0.78) gave up a run on two hits and struck out two in the ninth, but his ERA is still sub-1.00. CF Sebastien Boucher (R, 3 RBI, .305) and 3B Yung-Chi Chen (2B, R, 2 RBI, .278) both had a couple of hits and C Rob Johnson (HR, .304) had his eighth home run along with a walk.

Aguirre 4, Universidad 0 (FLA-WAS)
P Karlin Taylor (2.63, W) went five innings and only allowed a hit, a hit batter, and three walks against a trio of Ks. P Kervin Montbrum (2.13), not to be outdone, also one-hit Universidad through the next three innings, walking one, throwing two wild pitches, hitting a batter, and striking out five. RHP Diomny Gaetano (0.00) finished up with a strikeout in the ninth. LF Rayon Lampe (HR, 2 RBI, .255) had his first home run of the season, and 2B Humberto Espinoza (2B, 2 R, .421) had a double and two walks.

Tomorrow’s Schedule:
Tacoma: Off day
San Antonio: LHP Thom Oldham, at Frisco, @ 5:00 pm PT
Inland Empire: LHP Jason Mackintosh, at Stockton, @ 6:00 pm PT
Wisconsin: Off day
Aguirre: TBA, at Aguirre, @ 8:00 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 29-29, .500, 1.5 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 31-27, .534, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 27-31, .466, 5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 33-26, .559, 1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 10-7, .588, 1 GB in VSL Valencia
Organizational Record: 130-120, .520

  Draft Day Blogging

6:08 pm

I did not collapse from overworking myself. You will not need to check with the local authorities to see if I'm okay.

I just started doing too many things at the same time and needed to take a break.

Notes for the rest of the way:

* Varvano's a solid pick if you're willing to deal with the TJ which he'll likely need. Uhlmansiek, again, but perhaps a better pitcher overall.
* Boyer might end up as a value. He has good power and speed, but he was inconsistent this year.
* Holdzkom is a powerful right-hander, but was academically ineligible to play until the end of April, and then he was held back due to issues with his coach and his control. So, as far as prep players go in the first eighteen rounds, you have two right-handers with plus stuff but questions about their make-up and a switch-hitting centerfielder from Puerto Rico.
* The M's drafted James Russell in the 37th round last season too.
* The M's also picked up the other corner infielder from University of Nebraska. Though Ledbetter may be a good player somewhere down the line, ouch, all the same.

3:13 pm

Brian Contreras, CF, S/R, 6'2, 175 lbs out of Puerto Rico Baseball Academy. That's all I've got on that one.

2:49 pm

Ten minute break allows me some breathing room.

After Sabatella, we picked up a guy by the name of Ronald Prettyman. He seems to play the corner IF positions, but his hitting doesn't warrant much. Luckily for him he can play the middle infield positions fairly well. Not much in the tools dept., makes up for it with his play. Wille Bloomquist redux, perhaps, though BA compares him to Morgan Ensberg.

2:30 pm

Bryan Sabatella, 1B/3B Q... Qui... Quinnipiac University. Ouch.

.406/.466/.656, 50 GS, 192 AB, 15 2B, 11 HR, 78 H, 46 R, 40 RBI

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2005 Everett Aquasox starting third baseman.

2:22 pm

David Asher, sinker slider 90mph lefty from Florida International. Still going nuts on pitchers, but I like this.

Read this on Asher, courtesy of g_moneyball.

1:52 pm

Faster and faster.

The sixth round brought Lance (Michael) Lynn, a RHP from a high school in Indiana. He was a perfect 10-0 his senior year and had 122 Ks in 67 IP. Some think that he could be better than Josh Lindbolm, who was Indiana's top prep player and went to the Astros in the third round, but he's kind of iffy on his work ethic, etc.

Seventh gave us a Clemson pitcher, LHP Robert Rohrbaugh. Like Kahn he was inconstent and got hit hard at times (10 HR, .279 average), but his stuff isn't near Kahn's, with an average to slightly above FB, a curve, and a change.

1:17 pm


Technically, I called this pre-draft, as I implied over at SportSpot that I'd have a similar reaction to Kirk, subbing in the name of an M's scout, if Tulo was picked.

So now we have RHP Stephen Kahn in the system. He throws hard, mid-90s, but that slipped a little this year as did his FB command (left too many in the zone). Good potential, improving breaking ball, but still pretty unrefined. He did look like a first-rounder coming into the season though, so I like it.

He's actually in the top 200 at 110, and is nineteenth in California.

We're still waiting on a Lincecum appearance.

12:48 pm

M's picked up LHP Justin Thomas. Apparently his FB's about average, and he has a decent slider. Racked up a lot of strikeouts and came within six of Youngstown State's single season record. But... he isn't listen in BA's top 200, and he's the seventh-best prospect in Ohio according to the same source. I'm trying to find info on him but this is somewhat baffling.

11:02 am

Getting in a few words on Clement here, I do like this pick. It's not just because of the whole left-handed power thing, but in addition to that, there aren't a whole lot of quality catchers in the system. Rene Rivera, despite his fine start to the major leagues, may end up as a back up due to his hitting ability. Ryan Christianson hasn’t played catcher often enough over the past few years, and is still trying to re-learn the position after so much time off. Luis Oliveros after his curious suspensions would take some kind of miracle to make the majors with the M’s. Beyond that, you have Justin Ruchti, who just can’t seem to hit, and Rob Johnson, Danny Santin, Kent Dixon, and Jair Fernandez down in the lower levels of the minors, and while I do like those four for varying reasons, none of them have yet proven enough to fit into the game plan yet at this point.

Clement gives them left-handed power, a potential clubhouse leader, and depth at a relatively thin position, without quite putting all the eggs in one basket. I'm pegging him to start at Inland Empire.

On the other hand, the sky might be falling soon. I mean, for one thing, the m's didn't take an athletic shortstop with their first pick, and for another, they've finally done something that makes Logan happy.

10:09 am


9:04 am

Right now, the hot rumor is that C Jeff Clement is going to the M's. On the whole, I like that idea bit better than the Tulo thing, as Clement might have as much power as Gordon does and coming from the left side (though he might not flat-out embarrass pitchers in the style of Gordon). Clement does have his flaws behind the plate, and most of them aren’t anything Camp Hansen can’t cure, but his throwing arm is about, so it’s nothing to get too excited about. I’m not generally a fan of spending a first-round pick on a catcher, but this could work as, even if he falters behind the plate (not assumed, but still a possibility), he might be enough of a hitter to warrant a move to first.

Depending on who you’re reading at the moment, Upton is either locked at the first pick or still in ongoing negotiations, what have you.

Monday, June 06, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/6/05)

Tacoma 3, Portland 6 (SD)
RHP Cha Seung Baek (3.71, L) got the loss as he gave up four runs on ten hits (HR) and a walk against two strikeouts. LHP Jared Thomas (3.99, E) went the next two innings and gave up two runs on three hits and a walk against two Ks. On offense, CF Jamal Strong (2B, RBI, .294) had the only extra-base hit, and SS Yuniesky Betancourt (R, RBI, SB, CS, PO, .286) was the only one to multi-hit.

Inland Empire 6, Lake Elsinore 4 (SD)
RHP Brandon Moorhead (4.43, W) went seven innings tonight and gave up all four of the Storm’s runs on six hits (HR) and two walks with two strikeouts. LHP Nick Bourgeois (2.33, S) rebounded and went the final two frames, allowing a walk and a strikeout. DH Bryan LaHair (HR, 3 RBI, .288) was the only Sixer with two hits on the night. CF Wladimir Balentien (2B, R, .296) did have a double and a run in his lone at-bat before being pulled for CF Chris Colton (HR, .227). No word yet on what, if anything, is going on with that.

Southwest Michigan 12 (TB), Wisconsin 2
The D-Rays just clubbed the T-Rats in this one. RHP Aaron Jensen (5.46) would give up seven runs (six earned) on nine hits (2 HR!), a wild pitch, and two walks against two Ks. LHP Kendall Bergdall (3.00) continued the trend of bad luck, though the defense hurt him more, as only two of his five runs were earned and he gave up six hits (HR), a wild pitch, and two walks with one strikeout in three innings of work. The only bright spot on the pitching staff was LHP Eric O’Flaherty (5.63) turning in a perfect frame in the ninth and striking out a batter. Wisconsin had eleven hits to Southwest Michigan’s fifteen, but they just couldn’t get anyone to cross the plate. LF Jack Arroyo (2 2B, R, .243) and 1B Marshall Hubbard (2B, RBI, .297) both had three hits and SS Oswaldo Navarro (2 E, .273) had two.

Southwest Michigan 17, Wisconsin 4
Overkill, pure and simple. LHP Julio Santiago (4.35, L) went five and a third innings and gave up five runs (four earned) on six hits (HR), a wild pitch, and a walk against two strikeouts. That would be pretty much the best any of the T-Rats pitchers did in this game. RHP Cibney Bello (4.28) faced nine batters without recording an out, and that alone let a Santiago run score, but on top of that, there were five hits (HR), a wild pitch, two hit batters, and two walks, all of which would score against Bello. RHP Stephen Grasley (4.54) let two of those runs and three of his own (two earned) score on four hits and two walks as he went the rest of the way. The T-Rats had two hits from RF Brent Johnson (.224), but that was all that was worth noting.

Ciudad Alianza 1 (BOS-SD), Aguirre 8
Finally, the Aguirre M’s pulled out a win against a team with a better record. LHP Jose Escalona (1.00, W) worked five innings today giving up just an unearned run on five hits and two walks against four strikeouts. RHP Jorge Acosta (4.26) and LHP Jose Jimenez (7.36) split the last four innings, with Acosta giving up two hits and a walk while punching out four, and Jimenez giving up one hit and striking out two. Aguirre had a lot of multi-hit games today, with three hits from LF Rayon Lampe (R, 2 RBI, .260) and C Jair Fernandez (R, 2 RBI, PB, .394), two hits by SS Cesar Fuentes (R, SB, 2 E, .245), 2B Humberto Espinoza (2B, R, RBI, .429), and DH Pablo Orfila (2 2B, RBI, .194). CF Terry Serrano (R, CS, .278) also went 1-2 with three walks from the leadoff spot.

Tomorrow’s Schedule:
Tacoma: LHP Andrew Lorraine, at Portland, @ 12:05 pm PT
San Antonio: RHP Juan Sandoval, at Frisco, @ 5:05 pm PT
Inland Empire: TBA, at Stockton, @ 7:05 pm PT
Wisconsin: RHP Jason Snyder, at Appleton, @ 7:05 pm PT
Aguirre: TBA, at Universidad, @ 8:00 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 28-29, .491, 2.5 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 30-27, .526, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 27-30, .474, 4.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 32-26, .552, T-1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 9-7, .562, 1.5 GB in VSL Valencia
Organizational Record: 126-119, .514

  News Around the Minors (6/6/05)

Well, the draft-related wackiness is on the horizon and twenty-four hours from now we'll know who the M's have selected with the third pick in the draft and will have another set of rounds with which to judge the results, so I should probably clue you guys in as to my plans draft-wise.

Just like last year, I'm going to be helping out on the coverage at The current format has us doing one big blog-style entry and trying to tackle it all that way, talking to as many players as we can and updating regularly, so long as the server lets us. I don't think this is subscriber-based, but it might be, I haven't heard the final word yet. If I can get a few words in edgewise here, I'll do that as well since I'm planning on being around for the duration.

Speaking of draft-related goodies, I was invited to participate on the Mariners Roundtable at SportSpot, and a selection of five possible draft candidates is now posted. I wrote the one on Maybin, partially because I was curious and partially because Tulowitzki (whose name I am trying to move away from misspelling for comedic effect) doesn't particularly excite me.

Also, as long as I'm continuing to pimp stuff I've been involved with lately, note the transactions piece over at ITP, which is free, you know. Again, remember this is a bi-weekly thing so every other Monday there should be a new one up which I've devoted a weekend or so to writing. And yes, I whiffed on the Craig part, but I really did want to see him playing more often.

As for very cool things which I, unfortunately, have NOT been involved in (sorry guys), John Sickels ran a mock draft on Sunday and his AL West analysis is now up. If you've gotten this far into the post, you should already know my opinion on Tulo and the opinion of MacMariner, who chose to select him in his role as the scouting director. The other picks (done by Sickels) included Everett CC RHP Zach Simons and University of Georgia RHP Mitchell Boggs. Simons is an interesting risk pick; he's only recently appearedo n the radar after adding some muscle and boosting his fastball from the low-80s to the mid-90s. His slider and his change are inconsistent, but he's regarded as being coachable, though raw. Boggs, on the other hand, is a guy who has gone back and forth between baseball and football before finally settling into a closer's role at Georgia. He's another "good stuff, but raw" type of pitcher, but the plus of that is that there isn't too much wear on his arm as a result.

For more draft coverage, I recommend what the Tacoma News Tribune has, but the Seattle PI has some good stuff as well (reporting the same basic things).

On the topic of past third overall picks by the Mariners, I found an article by Jason Collette at RotoJunkie on Roger Salkeld. Collette, you may remember, wrote a piece on Felix Hernandez a while back, so it only seems natural that he should seek out and interview one of the past teenage pitching phenoms in the M's system. Check it out, it's rather cool.

A paper out of Salem, Oregon has a piece on RHP Brett Evert, who was released a while back and headed off for the Milwaukee system. Nothing too special, more of a local interest thing since he's from the area.

The San Bernadino County Sun wrote a piece on the intrigue involved in two players from Curacao facing each other for what might be the first time ever in the minor leagues, one of them being Sixers outfielder Wladimir Balentien. Balentien also gets a few words in on playing for the Dutch Olympic Baseball Team last season.

To close this one, I guess I'll go with a piece out of the San Antonio Express-News which covered the top Texas League prospects. Naturally, this was written before Betancourt got his promotion, but it's interesting to see the commentary on Bohn, Betancourt, and Rene Rivera (now with the M's). Sure, the angle is slanted towards the hometown Missions, but it's still good reading.

Sunday, June 05, 2005
  Game Recaps (6/5/05)

Tacoma 5, Portland 4 (SD)
LHP Damian Moss (3.12) went five and two-thirds innings in his start, allowing all four of Portland’s runs on nine hits (2 HR!), a wild pitch, a hit batter, and five walks against just two strikeouts. RHP Jeff Heaverlo (7.18, W) stranded all three of Moss’ runners and was perfect through the last three and a third, punching out five. RF Greg Jacobs (R, RBI, .222) had three hits in this one, CF Jamal Strong (R, .295) and 1B Aaron Rifkin (2 2B, 2 R, RBI, .250) both had two, and DH Scott Spiezio (3B, .267), C Miguel Olivo (HR, .133), and 3B Hunter Brown 2B, RBI, .257) added extra-base hits.

San Antonio 7, Wichita 6 (KC) (ten innings)
LHP Bobby Livingston (2.99, PO) went seven innings today and gave up four runs (three earned) after just six hits while he struck out three. LHP Cesar Jimenez (2.86) kind of blew it next, going an inning and two-thirds and allowing a couple of runs on two hits, a hit batter, and two walks, but the Missions rallied back and gave the win to RHP Renee Cortez (4.68, W), who didn’t allow a runner to reach through the last two and a third innings and struck out three. DH Nate Espy (2B, HR, 2 R, .284) was the hero of the night, giving the Missions the lead in the tenth with a solo home run, but there was a three-hit performance from SS Eddie Menchaca (2B, R, .222), another two hits from 2B Ismael Castro (2B, R, CS, PO, .222), and a double and a walk from 3B Jesus Guzman (2B, CS, .280).

Inland Empire 4, Lake Elsinore 6 (SD)
LHP Ryan Feierabend (5.40, PO) went five innings and gave up a couple of runs on five hits (HR) and four walks against two strikeouts. I was fairly optimistic that he’d start turning things around sooner or later, but he just continues to struggle. Looks like the only thing that’s consistently working for him is that pickoff move. RHP Aaron Looper (3.00) ran into his first bad outing in the next inning, giving up three runs on four hits (2 HR!) and a walk against a strikeout. LHP Nick Bourgeois (2.70, L) would get the loss after giving up a run on four hits in the next inning and two-thirds, and then RHP Greg Wear (2.53) picked up the last out of the inning. SS Adam Jones (2B, 2 RBI, .312), CF Wladimir Balentien (2B, R, .292), and LF B.J. Garbe (2B, RBI, .269) all had doubles, but the only other thing worth noting was DH Carlos Arroyo (R, .359) going 1-2 with a couple of walks. Balentien also struck out twice today, so just for kicks I decided to compare this season to his other seasons as far as that goes. In Peoria back in 2003, he struck out once every 3.9 plate appearances, or 25.5% of the time, in about half a season with Wisconsin plus a few games in Inland last year, he struck out once every 3.7 PAs (27.1%), and this year has been, thus far, roughly the same. So despite skipping over a level and missing half a season to the Olympics and a shoulder injury, it doesn’t seem like pitchers are exploiting him any more than usual right now. It’ll be interesting to see how those numbers look by the end of the season, seeing as how we’re about two-fifths of the way through right now.

Tomorrow’s Schedule:
Tacoma: RHP Cha Seung Baek, at Portland, @ 7:05 pm PT
San Antonio: Off day
Inland Empire: RHP Brandon Moorhead, at Lake Elsinore, @ 7:05 pm PT
Wisconsin: RHP Aaron Jensen, at Appleton, @ 11:05 am PT
Game two: LHP Julio Santiago, at Appleton, @ 5:05 pm PT
Aguirre: TBA, at Aguirre, @ 8:00 am PT

Tacoma Rainiers: 28-28, .500, 1.5 GB in PCL Pacific North
San Antonio Missions: 30-27, .526, 5 GB in TL West
Inland Empire 66ers: 26-30, .464, 5.5 GB in CAL South
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers: 32-24, .571, 1st in MWL West
Aguirre Mariners, 8-7, .533, 2.5 GB in VSL Valencia
Organizational Record: 124-116, .517

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