Jun 302013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 1-0 vs. Rochester,
5:00 p.m.
Clay (0-2, 3.14) vs.
Hendriks (1-5, 6.45)
Harrisburg Lost, 6-4 @ Bowie,
1:05 p.m.
Demny (5-5, 3.65) and
Swynenberg (2-0, 3.27) vs.
Gamboa (3-5, 3.77) and
Wright (6-2, 4.12)
Potomac Lost, 2-0; Won, 6-5 @ Wilmington,
1:05 p.m
Schwartz (6-2, 2.72) vs.
Smith (4-4, 2.87)
Hagerstown Losing, 5-0 vs. Lexington,
1:05 p.m.
(DH – comp., 7-inn.)
Mooneyham (3-2, 2.73) vs.
Almonte (3-5, 3.42)
Auburn Won, 8-5 @ Jamestown,
1:05 p.m.
D. Williams (0-2, 4.91) vs.
Dickson (0-0, 0.00)
GCL Nationals Won, 5-4 OFF DAY N/A
DSL Nationals Lost, 6-4 OFF DAY N/A



Syracuse 1 Rochester 0
• Roark (W, 5-3) 6IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Broadway (SV, 4) 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Rhymes 2-4, R
• Espinosa 1-3, 2B, BB, 0K (1st gm. w/o K since demotion; 6-for-53, 30K overall)

Chris Rahl’s sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 1st was all the Chiefs would get. Tanner Roark and two relievers would make it all they need, combining for a three-hit shutout and 1-0 win. Roark went six innings and allowed two hits, no walks, and struck out three. Tyler Robertson struck out two in a 1-2-3 seventh for the hold while Mike Broadway pitched around a hit and a walk in the and set ‘em down in order in the 9th for the save. Will Rhymes went 2-for-4 and scored the lone run to lead Syracuse’s five-hit offense.
Roster moves: 1B Chris Marrero, UT Jeff Kobernus optioned from Washington; RHP Erik Davis recalled to Washington.

Harrisburg 6 Bowie 4
• Treinen 6IP, 8H, 4R, 4ER, 3BB, 2K
• Grace (L, 1-1) 1IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 1K, HR
• Martinson 1-4, R, 2B, 2RBI
• Van Ostrand 1-4, R, 2B, RBI

Caleb Joseph took Matt Grace deep for a two-run shot in the 7th that turned out to be the difference as the Senators fell to the BaySox, 6-4. Grace had pitched 10 scoreless innings, earning him the “I” in Friday’s GBI (another victim to the “curse”). Starter Blake Treinen gave up the first four Bowie runs on eoght hits and three walks with just two strikeouts. Jason Martinson and Jimmy Van Ostrans both went 1-for-4 with a double and a run scored, as Harrisburg maximized its scoring chances with four runs on five hits and two walks, going 3-for-3 with RISP and two runners stranded.
Roster moves: RHP Taylor Jordan recalled to Washington; RHP Paul Demny activated from TIL; RHP Ryan Perry removed from 40-man roster (effective June 27), outrighted to Harrisburg.

Wilmington 2 Potomac 0 — GAME ONE
• Ray (L, 6-3) 6IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 5K, 2HR
• Oduber 1-2
• Gilmartin 1-2

Kyle Zimmer no-hit the P-Nats for five innings before Randolph Oduber broke it up with an infield single. Mike Gilmartin followed with a single to center, but that’s all the P-Nats could muster as the Blue Rocks shut out the P-Nats, 2-0. Robbie Ray’s troubles with the long ball continue. Nos. 6 and 7 of the month of June (eight for the year) account for both Wilmington runs. Ray gave up five hits total, walked one and struck out five for the complete-game loss.

Potomac 6 Wilmington 5 — GAME TWO
• Cole (W, 5-3) 6IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 7K, HR
• Benincasa (SV, 3) 1IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 0K
• Leonida 1-2, R, HR, 3RBI, BB
• Gilmartin 1-2, R, HR, RBI

Potomac took a 4-1 lead early and survived a last-inning rally to earn the 6-5 win and split the doubleheader. A.J. Cole turned in a quality start of three runs allowed on four hits and two walks over six innings. He struck out seven. Handed a 6-3 lead, Robert Benincasa gave up back-to-back singles to open the 7th and put the tying run on third by way of a one-out triple by Jack Lopez. He would earn the save by keeping the ball in the infield for two groundball outs. Cole Leonida and Mike Gilmartin both homered, with Leonida’s three-run shot highlighting the P-Nats’ four-run 2nd.

Lexington 5 Hagerstown 0 — SUSP.
• Anderson 3⅔ IP, 6H, 5R, 4ER, BB, 3K

The Legends scored five times in the first two innings before the rains came to save the Suns until today. The game will be resumed this afternoon, followed by a seven-inning game for the makeshift doubleheader.

Auburn 8 Jamestown 5
• Orlan 4IP, 4H, 3R, 2ER, 3BB, 4K
• Sylvestri (W, 1-0) 2IP, 0H, 1R, 0ER, 0BB, 0K
• Napoli (SV, 2) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Valdez 2-4, 3R, 2HR, BB, 4RBI
• Dent 3-4, R, CS
• Ballou 2-5, R, HR, 2RBI

The Doubledays never trailed in this one, taking a 3-0 lead in the 2nd and cruising to an 8-5 victory over the Jammers. R.C. Orlan couldn’t make it through the requisite five for the win, going four innings with three runs given up on four hits and three walks while striking out four. The “W” instead went to Mike Sylvestri for his unearned run allowed without a hit or a walk over two innings. David Napoli got the save with two scoreless innings. Jean Valdez went deep twice, scored three times, and drove in four to power the Auburn offense.

GCL Nationals 5 GCL Mets 4
• Silvestre 4⅓ IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 2K
• P. Valdez (W, 1-0) 2⅔ IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 3K, 1-0 IR-S
• Wa. Ramos 1-2, 2B, 2RBI
• Marmolejos-Diaz 1-3, R, BB

The G-Nats won for the seventh time in eight games with a 5-4 win over the G-Mets. Hector Silvestre got the start, allowing two runs on four hits, no walks, and struck out two. Philips Valdez finished the 5th and tossed two more scoreless frames for the win, walking one and striking out three. The G-Nats took advantage of three G-Mets miscues to score five times on just seven hits. Wander Ramos drove in two with a 1st-inning double while Jose “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz and Kyle Attl both singled and walked.
Minor-league rehab assignments: IF Blake Kelso from Potomac; OF Wander Ramos from Hagerstown.

DSL Rojos 6 DSL Nationals 4
• Pena 3IP, 4H, R, ER, BB, 0K
• R. Rosario (L, 0-3) 3IP, 5H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 2K
• Mota 2-4, 2B, 2RBI
• D. Rosario 1-3, R, RBI

The D-Nats dropped their third straight game, falling to the D-Rojos by a 6-4 count. Yefri Pena got the start and allowed a run on four hits and a walk but struck out none over three innings. The loss went to Ramses Rosario, who was tagged with four runs on five hits and a walk and struck out two over three innnings. Israel Mota singled, doubled, and drove in two to pace the D-Nats attack.

Jun 292013
 

No, I Said The White PhoneAfter five days of denials and juvenile posturing, the Washington Nationals formally announced last night that RHP Taylor Jordan will indeed replace Dan Haren in the starting rotation, starting this afternoon against the New York Mets.

It’s been a whirlwind season for the 24-year-old, who’s less than two years removed from Tommy John surgery and less than seven months removed from being exposed to the Rule 5 draft. Jordan’s success is well documented — 2-1, 1.24/1.02/2.46 in six starts for High-A Potomac; 7-0, 0.83/0.85/2.39 in nine appearances (essentially starts, one was following a rehab outing) for AA Harrisburg.

What remains to be seen is whether or not the lack of familiarity has been a factor in his success. In those 15 starts, he’s only faced the same opponent four times. Twice the opponent did better against him in the second start than in the first. Granted, he was still very, very good, but one cannot help but wonder if the Nationals are banking on this “lack of game tape” to succeed in the short run at the major-league while they either get Dan Haren healthy or arrange for a trade.

Which begs the question: Is this a showcase for Jordan as trade bait? It’s something brought up by a commenter, citing the September 2011 callups with Tommy Milone and Brad Peacock. That may be a stretch, but the trade deadline is 32 days from now…

As for the scouting report, Jordan throws the four-seam and two-seam fastballs (the former maxing out in the 95-97 mph range), an occasional slider and a changeup. Prior to his surgery, I spotted him throwing a curve, but that was three years ago and given the organization’s preference towards high heat and sinkers, it’s probably been shelved permanently.

Jun 292013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 5-4; Lost, 6-0 vs. Rochester,
7:00 p.m.
Roark (4-3, 3.69) vs.
P. Hernandez (1-1, 4.50)
Harrisburg Postponed @ Bowie,
6:35 p.m.
Treinen (6-6, 3.44) vs.
Wei (MLB Rehab)
Potomac Postponed @ Wilmington,
5:05 p.m
Ray (6-2, 3.12) and
Cole (4-3, 4.07) vs.
Zimmer (1-7, 5.98) and
Sample (1-3, 3.09)
Hagerstown Lost, 3-2 vs. Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Anderson (5-4, 2.88) vs.
Santiago (0-0, 3.60)
Auburn Lost, 6-5 @ Jamestown,
7:05 p.m.
Orlan (0-0, 0.00) vs.
Neverauskas (0-1, 4.76)
GCL Nationals Won, 6-5 vs. GCL Mets,
10:00 a.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 3-0 @ DSL Rojos,
10:30 a.m.
Rosario (0-2, 2.97) vs.
Hernandez (0-0, 3.00)



Sryacuse 5 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 4 — GAME ONE (Comp.)
• Tatusko 4IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 8BB, 2K
• Lowe (W, 1-0) 2IP, 3H, R, ER, 0BB, 3K
• Garcia (H, 2) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Davis (SV, 9) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Brown 1-3, 2B, 2R, BB
• Walters 2-4, R, 2B, 2RBI, SB

Zach Walters’s two-run double highlighted a three-run 6th that broke open a 3-2 game as the Chiefs held on for a 5-4 win in the continuation from Thursday night. Ryan Tatusko had the start and walked a career-worst eight batters but minimized the damage to just two runs on four hits over four innings. Mark Lowe got the win as the pitcher of record, turning in two innings with one run allowed. Erik Davis pitched around a hit in the 9th for his ninth save. Walters went 2-for-4, as did Chris Rahl, Brian Jeroloman, and Mike Costanzo as Syracuse pounded out 13 hits for the game.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 6 Syracuse 0 — GAME TWO
• Rosenbaum (L, 5-5) 6IP, 9H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 3K, 2HR
• Crotta 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Bocock 1-2, 2B
• Walters 1-3

Alas, the Chiefs may have saved some of those hits for the second game as the RailRiders pitchers held them to just two in a 6-0 shutout. Danny Rosenbaum was touched twice for the longball and gave up all six Scranton/Wilkes-Barre runs on nine hits over six innings. He walked two and struck out three as his won-loss record was leveled to 5-5. Brian Bocock’s one-out double in the 3rd and Zach Walter’s two-out single in the 4th, pushing ahead Corey Brown who jhad reached on a walk, were the only two times Syracuse put a runner in scoring position.

Harrisburg vs. Bowie — PPD
Can’t mess with a fireworks night. Thus, Friday night’s rainout will be made up tomorrow afternoon instead of tonight despite this being the final visit for Harrisburg this season.

Potomac vs. Wilmington — PPD
The clouds seen in the P-Nats press box picture delivered on their promise, pouring down on Frawley Stadium and postponing Friday night’s game to tonight (how novel).

Lexington 3 Hagerstown 2
• Purke 6IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 8K
• Self (BS, 1; L, 0-1) 1IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 0K, HR
• Pleffner 2-3, BB, RBI
• Schill 1-3, R, 2B, BB

Matt Purke’s sensational start was erased in the space of just four batters as Lexington rallied for three in the 9th for a 3-2 win over Hagerstown. Reliever Derek Self was a double shy of the cycle in his lone inning thrown, giving up a single, home run, and a triple to first three batters he faced before retiring his first batter on a sacrifice fly. Purke had allowed just one hit over six shutout innings (his longest outing as a pro), walking none, and setting down eight on strikes. Shawn Pleffner led the Suns offense, going 2-for-3 with a walk and an RBI.

Jamestown 6 Auburn 5
• Johansen 2⅓ IP, 1H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 2K
• Dicharry (L, 0-2) 1IP, 3H, 4R, 4ER, BB, K, 2-0 IR-S
• Selsor 4⅓ IP, 5H, R, ER, 2BB, 2K, 2-2 IR-S
• J. Valdez 3-5, R, 2B
• Yezzo 2-5, CS

Jamestown’s four-run 4th was the undoing of Auburn as the Jammers held off the Doubledays’ 9th-inning charge for a 6-5 victory. Jake Johansen failed to get out of the third inning for the second straight start, giving up a hit, a run, and three walks while striking two. Kevin Dicharry took the loss, his second, with four runs charged to him over an inning pitched. Isaac Ballou’s two-run double highlighted Auburn’s three-run rally in the 9th but couldn’t get past third to tie it. Jean Valdez led the hit column with a 3-for-5 night, followed by James Yezzo at 2-for-5.

GCL Nationals 6 GCL Mets 5
• Ullmann 3IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 4K
• K. Rodriguez (BS, 2; W, 2-0) 2IP, 3H, 2R, 1ER, 0BB, 1K
• Bafidis (SV, 1) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Marmolejos-Diaz 4-5, 2R, 2RBI
• Mejia 2-4, 2B, 2RBI
• Abreu 2-5, 2RBI

The G-Nats answered the G-Mets three runs in the bottom of the 6th with four in the top of the 7th, holding on for a 6-5 win. Jose “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz (4-for-5), Bryan Mejia (2-for-4), and Osvaldo Abreu (2-for-5) each had RBI singles in the frame. Ryan Ullmann got the start and gave up a run over three innings on two hits and no walks while striking out four. Kelvin Rodriguez had the blown-save-win with two runs allowed over two innings. Cory Bafidis tossed two prefect innings to get the save, his first.
Roster move: C Wilson Ramos assigned from Washington for MLB rehab.

DSL Cubs 3 DSL Nationals 0
• Torres (L, 0-2) 4IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 3BB, 5K
• Reynoso 3IP, 2H, 0R, BB, K
• Tillero 1-3, 2B
• Mercedes 1-4, 2B

The D-Cubs shut out the D-Nats and took over first place in the Boca Chica South division with a 3-0 win. Starter Luis Torres gave up all three D-Cubs runs on four his and three walks over four innings while striking out five. The D-Nats were held to just four hits, with Jorge Tillero and Yermin Mercedes each doubling.

Jun 282013
 

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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 30-48, 6th place I.L. North, 19½ games behind

Good Ryan Tatusko 70.4 LOB%
Bad Danny Espinosa 29K in 14G
Interesting 21 HBP by Chiefs pitchers 2nd fewest in the I.L.



HARRISBURG SENATORS 44-35, 1st place E.L. West, 4 games ahead

Good Aaron Barrett 12.1 K/9IP, 2.59 BB/9IP, 4.67 K:BB ratio
Bad Jose Lozada .156/.235/.200 in June (18G)
Interesting Matt Grace 0.00 ERA, .094 OBA in first 7 appearances



POTOMAC NATIONALS 5-1, 1st place C.L. North Champs, 1½ games ahead (47-28 overall)

Good Adrian Nieto .389/.450/.625 in June
Bad Brian Dupra 3.91 K/9IP
Interesting Michael Taylor 28 of 31 SB (90.3% success rate)


HAGERSTOWN SUNS 5-3, T2nd place Sally North, 1 game behind (43-32 overall)

Good Brandon Miller .249 ISO Avg.
Bad Bryan Harper 1.75 WHIP
Interesting 43% defensive CS rate, best in Sally League


DSL NATIONALS 13-8, T1st Boca Chica South, 2 games ahead

Good 17-y.o. Maximo Valerio 1.90ERA, 1.06WHIP, 2.19 FIP in 5 starts
Bad 17-y.o. Darryl Florentino .161BA, 16K in 18G
Interesting 17-y.o. Aldrem Corredor 14BB in 18G
Jun 282013
 

Rain for NPP 2

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Losing, 2-1
(suspended)
vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre,
5:00 p.m. (conclusion)
Rosenbaum (5-4, 3.69) vs.
Marshall (2-6, 6.72)
Harrisburg Won, 11-6 @ Bowie,
7:00 p.m.
Treinen (6-6, 3.44) vs.
Gamboa (3-5, 3.77)
Potomac Losing, 1-0
(suspended)
@ Wilmington,
7:05 p.m
Ray (6-2, 3.12) vs.
Zimmer (1-7, 5.98)
Hagerstown Won, 5-4 vs. Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Purke (1-1, 3.13) vs.
Simmons (0-1, 7.59)
Auburn Lost, 5-3; Winning, 1-0
(suspended)
@ Jamestown,
7:05 p.m.
Johansen (0-0, 0.00) vs.
Brewer (2-0, 2.70)
GCL Nationals Won, 4-0 @ GCL Mets,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 2-0 @ DSL Cubs,
10:30 a.m.
Yrizarri (1-0, 0.96) vs.
Figueroa (2-0, 1.50)



Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2 Syracuse 1 — SUSP.
The rains came in the middle in fourth in upstate New York, halting play with the RailRiders leading the Chiefs, 2-1. It will be completed today, weather permitting, at 5 p.m. followed by the regularly scheduled game.
Roster move: IF Josh Johnson reassigned from Harrisburg.

Harrisburg 11 Bowie 6
• Gilliam 3⅔ IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 4BB, 0K, 2HBP
• Swynenberg (W, 2-0) 1⅓ IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K, 3-0 IR-S
• Head 4-6, R, 2B, 4RBI
• Bloxom 3-4, 2-2B, 2BB, 3RBI
• Martinson 2-4, 2B, 2RBI, BB

Buoyed by some kid named Harper (2-4, R, 3B, 2RBI), Harrisburg clubbed Bowie for six runs in the first two innings and cruised to an 11-6 victory. The Senators pounded out 15 hits total, with Jared Head leading the way with a 4-for-6, 4RBI night, followed by Justin Bloxom’s 3-for-4, two-double, two-walk effort. Jason Martinson went 2-for-4 with a walk, double, and 2RBI in his AA debut. Rob Gilliam couldn’t get out of the fourth, giving up six hits and four walks over three and 2/3rds. Matt Swynenberg came in with the bases loaded in the 4th and stranded all three and pitched a scoreless 5th to get the win.

Myrtle Beach 1 Potomac 0 — SUSP.
Heavy rains swept through Woodbridge in the bottom of the third with two runners on and no outs as the game was eventually suspended. It will be picked up on the 1st of August, when the Pelicans next visit Potomac. It’ll be a 5:30 p.m. start for the completion followed by a 7-inning game for a de facto doubleheader.
Roster moves: RHP Brian Broderick placed on the 7-Day DL; RHP Colin Bates activated from the 7-Day DL.

Hagerstown 5 Lexington 4
• Encarnacion 6+ IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 4K, 2HR, WP
• Pena (W, 3-3) 2IP, 1H, 1R, 0ER, 0BB, 0K
• Dickson (SV, 1) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Pleffner 2-4, R
• Perez 1-3, R, BB

Brandon Miller’s two-run triple, the third straight hit with two outs, capped an 8th-inning comeback for a 5-4 Hagerstown win over Lexington. All the scoring cam in just three half innings, with Suns striking first with three in the 2nd. Starter Pedro Encarnacion had a three-hit shutout through six frames until Lexington stunned him with three hits and three runs in the space of three batters, including back-to-back home runs. He gave up six hits total, walked one and struck out four over six-plus innings. Ronald Pena gave up an unearned run to complete the Legends’ four-run 7th but got the win after pitching a scoreless 8th. Ian Dickson shut the door in the 9th for his first save as a Sun.

Williamsport 5 Auburn 3 — GAME ONE
• Barrientos 5IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Hollins (BS, 1; L, 0-1) ⅓ IP, 3H, 3R, 3ER, 1BB, 1K, 2-2 IR-S
• Yezzo 2-3, R, BB, HR, RBI
• Lippincott 2-3, R

Auburn posted a picket fence in the early going, only to see the 3-0 lead evaporate in the 7th for 5-3 loss. Joel Barrientos threw five shutout innings in his first start for the Doubledays, allowing just two hits and a walk while striking out three. Leonard Hollins blew the save and took the loss, letting in two inherited runs and giving up three hits and a walk to the six batters he faced, retiring one on a strikeout. James Yezzo and Bryan Lippincott both went 2-for-3 with a run scored, with Yezzo hitting his first professional home run.

Williamsport 1 Auburn 0 — SUSP.
Play was halted with one out in the third with the Doubledays leading 1-0. It will be made up later this season.

GCL Nationals 4 GCL Cardinals 0
• Rodriguez (W, 1-0) 5IP, 4H, 0R, 0BB, 7K
• Martin (H, 2) 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Eusebio 2-3, R, RBI
• Ward 1-3, 2B, BB

The G-Nats got right back up on the proverbial horse, winning for the fifth time in six games with a 4-0 shutout of the G-Cards. Jefry Rodriguez got the win with five scoreless innings, allowing four hits, walking none, and fanning seven. Diomedes Eusebio led the offense with a 2-for-3 game, scoring a run and driving in a run.

DSL Cubs 2 DSL Nationals 0
• Morales (L, 0-2) 3IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 0K
• Yrizarri 5IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 3K
• Tillero 1-3, 2B
• Mercedes 1-3, BB

The D-Nats were held to just four hits as the D-Cubs shut them out, 2-0. 18-y.o. Jose Morales started for the first time in six appearances, taking the loss with a run on two hits and a walk over three inning. Jorge Tillero connected for the sole extra-base hit while Yermin Mercedes was the only D-Nat to reach base twice; both went 1-for-3.

Jun 272013
 

Moving On Up for NPP
The Harrisburg Senators have announced that Potomac SS Jason Martinson has been promoted from Potomac, while SS Josh Johnson returns to Syracuse to make room on the AA roster.

Martinson had been hitting .268/.374/.484 with a team-leading 12 home runs and 53 RBIs for the P-Nats and had played in 73 of 75 games, which is also the most for the team. He was the Carolina League Player of the Week twice in April.

A corresponding move has yet to be announced, as the activation of Colin Bates from the DL more closely resembles the move in reaction to Brian Broderick going onto the DL, as feared from his aborted relief outing last night.

Martinson was drafted by the Nationals in 2010 out of Texas State University and has risen slowly through the A-ball ranks, splitting time between Low-A and High-A 2012 after spending all of 2011 in Hagerstown. He was a taxi squad player on the 2012 AFL team batting .189 with a HR and 8RBI in 11 games.

Like Zach Walters ahead him on the ladder, Martinson represents the next wave of infielders that could potentially back up incumbents Ian Desmond and (let’s face it) Anthony Rendon. Two things have held him back thus far: his penchant for strikeouts, and shaky defense.

The K’s may be something he never quite tames, and in today’s game, that seems to be tolerated as the price for such power, which he has in spades for middle infielder. Of late, he’s been drawing more walks, and all season long he’s grinded out the at-bats, which I’d be willing to bet is one of the reasons he’s getting the bump.

Defensively, he’s made great strides just in the parts of two seasons I’ve seen him, learning to play within his range and making better decisions. Does it mean he’s a highlight reel? No, but he can pretty much be counted to make the routine plays and no longer makes youthful mistakes. That may sound like faint praise, so to put it more concretely – he made 33 errors in 113 games at SS in ’11. He’s on pace in ’13 to make roughly 15 errors over that same number of games.

Jun 272013
 

Bryce Harper steps to the plate in the bottom of the 1st

Perhaps it was the season in microcosm — minus the rehab appearance by Bryce Harper, of course — as the P-Nats got good starting pitching, uneven bullpen work, and timely hitting in a 6-5 win over Myrtle Beach.

All eyes of course were on the 20-year-old Bryce Harper and he did not disappoint, launching a towering flyball in his second at-bat that hit the first level of signage above and beyond the right field wall. He was originally scheduled to play LF, but switched to DH shortly before gametime as storms swept through the region, though it did not appear as if any significant rainfall had accumulated.

Harper’s HR was the second of the evening. The first was Adrian Nieto’s, a solo blast that cleared all three tiers of signage in the second inning.

Brian Rauh got the spot start in place of Taylor Hill, and filled in admirably with four innings of one-hit ball, walking none and striking out three. He was to be followed by Brian Broderick, who warmed up in the bottom of the 4th and took the mound in the 5th but left during warmups, clutching his right forearm.

David Fischer was summoned on short notice to take over and seemed none the worse for wear in his first inning of work, walking two and striking out two but allowing no hits. The second inning, however, was another story as a hit batsmen, a generously scored single, a walk, a triple, and another single sent him to the proverbial showers with no outs.

Greg Holt let in the runner he inherited with an errant pickoff throw and a sacrifice fly to finish the 6th and pitched around a leadoff single and one-out double — thanks in no small part to Nieto gunning down the leadoff hitter — in the 7th for two scoreless innings.

Down 5-2 in the 8th, the P-Nats began one of their patented runs. Three straight singles by Michael Taylor, Nieto (who went 4-for-4), and Caleb Ramsey cut the deficit to 5-3. Following a Cutter Dykstra strikeout, Adrian Sanchez beat out a double-play ball while Mike Gilmartin drew the two-out walk to load the bases.

Francisco Soriano tied the game with a two-run single up the middle while Billy Burns plated the go-ahead run with a double to left, with Soriano getting thrown out at the plate to end the inning.

Richie Mirowski, who had taken over for Holt in the 8th, set ‘em down 1-2-3 in the 9th to get his 6th win of the season.

The series and homestand concludes tonight with a matchup of Ivan Pineyro (0-0, 9.64) vs. Victor Payano (5-4, 4.41)

Jun 272013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 5-3; Lost, 6-3 vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre,
7:00 p.m.
Tatusko (1-2, 3.75) vs.
Cotham (2-4, 7.34)
Harrisburg Won, 11-2 @ Bowie,
7:00 p.m.
Gilliam (2-2, 5.40) vs.
Jones (3-2, 5.53)
Potomac Won, 6-5 vs. Myrtle Beach,
7:05 p.m
Pineyro (0-0, 9.64) vs.
Payano (5-4, 4.41)
Hagerstown Lost, 7-6 (12 inn.) vs. Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Encarnacion (5-4, 3.09) vs.
Binford (4-3, 2.30)
Auburn Postponed vs. Williamsport,
5:05 p.m.
Barrientos (0-0, 7.71) and
Turnbull (2-0, 3.27) vs.
Prosinski (0-1, 40.50) and
Gueller (2-0, 1.80)
GCL Nationals Lost, 6-2 vs. GCL Cardinals,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs.
J. Perez (0-1, 0.00)
DSL Nationals Won, 1-0 vs. DSL Cubs,
10:30 a.m.
Yrizarri (1-0, 0.96) vs.
Figueroa (2-0, 1.50)



Syracuse Chiefs 5 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 3 — GAME ONE
• Maya (W, 3-5) 6IP, 8H, 3R, 2ER, BB, 2K
• Broadway (S, 3) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Owings 3-3, 2R, 2B, HR, RBI
• Rhymes 2-3, R, 2-3B
• Rahl 1-2, 2B, 2RBI

Chris Rahl’s sac fly in the 5th snapped the tie while Micah Owing’s big fly in the 6th gave the Chiefs the insurance run for a 5-3 win over the RailRiders. Yunesky Maya got the win, allowing all three Scranton/Wilkes-Barre runs on eight hits and a walk over six innings while striking out two. Mike Broadway struck out the side in the 7th for his third save.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 6 Syracuse Chiefs 3 — GAME TWO
• Mandel (L, 1-5) 5⅓ IP, 9H, 6R, 6ER, 0BB, 2K, 4HR
• Cedeno 1IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• Owings 2-3, R, HR, 2RBI
• Costanzo 2-3, R

Jeff Mandel gave up four home runs, three for solo shots, as the RailRiders rolled over the Chiefs, 6-3 in the nightcap. The 28-y.o. veteran was charged with all six Scranton/Wilkes-Barre runs on nine hits over five and a 1/3rd innings, with no walks and two strikeouts. Micah Owings homered again and drove in two, as both he and Mike “Don’t Call Me George” Costanzo went 2-for-3 with a run scored.
Roster moves: CF Eury Perez placed on the 7-Day DL, retroactive to June 24; RHP Jeremy Accardo released; RHP Cole Kimball activated from the 7-Day DL

Harrisburg 11 Akron 2
• Hill (W, 1-0) 7IP, 4H, R, ER, BB, 4K
• Herron 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Goodwin 3-4, 2R, HR, 3RBI, BB, SB
• Hood 2-4, R, RBI, SB
• Nicol 2-4, R, RBI

The Senators busted out for four runs twice against the Aeros to complete the three-game sweep with an 11-2 victory. Taylor Hill gave up a run on four hits and a walk while striking out four to win his AA debut. Brian Goodwin and Jimmy Van Ostrand both hit three-run HRs to power the Harrisburg attack, which scored 11 times on 11 hits and left just five men on base.

Potomac 6 Myrtle Beach 5
• Rauh 4IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Mirowski (W, 6-3) 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Harper 1-3, R, HR, RBI, K
• Nieto 4-4, R, HR, RBI

Harper and Nieto homer, but it was a good old-fashioned 8th-inning rally that won it Last Night In Woodbridge.
Roster move: IF Cutter Dykstra activated from the 7-Day DL.

West Virginia 7 Hagerstown 6 (12 inn.)
• Lee 4IP, 6H, 4R, 0ER, BB, 4K
• Mendez 3IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• Davis (L, 1-1) 2+ IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 0K
• Piwinica-Worms 3-6, R, 2B, RBI
• B. Miller 2-6, 2B, 3RBI
• Miller 2-6, 2B, RBI

Twice the Suns took the lead into the final frame, allowing the tying run in the 9th and the winning runs in the 12th as the Power prevailed, 7-6. Nick Lee gave up four unearned runs over four innings, though he coughed up six hits and a walk while fanning four and left down 4-2. The Suns chipped away with single runs in the 5th, 7th, and 9th, the latter giving them a 5-4 lead. West Virginia sent it to extras with a solo HR in the 9th and handed Cody Davis the loss by scoring twice on three singles and a walk in the 12th. Four Suns doubled and had multiple hits, with Will Piwinica-Worms leading the 13-hit attack with a 3-for-6 night.

Auburn vs. Williamsport — PPD
A wee bit of rain fell in the late afternoon in Auburn, forcing a doubleheader today.

GCL Cardinals 6 GCL Nationals 2
• Voth 2IP, 3H, 0R, 0ER, 0BB, K
• Suero (L, 0-1) 3IP, 6H, 3R, 2ER, 0BB, 4K
• Ruiz 1-2, 2B, 2BB, RBI
• L. Guzman 1-3, R, RBI

The season-opening streak of four wins for the G-Nats was halted with a 6-2 defeat by the G-Cards. Austin Voth got the start and turned in two scoreless innings, but gave up the three of the 15 hits the G-Cards collected. Wander Suero took the loss with three runs on six hits allowed over the next three frames. The G-Nats scored twice but were limited to just three hits. Adderling Ruiz and Luis Guzman each singled and drove in a run in the loss.

DSL Nationals 1 DSL Brewers 0
• Reyes (W, 2-0) 5IP, 3H, 0R, 3BB, 8K
• Sanchez (H, 3) 3IP, 2H, 0R, BB, K
• Salazar (SV, 4) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Cerda 1-2
• Aguero 1-3, 2B, RBI

Three pitchers combined on a six-hit shutout as the D-Nats edged the D-Brewers, 1-0. Luis Reyes went the first five, giving up three hits and three walks, but struck out eight for his second win (his second). Mario Sanchez followed with two hits and a walk given up over three innings for his third hold. Melvi Salazar pitched around a hit in the 9th for his fourth save. “Fred” Aguero’s RBI double in the 4th accounted for the lone run, as the D-Nats were held to just two hits and four walks.

Jun 262013
 

Rosters for the 2013 Eastern League All-Star Game were announced today, and for the third straight year, five Harrisburg Senators made the Western Division squad:

• IF Josh Johnson

• OF Steve Souza Jr.

• RHP Aaron Barrett

• RHP Paul Demny

• RHP Taylor Jordan

This is the first All-Star team selection for Demny and the second All-Star team selection for Johnson (Midwest, 2006), Souza (Sally, 2010), Jordan (Sally, 2011) and Barrett (Sally 2012).

This year’s game will be held in New Britain, Connecticut on July 10th with a HR derby on the 9th. New Britain previously hosted the All-Star game in 2003 and 1987.

UPDATE: The accolades keep coming for Jordan as the 24-year-old was named to the 2013 All-Star Futures Game.

Jun 262013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 5-0 vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre,
5:00 p.m.
Maya (2-5, 4.72) and
Mandel (1-4, 5.85) vs.
Huff (0-1, 2.87) and
Bootcheck (5-2, 3.36)
Harrisburg Won, 4-1 vs. Akron,
12:00 p.m.
Hill (AA debut) vs.
Roberts (5-4, 4.58)
Potomac Won, 7-5 vs. Myrtle Beach,
7:05 p.m
Rauh (0-0, 7.20) vs.
Eickhoff (6-3, 3.59)
Hagerstown Lost, 6-1 @ West Virginia,
7:05 p.m.
Lee (1-2, 6.26) vs.
Kuchno (3-3, 4.99)
Auburn Lost, 4-1 vs. Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Barrientos (0-0, 7.71)
vs. Prosinski (0-1, 40.50)
GCL Nationals Won, 3-2 @ GCL Cardinals,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 4-1 vs. DSL Brewers,
10:30 a.m.
Reyes (1-0, 2.29) vs.
Padilla (0-1, 9.00)



Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 5 Syracuse Chiefs 0
• Garcia 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Clay (L, 0-2) 7⅔ IP, 7H, 4R, 3ER, BB, 3K
• Bocock 2-2, BB
• Rivero 1-2, BB

Three Scranton/Wilkes-Barre pitchers combined on a four-hit shutout of Syracuse to hand the Chiefs a 5-0 loss. Christian Garcia gave up a hit but walked none and struck out two in his GCL-like “start.” Caleb Clay followed and was perhaps pushed an inning too far with four runs charged on seven hits over seven and 2/3rds with a walk and three strikeouts. Veteran infielders Brian Bocock and Carlos Rivero combined to go 3-for-4 with 2BB while the rest of the lineup went 1-for-23.

Harrisburg 4 Akron 1
• Karns (W, 5-3) 7IP, 5H, R, ER, 2BB, 7K, HR
• Barrett (SV, 15) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Souza 2-4, R, 2B
• Hague 1-2, R, HR, BB

Nathan Karns reverted to form in his second start since returning, giving up just a run on five hits over seven innings, while Harrisburg finally reached .500 at home with a 4-1 victory over Akron. The lone Aeros tally did come on a home run, which has been Karns’s weakness in 2013, with six allowed in the minors and five in the majors. Offensively, Ricky Hague answered that big fly with a solo shot in the 5th off the souvenir shop roof. Steve Souza led the Harrisburg attack with a 2-for-4 night, including a double and walk. The win evened the Senators home record at 20-20 and extended their lead in the E.L. West to two games over Erie.

Potomac 7 Myrtle Beach 5
• Schwartz (W, 6-2) 5IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 3K, HR
• Dupra (H, 3) 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 0K
• Taylor 2-3, R, 2B, RBI, SB
• Nieto 2-4, R, HR, 3RBI
• Harper 1-1, R, 2B, BB, SB

Potomac rallied for three in the 3rd to erase a 3-0 deficit, then posted a picket fence from the 5th to the 8th en route to a 7-5 win over Myrtle Beach. Bryce Harper, who was famously skipped over High-A in 2011, made his first appearance in Woodbridge on a rehab appearance. He doubled, walked, stole a base and scored in front of Adrian Nieto’s two-run single that capped the Potomac 3rd. Starter Blake Schwartz got the win, allowing three runs on six hits and two walks over five innings while striking out three. Nieto also homered to cap a 2-for-4 night with 3RBI.

West Virginia 6 Hagerstown 1
• Mooneyham 3⅓ IP, 4H, 4R, 3ER, 4BB, 5K
• Henke 2⅔ IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 4K, 2-2 IR-S
• Meza 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• Renda 2-3, BB, RBI
• Schill 1-2, R, BB, SB

Tony Renda’s RBI single in the 5th prevented a Power shutout as the Suns fell in Charleston, 6-1. Brett Mooneyham’s control woes continued with four walks over three and a 1/3rd innings. He was charged with four runs (three earned) on four hits while striking out five. Renda (2-for-3) and Wes Schill (1-for-2) accounted for all three Hagerstown hits and two of the four walks drawn.

Mahoning Valley 4 Auburn 1
• D. Williams (L, 0-2) 3IP, 6H, 4R, 2ER, BB, 3K
• Medina 2⅔ IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 6K
• Poole 1-3, R
• J. Valdez 1-3

Rain delayed the start and ended it early as Auburn lost for the second time in three nights to Mahoning Valley, 4-1. Deion Williams was rocked for four runs on six hits and a walk over three innings for his second loss in as many starts. Silvio Medina led a trio of relievers that combined for five scoreless innings. It was for naught as the offense managed just two hits and no walks, scoring the lone run with the help of a wild pitch and an error.

GCL Nationals 3 GCL Marlins 2
• Kimball 1⅔ IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 2K
• P. Valdez 2⅓ IP, 3H, R, ER, 0BB, 2K
• Ramos (W, 1-0) 3⅓ IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K, 2-0 IR-S
• Eusebio 1-2, R, 2B, RBI, SAC
• Mejia 1-3, 2B, RBI

The G-Nats won their fourth straight without a loss as they edged the G-Marlins, 3-2. David Ramos got the win and finished the game, stranding two runners while getting the last out of the 6th and allowing just one hit over the last three frames, walking none and striking out two. Rehabbing Cole Kimball started the game and allowed four baserunners — three hits and a walk — over an inning and 1/3rd, fanning two batters. DSL Grads Diomedes Eusebio and Bryan Mejia both had a double and an RBI as the G-Nats prevailed despite being outhit 9-5.

DSL Brewers 4 DSL Nationals 1
• Valerio (L, 1-1) 4⅓ IP, 5H, 3R, ER, 0BB, 7K
• Charlis 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Mercedes 2-3, BB, RBI
• Tillero 2-4

The offensive outage extended all the way down to the lowest level as the D-Nats lost to the D-Brewers, 4-1. Maximo Valerio took the loss, giving up three runs (one earned) on five hits and no walks while striking out seven. Catchers Yermin Mercedes (as the DH) and Jorge Tillero combined for four of the five hits the D-Nats mustered.