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 282012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 6-2 @ Charlotte,
7:15 p.m.
Duke (14-5, 3.52) vs.
Leesman (12-9, 2.46)
Harrisburg Lost, 8-6 @ Richmond,
7:05 p.m.
Holder (3-3, 4.46) vs.
Heston (9-6, 2.12)
Potomac OFF DAY @ Carolina,
7:15 p.m.
Grace (8-12, 5.30) vs.
Jimenez (8-8, 5.19)
Hagerstown OFF DAY @ Greensboro,
7:00 p.m.
Estevez (5-1, 5.79) vs.
Hodges (8-8, 3.60)
Auburn Won, 12-1 @ State College,
7:05 p.m.
Lee (1-1, 3.83) vs.
Rodriguez (3-2, 3.32)

Charlotte 6 Syracuse 2
• Roark (L, 6-17) 6IP, 10H, 5R, 2ER, 0BB, 5K
• Severino 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Leon 1-3, R, 2B, BB, RBI
• Marrero 1-3, R, BB

A three-run 3rd would prove to be enough as the Knights inflicted more than a flesh wound on the Chiefs, winning the game 6-2 and eliminating Syracuse from the I.L. playoffs. Starter Tanner Roark surrendered 10 hits for five runs (two earned) over six innings to lose his 17th game. He walked none and struck out five. Chris Marrero and Sandy Leon both went 1-for-3 with a walk while Eury Perez extended his hit streak to 15 with a bunt single in the 3rd.

Richmond 8 Harrisburg 6
• Wang 5IP, 9H, 6R, 6ER, BB, 3K, HR
• Demny (L, 6-8) ⅔IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 2K
• Nicol 2-3, R, RBI
• Solano 2-4, R, RBI

After overcoming a five-run deficit courtesy of Chien-Ming Wang to take a 6-5 lead, the Harrisburg offense ground to a halt in the late innings and fell to Richmond, 8-6. Facing the worst offense in the Eastern League, Wang was hammered for six runs on nine hits and a walk over five innings and struck out three. He also gave up his fifth HR in eight starts with the Senators. Sean Nicol, who replaced Seth Bynum on defense during the middle of an at-bat in the 3rd inning, led the Senators offense with a 2-for-3 game, followed closely by Jhonatan Solano’s 2-for-4 effort. No explanation was given for Bynum’s replacement, according to Patriot-News beat writer Geoff Morrow.

POTOMAC NATIONALS — OFF DAY
With Wilmington’s win in the sole game in the Carolina League on Monday night, the tragic number for Potomac fell to four with seven games to play in the states of North Carolina and Delaware, where the P-Nats are a “perfect” 0-for-23 this season. The P-Nats trail the Blue Rocks by three games, the Keys by two games, and the Hillcats by a ½ game. Despite playing Wilmington in the final three games, Potomac does not control its own destiny, as Lynchburg can still win the second half title in addition to needing to surpass both Frederick and Wilmington in the standings if that happens. Also, with cancellations for both the Keys and P-Nats last Sunday, it’s possible for those two teams to tie atop the Carolina League North and finish a ½ game ahead of the Hillcats and Blue Rocks. Should that happen, there will be a one-game play-in game with Frederick hosting Potomac. Roster moves: RHP Alex Meyer placed on 7-Day DL, RHP Shane McCatty activated from 7-Day DL.

HAGERSTOWN SUNS — OFF DAY
Unlike Potomac or Auburn, Hagerstown is more comfortably positioned to make the playoffs with a four-game lead in loss column and a three-game lead in the Sally League’s Northern Division. The three top teams each have seven games left, but the two cancellations the Suns have had in August positions them to possibly win on percentage points with 68 maximum games in the second half to 70 for the Crawdads and Power.

Auburn 12 State College 1
• Encarnacion (W, 5-1) 6IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 4K
• McGeary 2IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 3K
• Pleffner 3-5, 2R, BB, HR, RBI
• Lopez 3-4, R, 3RBI, E(13)

A seven-run top of the 1st made the outcome of this one a no-doubter as Auburn blasted State College, 12-1. Pedro Encarnacion won his fifth game with just two hits and a walk given up over six innings. The Doubledays pounded out 16 hits with every batter hitting safely and five collecting multiple hits, with Shawn Pleffner and Carlos Lopez both collecting three hits. Batavia was rained out, thus the Auburn lead is 2½ games and the magic number to win the division is down to eight.

Aug 272012
 

Caleb Ramsey has been named the South Atlantic League’s Batter of the Week for the week of August 20 to 26, the second Nationals farmhand to be honored this week.

Ramsey batted safely in five of six games during the week, collecting 10 hits and five extra-base hits, with a pair of doubles, a trio of triples and 10 RBI while scoring five runs and drawing two walks.

He’s the second Sun to earn the Sally League’s Batter of the Week honors, following Steve Souza Jr. (July 2-8). Alex Meyer earned Pitcher of the Week honors for the week of June 11-17.

The 2011 eleventh-round pick out of the University of Houston is batting .324/.407/.465 for the month of August and has played in 120 of the Suns 130 games thus far.

Aug 272012
 

John LannanJohn Lannan became the latest Syracuse pitcher to win the International League Pitcher of the Week award for the period of August 20-26, following Zach Duke (Aug. 6-12) and Tanner Roark (Jul. 23-29), on the strength of his three-hit shutout against Gwinnett on Saturday.

Lannan needed just 87 pitches to cut the gem, throwing 60 for strikes and facing just 29 batters while walking one and striking out two in the 1-0 contest. Presumably, he was a in a better mood afterwards than in the picture above.

Lannan is a 2005 11th-round draft pick out of Siena College who vaulted from High-A Potomac to DC in 2007 with a 12-3, 2.31 ERA performance in the minors and a 2-2, 4.15 mark in the majors. He’s expected to return to the Washington rotation soon, having won both spot starts in July and August.

Lannan is the fourth Syracuse Chief to win the I.L.’s weekly honors, with Corey Brown winning Batter of the Week for May 21-27.

Aug 272012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 7-0 @ Charlotte,
7:15 p.m.
Roark (6-16, 4.57) vs.
Axelrod (7-5, 2.88)
Harrisburg Postponed @ Richmond,
7:05 p.m.
Wang (1-4, 5.17) vs.
Westcott (11-10, 4.03)
Potomac Lost, 10-7 OFF DAY N/A
Hagerstown Cancelled OFF DAY N/A
Auburn Won, 4-0 @ State College,
7:05 p.m.
Encarnacion (4-1, 4.28) vs.
Creasy (0-4, 4.99)

Syracuse 7 Gwinnett 0
• Mandel (W, 5-5) 9IP, 6H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Leon 3-4, 2-2B, BB, RBI
• Rivero 3-5, R, 2RBI
• Johnson 2-4, 2R, BB, SB

Jeff Mandel followed the lead of John Lannan and spun a six-hit shutout on Sunday night, but had much more margin for error as the score was 7-0 Syracuse over Gwinnett. Mandel walked none and struck out four, throwing 102 pitches and 69 for strikes for his fifth AAA win. Sandy Leon went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles, a walk and an RBI to lead the Chiefs offense, which pounded out 12 hits and drew five walks. Carlos Rivero was close behind a 3-for-5 effort and drove in two. Eury Perez tripled to extend his hit streak to 14 games.

Bowie vs. Harrisburg — PPD
Rain postponed the finale of the four-game series turning it into a three-game sweep for the Baysox. The Senators head down the road to Richmond for four games before returning to Harrisburg for what will now be a five-game series, with this game being made up as part of a doubleheader on Saturday.

Frederick 10 Potomac 7
• Ray (L, 4-12) 3⅓ IP, 4H, 5R, 5ER, 4BB, 4K, 2HR
• Olbrychowski 3IP, 4H, 0R, 2BB, 3K, 1-0 IR-S
• Skole 2-4, 2B, BB, 2RBI
• Kelso 2-5, R, 2RBI
• Keyes 2-4, 2R, 2B, BB

One winning streak was stopped while another losing streak was extended as the P-Nats fell to the Keys, 10-7. The loss snapped a five-game run for Potomac but continued starter Robbie Ray’s August swirl with his fifth loss in as many starts. The 20-year-old southpaw gave up a pair of home runs, including a three-run blast in the first and five runs total on four hits and four walks over three and a 1/3rd innings. The nos. 2, 3, 4 batters Blake Kelso, Matt Skole, and Kevin Keyes combined for six hits, three runs, two doubles, two walks and four RBI as Potomac pounded out 10 hits and drew six walks (three by Steve Souza). The loss lowered the P-Nats’ tragic number to five with seven games to play, including three against the current first-place Wilmington, which split a doubleheader with Lynchburg and leads Potomac by 2½, Lynchburg by two, and Frederick by a ½ game in the somebody-has-to-win-this (right?) Carolina League’s Northern Division.

Hagerstown vs. Delmarva — CANCELLED
Hagerstown was leading 1-0 in the top of the 3rd when the rains came, forcing the final meeting between these two teams to be cancelled. This is the second cancellation in the second half, setting up the possibility of a division title on percentage points, though the Suns still lead the division by three games and have a magic number of six with seven games left to play. Today is a scheduled off day with Hagerstown making its final regular-season road trip to Greensboro for a three-game series starting tomorrow.

Auburn 4 Mahoning Valley 0
• Mooneyham (W, 2-2) 6IP, 1H, 0R, 2BB, 3K
• Boyden 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Henke 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Manuel 2-3, BB, RBI
• McQuillan 2-4, R

Auburn closed out the regular-season home schedule with badly needed 4-0 shutout of Mahoning Valley. Starter Brett Mooneyham went the first six frames, allowing just a hit and two walks and striking out three to get the victory, his second for the Doubledays. Michael Boyden and Travis Henke combined for three innings of scoreless relief, each allowing a hit and striking out two. Craig Manuel reached base three times with two singles and a walk to lead the 10-hit Auburn attack. The win kept pace with second-place Batavia to maintain the Pinckney Division lead of two games and lower the magic number to clinch to nine with 10 to play. Next up: a three-game series against third-place State College.

Aug 262012
 

It wasn’t pretty, but it counts just the same.

Potomac scored three times in the rain with two outs in the bottom of the sixth before the umpires ordered the tarp drawn. Forty-seven minutes later they called it to give Potomac its fifth straight win, 3-0.

The rally began with a leadoff walk to Matt Skole, and after a Kevin Keyes strikeout and a Steve Souza Jr. flyout, it looked like yet another runner would be stranded. With the wind blowing in, Jason Martinson launched a drive to center that Frederick centerfielder Glynn Davis couldn’t hold onto, plating Skole with a triple. A wild pitch sent in the second run, sailed shot that banged off the backstop like Wednesday night. Jeff Howell homered to center to finish the binge.

Matt Swynenberg got the win despite putting a baserunner (or two or three) on in every inning, issuing four walks and giving up five hits. The secret to stranding eight Frederick runners was two, um, key double plays that ended the first and fourth innings — the latter started Swynenberg himself for a 1-6-3 mark in the scorebook. Ten of the 18 outs he recorded came on grounders as the 23-year-old won his sixth game and was credited with his second complete game.

With Wilmington idle, Potomac crept to within two games of first place and can tie Frederick for second place with a win tonight. Robbie Ray (4-11, 4.52) is scheduled to pitch against Tim Berry (4-5, 4.52)

Aug 262012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 1-0 @ Gwinnett,
5:05 p.m.
Mandel (4-5, 3.06) vs.
Batista (1-1, 3.38)
Harrisburg Lost, 5-4 @ Bowie,
2:00 p.m.
Wang (1-4, 5.17) vs.
D. Bundy (1-0, 3.18)
Potomac Won, 3-0
(6 inn.)
vs. Frederick,
6:05 p.m.
Ray (4-11, 6.57) vs.
Berry (4-5, 4.52)
Hagerstown Won, 3-1;
Won, 6-5
vs. Delmarva,
1:05 p.m.
Schwartz (1-1, 3.34) vs.
Davies (5-6, 3.76)
Auburn Lost, 7-3
(11 inn.)
vs. Mahoning Valley,
6:05 p.m.
Mooneyham (1-2, 3.26) vs.
Morel (2-4, 4.46)
GCL Nationals Lost, 5-2 END OF SEASON N/A

Syracuse 1 Gwinnett 0
• Lannan (W, 8-11) 9IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Perez 1-4 (13G hit streak)
• Negrych 1-4
• Valdez 1-4
• Walters 0-2, R, BB

John Lannan threw a three-hit shutout as the Chiefs offense got the minimum for a 1-0 win. Lannan walked just one and struck out two and needed just 87 pitched to toss the comeplete game. Eury Perez, Jim Negrych and Jesus Valdez each singled, but the lone run came in the third without a base hit or an RBI. Zach Walters walked, took second when Jarrett Hoffpauir was hit by a pitch, advanced to third on a botched sacrifice and scored when Perez hit into a double play.

Bowie 5 Harrisburg 4
• Broderick (ND) 5⅔ IP, 9H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 4K
• Zinicola (BS, 1; L, 1-2) 1IP, 3H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 2K, 2-1 IR-S
• Bloxom 3-4, 2B, 3B, 3RBI
• Goodwin 2-5, 2R, 2B, HR, RBI, CS

The Senators couldn’t stand the prosperity of a 4-0 lead and let the last five runs go unanswered for their third straight loss, 5-4. The “L” also officially eliminated Harrisburg from the playoffs to end a two-year run. Zech Zinicola let in the tying run in the 8th and gave up the winning run in the 8th for the blown-save-loss, allowing three hits and two walks while recording three outs. Justin Bloxom was a home run short of the cycle and drove in three of the four Senator runs. The fourth came in on Brian Goodwin’s 5th home run for Harrisburg, 14th overall.

Potomac 3 Frederick 0 (6 inn.)
• Swynenberg 6IP, 5H, 0R, 4BB, 2K
• Howell 2-3, R, HR, RBI
• Martinson 1-3, R, 3B, RBI
• Hague 1-3, SB(20)

Potomac scored three times in the rain Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 3 Delmarva 1 — GAME ONE
• Rauh (W, 3-2) 6+IP, 3H, R, ER, 2BB, 6K
• Mirowski (SV, 2) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K, 1-1 IR-S
• Dykstra 2-3, 2B, RBI
• Leonida 1-2, 2RBI

The Suns took an early 3-0 lead and held off the Shorebirds late for a 3-1 win in the opener. Brian Rauh pitched into the seventh but was lifted after a leadoff walk. Richie Mirowski was greeted with a double to send the runner to 3rd but got the next three outs to preserve the win. Cutter Dykstra (2-for-3) and Cole Leonida (1-for-2) combined for three hits and three RBI.

Hagerstown 6 Delmarva 5 — GAME TWO
• Anderson 4IP, 3H, R, ER, BB, 3K
• Meza (W, 8-1) 2IP, 5H, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 3K, HR
• Bates (SV, 6) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Burns 3-3, 2R, BB, RBI
• Higley 1-2, R, HR, BB, RBI
• Norfork 0-1, R, 3BB

Hagerstown scored three in the 5th only to see Delmarva respond with four in the 6th, but answered back with the gamewinner in the last of the 6th for a 5-4 win and a doubleheader sweep. Christian Meza got the benefit of the Suns’ rally for his 8th win. Colin Bates pitched a 1-2-3 seventh for his sixth save. Billy Burns led the Hagerstown offense with a 3-for-3 game with two runs scored. The victories, the fourth and fifth straight, also opened up the Suns lead over second-place Hickory and West Virginia to 3½ games and lowered the magic number to clinch the Sally North to six with eight games to play.

Mahoning Valley 7 Auburn 3
• Fischer 5IP, 3H, 3R, 2ER, 4BB, 6K
• Mendez (L, 0-1) ⅓ IP, 1H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 0K
• Wall ⅔ IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 0K, 2-2 IR-S
• Renda 4-6, R, RBI
• Miller 2-6, R, RBI

The Auburn Citizen’s Ben Meyers has the story on the 11th-inning meltdown, including an Butch Hobson-like ejection of manager Gary Cathcart. The 7-3 loss drops Auburn’s lead over second-place Batavia to two games. The Doubledays and Muckdogs play next Sunday and Monday as part of Auburn’s 10-game roadtrip to end the season.

GCL Astros 5 GCL Nationals 2
• Mieses (L, 1-5) 5IP, 7H, 4R, 2ER, 0BB, 3K
• Lucas 3IP, 4H, R, ER, BB, 2K
• Difo 1-4, R
• Severino 1-4, R

The GCL Nationals finished the 2012 season with a 5-2 loss to the GCL Astros. Adalberto Mieses started and gave up four runs (two earned) on seven hits with no walks and three strikeouts over five innings, but notched his fifth “L.” Bobby Lucas finished the game with a run on four hits and a walk over the final three innings. The offense was held to just five hits and one walk, with both runs scoring by virtue of an error. The G-Nats’ final record of 27-33 was eight games off the pace and last in the GCL East.

Aug 252012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 6-0 @ Gwinnett,
7:05 p.m.
Lannan (7-11, 4.89) vs.
Teheran (7-7, 5.48)
Harrisburg Lost, 6-3 @ Bowie,
6:35 p.m.
Broderick (2-0, 4.08) vs.
Bascom (6-6, 4.28)
Potomac Won, 6-4 vs. Frederick,
6:35 p.m.
Swynenberg (5-5, 5.49) vs.
Jones (6-0, 2.30)
Hagerstown Postponed vs. Delmarva,
6:05 p.m.
Rauh (2-2, 4.40) and
Anderson (0-1, 27.00) vs.
Chalas (9-7, 5.07) and
Louico (0-6, 5.92)
Auburn Lost, 3-2 vs. Mahoning Valley,
7:05 p.m.
Fischer (3-3, 4.50)
Merritt (3-4, 4.09)
GCL Nationals Won, 6-3;
Won, 2-1
@ GCL Astros,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Cancelled END OF SEASON N/A

Gwinnett 6 Syracuse 0
• Maya (L, 11-9) 3IP, 8H, 5R, 4ER, BB, 2K
• Atkins 3IP, 3H, 1R, 0ER, 2BB, K
• Lehman 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Walters 3-4, 2B
• Perez 2-5

Gwinnett scored in each of the first four innings and cruised to 6-0 shutout of Syracuse. Yunesky Maya kept the ball in the yard for just the second time this month but was touched for five runs on eight hits and a walk over just three innings. Mitch Atkins and Pat Lehman combined for five innings of one-run (unearned) relief. The Chiefs offense stalled with just seven hits, five by Eury Perez and Zach Walters, and was a woeful 0-for-7 with RISP and left 10 runners on base.

Bowie 6 Harrisburg 3
• Rosenbaum (L, 8-10) 5⅔ IP, 7H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 4K, HR
• Pucetas 2⅓ IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 0K, 1-0 IR-S
• Hood 2-3, R, BB
• Rendon 1-3, R, 2B, BB
• Solano 1-3, 2RBI

Danny Rosenbaum’s woes returned with a five-run 6th inning that busted open a 1-1 game as Harrisburg fell to Bowie, 6-3. Rosenbaum was charged with all six runs on seven hits and two walks over five and 2/3rds innings. Destin Hood singled twice and and walked once to lead the Senators on offense. The loss lowered the tragic number for playoff contention to one with 11 games left to play.

Potomac 6 Frederick 4
• Gilliam (W, 1-1) 7⅔ IP, 6H, R, ER, BB, 8K
• Testa ⅓+ IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 0K
• Wort (SV, 11) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K, 3-2 IR-S
• Skole 3-5, R, 2B, RBI
• Souza 2-5, R, HR, 2RBI

Sorry, no LNIW. Took the new copyeditor to the Bark in the Park

Potomac posted a picket fence for six straight innings and survived a ninth-inning scare to take Game One of this pivotal series with Frederick, 6-4. Joe Testa, who was brought on with two outs in the 8th to escape a minor threat, created a big one by loading the bases with a hit and two walks. Rob Wort came on for the second night in a row and let in two before getting a double-play ball and a strikeout for his 11th save. Starter Rob Gilliam showed his AA experience with seven and 2/3rds innings of one-run ball, giving up six hits, one walk and striking out eight for the win. Potomac pounded out 14 hits, with Matt Skole leading the charge with a 3-for-5 night and Steve Souza Jr. homering again and driving in two. The win shaves the gap to 2½ games, with Wilmington assuming first place ahead of Frederick in the Carolina League North.

Hagerstown vs. Delmarva — PPD
An afternoon downpour rendered the field at Municipal Stadium unplayable, forcing a postponement and creating a doubleheader tonight.

Mahoning Valley 3 Auburn 2
• Monar 4IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 5K
• Hudgins 4IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Waterman (L, 2-1) 1IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, K
• Manuel 3-3
• Renda 2-3, R, BB
• Miller 2-4, 2B

A two-out double in the 9th drove in the deciding run as Mahoning Valley edged Auburn, 3-2. It might have been worse had Wander Ramos not thrown out the runner at the plate on the single that followed, but the Doubledays couldn’t rally in the last of the 9th, the game ending on a line-out double play at first base. Blake Monar got the start, giving up two runs over four innings on six hits and three walks while striking out five. Will Hudgins made his NYPL debut with four scoreless innings of relief. Elliot Waterman took the loss with the run given up in the 9th on two hits and a leadoff walk. Craig Manuel led the eight-hit attack with three singles in three at-bats. Second-place Batavia also lost, keeping Auburn’s lead at three games and lowering the magic number for the division title to 10.

GCL Nationals 6 GCL Astros 3 — GAME ONE
• Vasquez (W, 4-6) 7IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 6BB, 2K, HR
• Heredia (SV, 2) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Foat 3-4, 2RBI
• Lippincott 2-4, 2B, 3RBI

Picking where they left off last Saturday, the G-Nats blew an early 2-0 deficit by giving up three runs in the top of the 5th but matched the G-Astros with three in the bottom of the 6th en route to a 6-3 win in the completion. Daury Vasquez got the win with seven total innings pitched, three runs allowed on five hits and six walks and two strikeouts. Matt Foat led the hit colum with a 3-for-4 game while Bryan Lippincott drove in three while going 2-for-4.

GCL Nationals 2 GCL Astros GCL 1 — GAME TWO
• Pena 3IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Williams 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Dicharry (W, 4-1) 3IP, 2H, R, ER, 2BB, 0K
• Lippincott 2-4, 2B, RBI
• James Brooks 1-3, R

The second game was a pitcher’s duel that saw all the scoring in the final three innings as the G-Nats completed the doubleheader sweep with a 2-1 win. Ronald Pena threw three perfect innings, striking out three to start. Deion Williams was even better in his second outing, allowing just a hit and no walks over two innings. Kevin DiCharry gave up the Astros’ run but was the pitcher of record, allowing two walks and two hits. Bryan Lippincott singled and doubled to lead the G-Nats offense.

DSL Nationals vs. DSL Mets1 — CANCELLED
Presumably due to Hurricane Isaac, the final two games between the DSL Nationals and the DSL Mets1 have been cancelled.

Aug 242012
 

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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 63-70, 5th place I.L. North, 14½ games behind

Good Sandy Leon .371/.511/.600 in August (14G)
Bad Erik Arnesen 5.51ERA, 1.59WHIP since All-Star Break
Interesting Eury Perez 8BB in 34G at AAA (7 in 82G at AA)

HARRISBURG SENATORS 61-70, 5th place E.L. West, 15½ games behind

Good Destin Hood .289/.325/.447 in last 10G
Bad Rafael Martin 9H, 8ER, 3HR in last 3 appearances
Interesting Pat McCoy Home ERA: 5.47, Road ERA: 1.32

POTOMAC NATIONALS 27-32, 4th place C.L. North Division, 3 games behind (58-71 overall)

Good Aaron Barrett 1.26ERA, 0.77WHIP since callup (14G)
Bad Adrian Sanchez 15CS vs. 23SB (39.5%)
Interesting 40-27 home record, 3rd best in C.L.

HAGERSTOWN SUNS 35-24, 1st place Sally League North Divison, 2½ games ahead (77-51 overall)

Good Caleb Ramsey .452/.528/.710, three triples in last 10G
Bad Alex Kreis 6.75ERA, 2.34WHIP since return from GCL (8G)
Interesting Team batting 113HR in 128G

AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 38-25, 1st place Pinckney Division, N.Y.-Penn League, 3 games ahead

Good Wander Ramos 27BB in 55G
Bad Silvio Medina 9HBP in 43⅓ IP
Interesting Team pitching 36HR — 14th in 14-team NYPL

GCL NATIONALS 26-32, 4th Place GCL East, 8 games behind (eliminated)

Good Mike Mudron 1.00WHIP in 24IP
Bad Narciso Mesa 2BB in 32G
Interesting Wilmer Difo 33BB in 52G

DSL NATIONALS 38-32, 3rd Place Boca Chica South Division, 11 games behind (eliminated)

Good 18-y.o. Raudy Read 9HR – 3rd best in DSL
Bad 18 y.o. Miguel Acevedo 7HBP in 32⅔ IP
Interesting 38 team wins most since “Smileygate”
Aug 242012
 

With six strong innings from top pitching prospect Alex Meyer, the Potomac Nationals took their third straight win with a 7-5 decision over the Carolina Mudcats, setting up a weekend showdown with the first-place Frederick Keys.

Potomac scored in each of the first four innings, highlighted by Steven Souza Jr.’s fourth home run, a light-tower shot that comfortably cleared the 400-foot marker over the centerfield wall with two outs in the top of the first. It was 23-year-old’s 21st roundtripper between Low-A and High-A. He would total two walks and two stolen bases and kept his cool when Carolina starting pitcher Michael Goodnight, who did not have one, plunked him in his third plate appearance.

Meyer turned in a quality start for the sixth time in seven starts, rebounding from a six-run shellacking last Friday night in Salem. The lone Mudcat run came in the third as Todd Hankins doubled to center, then was sent in on a sacrifice hit and a sacrifice fly.

With Nathan Karns likely on the shelf for the rest of the season, the towering 22-y.o. has become the staff ace. Like Karns, he has shown that he doesn’t necessarily need to blow guys away to be effective, as his first strikeout did not come until the 18th batter he faced with one out in the 5th — though he would need it and another whiff to escape a bases-loaded jam in the 5th, then stranded two more in the 6th with his third and final K.

Potomac scored its seventh run in the 7th after a Blake Kelso single, the second Souza walk, and a Ricky Hague single to left that was hit so sharply that the fleet-footed Kelso could only advance one base. Jason Martinson fell behind quickly on a pair of curves, but didn’t bite on the 0-2 fastball on the outside corner. Instead of offering something in the dirt, Carolina southpaw J.D. Reichenbach went back to the bender, but Martinson was not fooled this time and looped it into left for the RBI and a 7-1 lead.

After two shutout frames from Aaron Barrett, Rob Wort took the mound for what should have been an easy inning in the 9th. Instead, Carolina did not roll over and made him work. After following a leadoff walk with a strikeout, the slender righty gave up four straight hits — triple to right-center, double to left, a two-run homer off the second tier of signs in right field, then a single to right.

Wort would catch the next batter looking then get the cleanup hitter, 24-y.o. veteran Anthony Gallas, to fly out to shallow left to finally put the game away.

As aforementioned, one of the two teams that Potomac needs to catch and pass to make the playoffs comes to town for three this weekend. Frederick leads Potomac by three, thus the P-Nats need no less than two out of three to have a chance at postseason play and probably need to sweep, given that they will have to face second-place Wilmington on the road as well as these Mudcats for another four as part of the their seven-game road trip to finish out the 2012 season.

Tonight, the P-Nats will send Rob Gilliam (0-1, 5.48) out to the mound against Frederick’s Kevin Gausman (0-0, 12.00), the No. 1 draft pick of the Baltimore Orioles this past June.

Aug 242012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 5-4
(10 inn.)
@ Gwinnett,
7:05 p.m.
Maya (11-8, 3.42) vs.
Delgado (4-2, 5.13)
Harrisburg Lost, 17-2 @ Bowie,
7:05 p.m.
Rosenbaum (8-9, 3.73) vs.
Pettit (9-3, 4.10)
Potomac Won, 7-5 vs. Frederick,
7:05 p.m.
Gilliam (0-1, 5.48) vs.
Gausman (0-0, 12.00)
Hagerstown Won, 8-5 vs. Delmarva,
7:05 p.m.
Rauh (2-2, 4.40) vs.
Chalas (9-7, 5.07)
Auburn Won, 6-3 vs. Mahoning Valley,
7:05 p.m.
TBD vs.
Lee (4-1, 2.17)
GCL Nationals Lost, 4-2;
Lost, 4-0
vs. GCL Astros,
11:00 a.m.
TBD and TBD vs.
TBD and TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 8-7
(11 inn.)
vs. DSL Mets1,
10:30 a.m.
TBD vs. TBD

Gwinnett 5 Syracuse 4 (10 inn.)
• Duke 7IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 4K
• Garcia (L, 1-1) 1⅓ IP, 3H, R, ER, 2BB, K,
• Perez 3-5, 2B, SB
• Leon 1-2, 2B, 2BB

Syracuse built a 4-0 lead after two innings, but couldn’t hold off Gwinnett late to lose, 5-4 in 10 innings. Christian Garcia gave up his own earned run for the first time since June 20, surrendering back-to-back-to-back singles with one out to suffer the loss, his first at AAA this season. Zach Duke had gotten the start and went the first seven innings, with three runs allowed on five hits and two walks. Eury Perez led the offense with a double, two singles, and a stolen base.

Bowie 17 Harrisburg 2
• Perry (L, 2-4) 4IP, 10H, 8R, 8ER, BB, 3K, HR
• Tatusko 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Hood 1-3, BB, RBI
• Skelton 2-2, BB, RBI

With rallies of six in the 5th and five in the 6th, Bowie knifed Harrisburg for a 17-2 gashing. Ryan Perry saw his ERA jump from 1.86 to 2.82 with eight runs surrendered on 10 hits over the first four innings. Marcos Frias and Rafael Martin combined to give up nine over the next three before Ryan Tatusko put the band aid on the evisceration with a scoreless eighth. Destin Hood and James Skelton highlighted the six-hit Senator offense, driving in both runs and combining for three hits and two walks.

Potomac 7 Carolina 5
• Meyer (W, 3-2) 6IP, 5H, R, ER, 2BB, 3K
• Barrett 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Wort 1IP, 4H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 2K, HR
• Souza 1-1, 2R, HR, 2RBI, 2BB
• Kelso 2-4, R, 2RBI
• Hague 2-4, RBI

Another quality start for Alex Meyer Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 8 Delmarva 5
• Jordan (W, 3-2) 5IP, 5H, R, ER, 0BB, 4K
• Hollins (SV, 1) 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K, 2-0 IR-S
• Ramsey 3-3, 2R, 2B, RBI
• Burns 2-3, 3R, 2B, BB, RBI
• Ortega 2-4, 2R, 2B, 3B,

With six runs in the first four innings, Hagerstown held off a late charge by Delmarva for an 8-5 win, the eleventh straight Suns victory over the Shorebirds. Taylor Jordan won his third game at Low-A with a run on five hits over five innings with no walks and four strikeouts. Leonard Hollins put out the fire in the 8th and pitched a scoreless ninth for his first professional save. Caleb Ramsey saw his triple streak snapped but still went 3-for-3 with a double, an RBI, and two runs scored.

Auburn 6 State College 3
• Pineyro 1IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, K
• Henke (W, 5-1) 3IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Davis (SV, 3) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Pleffner 2-4, 2R, 2B, BB
• Miller 2-4, RBI, OF assist at 2B
• Renda 2-5, R, RBI

A four-run 7th pushed Auburn past State College to take the game 6-3 and the series 2-1. The first six Doubledays batters combined for nine hits, with Shawn Pleffner, Brandon Miller, and Tony Renda each collecting two hits. Starter Ivan Pineyro left after one inning with a cut on his hand, according to Auburn beat writer Ben Meyers of The Citizen. Pineyro gave up two runs on four hits. Travis Henke got the win in relief while Cody Davis pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his third save.

GCL Cardinals 4 GCL Nationals 2 — GAME ONE
• Selsor (L, 0-4) 5IP, 4H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 5K
• McCatty 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Poole 2-3, R
• Severino 2-3, 3B, 2RBI

The G-Cards broke through for three in the bottom of the 4th against Casey Selsor, then tacked on another in the 5th as they doubled up the G-Nats, 4-2, in the opener. Selsor was charged the loss with all four runs allowed on four hits and a walk while striking out one over five innings. Pedro Severino drove in both Nationals runs with a two-run triple in the top of the 5th and went 2-for-3 for the game, as did Jordan Poole.

GCL Cardinals 4 GCL Nationals 0 — GAME TWO
• Turnbull (L, 0-1) 3⅓ IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 7K
• Difo 1-2, BB
• D. Eusebio 1-2, BB
• Jennings 1-3, SB

The G-Card completed the doubleheader sweep with a 4-0 shutout over the G-Nats. Kylin Turnbull took the loss with both runs given up over three and a 1/3rd innings on five hits, no walks, and seven strikeouts. Wilmer Difo, Diomedes Eusebio and Hayden Jennings accounted for the three (3) Nationals hits.

DSL Cubs2 8 DSL Nationals 7 (11 inn.)
• Ruiz 6IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, BB, 4K, HR
• Sanchez (L, 0-2) 1IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 0K
• Marmolejos-Diaz 3-5, 2R, BB, RBI
• Novas 2-4, RBI

After blowing a 5-2 lead after six, the D-Nats had to rally in the 9th to send it to extras where the D-Cubs2 won it 8-7 in 11 innings. Starter Raul Ruiz got the no-decision despite spinning a quality start of two runs (one earned) on five hits and a walk over six innings. Mario Sanchez took the loss with two runs allowed on three hits and a walk in the 11th. “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz led the offense with a 3-for-5 effort, including two runs scored, a walk, and an RBI.