Aug 192013
 

Jeff KobernusJeff Kobernus became the fourth Chief to win International League Batter of the Week honors, and the fifth winner overall, joining Tyler Moore, Chris Rahl, and two-time winner Zach Walters.

Kobernus went 12-for-32 during the period (August 12-18), posting a line of .375/.382/.406 with four runs scored, six RBI, and six stolen bases. For the month, the 25-y.o. California native has posted a similar line of .360/.380/.373 in the month of August and is currently riding a 14-game hit streak, three less than Rahl. He’s also 2nd in the I.L. in batting average (.323) and steals (39).

The Nats’ 2009 second-round pick was selected by Boston in the 2012 Rule 5 Draft and immediately traded to Detroit, where he attempted to make the Tigers as a utilityman, but was returned on March 23rd. The conversion has continued as he’s actually played more outfield (58 games) than infield (24 games) and committed just two errors this season (one at 2B, one at 3B).

Injuries shortened both his 2010 and 2012 seasons, but has flashed enough speed (81 steals in 164 games the past two seasons, second only to Billy Burns’s 95 in 218 games) to be a three-time watchlist player for this site.

Aug 192013
 

Admittedly, this is a week or two late — perhaps even unnecessary as the only drama is mostly how they’ll make it, not who — but with two weeks to go in the regular season, let’s take a look at the playoff chances for all seven affiliates anyways and continue the annual tradition.

For the fourth straight summer, the Nats will have multiple teams make the postseason. This is a far cry from the summer of 2009, when just three teams had winning records (G-Nats, P-Nats, Chiefs) and none made the playoffs. This year, five of seven should break the .500 mark, three are already in the postseason and a fourth is just a half-game out of first place.

Let’s take a look…

SYRACUSE
Unfortunately, 2009 was the last winning season for the Chiefs, which should come as no surprise to those in the know as AAA nowadays is more of a taxi squad than the last rung on the ladder. The pitching, to be kind, has been spotty. The offense has been too reliant on the long ball and drives to the mailbox (unwilling to walk). There’s still chance to finish at or above .500, but that will require an especially strong finish (11-3 or 12-2).

HARRISBURG
For fans of the big club, the narrative is awfully familiar. This team can pitch and prevent runs. They have real difficulty scoring on a consistent basis. They’ve been in or near 1st place since mid-June, but the gap between 2nd and 3rd is just two games. Guess who the Senators play seven times over the next two weeks? The third-place Richmond Flying Squirrels. There’s always hope that Jimmy Van Ostrand and Steve Souza Jr. can get healthy and return to the lineup, but even with them, the team has struggled. This is the pennant race to watch because it’s all-or-nothing, in-or-out.

POTOMAC
This is perhaps the most complete Potomac team ever, with one rather notable exception — the bullpen. Over the course of season, as they’ve proven, it’s irritating but not fatal. In a short series, it can be devastating — especially in the first round, though it would take a near miracle to lose the second half with a magic number of eight with 14 to play. In the finals, Potomac wouldn’t have home-field advantage, which could be problematic as they’re much better at home vs. the road (45-19 vs. 32-28). That’s not presuming an upset in the first round isn’t possible, either.

HAGERSTOWN
The past couple of Suns teams could really hit, but they didn’t have the pitching to match. This year, they do. Like the P-Nats, they’re already in as the first-half winner. Unlike Potomac, Hagerstown is battling to win the second half (currently tied with West Virginia, their most likely opponent in the first round) but has proven it can win on the road (35-26) as well as at home (38-26). The Suns and Power don’t play each other the rest of the way, and the Suns have a much more favorable schedule (eight at home, seven on the road; .411 opp. W%) than the Power (four at home, eleven on the road; .495 opp. W%), but stranger things have happened.

AUBURN
After two 45+ win seasons in 2011 and 2012, the 2013 edition may not win 30 and could very well end up with the New York-Penn League’s worst record. Is this significant? Probably not. The previous two editions were older and drafted from higher rounds. Aside from a select few (e.g. Jake Johansen, Austin Voth, David Napoli), the pitching has been atrocious and the hitting has only been marginally better. They’ll be eliminated by week’s end. Most folks are interested to see if anyone gets the bump from the juggernaut in…

GCL NATIONALS
…Viera. They clinched a playoff berth 10 days ago, so the only drama is whether or not they’ll not set the record for the best winning percentage in GCL history (1994 Kansas City, 47-12). The playoffs are short — basically a one-game play-in between the top division winner versus the fourth-best, with #2 playing #3 and then a best-of-three between the two winners. Quick: Who won the 2012 GCL title? If you knew the answer without Googling, please wear sunscreen and make sure you’re getting enough vitamin D.

DSL NATIONALS
They were eliminated this weekend (just six of 35 teams make the playoffs), but as noted in this morning’s News & Notes, they have a chance to surpass last year’s 38-32 record and barring a collapse, will post a winning record for the second consecutive season. It’ll be discussed more in the season reviews, but that’s really, really not bad when you consider where the Nats’ Dominican operations were just four years ago.

Aug 192013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 3-2 vs. Indianapolis,
7:00 p.m.
Mandel (2-8, 5.06) vs.
Godfrey (5-4, 4.29)
Harrisburg Lost, 2-1 @ Richmond,
7:05 p.m.
Ray (4-2, 3.89) vs.
Westcott (5-11, 4.08)
Potomac Won, 3-2; Won, 2-0 @ Wilmington,
7:05 p.m.
Rauh (3-1, 3.81) vs.
Selman (10-8, 3.53)
Hagerstown Postponed vs. Asheville,
5:05 p.m.
Dickson (3-3, 5.15) and
Nick Lee (5-3, 4.06) vs.
T.J. Oakes (8-8, 4.54) and
Ben Hughes (8-9, 5.69)
Auburn Lost, 7-1 @ Jamestown,
7:05 p.m.
Barrientos (1-4, 5.35) vs.
Dickson (2-0, 1.88)
GCL Nationals OFF DAY @ GCL Marlins,
12:00 p.m.
Giolito (1-1, 2.78) vs.
Villanueva (2-0, 1.00)
DSL Nationals OFF DAY @ DSL Rojos,
10:30 a.m.
Morales (3-3, 1.35) vs.
De Leon (0-3, 5.80)



Syracuse 3 Indianapolis 2
• Maya 7IP, 10H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 4K
• Lowe (W, 3-0) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Walters 2-4, RBI
• Solano 2-4, R, RBI

Chris Rahl singled, stole two bases, and scored a run. Not bad for a game. Even better with two outs in the 8th as Zach Walters drove in Rahl with the gamewinner for a 3-2 win. The win went to Mark Lowe, who tossed a 1-2-3 eighth. Yunesky Maya got the start and scattered 10 hits for two runs, walked none, and fanned four. Walters and Jhonatan Solano both went 2-for-4 with an RBI as to lead the Chiefs’ nine-hit attack.

Portland 2 Harrisburg 1
• Hill (L, 2-6) 7IP, 6H, 2R, 0ER, 3BB, 3K
• Mirowksi 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Bloxom 2-4
• Nicol 2-3, 2B

After an eight-run outburst on Saturday night, Harrisburg reverted to form on Sunday afternoon, losing the game, 2-1 and the series 2-1. Taylor Hill returned after his fill-in for Syracuse and gave up both runs (unearned) on six hits and three walks for his sixth AA loss. Portland’s Keith Couch went the distance, making just one mistake — a solo shot by Carlos Rivero — as he limited the Senators to six hits and no walks. Roster moves: RHP Taylor Hill reassigned from Syracuse; RHP Pat Lehman placed on the 7-Day DL

Potomac 3 Wilmington 2 — GAME ONE
• Schwartz (W, 11-4) 5⅓ IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 2K
• Benincasa (S, 14) 1⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 4K, 1-0 IR-S
• Sanchez 2-3, R, 3B, RBI
• Taylor 1-3, 2B, BB, RBI

Adrian Sanchez (2-for-3) tripled in the tying run in the 6th while Cole Leonida safely squeezed him in for the gamewinner as the P-Nats took the opener, 3-2. Blake Schwartz won for the 11th time in Potomac, 13th overall, with both Blue Rocks runs allowed on five hits, but no walks, and two strikeouts. Robert Benincasa got the last out of the 6th and worked around a leadoff single in the 7th to earn his 14th save for the P-Nats, 23rd overall. Cutter Dykstra lost his hit streak but extended his on-base streak to 27 with a leadoff walk in the 1st, his league-leading 71st.

Potomac 2 Wilmington 0 — GAME TWO
• Dupra (W, 1-6) 5IP, 3H, 0R, 2BB, 4K
• Martin (SV, 2) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 5K
• B. Miller 2-3, 3B, RBI
• Nieto 1-3, R, 2B

Brian Dupra and Rafale Martin combined on a seven-inning shutout as the P-Nats swept the doubleheader with a 2-0 victory in the nightcap. Dupra gave up three hits and two walks over five innings while setting down four on strikes for his first win for Potomac and second of the season. Martin closed out the game with two hitless frames, walking two but striking out five. Brandon Miller’s RBI triple in the 4th gave the P-Nats a 1-0 lead while Cole Leonida bunted in the insurance run in the 7th.

Hagerstown vs. Asheville — PPD
Rain washed out the Suns yesterday afternoon. They’ll try to make it up with two tonight, starting at 5:05 p.m.

Jamestown 7 Auburn 1
• Ullmann (L, 1-2) 5IP, 10H, 6R, 5ER, BB, 5K, 2HR
• Grisz 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Reistetter 2-3, R, 3B, BB
• Gunter 2-4
Jamestown answered Auburns’s first-inning run with three in the bottom of the first and cruised to four more to hand the Doubledays a 7-1 loss. Ryan Ullmann got the start for Auburn but was hammered for six runs (five earned) on ten hits, including two home runs, and a walk over five innings. Benjamin Grisz made his first appearance since 2011, striking out two in a scoreless 6th. Matt Reistetter reached base three times on single, triple, and a walk while the Doubledays were held to six hits and one walk total.

GCL Nationals — OFF DAY
Two weeks left for the G-Nats as they march towards the playoffs and are six wins shy of setting the record for the best winning percentage.

DSL Nationals — OFF DAY
If the D-Nats can post a 4-2 week this week as they did last week, they’ll surpass last year’s 38-32 record but will need some help to match last year’s third-place finish in the Boca Chica South.

Aug 182013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 3-1 vs. Indianapolis,
5:00 p.m.
Maya (8-7, 3.97) vs. Oliver (5-4, 4.10)
Harrisburg Won, 8-0 vs. Portland,
2:00 p.m.
Hill (2-5, 2.49) vs. Couch (9-3, 3.76)
Potomac Won, 7-1 @ Wilmington,
3:05 p.m.
Schwartz (10-4, 2.73) and Dupra (0-6, 5.90) vs.
Sulbaran (0-2, 6.86) and Hernandez (0-0, 2.14)
Hagerstown Won, 4-0 vs. Asheville,
1:05 p.m.
Dickson (3-3, 5.15) vs. Oakes (8-8, 4.54)
Auburn Won, 4-3 (10 inn.) @ Jamestown,
4:05 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
GCL Nationals Lost, 6-5 OFF DAY N/A
DSL Nationals Lost, 3-1 OFF DAY N/A



Indianapolis 3 Syracuse 1
• Rosenbaum (L, 6-10) 7IP, 8H, 3R, 2ER, 2BB, 3K, 2WP, PO at 1B
• Kimball 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Watts 2-3
• Walters 1-3, BB

Indianapolis’s Brandon Cumpton stifled the Syracuse bats for eight innings as the Chiefs fell, 3-1. Starter Danny Rosenbaum took the loss, giving up all three runs (two earned) on eight hits and two walks. The defense committed four errors but turned four double plays. Kris Watts (2-for-3) and Zach Walters (1-for-3) were the only two Syracuse batters to reach base twice.
Roster move: OF-1B Tyler Moore recalled to Washington.

Harrisburg 8 Portland 0
• Swynenberg (W, 4-0) 5IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Holland (H, 6) 3IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 5K
• Rivero 2-4, R, 2B, 2RBI
• Hague 2-4, 2R
• Head 2-5, R, RBI

Three Senators pitchers combined for a five-hit shutout while the offense exploded for seven runs in the 6th en route to an 8-0 shutout of the Sea Dogs. Matt Swynenberg let up just three hits over five innings in his second spot start in place of Taylor Hill to earn his fourth win. Twelve men came to the plate in the 6th, with the first five reaching base as Harrisburg posted season highs for both runs and hits in a single inning as the Senators broke out for eight runs and 10 hits total.

Potomac 7 Wilmington 1
• Solis 4⅔ IP, 2H, 0R, 4BB, 4K
• Fischer (W, 4-0) 3⅓ IP, 2H, R, ER, 2BB, 3K, HR
• Dykstra 3-5, 2R, 2B, 4RBI (18-game hit streak)
• Sanchez 3-5, R, 2B, 3B

The P-Nats stoned the Blue Rocks for 11 hits as they took their sixth straight, 7-1. David Fischer got the win in relief, giving up the lone Wilmington run on a solo shot in the 8th in relief. Sammy Solis failed to go the requisitve five for the fifth time in 10 starts, walking four and whiffing four in four and 2/3rds innings with two hits surrendered. Cutter Dykstra remains red-hot in the second half (.350/.508/.493 in 43G) as he drove in four while going 3-for-5, as did Adrian Sanchez with a single, double, and a triple.

Hagerstown 4 Asheville 0
• Mooneyham (W, 10-3) 7IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 9K
• Davis 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Norfork 3-4, R , HR, RBI
• Mesa 3-4, 2R, 3B

Brett Mooneyham tied Pedro Encarnacion for the team lead in pitching wins with #10 while Hagerstown won its seventh straight, 4-0 over Asheville. The Stanford southpaw won his sixth straight decision with seven shutout innings, allowing just three hits, no walks, and setting down nine on strikes. Cody Davis followed for two more scoreless frames to preserve the shutout, the Suns league-leading 15th of the 2013 campaign. Khayyan Norfork and Narciso Mesa both went 3-for-4 to pace the Hagerstown offense.

Auburn 4 Mahoning Valley 3 (10 inn.)
• Johansen 5IP, 0H, 1R, 0ER, 2BB, 6K
• Joyce (W, 1-2) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Ballou 2-4, 2R, 3B, 2BB
• Reistetter 3-5, 2B

The Auburn offense nearly lost this one, waiting until the 9th to tie it and winning it in the 10th, 4-3 over Mahoning Valley. Nats top 2013 pick Jake Johansen tossed five hitless innings, allowing an unearned run on two walks while striking out six to lower his ERA to 1.06 and OBA to .147 but got the no-decision for the eighth time in 10 starts. The Doubledays outhit the Scrappers 10-3 but flailed in the clutch with a 2-for-12 mark and left 14 baserunners on. Tablesetters Isaac Ballou and Matt Reistetter combined for five of those 10 hits with Ballou tripling and coming in on a sac fly in the 10th for the gamewinner.

GCL Mets 6 GCL Nationals 5
• Silvestre 5IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Ramos (BS, 4; L, 4-3) ⅔ IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 0K
• Bautista 3-5
• Mejia 2-4, R, 3B, RBI

The G-Mets scored the last six runs and walked off in the 9th with a 6-5 win over the G-Nats. David Ramos blew his fourth save and lost for the third time, coughing up two runs on two hits and walk over 2/3rds of an inning. Starter Hector Silvestre went five scoreless innings, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out three. Rafael Bautista led the G-Nats offense with a 3-for-5 game, followed by Bryan Mejia, who went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Roster move: C Spencer Kieboom activated from 7-Day DL, reassigned from Auburn.

DSL Cubs 3 DSL Nationals 1 (12 inn.)
• Sanchez 7IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 4K
• J. Ramirez 3IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K
• Green (L, 0-2) 1IP, 1H, 2R, 1ER, BB, 2K, 2WP
• Ortiz 3-5, 2B, CS
• Alvarez 2-4, BB, CS

The D-Cubs rallied for two in the 12th and held on for a 3-1 win, eliminating the D-Nats from the Boca Chica South Division race. Starter Mario Sanchez went seven innings, giving up the first D-Cubs run on five hits and a walk while fanning four. Oliver Ortiz and Thomas Alvarez combined for five of the D-Nats eight hits. Both were caught stealing. Adrian Green took the loss in the two-run 12th with just one hit allowed, “thanks” to a wild pitch on a strikeout and a one-out error.

Aug 172013
 

Potomac scored seven times with two outs as they completed a three-game sweep of Frederick with a 7-3 win.

Ross Ohlendorf made the rehab start but was not sharp. The 31-year-old journeyman gave up all three Keys runs on eight hits, including three hard-hit doubles.

While he walked just one, the former Diamondback farmhand faced multiple long counts as his command was spotty. For the velo who..er, enthusiasts, peeks at the guns were in the 89-91 range.

His counterpart, however, would need a vehicle to hit that speed. Frederick’s knuckleballer in training Zach Clark had the Potomac lineup fooled for about seven batters before Justin Miller knocked a flutterball off the left field wall in the 2nd, then Randolph Oduber put one over it for a two-run shot that gave Potomac a 2-1 lead.

Potomac would add three more in the third with three doubles by Caleb Ramsey, Kevin Keyes, and Adrian Sanchez. Clark would finish the evening by retiring the last seven in a row, but lost his sixth decision for the Keys while lowering his ERA from 14.06 to 13.19.

Greg Holt relieved Ohlendorf after he gave up his eighth hit to the leadoff batter in the 5th and earned his seventh win with two innings of scoreless relief, though he walked three — including the first two batters of the 6th. A grounder to third, a popup to third and strikeout enabled the 24-y.o. to escape the jam.

Colin Bates pitched the 7th and 8th and Rob Wort the 9th, as both relievers worked around multiple base hits (two in each inning) and combined for three scoreless innings.

The win was the fifth in a row for the P-Nats, who hit the road for four games in tax shelter Delaware against the Blue Rocks before returning home for their final regular-season homestand on Wednesday.

Aug 172013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 3-2 vs. Indianapolis,
7:05 p.m.
Maya (8-7, 3.97) vs.
Cumpton (5-7, 3.82)
Harrisburg Lost, 4-1 vs. Portland,
7:00 p.m.
Swynenberg (3-0, 3.67) vs.
Barnes (5-8, 4.27)
Potomac Won, 7-3 @ Wilmington,
6:05 p.m.
Solis (2-0, 3.12) vs.
Baez (1-0, 4.02)
Hagerstown Won, 5-3 vs. Asheville,
7:05 p.m.
Mooneyham (9-3, 2.09) vs.
Flemer (2-3, 3.97)
Auburn Won, 6-1 vs. Mahoning Valley,
6:05 p.m.
Johansen (1-1, 1.21) vs. Kime
(0-2, 2.75)
GCL Nationals Won, 5-2 @ GCL Mets,
10:00 a.m.
Silvestre (6-0, 2.29) vs.
Acosta (1-2, 2.28)
DSL Nationals Won, 2-0 vs. DSL Cubs,
10:30 a.m.
Sanchez (2-2, 2.40) vs.
Mejia (0-0, 9.00)



Lehigh Valley 3 Syracuse 2
• Tatusko 6IP, 3H, R, ER, 3BB, 4K
• Robertson (BS, 3; L, 3-2) ⅓ IP, 2H, 2R, 0ER, 0BB, K,
• Moore 2-4, R, HR, RBI
• Solano 1-3, R, 2B

The IronPigs rallied for two in the 7th against the Chiefs ‘pen for a 3-2 win to take the series 2-1. Tyler Robertson gave up a pair of singles then threw away a sacrifice bunt attempt to let up the tying run. After a strikeout and a runner cut down at the plate, Lehigh Valley got the go-ahead (and eventual winning run) on a two-out single off Mike Crotta. Starter Ryan Tatusko turned in a quality start with one run allowed on three hits and three walks over six innings. Tyler Moore homered while going 2-for-4 to lead the Chiefs offense.

Portland 4 Harrisburg 1
• Cole (L, 3-1) 6⅓ IP, 8H, 4R, 3ER, BB, 7K
• McCoy 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• Bloxom 1-3, BB
• Nicol 1-3, BB

The box score listed the wind as 7 mph from LF to RF, but didn’t measure the breeze from 16 strikeouts by the Senators in a 4-1 loss to Portland. Harrisburg was no-hit for five and 2/3rds and mustered just three total (all singles), the lone run scoring on a walk, passed ball, a steal of third (do I have to say who?) and a wild pitch. A.J. Cole suffered his first AA defeat, charged with all four Sea Dogs runs on eight hits and a walk with seven K’s. Roster moves: OF Brian Goodwin activated from the 7-Day DL; OF-1B Jimmy Van Ostrand placed on the 7-Day DL.

Potomac 7 Frederick 3
• Ohlendorf 4+ IP, 8H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 2K
• Holt (W, 7-0) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 3BB, K, 1-0 IR-S
• Keyes 2-4, R, 2B, 2RBI, SB
• Ramsey 2-5, 2B
• Oduber 1-4, R, HR, 2RBI

Potomac lowered its magic number to 12 with their fifth straight win Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 5 Asheville 3
• Encarnacion (W, 10-7) 6IP, 5H, 2R, ER, 2BB, 8K
• Thomas (H, 2) 2IP, H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Renda 2-3, 2R, BB
• McQuillan 2-4, R, 2RBI
• Ramos 2-4, R, 3B, RBI

Pedro Encarnacion became the Suns’ first 10-game winner as Hagerstown downed Asheville, 5-3. The 22-y.o. Dominican struck out eight and walked two while posting a quality start of two runs (one earned) on five hits over six innings. Hagerstown trailed 2-1 before going triple-single-double to open the 6th inning and tie the game. A wild pitch and an RBI groundout plated the next two runs in three-run inning. Tony Renda, Mike McQuillan, and “Help Me” Wander Ramos each had two hits as the Suns notched 10 for the game. Roster move: LHP Jake Walsh reassigned from the GCL.

Auburn 6 Mahoning Valley 1
• Voth (W, 2-0) 6IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 11K
• Bafidis 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• J.C. Valdez 3-4, R, RBI
• Zebrack 2-5, R, 2B, 3B, 2RBI

Auburn broke open a 1-1 game with a five-run 6th for a 6-1 win over Mahoning Valley. 5th-round pick Austin Voth struck out 11 in six innings to win his second game. The 21-y.o. U-Dub Husky allowed a run on five hits and one walk. Cory Bafidis and Silvio Medina combined for three shutout innings of relief and four strikeouts to bring the team total to 15. Jean Carlos Valdez went 3-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored to lead Auburn’s 11-hit parade. Roster move: RHP Ben Grisz activated from the 60-Day DL.

GCL Nationals 5 GCL Mets 2
• J. Rodriguez 3IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 4K
• Suero (W, 7-1) 5IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 6K
• Abreu 1-3, R, RBI
• R. Encarnacion 3-3, R, HR, 2RBI, BB

The G-Nats were saved from a devastating two-game losing streak with a four-run rally in the late innings as they prevailed against the G-Mets, 5-2. Jefry Rodriguez gave up both G-Mets runs on five hits and two walks while striking out four over three innings. Wander Suero got the win, his team-leading seventh, with five no-hit innings of relief. Randy Encarnacion was 3-for-3 with a run scored and a two-run HR that capped the G-Nats scoring in the 7th.

DSL Nationals 2 DSL Cubs 0
• Yrizarri 6IP, 4H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Reynoso (W, 1-1) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Tillero 2-3, RBI
• Corredor 1-3, 2B, 2BB, CS

The D-Nats staved off elimination for one more day with a 2-0 win over the division-leading D-Cubs. Starter Deibi Yrizarri tossed six shutout innings, allowing four hits and a walk with two strikeouts but got a no-decision. Yorlin Reynoso, Yefri Pena and Melvi Salazat each pitched a scoreless inning to earn the win, hold, and save respectively. Aldrem Corredor reached base three times on a double and two walks while Jorge Tillero led the hit column with a 2-for-3 game, collecting the D-Nats’ sole RBI.

Aug 162013
 


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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 59-68, 6th place I.L. North, 10 games behind

Good Tyler Moore .366/.449/.653, 6HR, 30RBI since All-Star Break (27G)
Bad Ryan Tatusko 5.78 BB/9IP (64 in 99⅔ IP)
Interesting Josh Johnson .328/.458/.478 in 28G



HARRISBURG SENATORS 66-58, 1st place E.L. West, 1 game ahead

Good Billy Burns .312/.429/.319, 5SB in 12G since promotion
Bad Rob Gilliam 0-4, 5.15 ERA, 1.34 WHIP since All-Star Break
Interesting Tyler Herron 0-1, 3SV, 1.50 ERA in last 10 appearances



POTOMAC NATIONALS 31-20, 1st place C.L. North, 8 games ahead (73-47 overall)

Good Colin Bates 2.10 ERA/3.02 FIP/1.01 WHIP in 30 appearances
Bad Mike Gilmartin, bases empty: .313/.425/.493
Gilmartin, RISP: .167/.258/.241
Interesting Greg Holt 4-0, 2.33 ERA, 1.26 WHIP since All-Star Break (15 appearances)



HAGERSTOWN SUNS 33-20, 2nd place Sally North, ½ game behind (71-49 overall)

Good Nick Lee 10.2K/9 (93K in 82IP)
Bad Wes Schill .160/.323/.160 in last 10G
Interesting 1st in runs scored, T12th in home runs (50, 18 by Brandon Miller)



AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 18-36, 6th place Pinckney Division, New York-Penn League, 15 games behind

Good James Yezzo .294/.306/.412 in August
Bad Mike Mudron 1.75 WHIP, 6.38 ERA in 15 appearances
Interesting 38 of 69E committed by 3B or SS



GCL NATIONALS 41-7, East Division Champions, 20½ games ahead

Good Lucas Giolito 0.64 ERA, 0.86 WHIP in August (3GS, 14IP
Bad Luis Guzman 17-y.o. .219/.281/.257 in 32G
Interesting Need to finish 7-5 to set GCL record for best W% (1994 Royals, 47-12)



DSL NATIONALS 34-28, 4th place Boca Chica South, 10 games behind

Good 17-y.o. Israel Mota .361 OBP
Bad 18-y.o. Jonathan Aquino 1.58 WHIP in 19⅔ IP
Interesting Pitchers T2nd with 8 shutouts in DSL
Aug 162013
 

Overcoming deficits of 1-0 and 2-1, Potomac sent eight men to the plate in the 5th to take a 3-2 lead and held on for a 5-4 win.

It was the fourth straight win for Potomac on the current homestand, and the first “W” for starter Paul Demny in five starts since his demotion from Harrisburg last month. The 24-y.o. allowed seven hits and walked two but allowed just two runs while striking out five.

To the naked eye, Demny’s velocity seemed diminished since he last pitched for the P-Nats in 2011, an observation also made by the Senators beat writers. Demny was placed on the DL in early July with “arm soreness” and removed from the Harrisburg rotation in late June. Last night marked the first time he had pitched more than three innings since June 23.

Offensively, the P-Nats notched 12 hits, with Cutter Dykstra, Justin Miller, and Caleb Ramsey each collecting three but struggled in the clutch — 2-for-15 with runners in scoring position and a total of 10 men left on base in eight innings.

Adrian Nieto got the scoring going with his 11th HR of the season, a bomb to right-center while batting lefthanded. Justin Miller, Dykstra, and Ramsey singled to load the bases in the 5th. After a Michael Taylor whiff, Nieto drove in the second Potomac run with a grounder to first. It would require back-to-back walks by Brandon Miller and Kevin Keyes to take the lead.

Ramsey bunted his way on in the 7th and took second on a wild pitch, but scored without a base hit thanks to a Taylor roller to 1st and a sacrifice fly by Brandon Miller, which ended his hit streak at 15 games, but pushed the score to 4-2 in favor of Potomac. Dykstra’s RBI single in the 8th gave the P-Nats a 5-3 lead.

Brian Dupra followed Demny out of the ‘pen and worked around a leadoff single in both innings he pitched to earn his fifth hold. Travis Henke was knocked around in the 8th a run while Robert Benincasa served up a long homer to the Keys’ Johnny Ruettiger before setting down the next three in the 9th to qualify for his 13th save.

With the victory, Potomac extended their lead to eight games over Lynchburg and reduced the magic number to 13.

LHP Sammy Solis (2-0, 3.12) is officially listed as the starter for tonight, however, on Wednesday multiple Washington beat writers reported that RHP Ross Ohlendorf would be pitching five innings in his final tuneup before replacing former P-Nat RHP Taylor Jordan in the big club’s rotation.

Aug 162013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 2-1 @ Lehigh Valley,
7:05 p.m.
Tatusko (5-6, 3.88) vs.
Smith (7-2, 2.42)
Harrisburg Won, 6-5 vs. Portland,
7:00 p.m.
Cole (3-0, 1.73) vs.
Owens (1-1, 1.80)
Potomac Won, 5-4 vs. Frederick,
7:05 p.m.
Ohlendorf (rehab) or
Solis (2-0, 3.12) vs. Clark (0-5, 14.05)
Hagerstown Won, 9-1 vs. Asheville,
7:05 p.m.
Encarnacion (9-7, 3.55) vs.
Flemer (2-3, 3.97)
Auburn Lost, 3-2 vs. Mahoning Valley,
7:05 p.m.
Voth (1-0, 1.46) vs.
Kime (0-2, 2.75)
GCL Nationals Lost, 5-4 vs. GCL Mets,
12:00 p.m.
J. Rodriguez (3-0, 2.31) vs.
Church (2-2, 6.04)
DSL Nationals Won, 6-2 @ DSL Cubs,
10:30 a.m.
Yrizarri (4-3, 2.37) vs.
Perez (3-3, 2.25)



Syracuse 2 Lehigh Valley 1
• Clay (W, 4-2) 6⅔ IP, 4H, 1R, 0ER, 0BB, 4K
• Lowe (SV, 1) 1⅓ IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Kobernus 4-4, 2B, RBI, SB, CS
• Moore 2-3, BB

Jeff Kobernus’s fourth hit of the night was the difference in a 2-1 Syracuse win over Lehigh Valley. The 25-y.o. went 4-for-4 with a double and an RBI while swiping his 38th base to lead the Chiefs seven-hit attack. Caleb Clay won his fourth AAA game with an unearned run allowed on four hits over six and 2/3rds innings. He walked none and struck out four. Xavier Cedeno got the last out of the 7th and the first two of the 8th for the hold while Mark Lowe escaped a two-out jam in the 9th for the save.
Roster moves: RHP Drew Storen recalled to Washington; RHP Ryan Mattheus optioned from Washington.

Harrisburg 6 Trenton 5
• Gilliam 4⅓ IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 4K
• Mirowski (W, 1-0) 2⅔ IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 4K, 2-2 IR-S
• Barrett (SV, 24) 1⅓ IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 3K, 2-1 IR-S
• Nicol 4-5, 3B, 2RBI, SB
• Burns 3-4, 2R, BB, RBI, SB

The Senators tablesetters combined for seven hits and drove in the last two runs in a 6-5 Harrisburg win over Trenton. Billy Burns (3-for-4) singled in the 6th to break a 4-4 tie while Sean Nicol’s RBI triple in the 8th put the Sens up 6-4. Starter Rob Gilliam was lifted in the 5th and left with a 4-1 lead. He was charged with three runs on five hits and two walks with four strikeouts. Richie Mirowski let in two inherited runners and gave up one of his own but earned the win. Aaron Barrett let in one of two himself, but struck out three of seven batters faced to earn his 24th save.

Potomac 5 Frederick 4
• Demny (W, 1-1) 5IP, 7H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 5K
• Dupra (H, 5) 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Dykstra 3-4, R, BB, RBI
• J. Miller 3-4, R
• Ramsey 3-5, R

The P-Nats won their fourth straight Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 9 Delmarva 1
• Turnbull (W, 6-5) 7IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 4K
• Harper 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 0K
• Piwinica-Worms 3-4, BB, 2RBI
• Martinez 3-4, R, 2RBI
• Renda 2-3, 3R, 2B, 2BB, RBI

The Suns scored eight unanswered runs in a 9-1 win to complete the sweep of the Shorebirds and finish the season 14-8 against their Maryland rivals. Starter Kylin Turnbull allowed just a first-inning run and five hits total for his 6th Low-A win while walking one and striking out four. Eight of nine Hagerstown batters hit safely, with Will Piwinica-Worms and Estarlin Martinez both going 3-for-4 with 2RBI to lead the Suns offense.

Williamsport 3 Auburn 2
• Pivetta 3⅔ IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 4BB, 3K, HR
• Selsor 3⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 5K
• Mudron (L, 0-1) 1IP, 2H, R, ER, 2BB, K
• Yezzo 2-4, 3B, 2RBI
• Ballou 1-3

Williamsport rallied for one in the 8th and took the game 3-2 to split the two-game series with Auburn. Nick Pivetta gave up the first two Crosscutter runs on three hits and four walks over three and 2/3rds innings. Casey Selsor finished the 4th and retired all 10 batters he faced. The Doubledays offense, however, was limited to three hits: a single and two-run triple by James Yezzo and a single by Isaac Ballou. Mike Mudron lost it in the 8th, giving up a run on two hits and two walks.

GCL Marlins 5 GCL Nationals 4
• Williams (L, 1-1) 4IP, 7H, 3R, 2ER, 4BB, K
• P. Valdez 2IP, 2H, 1R, 0ER, BB, 0K
• Medina 2-4, R, CS
• Bautista 2-5, R, RBI, SB

The G-Nats streak was halted at 17 with a 5-4 loss to the G-Marlins. Deion Williams took the loss in his second start since his reassignment from Auburn, giving up three runs (two earned) on seven hits and four walks while striking out one (1). Down 5-1, the G-Nats rallied for three in the 9th, collecting four of their eight hits in the frame, but left the tying run on second. Rafael Bautista went 2-for-5 with a run scored, an RBI, and a stolen base to lead the G-Nats attack.

DSL Nationals 6 DSL Yankees1 2
• Reyes (W, 5-3) 5IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 6K, HR
• Feliz (H, 3) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Rosario 2-4, RBI
• Ortiz 2-4, 2R
• Gutierrez 2-4, 2R

The D-Nats snapped a 1-1 tie with two runs in the 4th and scored three more en route to a 6-2 win over the D-Yankees1. Luis Reyes won his team-leading fifth game with both D-Yankees1 runs on three hits and two walks while striking out six. All nine D-Nats batters reached base while Dionicio Rosario, Oliver Ortiz, and Kelvin Gutierrez all went 2-for-4 in the D-Nats 10-hit, three-walk offense.
Roster Moves: 3B Neivy Pilier placed on the 7-Day DL; C Luis Vilorio, SS Joshual Ramirez assigned from Washington; 3B Anderson Franco signed as an IFA (not eligible to play until 2014).

Aug 152013
 

Matt Purke evened up his won-loss record at 3-3 as the P-Nats cut down the Keys, 6-2.

The 23-y.o. southpaw gave up both Frederick runs on four hits and a walk while striking out three for his second quality start in his last three starts, and the second time he’s gone six frames for Potomac.

While neither dominant nor ineffective, Purke got the job done by working off the fastball and throwing strikes… but not gunning for the K with his breaking stuff or trying to get batters to chase. He retired the leadoff batter in three of six innings and and got two diving catches by his corner outfielders — Brandon Miller in the 3rd, Randolph Oduber in the 6th — to end the inning in dramatic fashion.

Offensively, the P-Nats middle of the order carried the night. Frederick’s Brady Wager had a no-hitter and a 1-0 lead through three innings but lost it on Adrian Nieto’s line-drive single off the leaping glove of Keys SS Jerome Pena to lead off the 4th. Brandon Miller extended his hit streak to 15 games with a double down the left field line while Kevin Keyes tied it with a single to center. The 4-5-6 combo of Nieto, Miller, and Keyes would combine for six hits, three doubles, four runs, and three RBI on the night.

Potomac rallied for three in the 4th and posted a picket fence in the 5th, 6th, and 7th innings to build a 6-2 lead. Veteran relievers Rafael Martin and Colin Bates finished out the game with three scoreless to nail down the “W” for Purke.

With the win, Potomac improves to 30-20 in the second half and holds a 7½ game lead over second-place Wilmington in the Carolina League North. The three-game series continues tonight with a matchup of Paul Demny (0-1, 5.06) vs. Zach Davies (7-5, 3.41).