Luke Erickson

Luke Erickson is a season-ticket holder for the Potomac Nationals, but makes a point of seeing games in Hagerstown and Harrisburg at least once a summer. When the PNats are away on the weekend, Luke finds a minor-league game somewhere to watch, and generally attends 70-80 baseball games a year up across several states. A former sportswriter with newspapers in Massachusetts and Oregon, Luke lives in Western Fairfax County with his wife and two sons.

Aug 222015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 9-0 @ Buffalo,
7:05 p.m.
Billings (7-5, 4.19) vs.
Redmond (2-4, 4.47)
Harrisburg Won, 5-3 vs. Portland,
7:05 p.m.
Voth (4-6, 3.01) vs.
McCarthy (6-6, 3.52)
Potomac Lost, 5-2 @ Lynchburg,
6:30 p.m.
Spann (1-6, 4.92) vs.
Kime (3-6, 4.57)
Hagerstown Lost, 5-2;
Won, 6-1
vs. Lexington,
5:05 p.m.
Fedde (0-1, 6.00) vs.
Griffin (2-5, 6.13)
Auburn Lost, 3-1 vs. Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Crownover (0-4, 4.66) vs.
Arteaga (4-1, 2.75)


Buffalo 9 Syracuse 0
• Hill (L, 3-9) 4IP, 12H, 5R, 5ER, BB, 4K, 0HR
• den Dekker 2-3

Buffalo scored in five of their first six turns at bat as they shut out Syracuse, 9-0. Taylor Hill took the brunt of it with five runs charged on 12 hits and one walk over four innings. He struck out four. Matt den Dekker singled twice as did the rest of the Chiefs, who finished with four hits and one walk with just one baserunner reaching second base.
Roster moves: SS Trea Turner placed on the 40-man roster, recalled to Washington; UT Jose Lozada reassigned from Harrisburg.

Harrisburg 11 Portland 6
• Bates (W, 5-4) 6IP, 6H, 5R, 3ER, 3BB, 4K, HR
• Carpenter 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• A. Sanchez 3-4, R, 2-2B, 2RBI
• Goodwin 2-4, R, BB, 3RBI
• Bostick 2-4, 2R, HR, 3RBI

The Senators snapped a 3-3 tie with a four-run 5th and cruised to an 11-6 win over the Sea Dogs in the series opener. Colin Bates got the Jack Morris win with five runs allowed on six hits and three walks while striking out four over six innings. Adrian Sanchez, Brian Goodwin, and Christopher Bostick combined for seven of the nine Harrisburg hits and eight of the 11 RBI with Sanchez going 3-for-4 and Bostick hitting a three-run HR in the aforementioned 5th.
Roster moves: LHP Matt Purke placed on the 7-Day DL; RHP Brian Rauh reassigned from Potomac; OF Denard Span, IF Dan Uggla, RHP David Carpenter assigned from Washington for MLB rehab.

Lynchburg 5 Potomac 2
• A. Williams (L, 4-4) 6IP, 6H, 5R, 4ER, BB, 6K
• Walsh 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Bautista 1-4, R
• Manuel 1-4, R

Potomac scored early but Lynchburg scored often as the Hillcats beat the P-Nats 5-2. Austen Williams gave up all five runs on six hits and a walk over six innings while striking out six. Jake Walsh followed with two perfect innings of relief with two K’s. The offense was limited to five hits and two walks with no batter reaching base twice. Both runs came in the 3rd with the help of a two-base error that enabled Craig Manuel to score from second and Rafael Bautista to take 3rd and score on a groundout by Alec Keller.
Roster move: RHP Jeff Howell reassigned from Hagerstown.

Lexington 5 Hagerstown 2 — GAME ONE
• Bach (L, 6-4) 4IP, 3H, 3R, 2ER, 5BB, 2K
• Gardner 1-3, R, 2B, SB
• W. Rodriguez 1-3, 2B, RBI

The Legends took advantage of seven walks to score five times on just five hits as they eclipsed the Suns, 5-2 in the opener. Connor Bach issued five of those free passes in just four innings, as he lost for the fourth time with three runs let in over four innings. Jeff Gardner and Wilman Rodriguez both went 1-for-3 with a double but Hagerstown was held to just six hits total.

Hagerstown 6 Lexington 1 — GAME TWO
• A. Lee 4IP, 1H, R, ER, 2BB, 6K
• Napoli (W, 6-4) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Keniry 2-2, R, 2RBI
• W. Rodriguez 2-2, R, BB, RBI, SB

Hagerstown broke out for five runs in the 2nd and took the nightcap by a 6-1 score over Lexington. Andrew Lee went the first four frames with a one run allowed over four innings on one hit and two walks. He struck out six. David Napoli got the “W” with two scoreless innings of relief. Wilman Rodriguez stayed hot with two singles, a walk, a run scored, and an RBI to lead the offense.
Roster moves: RHP Kevin Perez, OF D.K. Carey activated from the 7-Day DL; C Jake Mayers place on the 7-Day DL.

Williamsport 3 Auburn 1
• Borne (L, 1-3) 5IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 6K
• Pirro 1IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 2K
• Kerian 2-4, 2R, 2B, 3B
• Jefferies 1-3, R, BB

The Crosscutters struck for three in the 3rd and held off the Doubledays to take the opener, 3-1. Starter Grant Borne took the loss with all three Williamsport runs given up on four hits and no walks while fanning six. Three relievers each turned in a scoreless inning but the offense, which was led by David Kerian’s double and triple in four ABs, couldn’t convert its nine hits and one walk into more than just the one run.

Aug 212015
 

rain for npp 3

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse OFF DAY @ Buffalo,
7:05 p.m.
Hill (3-8, 4.83) vs.
Copeland (9-4, 2.60)
Harrisburg Won, 5-3 vs. Portland,
7:05 p.m.
Bates (4-4, 4.04) vs.
Diaz (1-9, 5.38)
Potomac Canceled @ Lynchburg,
6:30 p.m.
A. Williams (4-3, 2.09)
vs. Brown (8-11, 4.99)
Hagerstown Postponed vs. Lexington,
5:05 p.m.
Howell (1-0, 0.90) and
Bach (6-3, 3.14) vs.
TBD and TBD
Auburn Lost, 6-4 @ Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Borne (1-2, 2.76) vs.
Kilome (2-2, 2.55)


Syracuse — OFF DAY
After taking two of three from Pawtucket, the Chiefs return to upstate New York to face Buffalo for three games before taking on Rochester for five games (three home, two away) next week.

Harrisburg 5 Akron 3
• Giolito (W, 2-1) 5IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, 3BB, 5K, WP
• Mendez (H, 4) 1⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Ballou 1-1, R, HR, RBI, 2BB, CS
• Pleffner 2-4, 2B, SF, 2RBI

Lucas Giolito wasn’t as sharp as he was last Friday night, but hung in for five innings to get the win as Harrisburg downed Akron, 5-3. The reigning E.L. Pitcher of the Week walked three and struck out five while allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits. He threw 87 pitches, 53 for strikes but struggled with his command. The offense pounded out 12 hits, including leadoff HRs by Drew Vettleson and Issac Ballou, doubles by Pedro Severino and Shawn Pleffner and a triple from Adrian Sanchez.

Potomac vs. Wilmington — CNCLD
Rain washed away the finale between the Blue Rocks and P-Nats on Thursday night. As the final meeting between the two teams in 2015, it will not be made up.
Roster move: RHP Reynaldo Lopez placed on 7-Day DL, retroactive to August 19.

Hagerstown vs. Lexington — PPD
Likewise, the folks in Hagerstown pulled the plug early in the afternoon. This one, however, will be made up tonight with twinbill starting at 4:35 p.m.

West Virginia 6 Auburn 4
• Guilbeau 5IP, 7H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 0K
• Rivera (L, 0-2) 2IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 2K
• Kerian 2-4, 2R, 2B, 3B
• Jefferies 1-3, R, BB

The Black Bears struck again for three in the 7th and completed the sweep of the two-game series with a 6-4 triumph over the Doubledays. Taylor Guilbeau got the start and went the first five, allowing three runs on seven hits and two walks without a strikeout. Mariano Rivera III was taken for three runs on five hits over two innings to suffer the loss, his second. David Kerian doubled and tripled while Rhett Wiseman homered as Auburn scored four times on just six hits.

Aug 202015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 2-1 (13 inn.) OFF DAY N/A
Harrisburg Won, 5-3 @ Akron,
7:05 p.m.
Giolito (1-1, 4.18) vs.
von Schamann (1-0, 3.60)
Potomac Lost, 7-6 @ Wilmington,
6:35 p.m.
A. Williams (4-3, 2.09) vs.
Mills (6-6, 3.04)
Hagerstown Lost, 3-2 vs. Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Howell (1-0, 0.90) vs. TBD
Auburn Lost, 5-4 vs. West Virginia,
7:05 p.m.
Guilbeau (1-2, 4.94) vs.
Waddell (0-0, 1.29)


Syracuse 2 Pawtucket 1 (13 inn.)
• Cole 7IP, 5H, 0R, 0BB, 8K, HBP
• McGregor (W, 6-5) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Martin (SV, 9) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Turner 4-6, R, 2-2B
• den Dekker 2-5, R, HR, BB, 2RBI

Matt den Dekker’s two-out solo HR in the top of the 13th put the Chiefs over the top and sealed a 2-1 win to take the series by the same score. A.J. Cole started and turned in seven scoreless innings, with five hits allowed, no walks, and a season-high eight strikeouts. He left with a 1-0 lead but Matt Grace blew the save in the 8th. The win went to Scott McGregor, the save to Rafael Martin as both pitchers put up goose eggs in the 12th and 13th innings respectively. Trea Turner singled twice and doubled twice and scored the first run to account for four of the eight hits notched by Syracuse.
Roster move: UT Josh Johnson placed on the 7-Day DL.

Harrisburg 5 Akron 3
• Simms (W, 2-2) 7IP, 7H, 3R, 2ER, 2BB, 1K, HBP
• De Los Santos (S, 7) 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 4K
• Goodwin 2-4, BB, SB
• Dykstra 2-4, R, RBI, 2SB
• Ballou 2-4, R, RBI, SB

Harrisburg rallied for two in the 5th to tie and two in the 7th to win as the Sens ‘pen held the 5-3 lead. John Simms gave up all three runs (two earned) on seven hits and two walks over seven innings to even his won-loss mark at 2-2. Abel De Los Santos fanned four over two frames to earn his seventh save. Brian Goodwin reached base three times with a walk and two singles and stole a base, one of five on the night by the Senators lineup, which notched 10 hits and four walks total.

Wilmington 7 Potomac 6
• Carpenter 1IP, 1H, R, ER, BB, 0K
• Johansen (BS, 2; L, 1-6) 1⅓ IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 2K, HR
• Norfork 3-4, 3R, 2-2B
• Bautista 2-3, R, SB

It was stoppable force versus a moveable object as the P-Nats were the former and the Blue Rocks were the latter, 7-6. Five pitchers appeared for Potomac, beginning with rehabber David Carpenter, who was nailed for a run in the 1st, and ending with R.C. Orlan letting in one of two inherited runners to tag Jake Johansen with his sixth loss and second blown save. Reed Johnson homered again, smacking a three-run shot in Potomac’s four-run 3rd, while Khayyan Norfork led the regulars with a 3-for-4 night including two doubles and three runs scored.
Roster move: RHP David Carpenter assigned from Washington for MLB rehab.

Hickory 3 Hagerstown 2
• Amlung (L, 3-2) 7IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 3K
• Brinley 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Span 2-2, BB, SB
• Marmolejos-Diaz 1-3, BB

Hickory scored three runs off starter Justin Amlung in the first two innings and held off Hagerstown for a 3-2 win. Amlung recovered to go seven full innings, giving up six hits and a walk while setting down three on strikes but for a losing quality start. Ryan Brinley followed with two scoreless innings, but the offense mustered just six hits and three walks beyond the two hits and two walks provided by rehabs Denard Span and Dan Uggla.

West Virginia 5 Auburn 4
• Rodriguez 5IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 5K
• Johns (L,2-1) 1⅔ IP, 2H, 3R, 0ER, 0BB, 3K
• Robles 0-2, R, SB
• Eusebio 1-3, 2B, RBI

Back-to-back-to-back doubles against the first reliever out of the Black Bears bullpen led to three runs in the top of the 7th and gave the Doubledays a 4-2 lead. An error and a poorly played grounder to the left side put on two runners without the ball leaving the infield to start the bottom of the 7th. A single, a walk, and a double followed as the Auburn bullpen gave those three runs right back for a 5-4 loss. Jefry Rodriguez made the start and pitched five innings of two-run ball, with two hits and two walks allowed and five whiffs. The loss went to Sam Johns on three unearned runs allowed over an inning and 2/3rds. The Doubledays managed just six hits, though four were doubles, and drew no walks while striking out seven times.

Aug 192015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 6-2 @ Pawtucket,
7:05 p.m.
Cole (4-5, 3.69) vs.
Spruill (4-9, 4.29)
Harrisburg Lost, 4-3 @ Akron,
7:05 p.m.
Simms (1-2, 4.07) vs.
Clevinger (8-7, 2.91)
Potomac Won, 5-0;
Won, 4-2
@ Wilmington,
6:35 p.m.
Dickson (2-2, 3.81) vs.
Fernandez (0-3, 8.78)
Hagerstown Won, 9-8 vs. Hickory,
7:05 p.m.
Amlung (3-1, 3.08) vs.
Wiles (10-3, 2.65)
Auburn ALL-STAR BREAK @ West Virginia,
7:05 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD


Syracuse 6 Pawtucket 2
• Bleier (W, 5-1) 7IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, 0BB, 2K
• Martin 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Ramsey 2-4, R, RBI
• Turner 2-5, SB, CS
• Skole 1-4, R, BB, 2RBI

Syracuse scored three in the 3rd and never looked back as they tripled up Pawtucket, 6-2. Richard Bleier got the win, his 13th between AA and AA, as he gave up both PawSox runs on five hits and no walk while striking out two over seven innings. Sammy Solis and Rafael Martin followed with a scoreless inning apiece in relief. Caleb Ramsey and Trea Turner both singled twice, with Turner stealing his 14th base and Ramsey driving in run to lead the Chiefs offense.

Akron 4 Harrisburg 3
• Purke 1⅔ IP, 1H, 2R, 1ER, 4BB, 1K, HBP
• Demny (L, 2-4) 1⅔ IP, 3H, R, ER, BB, 3K
• Corona 3-4
• Ballou 2-4, 2R, HR, RBI

For the 10th time this season, the Senators lost on a walkoff hit as the RubberDucks took the series opener, 4-3. Matt Purke injured himself trying to run over to first on grounder to first and left with two outs in 1st. Dakota Bacus, Nick Lee, and Erik Davis combined for six and a 1/3rd innings of one-run relief. Meanwhile, the Harrisburg offense scored single runs in the 2nd, 5th, and 7th innings to tie the game at 3-3. Paul Demny suffered the loss when he gave up a leadoff single and a two-out RBI double in the 9th. The Sens collected 11 hits and stole five bases but were just 1-for-12 with RISP and hit into three double plays.

Potomac 5 Wilmington 0 — GAME ONE
• Lopez 3IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 5K
• Dupra (W, 2-0) 4IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 4K, HBP
• Bautista 2-4, SB
• R. Johnson 2-3, R, HR, RBI

Two Potomac pitchers combined on a two-hit, 5-0 shutout of Wilmington. Reynaldo Lopez went the first three, giving up a two-out infield hit in the 3rd but walked none and fanned five. Brian Dupra earned the win with the final four innings pitched, one walk, one hit, one hit batsman, and four whiffs. Reed Johnson homered to give the P-Nats an early 1-0 lead while Rafael Bautista went 2-for-4 with a stolen base to lead the regulars.
According to the P-Nats gamer, Lopez tweaked something while fielding the infield hit. He threw some practice pitches and pitched to one more batter. Presumably, he was held back as a precaution.

Potomac 4 Wilmington 2 — GAME TWO
• Mapes (W, 4-2) 6IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 5K
• Self (SV, 1) 1P, 0H, R, ER, BB, K, 2WP
• Keller 2-3
• Norfork 1-3, R, HR, 2RBI

In the nightcap, Khayyan Norfork’s two-run shot in the 4th broke open a 2-1 game as the P-Nats held on for a 4-2 win and swept the doubleheader. Tyler Mapes got the win with six innings pitched, allowing one run on five hits and one walk while striking out five. Derek Self allowed a run in the 7th on a walk, two wild pitches, and an groundout to second to register the save. Alec Keller led the hit column with a 2-for-3 game.

Hagerstown 9 Hickory 8
• Reyes 4IP, 5H, 6R, 3ER, BB, K, HR
• Cooper 3IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Glover (BS, 2; W, 1-1) 2IP, 3H, 2R, 1ER, 0BB, 2K
• Mejia 3-4, R, 3B, 3RBI, SB
• Marmolejos-Diaz 3-5, 2R, 2B
• Page 2-3, 3R, BB, SF, 3RBI

The lead changed hands three times in the last three innings, with Hagerstown walking off as 9-8 winners over Hickory in the 9th. Starter Luis Reyes was knocked for six runs (three earned) on five hits and a walk over four innings. The Suns scored four in the 5th and three in the 7th to take an 8-6 lead, but Koda Glover, with a little “help” from an error by Matthew Page, coughed up two runs in the 8th to tie it at 8-8. Page got his redemption for the error (one of four by Hagerstown) as he drove in the game-winner with a one-out single in the 9th.
Roster moves: OF Denard Span, IF Dan Uggla assigned from Washington for MLB rehab.

Auburn — ALL-STAR BREAK
The North All-Stars struck for three in the 1st and added one in the 5th, after which the South All-Stars responded with two for the game’s eventual 4-2 score. Kelvin Rodriguez came off the bench to play shortstop and went 0-for-1 and made one assist on defense.

Aug 182015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 6-1 @ Pawtucket,
7:05 p.m.
Bleier (4-1, 2.53) vs.
Haviland (4-7, 4.32)
Harrisburg OFF DAY @ Akron,
7:05 p.m.
Purke (1-2, 7.27) vs.
Morimando (9-10, 2.98)
Potomac OFF DAY @ Wilmington,
5:05 p.m.
Lopez (6-7, 4.22) and
Mapes (3-2, 2.60) vs.
Junis (4-9, 3.60) and
Strahm (1-3, 3.21)
Hagerstown Lost, 3-2 (11 inn.) vs. Hickory,
7:05 p.m.
Reyes (5-7, 5.06) vs.
Jurado (11-0, 2.08)
Auburn ALL-STAR BREAK ALL-STAR BREAK N/A


Pawtucket 6 Syracuse 1
• Espino (L, 5-6) 5⅔ IP, 8H, 5R, 5ER, 2BB, 7K, HR
• J. Gutierrez 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Ramsey 2-3, R, BB
• Burriss 2-5, 2B, RBI

Pawtucket broke open a 1-0 game with a four-run 6th to send Syracuse to its third straight loss, 6-1. Paolo Espino was knocked for five runs on eight hits, including a home run over five and 2/3rds innings. He walked two and struck out seven. Caleb Ramsey walked once and singled twice to lead the Chiefs offense, which was limited to six hits and three walks.

Harrisburg — OFF DAY
Turns out if you throw seven one-hit, shutout innings that’ll make you the Eastern League Pitcher of the Week. It’s the third such honor for the 21-y.o. Lucas Giolito, who won the award twice last season with the Hagerstown (June 23-29, July 21-27).

Potomac — OFF DAY
Reynaldo Lopez gave up two hits in his seven-scoreless, 11-K effort last week, but walked none to effectively match Giolito’s outing and was named the Carolina League Pitcher of the Week. It was his second weekly award, as he won the POTW for the week June 23-29 for the New York-Penn League in 2014.
Roster move: OF Denard Span rehab assignment ended.

Hickory 3 Hagerstown 2 (11 inn.)
• Fedde 4⅔ IP, 4H, 0R, BB, 4K
• Napoli (L, 5-4) 3⅔ IP, 3H, R, ER, 2BB, 3K
• Stevenson 3-5, R, 2B, SB
• Page 2-5, R, 2B

Hagerstown’s modest four-game winning streak ended with a 3-2 loss to Hickory in extra innings. Erick Fedde made his second Sally Lg. start, tossing four and 2/3rds scoreless with one walk and four hits allowed and striking out four. The Crawdads pinched Drew Van Orden for two in the top of the 6th but the Suns tied it in the bottom half of the 6th on a double, wild pitch, and RBI groundout. The loss was pinned on David Napoli in his fourth inning of relief. Despite Mario Sanchez stranding three in the top of the 11th, the offense did not get the lift and went in order in the bottom of the 11th.

Auburn — ALL-STAR BREAK
Kelvin Rodriguez is the sole Auburn representative in the 2015 New York-Penn League All-Star game, held tonight at Ripken Stadium in Aberdeen, MD.

Aug 172015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 3-1 @ Pawtucket,
1:05 p.m.
Espino (5-5, 3.43)
Escobar, Ed (0-2, 6.51)
Harrisburg Lost, 7-3 OFF DAY N/A
Potomac Lost, 4-1 OFF DAY N/A
Hagerstown Won, 7-2;
Won, 4-3
vs. Hickory,
7:05 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
Auburn Won, 5-2 ALL-STAR BREAK N/A


Buffalo 3 Syracuse 1
• Billings (L, 7-5) 6IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 3K
• Grace 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• den Dekker 1-3, R, HR, RBI
• Mastroianni 1-4, 2B

Syracuse’s reversion to the mean continued with a second straight loss to Buffalo, 3-1. Bruce Billings turned in a quality start of three runs on six hits and a walk with three strikeouts over six innings and was rewarded with a loss. The offense was limited to just five hits, with Matt den Dekker’s solo HR in the 5th breaking up the Bisons’ shutout bid.

Bowie 7 Harrisburg 3
• Voth (L, 4-6) 5IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 5K
• Bacus 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Corona 1-2, R, BB
• Difo 2-5

Austin Voth pitches well, gets no-decision; bullpen implodes, offense is too little, too late. It was a familiar sequence as Harrisburg lost the rubber game of the series, 7-3. Voth let in two runs over five innings on six hits and two walks while fanning five. The BaySox piled on two in the 8th and three in the 9th to break open a 2-1 game. The Sens managed just six hits, with Wilmer Difo and Reegie Corona the only batters to reach base twice.

Wilmington 4 Potomac 1
• Rauh (L, 2-2) 7IP, 7H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 9K, HR, HBP
• Valdez 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K
• DeBruin 2-4, 2B
• Norfork 2-4, R

Starter Brian Rauh pitched well enough to win, but the offense was out to lunch as the Blue Rocks took the series finale from the P-Nats, 4-1. Rauh gave up three runs on seven hits and two walks but struck out nine over seven innings. The Potomac offense eked out six hits, including a double by Grant DeBruin and an RBI triple by Zach Wright but was 0-for-6 with RISP and left on six.
Roster move: OF Denard Span assigned from Washington for MLB rehab.

Hagerstown 7 Kannapolis 2 — GAME ONE
• Bach (W, 6-3) 5IP, 2H, 2R, 1ER, 2BB, 4K, WP
• Brinley 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Stevenson 2-3, R, BB, SB
• Mayers 2-4, R, RBI
• Marmolejos-Diaz 1-4, R, HR, 5RBI

Highlighted by a grand slam off the bat of “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz, the Suns broke out for six runs in the 6th, and took the opener from the Intimidators, 7-2. The big fly took Connor Bach off the hook for the would-be 2-1 loss and instead gave him his sixth “W” with two runs allowed on two hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out four. Andrew Stevenson paced the Hagerstown attack with two singles, a walk, and a stolen base.

Hagerstown 4 vs. Kannapolis 3 — GAME TWO
• A. Lee 3IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• D. Williams (W, 1-1) 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Marmolejos-Diaz 2-3, 2R
• Mejia 2-3, SB
• Reistetter 2-4, 2RBI

Hagerstown survived a late rally from Kannapolis to take the nightcap, 4-3 and sweep the doubleheader. Andrew Lee got the spot start and was perfect through three before turning the ball over to Deion Williams, who got the win with two scoreless innings. “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz, Bryan Mejia, and Matt Reistetter each collected two singles as the Suns registered eight hits total.

Auburn 5 Batavia 2
• Crownover 5IP, 5H, R, ER, 0BB, 2K
• Boghosian (W, 3-0) 1IP, 1H, 1R, 1ER, 1BB, 0K
• Encarnacion 2-3, R, 2B
• Gutierrez 2-4, R

The Doubledays fell behind 2-1 in the top of the 8th but rallied for four to take the series finale, 5-2. Starter Matthew Crownover gave up a run on five hits but walked none and struck out two for a no-decision. Maximo Valerio followed with two goose eggs in his NYPL debut. Adam Boghosian was credited with the win as the pitcher of record but gave up the go-ahead run in the 8th on a hit and a walk. Luis Torres pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for the save, his second. Rhett Wiseman’s two-run single highlighted Auburn’s four-run 8th. Randy Encarnacion led the offense with single and a double and a run scored.

Aug 162015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 4-0 vs. Buffalo,
1:05 p.m.
Billings (7-4, 4.17) vs.
Redmond (1-4, 4.84)
Harrisburg Lost, 9-1 vs. Bowie,
1:30 p.m.
Voth (4-5, 2.99) vs.
C. Lee (2-0, 3.18)
Potomac Lost, 13-10 vs. Wilmington,
6:05 p.m.
Rauh (2-1, 2.21) vs.
Lovvorn (2-3, 4.02)
Hagerstown Postponed @ Kannapolis,
3:05 p.m.
Bach (5-3, 3.21) and
TBD vs.
Thompson (3-5, 4.59) and
Peralta (4-8, 6.04)
Auburn Won, 9-3;
Lost, 8-5
vs. Batavia,
2:05 p.m.
Crownover (0-4, 5.12) vs.
Lilek (1-2, 3.90)


Buffalo 4 Syracuse 0
• Hill (L, 3-8) 5IP, 4H, R, ER, 2BB, 4K, HBP
• McGregor 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 2K
• den Dekker 2-4, R, 2B, RBI

Syracuse’s ride ended with a 4-0, four-hit shutout by Buffalo. Taylor Hill suffered the loss despite pitching fairly well: one run on four hits, two walks, and four strikeouts over five innings. The Chiefs bats were held to just four hits — two singles by Matt den Dekker and doubles by Emmanuel Burriss and Matt Skole.
Roster move: RHP Taylor Hill activated from 7-Day DL.

Bowie 9 Harrisburg 1
• Bates (L, 4-4) 5IP, 7H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 2K
• Lee 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K, 2-0 IR-S
• Pleffner 2-4, R
• Lozada 1-4, RBI

The BaySox knifed the Senators in the middle innings, breaking a 1-1 tie with a run in the 5th then eviscerating the Sens ‘pen for four in the 6th and three in the 7th en route to a 9-1 win. Colin Bates took the loss with five innings of two-run ball on seven hits and a walk while striking out two. Shawn Pleffner was the sole Harrisburg bat to reach base twice as he went 2-for-4 and scored the lone run on Jose Lozada’s two-out single in the 4th.

Wilmington 13 Potomac 10
• Spann 5⅓ IP, 8H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 5K, 2HR
• Johansen (BS, 1; L, 1-5) 6BF, 4H, 6R, 4ER, BB, 0K, HR, 1-1 IR-S
• Bautista 3-5, 2R, 2B, BB, 2SB
• DeBruin 3-6, 2R, 2B, 3B, 3RBI
• Webb 2-4, 2R, 2-2B, BB, RBI

The Blue Rocks took advantage of sloppy defense and pounced on flat fastballs for seven runs in the 6th as they outslugged the P-Nats, 13-10. Matt Spann swapped spots with Brian Rauh in the announced rotation and looked like he was out of sync, giving up runs in every inning but one over five and a 1/3rd thrown. He was charged with six runs on eight hits and two walks and gave up two homers. The loss went to Jake Johansen, who faced six batters and retired none, giving up four hits (including a HR), a walk and committing multiple misplays, only one of which was deemed an error. Offensively, Rafael Bautista and Grant DeBruin powered the P-Nats attack again with six hits, four runs, three RBI (DeBruin) and two stolen bases (Bautista).

Hagerstown vs. Kannapolis — PPD
Rain postponed last night’s game to a dreaded getaway day doubleheader for both teams.

Auburn 9 Batavia 3 — GAME ONE
• Guilbeau 4IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, K, WP
• Johns (W, 2-0) 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K
• Jefferies 3-3, R, 2-2B, 2RBI, SB
• Eusebio 2-3, 2R, SF, RBI
• Wiseman 2-4, 3RBI

Auburn struck for five in the 1st and cruised to a 9-3 win over Batavia in the opener. Taylor Guilbeau fell one inning short of qualifying for the win, giving up all three Muckdog runs on five hits over four innings. The “W” went to Sam Johns for pitching a scoreless 5th, walking one and striking out one. Jake Jefferies powered the Doubleday attack with a single, two doubles, and two RBI while scoring a run and stealing a base.

Batavia 8 Auburn 5 — GAME TWO
• Borne 4IP, 5H, 5R, 2ER, BB, 3K
• Ramos (L, 0-1) 1IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 0K
• Eusebio 3-3, R, 2B, RBI, SB
• Wiseman 1-3, R, 2B, RBI

The Doubledays twice led the nightcap — 2-0 and 5-3 — but the bullpen couldn’t hold the Muckdogs in an 8-5 loss. Grant Borne went the first four innings and was charged with the first five runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk. He struck out three. David Ramos didn’t blow the save but lost the game with two runs coughed up in the 5th. Diomedes Eusebio paced the Auburn offense with two singles, a double, and a stolen base, going 5-for-6 with three runs scored and two RBI for the twinbill.
Roster move: RHP Maximo Valerio promoted from the GCL Nationals.

GCL Update
Two weeks remain for the last-place G-Nats, who fell to six games back with a 1-5 week and are on a four-game slide. The elimination number is seven. The bump up for Valerio (see above) is encouraging at the individual level, but the usage of pitchers in Hagerstown (see the most recent GBI) gives little confidence that more will follow.

DSL Update
It’s the final week for the DSL and a four-game slide clinched a losing season for the first time since 2011. There’s not much else to write that hasn’t already been written… it’s the youngest set of bats in the DSL and fourth-youngest set of arms; let’s see what happens next year when the organization decides who stays and who goes up or out.

Aug 152015
 

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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 54-67, 4th place I.L. North, 15 games behind

Good Trea Turner .358/.397/.453, 12R, 6SB in August (12G)
Bad 10E in 44G for Turner
Interesting Chiefs 28-18 since Turner promoted to AAA



HARRISBURG SENATORS 57-62, 5th place E.L. West, 10½ games behind

Good Austin Voth – pitched 5IP or more 17 times in 23 appearances, 12 quality starts/td>
Bad RHB Christopher Bostick .176/.230/.294 vs LHPs
Interesting 58 players used, just four have played all season long (Voth, Mendez, Severino, Pleffner)



POTOMAC NATIONALS 22-25, 3rd place C.L. North, 5½ games behind (55-62 overall)

Good Narciso Mesa .333/.326/.400 in August (11G)
Bad Ian Dickson 23BB in 35⅓ IP (5.86/9IP)
Interesting Fewest batting strikeouts in the eight-team Car. Lg.



HAGERSTOWN SUNS 23-24, T4th place Sally North, 9 games behind (58-57 overall)

Good Connor Bach 87K in 89⅔ IP (8.73 K/9IP)
Bad Raudy Read .167/.167/.333 in August (10G)
Interesting 25-y.o. Justin Amlung, 32-y.o. Jeff Howell combined 6GS since July 27



AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 24-27, 4th place Pinckney Division, New York-Penn League, 9½ games behind

Good Max Schrock .311/.370/.422 in 26G
Bad Luis Torres 11BB, 13K in 23⅔ IP (4.18, 4.94 per 9IP)
Interesting Nine pitchers have recorded at least one save (13 in 51G)



GCL NATIONALS 20-27, 4th place GCL East, 5½ games behind

Good .966 FA 4th best in 16-team GCL
Bad 106BB drawn by batters fewest in the the GCL
Interesting 5 passed balls tied for fewest in the GCL



DSL NATIONALS 29-36, 3rd place Boca Chica North, 18 games behind (eliminated)

Good 20-y.o. Jeyner Baez .314 (11-for-35) in last 10G
Bad 17-y.o. Yelmery Sisnero 1-0, 5.79 ERA, 1.79 WHIP
Interesting 17-y.o. Edwin Ventura .286/.366/.382, 11SB, 15BB in 55G


Editor’s note: GBI will skip next week and return on or around August 29

Aug 152015
 

On a warm August night, the sunlight fading like the hopes of playing past Labor Day, the Potomac Nationals put it all together in all three phases of the game for a 4-0 win over the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

Three pitchers combined on the seven-hit shutout, led by starter Austen Williams. The 22-y.o. Texan was perfect through three and allowed three hits total through six innings. He walked one and struck out three to earn his fourth win for Potomac and 12th overall, which for what it’s worth, leads the Nationals minors.

He was followed by Derek Self, who was his usual self in turning in two scoreless but uneven innings with three hits allowed, no walks, and one whiff for the hold, his third for Potomac. Dupra closed out the ballgame in the 9th with one hit allowed and one strikeout.

Offensively, it wasn’t so much the bats as it was the legs of Rafael Bautista. The young Dominican drew a leadoff walk, then stole second and third rather easily, then scored on Grant DeBruin’s two-out single — the first of three RBI for the veteran minor-leaguer.

Two innings later, Bautista singled and stole second. In the 5th, he doubled, stole third (that’s four, if you’ve lost count) and stole home on a flyball to shallow center field, though technically it was sacrifice fly for Alex Keller.

In his final at-bat, he easily beat out a tapper to third but was picked off trying for his official fifth base. Final line: 3-for-3, 2R, 2B, BB, 4SB. In total, the P-Nats rapped out 11 hits, with DeBruin also getting three, and John Wooten going 2-for-4 with a double. They were 4-for-11 with RISP and left on just six.

With the win, Potomac improves to 22-25 in the second half but trails the Lynchburg Hillcats by five and a half games and just three games left between the two teams. Their elimination number stands at 18 with 23 games left to play.

The series continues tonight with a matchup of Brian Rauh (2-1, 2.21) for Potomac vs. Alec Mills (6-6, 2.73) for Wilmington.

Aug 152015
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 8-2 vs. Buffalo,
7:05 p.m.
Hill (3-7, 5.00) vs.
Jenkins (7-3, 2.48)
Harrisburg Won, 2-0 vs. Bowie,
6:00 p.m.
Bates (4-3, 4.07) vs.
Miranda (2-1, 1.66)
Potomac Won, 4-0 vs. Wilmington,
6:35 p.m.
Rauh (2-1, 2.21) vs.
Mills (6-6, 2.73)
Hagerstown Won, 7-2 @ Kannapolis,
7:05 p.m.
Bach (5-3, 3.21) vs.
Thompson (3-5, 4.59)
Auburn Canceled vs. Batavia,
5:05 p.m.
Guilbeau (1-2, 4.67) and
Borne (1-2, 2.51) vs.
TBD and TBD


Syracuse 8 Buffalo 2
• Cole (W, 4-5) 6IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, BB, 2K, HR
• Solis 2IP, 3H, 0R, BB, K
• Mastroianni 3-5, R, RBI
• Skole 2-4, R, 2B, RBI
• Johnson 2-3, 2B, RBI

Syracuse only scored in one inning, but eight runs was more than enough to stampede Buffalo, 8-2, for their 11th straight win. A.J. Cole got the win with both Bisons runs allowed on five hits and a walk over six innings. He struck out two but gave up his ninth HR at AAA. Matt Grace and Sammy Solis combined for three scoreless innings to close out the game. Darin Mastroianni came off the DL and went 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored while Kevin Keyes smacked his sixth HR to drive in three.
Roster move: OF Darin Mastroianni activated from the 7-day DL; RHP Taylor Jordan place on the 7-Day DL, retroactive to August 12 (forearm tenderness).

Harrisburg 2 Bowie 0
• Giolito (W, 1-1) 7IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 11K, HBP, 99-63 P-K
• Harper (H, 7) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Demny (SV, 3) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Goodwin 2-4, RBI
• Severino 1-3, R, 2B

The force was strong with young Luke Giolito as the Nats’ top prospect turned in a career-best outing in a 2-0 win vs. Bowie. Giolito allowed just a second-inning single, walked a batter, and a hit batter over seven shutout innings. He tied his season-high of 11 strikeouts and threw 99 pitches, 63 for strikes while winning his first AA game. Bryan Harper and Paul Demny followed with an inning apiece, both striking out two for a combined one-hit shutout with 15Ks for the Sens. Brian Goodwin went 2-for-4 with an RBI to lead the Harrisburg offense.

Potomac 4 Wilmington 0
• Williams (W, 4-3) 6IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Self 2IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, K, WP
• Bautista 3-3, 2R, 2B, BB, 4SB
• DeBruin 3-4, 3RBI
• Wooten 2-4, 2R, 2B

Pitching and speed made the difference Last Night In Woodbridge.

Roster move: OF Brendan Webb assigned from Washington.

Hagerstown 7 Kannapolis 2
• Howell (W, 1-0) 6IP, 4H, R, ER, 4BB, 0K, WP
• Napoli 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K
• Marmolejos-Diaz 2-5, 2B
• Read 2-4, R, 2-2B, RBI, CS
• W. Rodriguez 2-4, RBI

The Suns lapped the Intimidators six times in the first six innings en route to a 7-2 checkered flag. Jeff Howell earned his first professional win, allowing one run on four hits and four walks but struck out none. Raudy Read doubled twice, scored a run, and drove in a run to lead the nine-hit Hagerstown attack.

Auburn vs. Tri-City — CNCLD
For the second time on this road trip, the Doubledays were washed away and the game won’t be made up. They return home tonight for two against Batavia tonight and one tomorrow before the two-day All-Star break on Monday and Tuesday.