May 212013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 4-3 (10 inn.) @ Toledo,
10:30 a.m
TBD vs.
Hankins (1-2, 2.84)
Harrisburg Won, 10-7 @ Erie,
6:35 p.m.
Clay (3-2, 5.14) vs.
Crouse (3-2, 4.19)
Potomac OFF DAY @ Frederick,
7:00 p.m.
Solis (1st start of ’13) vs.
TBD
Hagerstown Won, 12-3 vs. Greensboro,
7:05 p.m.
Pena (2-2, 3.26) vs.
Lyman (1-3, 6.00)



Syracuse 4 Toledo 3 (10 inn.)
• Young 5IP, 6H, 3R, 2ER, 2BB, 4K
• Cedeno (W, 1-0) 3IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 4K
• Marrero 1-3, R, BB, RBI, SF, E(6)
• Costanzo 2-4, R, 2-2B

Jeff Kobernus drew a leadoff walk and stole 2nd and 3rd to set up a Chris Marrero sac fly as the Chiefs took the Monday matinee from the Mud Hens, 4-3 in 10 innings. Chris Young pitched well enough to not lose, giving up all three Toledo runs on six hits and two walks while tying his season-high of strikeouts with four. It was also his third start (out of six) without issuing a home run. Xavier Cedeno got the win, combining with Tanner Roark for five scoreless and hitless innings of relief with four walks and five strikeouts. Roster moves: RHP Yunesky Maya, LHP Fernando Abad recalled to Washington; OF Eury Perez optioned to Syracuse

Harrisburg 10 Erie 7
• Demny 4IP, 5H, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 5K
• Herron (W, 1-0) 2IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 2K
• Krol (SV, 1) 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Van Ostrand 4-5, 2R, 2B
• Hague 2-4, R, HR, 3BI, BB (7-game hit streak)
• Goodwin 2-6, 2R, HR, RBI

Harrisburg rallied from deficits of 2-0 and 5-2 with a pair of four-run rallies to take their fourth straight game, 10-7 over Erie. Paul Demny got the no-decision with four runs allowed on five hits and two walks with five strikeouts. No word on whether he failed to breathe through his eyelids. Tyler Herron got the win in relief while Ian Krol locked it down with two scoreless for his first pro save. Jimmy Van Ostrand led the hit parade with a 4-for-5 night, while Ricky Hague remains red-hot with another multihit game (six straight) at 2-for-4 and a seven-game hit streak overall.

Potomac — OFF DAY
Byron Kerr has confirmed whispers heard that LHP Sammy Solis will start for Potomac tonight in Frederick. Corresponding roster moves have not yet been announced.

Hagerstown 12 Greensboro 3
• Anderson (W, 4-1) 6IP, 2H, 0R, 2BB, 3K
• Henke ⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, 1BB, 1K
• Manuel 2-4, R, 2B, HR, 5RBI
• Renda 2-3, 2R, 2BB
• Piwinica-Worms 2-4, 2R, BB

Craig Manuel’s three-run shot capped off a six-run first as the Suns scorched the Grasshoppers, 12-3. Manuel drove in five total and doubled as part of his 2-for-4 night. The offense was more than enough for starter Derek Anderson, who tossed six scoreless innings and gave up just two hits and two walks to win his fourth game of the year. Tony Renda singled twice, walked twice, and scored twice as Hagerstown took advantage of seven Greensboro walks and two errors to score 12 times on just 10 hits. Roster moves: IF Mike McQuillan placed on the 7-Day DL; C Thor Meeks assigned from XST, placed on 7-Day DL

May 202013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 4-3 @ Toledo,
10:30 a.m.
Young (1-2, 7.96) vs.
Hill (0-4, 4.97)
Harrisburg Won, 11-3 @ Erie,
6:35 p.m.
Demny (3-4, 4.19) vs.
Saupold (3-1, 2.03)
Potomac Lost, 7-3 OFF DAY N/A
Hagerstown Postponed vs. Greensboro,
7:05 p.m.
Anderson (3-1, 2.43) vs.
Hope (2-2, 5.63)

Toledo 4 Syracuse 3
• Ohlendorf (L, 3-5) 5⅓ IP, 9H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 3K, 2HR
• Accardo 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Owings 2-4, R, 2B, RBI
• Costanzo 1-3, R, HR, RBI

Toledo took Syracuse starter Ross Ohlendorf deep twice as the edged the Chiefs, 4-3. Ohlendorf gave up nine hits total and all four Mud Hens runs as he walked one and struck out three. Syracuse posted a picket fence in the 5th through 7th innings but couldn’t get the equalizer as Toledo’s relievers retired the last eight batters following Mike Costanzo’s solo HR in the 7th. Micah Owings singled and doubled as the sole Chief to reach base twice.

Harrisburg 11 Reading 3
• Treinen (W, 4-4) 6IP, 6H, R, ER, 2BB, 5K
• Swynenberg 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Head 3-6, 2R, HR, 3RBI
• Rendon 1-3, R, 3B, 2RBI, SF, BB, 2E
• Hague 2-5, 2B, RBI

A pair of four-run rallies helped Harrisburg build a 10-0 lead as they swept their first series with an 11-3 pummeling of Reading. Blake Treinen evened his won-loss record at 4-4 with six innings of one-run ball, allowing six hits and two walks while striking out five. Jerad Head homered while going 3-for-6 and drove in three to lead the Sens offense, while Ricky Hague went 2-for-5 with a double and an RBI for his fifth straight multihit game and sixth consecutive game with a hit overall.

Winston-Salem 4 Potomac 3 (10 inn.)
• Gilliam (L, 0-1) 3⅔ IP, 7H, 5R, 5ER, 3BB, 2K, HR
• Dupra 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Ramsey 4-4, 2R, HR, RBI
• Dykstra 1-1, 2B, 3BB

The Dash scored in each of the first five innings en route to a 7-3 win and a sweep of the P-Nats. It was the 13th straight loss for Potomac at BB&T dating back to the 2012 season. Rob Gilliam was battered for five runs on seven hits and three walks with a solo home run surrendered and two strikeouts. Caleb Ramsey homered and singled three times to pace the Potomac offense, which was held to seven hits and four walks (three by Cutter Dykstra).

Hagerstown vs. Kannapolis — PPD
For the eighth time this season rain has postponed or cancelled a Suns game, the latest being yesterday’s series finale vs. Kannapolis. It will be made up next month when the Intimidators visit on June 4-6.

May 192013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 6-4 @ Toledo,
2:00 p.m.
Ohlendorf (3-4, 4.96) vs.
J. Alvarez (3-2, 1.69)
Harrisburg Won, 6-4 @ Reading,
1:35 p.m.
Treinen (3-4, 5.04) vs.
Wright (0-1, 9.00)
Potomac Lost, 4-3
(10 inn.)
@ Winston-Salem,
2:00 p.m.
Gilliam (0-0, 2.25) vs.
Jaye (1-0, 3.00)
Hagerstown Lost, 5-0 @ Kannapolis,
5:05 p.m.
Anderson (3-1, 2.43) vs.
Olacio (1-5, 6.75)

Syracuse 6 Toledo 4
• Rosenbaum 7IP, 5H, R, ER, 5BB, 6K
• Davis (SV, 5) 1IP, 2H, 0R, BB, K
• Kobernus 3-5, R, 2-2B, RBI
• Owings 2-5, 2-2B
• Rahl 2-6, R, 2B, 2RBI

The Chiefs batters roasted the Mud Hens pitchers for 15 hits as they scored five runs early and held off a late Toledo charge for a 6-4 win. Danny Rosenbaum rebounded again from a poor outing with seven innings of one-run ball, though he did walk five and allow five hits with six strikeouts. Jeff Kobernus singled and doubled twice to lead the offensive outburst. Erik Davis loaded the bases in the 9th with two singles and a walk but induced a popup to end it and earn his fifth save.
Roster move: RHP Jeremy Accardo activated from the 7-Day DL.

Harrisburg 6 Reading 4
• Jordan (W, 1-0) 6IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 9K
• Herron ⅔ IP, 3H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 2K
• Barrett (SV, 7) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Hague 3-3, 2R, 2B, HR, 3RBI
• Rendon 2-4, R, 3B, HR, BB, 3RBI

Taylor Jordan threw six scoreless innings with just one hit and one walk allowed while setting down nine on strikes for his first AA win, as Harrisburg held off a late surge from Reading for a 6-4 win. Ricky Hague and Anthony Rendon both homered and drove in three runs to power the Senators attack. Tyler Herron’s return to AA after a four-year absence was one to forget with three runs on three hits and a walk with two strikeouts. Aaron Barrett locked it down 1-2-3 in the 9th for his seventh save.

Winston-Salem 4 Potomac 3 (10 inn.)
• Ray 6⅓ IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 9K
• Grace (BS, 4) 2⅔ IP, 1H, 1R, 0ER, 1BB, 0K, 2-1 IR-S
• Mirowski (L, 3-3) ⅔ 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 0K
• Nieto 3-4, 2R
• Difo 2-4, BB, RBI, CS

Robbie Ray flirted with a no-hitter into the 7th, but couldn’t finish the inning. For the second night in a row, the Potomac ‘pen blew the lead, allowing Winston-Salem to tie it in the 9th and win it in the 10th. Ray struck out nine and walked three and finished with six and 1/3rd innings pitched, with two runs charged on two hits. Adrian Nieto and Wilmer Difo combined for five hits; Justin Miller had the sixth and the only extra-base knock. Roster move: UT Francisco Soriano reassigned from Syracuse.

Kannapolis 5 Hagerstown 0
• Encarnacion (L, 3-3) 3IP, 7H, 4R, 4ER, BB, K
• Rauh 4IP, 2H, R, ER, 2BB, 5K
• Norfork 1-3, 2B, BB
• Ramos 1-3, BB

Kannapolis scored in each of the first four innings while three pitchers combined to shut out Hagerstown, 4-0. The Intimidators moundsmen issued seven walks, but with just four hits, the Suns couldn’t cash any of them in. Pedro Encarnacion took the loss, giving up four runs on seven hits and a walk with just one strikeout. Khayyan Norfork and “Help Me” Wander Ramos both went 1-for-3 with a walk as the Hagerstown offense stranded nine and went 0-for-8 with RISP.

May 182013
 

[Ed. Note:] These are the thoughts of my friend Shawn, a.k.a. one of my “spies in Hagerstown,” on the Suns position players. And again, don’t forget to visit his blog Musings about Sports and other important items

This team winning stuns me. The old phrase “More than the sum of its parts” is pretty dead on.

CATCHERS
Behind the plate, Pedro Severino has been impressive with his arm… as in a big-time, MLB-level arm. Offensively, he’s made contact, but lacks pop. Considering he doesn’t turn 20 until July, I’m intrigued. I’ve only seen Craig Manuel play once,so I’ll reserve judgement

INFIELDERS
Shawn Pleffner got off to a hot start, but slumped thereafter. The 6’5″ Pleffner makes me think of former organizational soldier Tim Pahuta, especially when you consider Pleffner turns 24 before the season ends.

Mike McQuillan plays both first and third and runs well, but doesn’t make a ton of contact and the Rory McElroy lookalike has not fielded smoothly in his starts at third, where he has played more often.

Tony Renda came to town with the most publicity. Renda makes me think of a ceiling/floor scenario. His ceiling? Think Steve Lombardozzi as they have similar skills. The floor? Sean Nicol. A great guy to have around, but struggling with the bat. Renda runs well, but has made eight errors and will kick the routine play.

Stephen Perez has made the plays at shortstop, but I think the bat has to pick up. I am not sure that will happen. Perez looks to be an org. soldier to me.

Khayyan Norfork puts the ball in play and can play around the infield, but he is 24 already and still here in Low-A. He’s the type of player that plays hard and is nice to have around, but is not a real prospect. I would not be surprised if Norfolk winds up to be much like Nicol and stick around on character and versatility for a nice minor-league career.

Wes Schill knows how to take a walk (20) and has command of the strike zone, but lacks power and doesn’t make a ton of contact.

Hunter Bailey never seems to play when I get to the games, but one extra-base hit in 42 at-bats with an average under .200 makes one wonder. Both Bailey and Schill are old for the level and I would scratch them from the list.

OUTFIELDERS
Brandon Miller leads the team in homers, but has struck out almost fifty times by mid-May = red flag alert right there. Miller has been an all-or-nothing player thus far and already (recurring theme) is 23.

Wander Ramos shows impressive tools and hit one of the longer homers that I’ve seen in a while, but swings and misses a lot and is… wait for it… 23. Something about those tools gives me a reason to give Ramos more time.

Estarlin Martinez hit just .191 before being injured, but was just starting to rev up with the bat before the injury. I’m interested in watching him when he returns.

J.R.Higley is still around and doesn’t do anything better than he did before. For a player that turns 25 in a month, I am befuddled on why he is still around these parts.

Haven’t seen Will Pinwica-Worms or Carlos Lopez play enough to form an opinion.

PITCHERS

Brett Mooneyham was impressive until being injured after his third start. Mooneyham has the “college guy/should dominate” tag on him, but I liked what I saw.

Pedro Encarnacion has been the breakout prospect over the first few weeks. Keeps the ball down, lets his fielders do the work.

Dixon Anderson has great numbers and is striking out almost a batter an inning and looks like a different pitcher than the fellow that arrived at the end of last season. Downside… he turns 24 before the season ends. Like Blake Schwartz, if the Nationals want to look at him seriously, he will need to see Potomac soon.

Ivan Pineyro has improved of late, but overall has been erratic in my view. Still needs more looks.

Ronald Pena has above-average stuff and below-average command.

David Fischer was promoted to Potomac and only two bad games make Fischer’s numbers look worse than he has pitched. The UConn Huskie had an almost 4 to 1 K to BB ratio.

Kylin Turnbull had an awful stat line in his last home start, due to a gusting wind blowing out to right, but his other starts have not been much more impressive. Almost 24, almost ready to give up on as a prospect if things do not turn around.

Will Hudgins has looked strong when I have seen him and his 12 K’s in 12 innings makes me consider him a player to watch.

I didn’t think Brian Dupra looked much different than last season, but someone must have as he was promoted to High A. The organization must think more of him than I do.

Brian Rauh has been hammered, but he still strikes people out (21 in 23 IP). Rauh has been really bad when he has been bad, so keep that in mind.

Bryan Harper, Travis Henke and Robert Benincasa are pitchers that I have seen very little of — Harper and Benincasa, just once and Henke not at all.

Henke turns 25 in July, so I’d rule him out. Benincasa is being used as the closer and the Nats’ track record is that they move guys quicker who close. Harper has the advantage of being a lefty and another obvious advantage as well.

I know this sounds pessimistic for a first-place team leading their division by four games as of this writing, but this is not a team loaded with prospects. In the Sally League, a team filled with older players wins games over teams with more true prospects due to age and experience. It also appears the North Division is the weaker of the two as only Hagerstown and Hickory are over .500 with all but one team in the South is at .500 or better.

The Washington Nationals appear to be slow-tracking their high schoolers and sending their college players to Hagerstown. Is that because of the state of Municipal Stadium? Perhaps, but one thing is certain: If the Nationals continue to send these types of players to Hagerstown, the Suns will contend for Sally League titles, but they will not produce very many future Nationals.

May 182013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 6-3 @ Toledo,
7:00 p.m.
Rosenbaum (3-2, 3.35) vs.
R. Garcia (1-3, 4.30)
Harrisburg Won, 7-4 @ Reading,
6:35 p.m.
Jordan (0-0, 0.00) vs.
Buchanan (1-4, 5.87)
Potomac Lost, 5-4 @ Winston-Salem,
7:05 p.m.
Ray (3-2, 2.36) vs.
Blough (2-4, 5.82)
Hagerstown Won, 9-7 @ Kannapolis,
7:05 p.m.
Encarnacion (3-2, 1.62) vs.
Cose (2-3, 1.77)

Columbus 6 Syracuse 3
• Perry (L, 1-4) 2⅓ IP, 2H, 6R, 4ER, 5BB, 3K, 0HR
• Mandel 4⅔ IP, 3H, 0R, 2BB, 4K, 2-2 IR-S
• Rahl 2-4, R
• Marrero 3-4, RBI
• Walters 0-4, 3E (10,11,12)

The Clippers piled on six runs early and, um, sailed to a 6-3 victory over the Chiefs for a three-game sweep. Ryan Perry walked five (a season high) in just two and a 1/3rd innings (a season low) to lose for the fourth time in eight starts. He was charged with all six runs on two hits. Jeff Mandel and Tanner Roark combined for six and 2/3rds innings of scoreless relief, but Syracuse rallied just once after the first — two runs in the 8th — as they outhit Columbus 9-6. Chris Marrero led the hit column with a 3-for-4 night, driving in the first Chiefs run. Roster moves: C Brian Jeroloman traded from Washington to Pittsburgh, assigned to Syracuse Chiefs; C Sam Palace shuffled back onto the 7-Day DL.

Harrisburg 7 Reading 4
• Karns (W, 4-2) 6IP, 7H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 6K
• Krol (H, 3) 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Van Ostrand 2-4, R
• Hague 2-3, 2R
• Head 1-1, R, HR, 2RBI (PH)

A five-run 4th took the fight out of the Phils as the Senators took the series opener, 7-4. Nathan Karns rebounded from his worst outing of the year with a quality start, allowing three runs on seven hits, no walks, and striking out six. Brian Goodwin’s three-run double highlighted Harrisburg’s big inning while Jerad Head’s pinch-hit two-run home run in the 9th doubled the lead from two runs to four. Jimmy Van Ostrand and Ricky Hague both singled twice to pace the 11-hit attack.
Roster move: RHP Tyler Herron promoted from Potomac; RHP Pat Lehman shelved on the 7-Day DL.

Winston-Salem 5 Potomac 4
• Schwartz 6IP, 4H, 2R, 1ER, BB, 4K
• Self (BS, 3; L, 2-2) ⅓ IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 0K, HBP, 1-1 IR-S
• Ramsey 3-4, 2R, SB
• Sanchez 2-4, R, SB
• 2-for-17 with RISP, 9 LOB

Winston-Salem struck for three runs in the bottom of the 8th to turn a 4-2 deficit into a 5-4 lead and stranded Michael Taylor’s one-out double in the 9th for the win. Blake Schwartz allowed just two runs (one earned) on four hits and a walk while setting down four on strikes for his third quality start. Derek Self took the loss and was charged with his third blown save as put on the the first three batters he faced (double, single, HBP). Caleb Ramsey paced the offense with a 3-for-4 night.
Roster move: OF Billy Burns placed on the 7-Day DL.

Hagerstown 9 Kannapolis 7
• Pineyro (W, 3-2) 6⅔ IP, 8H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 2K
• Benincasa (SV, 8) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K, 2-1 IR-S
• Renda 3-5, 2R, 2-2B
• B. Miller 3-5, 2R, HR, 3RBI

Hagerstown racked up nine runs in the first five innings lead and held off a late Kannapolis charge over the last four frames for a 9-7 win. Brandon Miller and Khayyan Norfork both went deep and drove in three runs while Tony Renda singled and doubled twice as the Suns filled the scorebook with 13 hits. Ivan Pineyro got the win with four runs given up over six and 2/3rds on eight hits and a walk with two strikeouts. Robert Benincasa came on with two on and no outs and let in one but got the three outs for his eighth save, tied for second-best in the Sally League.

May 172013
 

GBI for NPP 2Our weekly look at the leaders, trailers, and outliers in the Washington Nationals minor leagues.

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 15-25, 6th place I.L. North, 9½ games behind

Good Fernando Abad 1.26 ERA/1.94 FIP/1.05 WHIP, 86.7 LOB% in 16 app.
Bad Mike Costanzo 36K in 29G
Interesting Zach Walters 9HR, 9E, 41K in 38G

HARRISBURG SENATORS 18-22, T5th place E.L. West, 7 games behind

Good Anthony Rendon (duh) .348 (2nd) / .483 (1st) / .620 (1st) in E.L.
Bad 30E by Senator IFs in 40G
Interesting Paul Demny 2-1, 1.50 ERA, 1.111 WHIP in May (3 starts)

POTOMAC NATIONALS 22-18, T1st place C.L. North, .003 W% behind

Good Billy Burns .364/.455/.455 with runners on base (51PA)
Bad Brian Dupra 0-2, 8.25/3.87/1.58 in four appearances (two starts)
Interesting Justin Miller .400/.455/.667 in May with 2HR, 8RBI, 3SB

HAGERSTOWN SUNS 19-12, 1st place Sally North, ½ game ahead

Good Shawn Pleffner .298/.412/.452 with 2HR, 14RBI in 25G
Bad Kylin Turnbull 6HR in 4GS and 18IP
Interesting Ronald Pena starting on two days’ rest (5/15) after 2IP relief (5/12)
May 172013
 

The offensive onslaught carried over from Wednesday as the Potomac Nationals closed out their seven-game homestand Thursday at 5-2 with a 7-4 win over the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

The P-Nats wasted no time getting things going. Kevin Keyes, who went 6-for-21 with eight walks during the week, blasted a two-out, two-run home run into the woods past the left field fence to erase an early 1-0 deficit in the first.

Two innings later, also with two outs, the linebacker first baseman drilled a single up the middle to send in Michael Taylor (again) and increase the lead to 3-1. Taylor walked in the first and been hit by a pitch in the third for a burst of five straight PAs reaching base.

In the fourth, Potomac demonstrated its newfound penchant for stringing together base hits as Adrian Nieto, Caleb Ramsey, and Adrian Sanchez each singled to load the bases while Justin Miller doubled in two to extend the lead to 5-2. Like Keyes, Miller enjoyed the home cooking with a 10-for-24 stretch with two doubles, two homers, and eight RBI for the week.

Meanwhile, Taylor Hill turned in a quality start with two runs allowed over six innings to earn his team-leading fourth win. However, three of the seven hits went for extra bases and it was the fourth start in which he gave up more hits than innings pitched — a bugaboo from last season when he allowed 161 in 139⅓ innings between Hagerstown and Potomac.

Christian Meza followed Hill and was charged with two runs on a double and two walks, with Adrian Nieto’s passed ball problems continuing as the backslow was charged with nos. 10 and 11, making the second of the two run scored in the Wilmington 7th unearned. He followed with a two-strikeout eighth.

Richie Mirowski set ‘em down 1-2-3 in the ninth for his second save of the season.

The win combined with a Lynchburg loss puts the P-Nats back into a tie for first place, percentage points behind thanks to two fewer contests played by the Hillcats (21-17, .553 vs. 22-18, .550) with Frederick just a half-game back at 21-18 in the Carolina League North.

Potomac takes to the road for nine games in 10 days with a trio of three-game series against Winston-Salem, Frederick and Lynchburg as they return to the Pfitz on Memorial Day for a seven-game homestand versus Salem and the Hillcats once again. Tonight, it’s RHP Blake Schwartz (3-1, 0.82) versus Ryan Buch (0-0, 4.91 at AA).

May 172013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 4-2
(11 inn.)
vs. Columbus,
7:00 p.m.
Perry (1-3, 7.15) vs.
D. Salazar (0-0, 0.00)
Harrisburg OFF DAY @ Reading,
7:05 p.m.
Karns (3-2, 4.36) vs.
Smith (1-1, 4.50)
Potomac Won, 7-4 @ Winston-Salem,
7:05 p.m.
Schwartz (3-1, 0.82) vs.
Buch (0-0, 0.00)
Hagerstown Won, 10-7 @ Kannapolis,
7:05 p.m.
Pineyro (2-2, 3.64) vs.
Hansen (0-0, 6.75)

Columbus 4 Syracuse 2 (11 inn.)
• Maya 7IP, 5H, R, ER, 2BB, 5K
• Davis 2IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Rahl 2-5
• Marrero 1-5, R, HR, RBI

Syracuse was held to just six hits over 11 innings as good pitching went to waste in a 4-2 defeat by Columbus. Yunesky Maya pitched seven innings of one-run ball, allowing just five hits and two walks while setting down five on strikes. Fernando Abad and Erik Davis combined for three scoreless, but Mike Crotta couldn’t lay the fourth goose egg, giving up three in the top of the 11th. Chris Marrero homered to lead off the bottom of the 11th for the final Chiefs hit, with Chris Rahl the only Syracuse batter to notch multiple hits. C Jhonatan Solano recalled to Washington; C Sam Palace activated from 7-Day DL; OF Corey Brown activated from 7-Day DL; LHP J.C. Romero placed on 7-Day DL; IF Brian Bocock assigned from Harrisburg

Harrisburg Senators — OFF DAY
The Senators embark on a seven-game jaunt through the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, beginning with a weekend set against the Reading Fightin Phils and followed by a four-game series against the Erie Seawolves. Roster moves: C Jeff Howell assigned from Syracuse; RHP Tyler Herron promoted from Potomac

Potomac 7 Wilmington 4
• Hill (W, 4-1) 6IP, 7H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 5K
• Mirowski (SV, 2) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Keyes 2-3, R, HR, 3RBI, BB, CS
• Ramsey 2-4, R, 2RBI
• Sanchez 2-4, E

The P-Nats closed out a 5-2 homestand with a 7-4 win Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 10 Kannapolis 7
• Turnbull 4IP, 7H, 4R, 2ER, BB, 3K, HR, 2E as fielder
• Lee (W, 1-0) 2⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 2K
• B. Miller 1-3, 2R, 2BB, HR, RBI
• S. Perez 2-4, 2R, 3B, 2RBI
• Pleffner 2-4, R, 2B, BB, RBI

After falling behind 4-1, Hagerstown put the Kannapolis ‘pen into the wall with a four-run 7th and a five-run 8th and held off a late charge for a 10-7 win. Kylin Turnbull gave up his sixth HR in four starts for the Suns and allowed seven hits total with four runs (two earned) a walk, and three K’s charged to him in the no-decision. Nick Lee got the win in his 2013 debut with two and 1/3rd scoreless innings pitched. Wes Schill was the beer man as the only Sun not to march in the 10-hit parade, which included Brandon Miller’s team-leading eighth home run.

May 162013
 

Moving On Up for NPPThe Hagerstown Suns have announced that RHP David Fischer has been promoted to the Potomac Nationals.

Fischer was 1-0 with three saves and a 3.65 ERA in nine relief appearances with eight walks and 28 strikeouts over 24⅓ innings for the Suns.

At Auburn last summer, he was 3-3 with a 4.96/4.30/1.43 pitching line in eight starts and four relief appearances after being drafted in the 18th round out of UConn.

A corresponding move for Potomac has not yet been announced.

UPDATE: To make room on the Potomac roster, RHP Tyler Herron has been promoted.

Herron was signed this past offseason as a reclamation project, having pitched 2012 with the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks of the independent American Association. A former first-rounder with St. Louis in 2005, off-the-field issues forced Herron out of affiliated ball by 2009. He spent 2010 with the Kalamazoo Kings of the Frontier League, but missed the 2011 season with an arm injury.

This season, at the age of 26, Herron was 1-1 with one save and a 1.77 ERA in ten relief appearances with 11 walks and 32 strikeouts over 20⅓ innings for Potomac.

With an off day today, a corresponding move for Harrisburg will most likely be announced on Friday.

May 162013
 

After scoring just three runs in the previous 20 innings, the Potomac Nationals tripled that output in one game in a wild 9-6 win over Wilmington.

The offensive resurgence featured 12 hits, including three doubles, a triple, and a Justin Miller home run that bounced halfway up the LF light tower that served as an double exclamation point (a two-run shot, natch) as the P-Nats scored the last seven runs without an answer from the Blue Rocks.

The highlight of the night was the 7th inning, in which Potomac rallied from four down to score five. It began with a whimper, not a bang, as Randolph Oduber took one off the left ankle and had to leave the game in favor of Wilmer Difo. Michael Taylor followed with a rocket to right-center that easily pushed Difo to third.

A wild pitch pushed across Difo and moved up Taylor, but a shallow flyout by Miller and a strikeout by Cutter Dykstra left it up to cleanup man Jason Martinson. The two-time Carolina League Player of the Week delivered Taylor with double to dead center, the second in as many nights, for the fourth Potomac run.

Kevin Keyes continued his walking ways with his seventh BB of the homestand while Caleb Ramsey delivered the fifth P-Nat run with a single to left. Adrian Sanchez capped off the rally with two-run triple to right-center, reminiscent of Taylor’s shot six batters earlier.

Unfortunately, the comeback was made necessary by another uneven outing by A.J. Cole. The 21-year-old was torched for six runs on six hits and two walks and just three strikeouts. The latter matters because it’s his go-to when the going gets rough, and the escape route wasn’t there last night.

That’s because Cole couldn’t get his breaking stuff over enough to keep hitters honest. Too much gets made about velocity nowadays and it cannot be repeated too often: Even in single-A, a batter can hit a 95 m.p.h. fastball when he knows it’s coming.

Hence, a pair of two-run home runs that accounted for four of the six runs Wilmington hung on his pitching line, one preceded by a double, the other by a walk. He would be lifted with no outs in the sixth.

Tyler Herron came to relieve Cole and promptly loaded the bases with a walk and two singles. He cleaned up his own mess with help from Dykstra on a tapper to third for a force at home, then two strikeouts.

Greg Holt would get the win for his two innings and also a little help from the 23-y.o. third baseman as he raced across the diamond to corral a slow roller and gun down the Blue Rocks leadoff man to end the 8th inning, helping Holt strand two runners in scoring position.

Derek Self tossed a 1-2-3 ninth for his third save.

With the win, Potomac returns to second place, a game behind Lynchburg in the Carolina League North. Jayson Werth, who went 1-for-2 with a sharp single to center and threw out a runner at the plate as part of a 9-2 double play to end the 2nd, is expected to rehab for a second night.

The rubber match of the series will feature a matchup of “northpaws,” with Taylor Hill (3-1, 2.21) going for Potomac and Kyle Zimmer (0-2, 4.09) pitching for Wilmington.