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 182014
 

If Potomac clinches both halves, the proper thing to do is to send a “Thank You” to Carolina.

That’s because the Mudcats lost to the P-Nats for the ninth straight time on Sunday night by a 7-6 score. Combined with yet another loss by the Hillcats, Potomac now leads the Northern Division by three games with two weeks left to go.

By no means of course, has it been easy. All three games this weekend were one-run decisions, which even Harold Reynolds could tell you means that just one break or play that had gone other way could have reversed the outcome.

Early on, it certainly looked like Carolina was about to get some semblance of payback — overall, it’s been 15 of 19 games won by
Potomac — as they jumped on Matt Swynenberg for three runs in the 1st on a single-triple-double-error sequence with two outs.

Following a 1-2-3 bottom of the 1st, the Mudcats loaded the bases in the top of the 2nd with a single and two walks before hitting a long flyball to deep center that Isaac Ballou ran down for the third out.

Potomac went in order again in the 2nd, but got things going in the bottom of the 3rd. IF Khayyan Norfork caught his counterpart at 3B napping with a perfectly placed bunt for the first P-Nat baserunner. Brandon Miller and Pedro Severino both walked to get the bases tipsy.

After a nifty snag of a popup by the Mudcat dugout, Tony Renda steered one into right for a 1-0 score. Carolina got pinch-hitter Estarlin Martinez (no word on why Pleffner was lifted) to strike out, Randolph Oduber got the Homer Simpson RBI with a HBP, then Stephen Perez laced one into right-center for a two-run single and a 4-3 P-Nats lead.

Swynenberg worked through the 4th, retiring the last seven batters for an uneven performance of three runs (two earned) on four hits and two walks. Potomac added one more in the 4th, two more in the 5th to open up a 7-3 lead.

The game seemed in hand when Bryan Harper took the hill in the 9th — following two and 2/3rds scoreless relief from Cody Davis, who got the win — having retired three of four batters faced by way of the K, beginning with a whiff that stranded two in the 7th.

Give credit to the Mudcats, as they loaded the bases with two singles and a walk to chase Harper, then unloaded them against Jake Walsh with a walk and a single before Walsh got his bearings and retired the next three batters for the save, his first at High-A.

It’s their last scheduled off day today before Potomac begins a stretch of 17 games in 14 days — all against the rest of the Northern Division. They’re in the driver’s seat, though, leading Lynchburg by five in the loss column with four games left (this Tuesday through Thursday), Wimington by five with five games left (next Tuesday through Friday), and Frederick by seven with eight games left.

Aug 162014
 

After losing four straight to the resurgent Red Sox, the prospect of a fifth straight loss seemed quite possible as the P-Nats fell behind 5-1 after five and a half innings.

Matthew Spann had started but struggled through four innings, giving up three runs on a 2nd-inning HR and three hits total. He walked three and struck out three. Kylin Turnbull followed but was touched for single runs in the 5th and and 6th innings.

Then came the bottom of the 6th, in which Potomac jumped on the Carolina bullpen for five runs, having been stifled by Joe “I got my Dad’s 1970s haircut” Clevinger for five innings.

Isaac Ballou got things going with a leadoff walk. Tony Renda lined one into right, with Ballou taking third with no hesitation. Shawn Pleffner lifted a high fly to center that Renda judged would not be caught, enabling him to score all the way from first on the double.

A grounder to second pushed the big man to third while Stephen Perez laced one up the middle to plate Pleffner and send Clayton Cook to the bench in favor of Michael Peoples.

The power was not with Peoples but with John Wooten, who clubbed his second homer for the P-Nats to give them a 6-5 lead and atone for his sixth error that let the fourth Mudcat run score in the 5th.

Travis Henke, who’s often called upon when the game’s not on the line, responded to the pressure situation with two scoreless innings in the 7th and 8th, walking one and striking out three to earn his team-leading fifth hold.

Henke gave way to Gilberto Mendez in the 9th. Facing the heart of the Carolina lineup, Mendez mowed ‘em down in order — flyout, strikeout, groundout — to earn his 10th save in 12 chances.

The win, combined with a Lynchburg loss, puts Potomac back up a game in the Carolina League North while Carolina sinks to third place in the C.L. South, a half-game behind Salem which won its sixth straight.

The series continues tonight with Ian Dickson (3-8, 5.16) taking the hill against D.J. Brown (2-6, 4.57).

Aug 152014
 


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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 71-53, 1st place I.L. North, 1 game ahead

Good Brandon Laird .372/.386/.744, 3HR, 14RBI last 10G
Bad 787 pitching K fewest in I.L.
Interesting Six weeks without any news on the health or status on Brian Goodwin



HARRISBURG SENATORS 49-74, 6th place E.L. West, 20½ games behind

Good Tyler Herron 0-0, 2SV, 0.73 WHIP last 10G
Bad 60 of 123 games started by Washington-drafted pitchers
Interesting Bullpen ERA is 2.89 since July 1 (H/T Sens PR staff)



POTOMAC NATIONALS 26-22, 1st place C.L. North, .004 W% ahead (64-53 overall)

Good Randolph Oduber .350/.366/.600, 2HR, 11RBI in last 10G
Bad Travis Henke 7HR allowed in 52⅓ IP
Interesting Tied with Lynchburg for fewest CGs, SHOs (0)



HAGERSTOWN SUNS 35-19, 1st place Sally North, 1 game ahead (79-45 overall)

Good Wander Suero 0-0, 2SV, 1.52 ERA, 0.74 over last 10 appearances for the Suns
Bad David Masters .188 BA last 10G
Interesting 212 Team SBs = Most since becoming Nationals affiliate in 2007



AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 26-32, 5th place Pinckney Division, New York-Penn League, 8 games behind

Good Bryan Mejia .367/.406/.533 in last 10G
Bad James Bourque 1.75WHIP, 5HBP in 28IP
Interesting 384 pitching K = 13th in 14-team NYPL



GCL NATIONALS 25-24, T2nd GCL East, 4 games behind

Good Jean Ramirez 3-0, 1.95 ERA, 1.30 WHIP in 11 appearances
Bad Conor Keniry .035 ISO
Interesting 19-y.o. Thomas Alvarez .407 SLG%



DSL NATIONALS 37-27, 4th place Boca Chica South, 8½ games behind

Good 18-y.o. Israel Mota 8HR (T1st, DSL), 47RBI (4th)
Bad 17-y.o. Malvin Pena 5.84 ERA, 1.66 WHIP in 12 appearances (24⅔ IP)
Interesting Avg. Pitcher Age = 18.4; League Avg. = 18.9
Aug 142014
 

The second of two silent auctions for the Potomac Booster Club is scheduled for this Saturday, August 16th, which is also the same night as the Wolf-A-Rine giveaway (like Jayson Werth, they will go fast) as well as fireworks. Come early, bid often, and help support the folks who help the players during the long season.

Without further ado, here’s a list of the items that will be up for auction:
• Paul Nichols 3×6 Original Drawing Caricature – Jordan Zimmermann
• Paul Nichols 8.5×10 Original Drawing Caricature – Jason Werth
• Paul Nichols 5×6 Original Drawing Caricature – Tyler Clippard
• Paul Nichols 5.88×8 Print Caricature – Steven Strasburg
• Paul Nichols 5.5×8 Print Caricature – Frank Howard
• Doug Fister Autographed Baseball Card – 2013 Topps
• Drew Storen Autographed Card – 4×6
• Danny Espinosa Autographed Card – 4×6
• Adam LaRoche Autographed Cracked Bat
• Adrain Sanchez, Rafael Martin, and Brad Meyers Autographed Harrisburg Senators Logo Baseball
• Randy Knorr Autographed MLB Baseball
• Baltimore Orioles Autographed Arizona Fall League Baseball – Gary Kendall; Alan Mills; Tim Berry; Brandon Kline; Jonathon Schoop; Dariel Aluarez; Henry Urrutia
• Nick Ahmed (Arizona Diamondback Prospect) Autographed MLB Baseball
• Brett Nichols (Texas Rangers Prospect; Fall Stars Game MVP) Autographed Arizona Fall League Baseball
• Richie Mirowski(Fan Voted MiLBY Relief Pitcher of the Year) Autographed MLB Baseball
• Jake Lowrey (Cleveland Prospect; Johnny Bench Award Winner 2011; James Madison) Autographed MLB baseball
• Zach Borenstein (Angels Prospect; California League MVP 2013)
• Original Line-Up Card – 2013 P-Nat 1st Round Playoff Game vs Salem 5 Sept 2013 – Eleven autographs including Michael Taylor
• Doug Fister Autographed Carolina League Baseball
• Kevin Keyes Autographed Cracked Bat
• Eury Perez Autographed Cracked Bat
• Wilmington Team Signed Ball
• Wilmington Team Signed Bat
• Ross Detwiler Autographed MLB Baseball
• Doug Fister Autographed MLB Baseball
• P-Nat Team Signed Bat
• P-Nat Team Signed Helmet
• Bryce Harper Autographed Ball
• Michael Taylor Autographed Carolina League Baseball

Aug 132014
 

rain for npp 3

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 9-3 (5 inn.) vs. Louisville,
7:00 p.m.
McGregor (0-0, 3.00) vs.
Wang (11-7, 3.94)
Harrisburg Postponed vs. Reading,
5:30 p.m.
Kroenke (2-5, 6.56) and TBD vs.
Nola (1-0, 1.80) and TBD
Potomac Postponed vs. Salem,
5:00 p.m.
TBD and TBD vs.
TBD and TBD
Hagerstown Postponed @ Delmarva,
4:35 p.m.
Lopez (2-1, 2.19) and
Swynenberg (1st Low-A start of ’14) vs.
Horacek (5-10, 3.98) and
Delgado (0-2, 3.65)
Auburn Postponed @ Jamestown,
6:05 p.m.
Bourque (1-4, 3.81) and
A. Williams (2-2, 5.61) vs.
Duncan (2-2, 3.45) and
DuRupau (1-2, 2.85)
GCL Nationals Lost, 4-1 vs. GCL Mets,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 4-3 (11 inn.) @ DSL Yankees1,
10:30 a.m.
W. Pena (3-4, 3.04) vs.
Guzman (5-1, 2.02)


Syracuse 9 Charlotte 3
• Laffey (W, 12-4) 5IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 4K, HR
• Perez 2-2, RBI, SB
• Laird 3-4, 3R, 2-2B, HR, 4RBI
• Moore 2-3, 2-2B, 2RBI

Turnabout is fair play as the Chiefs laid a 9-3 hurt in a rain-shortened five innings. Aaron Laffey got the complete-game win with a pedestrian three runs allowed over five innings on five hits and a walk. Brandon Laird doubled twice and got the scoring going with a two-run jack in the 1st, going 3-for-4 with four RBI on night. Syracuse scored in each of the first four innings before the game was called with two outs in the bottom of the 5th.

Harrisburg — Postponed
Rain spoiled the first of three games between Harrisburg and Reading yesterday afternoon, forcing a doubleheader tonight.

Potomac — Postponed
As feared, rain postponed a fourth straight date between the Red Sox and P-Nats, reducing this week’s five-game series to a pair of doubleheaders today and tomorrow.

Hagerstown vs. Delmarva — PPD
The 26th and 27th meeting between Delmarva and Hagerstown will take place tonight, thanks to the Sally League’s god-awful scheduling the rain. Tomorrow, Suns go up the coast to Jersey for Game nos. 20-23 of 27 against the BlueClaws.
In a story that should shock nobody here, the City of Fredericksburg says its **proposed** stadium project is in jeopardy

Auburn vs. Jamestown — PPD
Rain. Bad. No game. Play two today.
– Tarzan, Tonto, and Frankenstein

GCL Mets 4 GCL Nationals 1
• Yrizarri (L, 2-2) 5IP, 4H, 4R, 4ER, 5BB, 0K
• Reynoso 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• G. Ramirez 2-3, R, BB, SB
• Lora 2-4, RBI

The G-Mets put up four in the 3rd and held off the G-Nats for a 4-1 win. Deibi Yrizarri gave up all four runs on four hits and five walks with no strikeouts over five while losing his second game. Three of the free passes came in the 3rd and all three scored. Gilberto Ramirez singled twice, walked once, and scored the lone G-Nat run in the top of the 7th. Edwin Lora and Oliver Ortiz both went 2-for-4 as the G-Nats managed seven hits (all singles) total.

DSL Rockies 4 DSL Nationals 3 (11 inn.)
• Acevedo 5IP, 3H, 1R, 0ER, 0BB, 3K, WP
• Rosario (BS, 2) 3IP, 3H, R, ER, BB, 2K
• Guance (BS, 1; L, 0-1) 2⅔ IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, K
• Rengel 3-6, R, 2B, HR, 3RBI
• A. Martinez 3-5
• Vilorio 3-4, 2-2B, BB, CS

The D-Nats ‘pen couldn’t hold a 3-2, givng up the equalizer in the 9th and the game-winner in the 11th for a 4-3 loss to the D-Rockies. Carlos Acevedo let in an unearned run over five innings of three-hit ball with no walks and three K’s and left with a 2-1 lead. Ramses Rosario allowed the D-Rox to tie it at 2-2 in his first inning of relief as did Hector Guance, who got the blown-save-loss for his efforts. Luis Rengel drove in all three runs including an 8th-inning solo shot that gave the D-Nats a 3-2 lead.

Aug 122014
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 9-3 vs. Louisville,
7:00 p.m.
Laffey (11-4, 3.20) vs.
E. Johnson (5-6, 6.29)
Harrisburg OFF DAY vs. Reading,
7:00 p.m.
Kroenke (2-5, 6.56) vs.
Nola (1-0, 1.80)
Potomac OFF DAY vs. Salem,
5:00 p.m.
TBD and TBD vs.
TBD and TBD
Hagerstown Won, 13-7 @ Delmarva,
7:05 p.m.
Swynenberg (1st Low-A start of ’14)
vs. Horacek (5-10, 3.98)
Auburn Lost, 6-2 @ Jamestown,
7:05 p.m.
Bourque (1-4, 3.81) vs.
Duncan (2-2, 3.45)
GCL Nationals Won, 3-0 (6 inn.) @ GCL Mets,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Won, 3-1 @ DSL Rockies,
10:30 a.m.
Acevedo (3-3, 3.91) vs.
Oviedo (3-2, 2.54)


Charlotte 9 Syracuse 3
• Hill (L, 10-6) 4+ IP, 8H, 7R, 7ER, 2BB, K, 3HBP
• Stange 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K, 3-3 IR-S
• Rhymes 2-4, R, 2B, HR, 3RBI
• Moore 2-4, R

The Knights scored three times in the 5th to break open a 4-3 game and made single-run crusades in the 7th and 9th to complete a 9-3 conquest of the Chiefs. Taylor Hill put on 13 baserunners in the space of 25 batters faced over four-plus innings. Seven of them crossed home plate, including the three he left to Daniel Stange, who was greeted with a two-run single by the “other” Michael Taylor before inducing a double play, which scored the third inherited run. All three Syracuse runs came in the 3rd as Will “Don’t Call Me Buster” Rhymes smacked his fifth home run. Rhymes and Tyler “Boz Thinks I’m Boggs” Moore both went 2-for-4 with a run scored as the Chiefs managed eight hits and three walks total.

Harrisburg — OFF DAY
The elimination number for the Western Division race is down to five for Harrisburg, which hosts Eastern Division cellar-dweller Reading for the next three at City Island. The Fightins now lead the Senators by four and 1/2 games to avoid the tag of the worst record in the Eastern League. Roster move: LHP Felipe Rivero reassigned from Hagerstown.

Potomac — OFF DAY
The rain that washed out this past weekend’s slate between Salem and Potomac has followed them to Woodbridge as thunderstorms are forecast for today. For Potomac, one or more cancellations could actually be to their benefit as it will make it harder for second-place Lynchburg to catch them as well as make it possible to win by less than a game or by percentage points.

Hagerstown 13 Delmarva 7
• Giolito (W, 9-2) 5IP, 2H, 0R, 2BB, 6K, HBP
• Difo 5-6, 2R, 2RBI
• Bautista 3-5, 2R, BB, RBI
• W. Rodriguez 3-5, R, HR, 3RBI
• Lopez 3-6, 2R, HR, 4RBI

Hagerstown got a touchdown on their opening drive, featuring deep completions beyond the secondary by Rafael Bautista and Wilman Rodriguez, and added a pair of field goals for a 13-7 win over Delmarva. Lucas Giolito won his 9th game with five shutout innings, allowing two hits and two walks while striking out six. Wilmer Difo went 5-for-6 to lead the 19-hit parade while Bautista, Rodriguez, and Carlos Lopez, who had a two-run homer in the 6th, had three hits apiece. It’s not all roses as reliever Andrew Cooper was hammered for six runs on seven hits and a walk over an inning and 2/3rds — the third time in a week that the Suns ‘pen was charged with three or more runs. Roster move: RHP Matt Swynenberg reassigned from Auburn.

Vermont 6 Auburn 2
• Ott 5IP, 4H, R, ER, BB, 5K, HR, WP
• Ramos (BS, 2; L, 1-2) 2IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, K
• Williamson 2-3, RBI
• Marmolejos-Diaz 2-4, R, 2B, 3B

The Lake Monsters scored five unanswered runs to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 6-2 win over the Doubledays. Travis Ott gave up a solo shot with two out in the 1st but finished with the one run allowed on four hits. He walked one and struck out five. David Ramos blew yet another save as he was knocked for two runs in the 6th and was charged with the loss. Clay Williamson singled twice while “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz doubled and tripled to lead the Auburn offense. Roster move: RHP John Feliz reassigned from the GCL Nationals.

GCL Nationals 3 GCL Mets 0 (6 inn.)
• K. Simmons 2IP, 2H, 0R, 2BB, 2K
• Vasquez (W, 1-2) 3IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K, HBP, WP
• Valerio (S, 2) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Ortiz 1-2, R, HR, 3RBI
• Lora 1-2, BB

Oliver Ortiz’s three-run homer in the last of the 5th was the difference in a 3-0 G-Nats win over the G-Mets in six innings (rain). Kyle Simmons got the start and went two scoreless innings with two hits and two walks with… wait for it… two strikeouts. Daury Vasquez got the win with three shutout frames while Maximo Valerio was awarded the save for recording a goose egg in the 6th. The G-Nats totaled just four hits and one walk with Edwin Lora the sole batter to record one of each.

DSL Nationals 3 DSL Rockies 1
• M. Pena (W, 1-1) 5IP, 3H, R, ER, 0BB, 3K
• Morel (H, 3) 2IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Mota 2-4, 2B
• A. Martinez 2-4, R, 3B

The D-Nats stopped a two-game slide with a 3-1 win over the D-Rockies. Malvin Pena, who took Joan Baez’s place in the rotation, earned his first “W” with five frames of one-run ball, giving up three hits, no walks, and setting down three on strikes. Angher Cespedes completed four innings of shutdown relief that earned holds for Melvin Morel (#3) and Miguel Vargas (#1) as he set ‘em down in order in the 9th for the save (#8). The trio of Israel Mota, Anderson Franco, and Andres Martinez combined to go 5-for-12 with double (Mota), triple (Martinez) and home run (Franco) as the D-Nats registered eight hits for the game.

Aug 112014
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 5-1 vs. Charlotte,
7:00 p.m.
Hill (10-5, 2.52) vs.
Doran (3-1, 6.55)
Harrisburg Lost, 3-0 OFF DAY N/A
Potomac Postponed OFF DAY N/A
Hagerstown Won, 5-3 @ Delmarva,
7:05 p.m.
Giolito (8-2, 2.35) vs.
Gonzalez (6-1, 2.84)
Auburn Won, 10-2 vs. Vermont,
7:05 p.m.
Ott (1-2, 3.20) vs.
Cr. Perez (1-2, 4.28)
GCL Nationals OFF DAY vs. GCL Mets,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 8-5 vs. DSL Rockies,
10:30 a.m.
M. Pena (0-1, 6.86) vs.
Viloria (0-2, 3.94)


Syracuse 5 Louisville 1
• Cole (W, 4-0) 7IP, 9H, R, ER, BB, 3K, HBP
• Cedeno 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Kobernus 3-5, R, 2B, RBI, SB
• Burriss 2-4, R, 2RBI, BB, SB(20)
• Rhymes 2-4, R, RBI

A.J. Cole improved to 4-0 with seven strong innings versus Louisville as Syracuse took the game 5-1, the series 3-1, and held onto sole possession of first place by a game over Pawtucket. Cole scattered nine hits and walked one while striking out three. The defense turned two double plays for him while Eury Perez gunned down a runner trying to stretch a single into a double. Emmanuel Burris and Jeff Kobernus both reached base three times and swiped a bag to lead the 11-hit, five-walk attack for the Chiefs.

Binghamton 3 Harrisburg 0
• Simmons (L, 2-3) 6IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, BB, 8K
• Holland 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Keyes 1-3, 2B, BB
• Latimore 1-4, OF assist at 2B

Another quality start, but another feeble offensive effort doomed the Senators as they dropped the series finale to the B-Mets, 3-0. James Simmons gave up all three runs on six hits and a walk while striking out a season-high of eight. The Harrisburg bullpen clamped down Binghamton for another three scoreless innings — nine and 2/3rds total for the series — but for the second straight game the lineup produced just four hits and drew but two bases-on-balls as they were shut out for the seventh time this season.

Potomac vs. Salem — PPD
Well, there will be a doubleheader on Wednesday. And Tuesday, too, as the entire weekend series between Potomac and Salem was rained out. That’ll make up two of the three games lost, which affects both C.L. playoff races as the Red Sox are still in wild-card contention, having gotten some help from a Hillcats sweep of the Dash over the weekend to knock Winston-Salem back to third place in the Southern Division’s overall standings. Lynchburg also made up a game and a half on Potomac, though they still trail in the loss column by five. Meanwhile, Myrtle Beach continues to win — seven straight — and has opened up a five-game lead in their quest to take both halves.

Hagerstown 5 Kannapolis 3
• Suero 5IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 6K, HR
• Ullmann (W, 4-1) 2IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, K
• Napoli (SV, 4) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• W. Rodriguez 2-3, R, BB, RBI, SB
• Mesa 2-4, 2B, SB
• Lopez 2-4

Hagerstown completed its four-game sweep of Kannapolis with a 5-3 win. The Suns fell behind 2-1 after four and a half, but posted a picket fence with single runs in their last four “ups” to pull away. Wander Suero started and had a shutout going until Toby Thomas took him deep for a two-run HR with one out in the 5th. Ryan Ullmann got the win in relief while David Napoli earned the save, the fourth for both, respectively. Wilman Rodriguez singled twice, scored a run, drove in a run, walked and stole a base to lead the 11-hit attack for the Suns.

Auburn 10 Vermont 2
• A. Martinez (W, 1-1) 6IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 2K, HR
• McDowell 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 1K
• Abreu 4-4, 3R, HR, 3RBI, 2SB
• Read 1-4, R, HR, 4RBI

Raudy Read baked the offensive cake with a three-run HR in the 3rd while Osvaldo Abreu frosted it in the 7th with a solo shot as Auburn pummeled Vermont, 10-2. Anderson Martinez evened up his won-loss mark at 1-1 with both Lake Monster runs given up on five hits and no walks while setting down two on strikes. The Doubldays totaled 11 hits with Abreu leading the way with a 4-for-4 game with three runs scored and two stolen bases.

GCL Nationals — OFF DAY
The G-Nats continue to play .500 ball with yet another 3-3 week. They’ll host the G-Mets today and Wednesday with a trip to Port St. Lucie tomorrow, then go home-away-home on Thursday through Saturday against the G-Cards.

DSL Nationals — OFF DAY
Two weeks remain in the season but the tragic number is now in single digits for both the division title and the wild-card chase. After reeling off eight straight, the D-Nats are on a two-game slide but need just five wins to surpass last season’s total of 38.

Aug 102014
 

No, I Said The White PhoneLike his teammate Taylor Hill, his stay on the big Nats may be brief, but for today Michael Taylor will be a major-leaguer as multiple outlets are reporting that the 23-y.o. outfielder will join the big club in Atlanta.

Taylor will be replacing either Jayson Werth or Steve Souza, who was called up last week to replace outmak..er, fielder Nate McLouth, as both rightfielders are battling injuries

Taylor is in the midst of a breakout season, which began in Harrisburg where he batted .313/.396/.539 with 22HR and 34SB in 98 games, which earned him a trip to the Eastern League All-Star game and the 2014 Futures game.

He’s barely skipped a beat in Syracuse going 5-for-13 with three doubles and a triple with two RBI, albeit in four games.

Corresponding moves have obviously not yet been made, and in a season with more movement than after a bad buffet, it’s pointless to guess. As always, if/when those moves are made today, this space will be updated.

UPDATE: Steven Souza is going to the DL. Thus far, there’s just one corresponding move: UT Jose Lozada has been reassigned from Harrisburg. The P-Nats, who were rained out for the entire weekend, and the Senators both have Monday off — so it’s unlikely that any more moves will be made (or announced) until Tuesday.

Aug 092014
 


Rosters for the 2014 New York-Penn League All-Star team were announced this week and will include two Auburn Doubledays — Jose “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz and Mario Sanchez.

Diaz was selected as a first baseman and has posted a line of .266/.344/.373 with one home run and 24RBI in 47 games. He’s a 21-y.o. from the Dominican Republic in his fourth professional season, having spent last year in the GCL and his first two seasons in the DSL.

Sanchez is a 19-y.o. Venezuelan who skipped the GCL after spending the 2012 and 2013 campaigns in the D.R. This season, his third, he’s 5-0 with three saves in 13 relief appearances. Over 28⅓ innings he’s allowed 12 runs (eight earned) on 22 hits (one HR) with eight walks and 22 strikeouts for a 2.54/3.38/1.06 line.

Brooklyn is the host of the 10th annual exhibition, which will pit players from the American League against players from the National League on Tuesday, August 19th.

Aug 082014
 

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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 66-51, 1st place I.L. North, 2 games ahead

Good Manny Delcarmen 0-1, 1.26 ERA, 0.63 WHIP in last 10 appearances
Bad Josh Johnson .043 ISO
Interesting 803 batting K 3rd fewest in 14-team I.L.



HARRISBURG SENATORS 47-70, 6th place E.L. West, 18½ games behind

Good Quincy Latimore .323/.462/.742 4HR, 11RBI in last 10G
Bad Current pitchers with a sub-3.00 ERA: 1 (Derek Self, 2.67)
Interesting Paolo Espino 10HBP, 1.97 BB/9IP, 4.3 K:BB ratio



POTOMAC NATIONALS 26-18, 1st place C.L. North, 4 games ahead (64-49 overall)

Good Ian Dickson 1-0, 2.76 ERA since return to rotation (3GS)
Bad Khayyan Norfork .188/.257.250 in last 10G
Interesting Lead league with intentional walks drawn (12)



HAGERSTOWN SUNS 29-18, T1st place Sally North, 2 games ahead (73-44 overall)

Good Wilmer Difo .454 SLG%, 40SB, 32-game on-base streak
Bad Wirkin Estevez 0-2, 9.18 ERA, 1.98 WHIP in five Low-A starts
Interesting 0-for-6 in pinch-hitting



AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 24-28, 2nd place Pinckney Division, New York-Penn League, 8½ games behind

Good Mario Sanchez 4-0, 3SV, 2.49 ER, 1.07 WHIP in 12 appearances
Bad Chris Riopedre .447 OPS in 14G
Interesting .964 Fld. Pct. 11th in 14-team NYPL



GCL NATIONALS 22-21, 3rd place GCL East, 5½ games behind

Good Jorge Tillero .316/.381/.368 in 23G
Bad Daury Vasquez 0-2, 9.22 ERA, 2.27 WHIP in eight appearances
Interesting 2nd fewest passed balls (7), 2nd worst CS% (24) in the GCL



DSL NATIONALS 34-24, 3rd place Boca Chica South, 6½ games behind

Good 18-y.o. Wilber Pena 2-0, 1.62 ERA, 0.96 WHIP in last three GS
Bad 19-y.o. Sandy Guerrero .167/.300/.292 in last 10G
Interesting Team batting 6th in 36-team DSL (6.34 R/G)