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.

Jul 182012
 

Five times the Lynchburg Hillcats scored in the second inning, but five times the Potomac Nationals scored after the second out of the inning, including once in the 9th and once in the 10th for a thrilling 7-6 win in extras.

Francisco Soriano drove in a lumbering Kevin Keyes from first base for the deciding run with a double to the right-centerfield wall to complete the comeback from deficits of 5-0 and 6-1. Keyes led the 15-hit attack with a single, double, and a home run, while also drawing a walk.

As with any comeback win, often unsung is the effort of the bullpen, which threw eight and a 1/3rd innings with just one run allowed on four hits, no walks, and eight strikeouts. Ryan Demmin was the first man out and finished off the second inning without throwing a pitch, catching an ill-advised steal of third with a five-run lead, the first of two critical baserunning blunders.

The big southpaw turned in four innings of solid relief, retiring the first seven batters he faced before giving up back-to-back doubles in the 5th. Another single came after that, with Michael Taylor ever-so-slightly overrunning the ball, but staying on his feet to unleash an off-target bullet to the infield. Steven King laid out to cut it off and keep it from skipping past Freitas. The defensive sequence wasn’t technically pretty, but the runner stayed put.

After single runs in the 4th and 5th innings — David Freitas RBI double, a Soriano sac fly to drive in Keyes — the P-Nats came up big in the 6th with three runs, highlighted by Keyes’ 14th HR to pull within one.

Demmin gave way to Drew Storen in the 7th, and the rehabbing closer set down the side in the 9th. He still looks deliberate and tentative, but it was nice rebound after rough outing on Sunday in Harrisburg. Jimmy Barthmaier hit a batter but retired the the other six batters he faced in the 8th and 9th innings.

Potomac went down in order in the 7th, and left ‘em loaded in the 8th, but as pictured above, got the tying run that made the 10th inning heroics. With two outs, Xavier Nady finally showed proof that he has played above the level with his second single of the game. Adrian Sanchez pinch-ran and took third on a Freitas single to left. Jason Martinson delivered nearly the same hit to the same place to plate Sanchez.

Neil Holland got the win, thanks in part to the aforementioned second baserunning blunder. After giving up a leadoff single, Lynchburg elected to bunt over the go-ahead run. Perhaps it was a calculated gamble that Ricky Hague, who had covered for King vacating first to field the sacrifice, would be slow to notice or maybe it was the hubris that comes with a leadoff man’s speed. In any case, like a Monty Python character in drag, nobody was fooled as Freitas directed Hague to fire over to third for the 1-4-5 double play.

Game Three of the four-game series is scheduled to have Robbie Ray (3-6, 5.11) take the mound against Gus Schlosser (9-4, 3.45), though multiple reports have Chien-Ming Wang pitching tonight as well.

Jul 182012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 8-3 @ Pawtucket,
7:05 p.m.
Mandel (0-2, 2.05) vs.
Buckner (1-4, 6.80)
Harrisburg Lost, 3-2 @ Akron,
12:05 p.m.
Perry (1-1, 1.66) vs.
Wright (6-6, 2.62)
Potomac Won, 7-6
(10 inn.)
vs. Lynchburg,
7:05 p.m.
Ray (3-6, 5.11) or
Wang (rehab) vs.
Schlosser (9-4, 3.45)
Hagerstown Lost, 10-7 OFF DAY N/A
Auburn Lost, 6-5
(11 inn.)
vs. Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Mooneyham (0-0, 0.00) vs.
Oviedo (0-1, 6.75)
GCL Nationals Lost, 5-4 @ GCL Cardinals,
12:00 p.m.
Hudgins (0-2, 3.09) vs.
Foody (0-0, 1.80)
DSL Nationals Won, 1-0 vs. DSL Phillies,
10:30 a.m.
TBD vs. TBD

Pawrucket 8 Syracuse 3
• Maya (L, 6-8) 5⅓ IP, 8H, 6R, 6ER, 4BB, K, HR
• Pena ⅔ IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 0K, 3-3 IR-S
• Brown 2-5, 2B, 2RBI
• Carroll 2-4, CS

A six-run 6th by Pawtucket erased a 2-1 Syracuse lead as the Chiefs eventually fell to the PawSox, 8-3. Starter Yunesky Maya suffered the loss with six runs charged on eight hits and four walks. Hassan Pena let in three of those runs on a triple surrendered to the first batter he faced and eventually gave up two of his own runs over just 2/3rds-plus innings. Corey Brown led Syracuse’s offense with a single and a double and two RBI.

Akron 5 Harrisburg 4
• Tatusko (ND) 6⅔ IP, 1H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 7K, HR, 2HBP
• Frias (BS, 1; L, 3-4) 1⅓ IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, 2K, 1-1 IR-S
• Bloxom 2-3, R, HR, RBI
• Van Ostrand 2-4, 2B

After winning eight straight, the worm has turned for the Senators as Harrisburg lost its four straight game (all by one run), 3-2. Starter Ryan Tatusko gave up just one hit (a home run) over six and 2/3rds innings, but was charged with two runs and got the no-decision when Marcos Frias couldn’t strand Tatusko’s two-out walk in the bottom of the 7th. Frias took the loss, allowing a run on two hits and a walk in the 7th and 8th innings. Justin Bloxom homered in the top of the 7th to give the Sens a 2-1 lead and went 2-for-3 on the night overall.

Potomac 7 Lynchburg 6 (10 inn.)
• Olbrychowski 1⅔ IP, 6H, 5R, 5ER, BB, K, HR
• Demmin 4⅓ IP, 3H, R, ER, 0BB, 5K
• Holland (W, 5-1) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Keyes 3-4, 2R, 2B, HR, 2RBI
• King 2-5, R, 2B, RBI
• Soriano 1-4, R, 2B, SF, 2RBI

The P-Nats rallied from a 6-1 deficit to win in 10 innings Last Night In Woodbridge.

Byron Kerr is reporting that Alex Meyer and Aaron Barrett will be promoted to Potomac, arriving in Woodbridge tomorrow (the Suns are traveling from Kentucky to Maryland), which has been echoed by multiple congratulatory tweets by their teammates. No word on the corresponding moves, but look for Jimmy Barthmaier and perhaps Adam Carr to be sent up Harrisburg to make room.

Lexington 10 Hagerstown 7
• Hill (L, 9-5) 5⅓ IP, 9H, 9R, 6ER, BB, 2K
• Holt 1⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K, 1-1 IR-S
• Dykstra 3-5, 2R, 2B, RBI, 3E
• Souza 2-5, 2R, 2B, HR, 3RBI
• Goodwin 2-5, R, HR, 2RBI, CS

Hagerstown couldn’t hold an early 5-0 lead and fell to Lexington in the series finale, 10-7. Starter Taylor Hill was battered for nine runs (six earned) on nine hits and a walk over five and 1/3rd innings. Steve Souza and Brian Goodwin both homered in the loss, while Cutter Dykstra singled twice and doubled once while going 3-for-5 with two runs scored.

Connecticut 6 Auburn 5
• Encarnacion 6IP, 8H, 4R, 4ER, 3BB, 4K
• Davis 2⅔ IP, 2H, 0R, 2BB, 3K, 3-0 IR-S
• Henke (L, 3-1) 2IP, 2H, R, ER, BB, K
• Ramos 3-5, 2-2B
• Pleffner 3-6, 2R, 2B, RBI

Auburn couldn’t walk off again, losing in 11 innings to Williamsport, 6-5. Travis Henke took the loss with a single and a triple given up in the 11th following a scoreless 10th. Wander Ramos led the offense with a single and two doubles, but despite 14 hits total, the Doubledays were an abysmal 1-for-16 with RISP, stranding 10 baserunners.

GCL Marlins 5 GCL Nationals 4
• Schwartz (ND) 5IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 7K
• Boyden 1⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Heredia (BS, 2; L, 1-2) 1IP, 2H, 3R, 3ER, BB, K, HR
• Mesa 3-5, R, RBI, SB
• Piwnica-Worms 1-3, 2B, BB, 2RBI, SB
• Difo 1-3, R, 2BB, 2SB (10)

With a three-run homer in the top of the 9th, the G-Marlins edged the G-Nats, 5-4. Inocencio Heredia coughed up the big the fly for his second blown save and second loss, giving up a double and a walk prior to the killshot. Narciso Mesa led the hit column with a 3-for-5 afternoon with a run scored and a stolen base.

DSL Nationals 1 DSL Pirates2 0
• Valerio (W, 1-4) 6IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 5K
• Benitez (SV, 2) 3IP, H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Marmolejos-Diaz 1-2, 2B, BB, RBI
• Bautista 1-4, 2B

Maximo Valerio and Juan Benitez combined on a three-hit shutout as the DSL Nationals edged the DSL Pirates2, 1-0. “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz’s RBI double in the 4th proved to be the game-winner as the two teams each collected just three hits. Valerio gave up two hits and a walk over six innings to earn the win while Benitez allowed just a hit and a walk over the last three frames to earn the save.

Jul 172012
 

A leadoff walk, a stolen base, and three singles and things were looking bleak for the pitcher in the first. Then, a grand slam. In the space of just a few minutes, it’s a 5-0 deficit.

Rolling your eyes, are you? This happened in the bottom of the first.

Highlighted by Michael Taylor’s first home run of the season (the grand slam), the Potomac Nationals started strong with a five-run first and cruised to a 14-0 pummeling of the Lynchburg Hillcats.

Of course, it was a baker’s dozen more runs that Nathan Karns needed as the 24-year-old continues to roll through the Carolina League, lowering his ERA to 2.12 with six shutout innings, one hit and two walks allowed, and six strikeouts.

Karns has yet to be tested against the class of the Carolina League (Winston-Salem), but as P-Nats play-by-play man Tim Swartz tweeted last night, Karns is making the case to be the best prospect in the system at this moment. His last six starts: 40IP, 19H, 10BB, 50K, and a 0.75ERA. As written previously, the twin trends of reduced walks and increased (and improved) use of his breaking pitches have been the keys to this string of success.

Potomac did lose steam after the grand slam, but credit should go to Lynchburg’s pitcher Aaron Northcraft for bearing down. The Hillcat righty retired 15 of 16 batters before Jason Martinson’s single to right opened up a three-run rally in the 6th, as Taylor ripped a double down the left field line to send the shortstop to third and Stephen King plated the two with a single up the middle against the drawn-in infield.

The 7th inning also started slowly, with the Lynchburg left fielder muffing a Ricky Hague flyball. After Xavier Nady grounded to short to complete his 0-for-4 night, David Freitas drew a walk, Martinson sliced a liner to right for a triple to drive in Hague and Freitas. Following a walk to Taylor, a King RBI single, Kevin Keyes completing the scoring binge by putting a coat on hanger by Hillcat reliever Caleb Brewer for his team-leading 13th homer and RBI nos. 48, 49, and 50.

With the outcome of the game certain, Karns was lifted and the Potomac ‘pen given a chance to get some work done. Joe Testa delivered a 1-2-3 frame in the 7th while Adam Carr finished the game with just a walk allowed over the final two innings to complete the shutout, the fourth of the season for Potomac.

The win pulls the P-Nats to within two games of the ‘Cats for first place in the Carolina League Nothh, though they still inhabit the cellar of the four-team division. Veteran Adam Olbrychowski (4-7, 5.54) gets the start tonight, opposed by Lynchburg southpaw Dimasther Delgado (5-4, 3.62).

Jul 172012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 8-5 @ Pawtucket,
7:05 p.m.
Maya (6-7, 3.68) vs.
Mathis (6-6, 4.14)
Harrisburg Lost, 5-4 @ Akron,
7:05 p.m.
Tatusko (2-2, 4.06) vs.
House (5-2, 4.07)
Potomac Won, 14-0 vs. Lynchburg,
7:05 p.m.
Olbrychowski (4-7, 5.54) vs.
Delgado (5-4, 3.62)
Hagerstown Lost, 11-1;
Lost, 8-4
@ Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Hill (9-4, 4.58) vs.
Ordosgoitti (2-3, 5.45)
Auburn Won, 5-1 vs. Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Encarnacion (2-0, 1.71) vs.
Gonzalez (0-1, 3.68)
GCL Nationals Lost, 4-3 vs. GCL Marlins,
12:00 p.m.
TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Lost, 15-4 vs. DSL Pirates2,
10:30 a.m.
TBD vs. TBD

Pawrucket 8 Syracuse 5
• Lannan (L, 6-9) 5+ IP, 9H, 6R, 6ER, BB, 2K, 2HR
• Pena 1IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 0K
• Rivero 2-3, 2R, BB, HR, RBI
• Valdez 2-4, R, HR, RBI

In a game that featured seven HRs between the two teams, Pawtucket outslugged Syracuse for an 8-5 win. John Lannan, who’s been tabbed to start in the DC doubledip on Sat., was hammered at the start and finish, charged with six runs on nine hits and a walk over five-plus innings, with two solo shots surrendered. The Chiefs hit four of the seven HRs, with Carloses Rivero and Maldonado, Brett Carroll, and Jesus Valdez going deep and accounting for all five Syracuse runs.

Akron 5 Harrisburg 4
• Holder (L, 0-2) 5⅔ IP, 7H, 4R, 3ER, BB, 3K
• VanAllen ⅓ IP, H, 1R, 0ER, 2BB, K, 1-0 IR-S
• Hood 3-4, R, 2-2B, BB, RBI
• Rahl 3-5, R, 2B, 2SB
• Perez 3-5, R, RBI

Trevor Holder’s second start was much better than his first, but a four-run sixth hung the “L” on him as the Aeros edged the Sens, 5-4. The 25-y.o. kept the ball in the yard and issued just one free pass but gave up four runs (three earned) on seven hits over five and 2/3rds. Harrisburg outhit Akron 12-9, with the trio of Eury Perez, Chris Rahl, and Destin Hood combining for nine hits, three runs scored, three doubles, and two RBI.

Potomac 14 Lynchburg 0
• Karns 6IP, 1H, 0R, 2BB, 6K
• Carr 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Taylor 2-3, 2R, 2B, BB, HR, 4RBI
• Keyes 2-3, R, BB, HR, RBI, SB
• Martinson 3-5, 3R, 3B, 2RBI

Nathan Karns got plenty o’ offense Last Night In Woodbridge.

Lexington 11 Hagerstown 1 — GAME ONE (Comp.)
• McKenzie ⅔ IP, 2H, 6R, 6ER, 3BB, 0K, 0HR
• Meza 2⅓ IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, 2BB, 2K, 2-2 IR-S
• Goodwin 1-3, R, HR, BB, RBI
• Ramsey 2-4, 2B

Lexington picked up where they left off on Sunday afternoon and completed the thrashing of Hagerstown, 11-1. Richie Mirowski got the de facto start and gave up a run over three innings, but Bobby Lucas and the strike zone were complete strangers as the southpaw issued five walks over the last two innings and was charged with two earned runs. The Legends relievers held the Suns to just two hits over the final five frames.

Lexington 8 Hagerstown 4 — GAME TWO
• Turnbull (L, 4-5) 2IP, 6H, 6R, 6ER, BB, 0K, 2HR
• Hawkins 2IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Ortega 2-3, R
• Goodwin 2-4, R, 2B,

Game Two saw much the same pattern, as the Legends doubled up the Suns, 8-4. Kylin Turnbull gave up a pair of two-run home runs and six runs overall in two innings of work to take the loss. Bryce Ortega and Brian Goodwin combined for four of the Suns’ six hits and two of the four runs scored. Roster moves: RHP Wilson Eusebio was placed on the 7-Day DL while RHP Leonard Hollins was promoted from the GCL.

Auburn 5 Connecticut 1
• Monar (W, 2-2) 6IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 5K
• Benincasa 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Schill 1-3, 2R, RBI
• Norfork 1-3, R, HR, 2RBI

Auburn broke its two-game slide with a 5-1 win over Connecticut, finishing the 900+ mile, six-game roadtrip with a 4-2 mark. Blake Monar tossed six scoreless, allowing just three hits and a walk while striking out five, evening his W-L record at 2-2. The #1 and #2 men in the lineup, Wes Schill and Khayyan Norfork, both went 1-for-3 with Schill scoring two runs and Norfork driving in two runs, courtesy of a two-run HR in the 3rd inning. The Doubledays are home now for 10 of the next 14 games, starting with a pair against Williamsport.

GCL Marlins 4 GCL Nationals 3
• Santana (L, 1-2) 3⅔ IP, 4H, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 2K, WP
• Mudron 3⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 4K
• Foat 4-5, R, RBI
• Severino 2-4

A four-run first was too much for the G-Nats to overcome as they fell one run short, 4-3. Andy Santana took the loss, allowing all four G-Marlins runs on four hits and two walks while striking out two. The G-Nats outhit the G-Marlins 11-4, but stranded 12 runners while going just 3-for-14 with RISP. Matt Foat led the offense with a 4-for-5 afternoon, scoring a run and driving in a run.

DSL Pirates2 15 DSL Nationals 4
• J. Rodriguez (L, 0-2) 2+ IP, 3H, 5R, 2ER, 7BB, 1K, 0HR
• Acevedo 2IP, 2H, 0R, BB, K, 3-1 IR-S
• Abreu 2-3, R, BB, RBI
• Read 2-4, BB, RBI
• Mejia 2-4, R, RBI

The DSL Pirates2 scored in five of the first six innings, building a 9-0 lead en route to a 15-4 smackdown of the DSL Nationals. Jefry Rodriguez took the loss, walking seven for the second time this season and allowing five runs on three hits over two-plus innings. The D-Nats broke through for four runs in the 7th, but were held to seven hits total, with Osvaldo Abreu, Raudy Read, and Bryan Mejia each collecting two hits.

Jul 162012
 
Post #1000

For what it’s worth, this is post #1000 since the site was relaunched in June 2010

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 4-2 @ Pawtucket,
7:00 p.m.
Lannan (6-8, 4.60) vs.
Pena (0-7, 6.23)
Harrisburg Lost, 8-7 @ Akron,
7:00 p.m.
Holder (0-1, 37.80) vs.
Espino (3-2, 3.41)
Potomac OFF DAY vs. Lynchburg,
7:05 p.m.
Karns (4-2, 2.43) vs.
Northcraft (8-5, 3.45)
Hagerstown Losing, 8-1
(susp. mid 4th)
@ Lexington,
5:05 p.m.
Turnbull (4-4, 4.82) vs.
Cruz (6-5, 3.58)
Auburn Lost, 5-4
(10 inn.)
@ Connecticut,
7:05 p.m.
Monar (1-2, 3.57) vs.
Lo (1-0, 0.00)
GCL Nationals OFF DAY @ GCL Marlins,
12:00 p.m.
Mieses (1-2, 4.79) vs.
Cavanerio (0-1, 6.61)
DSL Nationals ALL STAR
BREAK
@ DSL Pirates2,
10:30 a.m.
TBD vs. TBD

Scranton-Wilkes/Barre 4 Syracuse 2
• Duke (L, 10-4) 7IP, 10H, 4R, 4ER, 0BB, 2K, HR
• Garcia 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• J. Valdez 2-4, R
• Rivero 1-4, 2RBI

A three-run HR in the bottom of the 2nd erased an early 2-0 lead as the Chiefs fell to the Yankees, 4-2. Zach Duke took the loss, giving up all four runs on 10 hits while striking out two. Syracuse was limited to just three hits, with Jesus Valdez singling twice and Carlos Rivero collecting the third hit, which drove in two in the top of the 1st. After dropping four games to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre since Thursday, Syracuse heads to Rhode Island for four against the Pawtucket Red Sox before returning to upstate New York on Friday. Roster move: C Jeff Howell activated from the DL.

Richmond 8 Harrisburg 7
• Rosenbaum (ND) 6IP, 9H, R, ER, BB, 5K
• Storen (BS, 1) ⅔ IP, 3H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 0K, HR
• Davis (L, 7-3) 1IP, 2H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 0K
• Walters 3-5, 2R
• Van Ostrand 2-4, R, BB
• Perez 2-5, R

Danny Rosenbaum’s best start in six weeks was an afterthought after a 4-1 would-be Harrisburg win turned into a crushing 8-7 loss, completing a 1-4 series with Richmond. Rosenbaum gave up just a run as he scattered nine hits over six innings with one walk and five strikeouts. Drew Storen blew the save with a four-run seventh in which he retired just two of six batters faced, giving up four runs, a walk, and three hits, including a two-run homer. The Senators rallied to tie it at 5-5 in the 8th, but the ‘pen faltered again in the 9th and gave up three. Harrisburg got the tying and winning runs into scoring position with no outs in their final “ups,” but couldn’t push them across. Like Syracuse, it’s one-series road trip to Akron before returning home on Friday.

POTOMAC NATIONALS — OFF DAY
After the recent four-game sweep in Wilmington, Potomac’s road record in 2012 is 12-34, the worst mark in the full-season minors — with 21 of those losses coming to three teams in two states (Wilmington, Carolina, Winston-Salem). Their 29-18 home record is second-best in the Carolina League. Tonight, they begin a three-game series with the division-leading (and first-half winners) Lynchburg Hillcats.

Lexington 8 Hagerstown 1 — SUSP.
• McKenzie ⅔ IP, 2H, 6R, 6ER, 3BB, 0K, 0HR
• Meza 2⅓ IP, 5H, 2R, 1ER, 2BB, 2K, 2-2 IR-S
• Goodwin 1-2, R, HR, RBI

Chris McKenzie lasted just eight batters in the first inning as the Legends dropped six runs on the Suns. Play was halted midway through the fourth inning, with Lexington leading Hagerstown, 8-1. The game will be resumed today, weather permitting, with a completion/7-inning doubleheader.

Connecticut 5 Auburn 4 (10 inn.)
• Rauh (ND) 5IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 3BB, 3K
• Henke (H, 2) 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Self (BS, 1; L, 1-2) 2IP, 3H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 0K
• E. Martinez 2-3, 2R, 2B, BB, OF assist at HP

The sun can’t shine on the same dog’s behind all the time, as Auburn learned when they blew their first ninth-inning lead of the season, 5-4 to Connecticut. Thanks to four Tigers errors, the Doubledays were in a position to win despite having just four hits (three singles and a double) and four walks. Derek Self took the loss (and blew the save), giving up single runs in the 9th and 10th innings. Brian Rauh made his first start and gave up three runs on five hits and three walks while striking out three. Estarling Martinez singled, doubled, and walked to lead the Doubledays on offense.

GCL NATIONALS — OFF DAY
A 4-2 week has pulled the G-Nats into a tie for 3rd place, as they open the week on the road and have home games on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.

DSL NATIONALS — ALL STAR BREAK
• Marmolejos-Diaz 0-1, K
• Bautista 0-1

Just two D-Nats saw action in the DSL All-Star Game, which saw the American League defeat the National League, 6-3. “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz and Rafael Bautista both went 0-for-1 off the bench. Diaz played 1st base and did not make an error while Bautista appeared as a pinch-hitter.

Jul 152012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 8-1 “@” Scranton/WB,
7:00 p.m.
Duke (10-3, 3.68) vs.
Maine (2-3, 7.15)
Harrisburg Lost, 5-4
(10 inn.)
vs. Richmond,
2:00 p.m.
Rosenbaum (7-6, 3.54) vs.
Westcott (8-6, 3.71)
Potomac Lost, 6-3 OFF DAY N/A
Hagerstown Won, 9-4 @ Lexington,
1:35 p.m.
McKenzie (2-2, 7.54) vs.
Foltynewicz (10-2, 2.59)
Auburn Lost, 3-1 @ Connecticut,
4:05 p.m.
Rauh (0-0, 1.29) vs.
Gillies (0-1, 3.38)
GCL Nationals Lost, 8-6 OFF DAY N/A
DSL Nationals ALL STAR
BREAK
ALL STAR
BREAK
N/A

Scranton-Wilkes/Barre 8 Syracuse 1
• Roark (L, 4-12) 3IP, 8H, 7R, 6ER, 4BB, 0K, 0HR
• Bibens-Dirkx 4IP, 4H, R, ER, 0BB, 4K
• J. Valdez 1-3, BB
• Carroll 1-3, BB

A six-run 2nd put this game away early as Syracuse Chiefs lost on the “road,” 8-1 to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees, extending their losing streak to six games (seven if you count the completion on Thursday). Tanner Roark suffered his 12th loss with seven runs surrendered on eight hits and four walks over three innings. Jim Negrych homered in the 8th break up the shutout bid as the Chiefs were limited to just five hits total and stranded eight baserunners. Roster moves: IF Josh Johnson was transferred from Auburn, 1B Chris Marrero was placed on the 7-Day DL.

Richmond 5 Harrisburg 4 (10 inn.)
• Demny 5⅔ IP, 6H, 4R, 3ER, BB, 7K, HR, 1-1
• McCoy 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Nelo (L, 1-3) 1IP, 0H, R, ER, 0BB, 0K, HBP
• Walters 1-4, R, 2B, RBI
• Hood 1-4, RBI

The Senators rallied for four in the last of the 9th but lost in the 10th without giving up a base hit. A hit batsmen, sacrifice, fielder’s choice, and a sac fly did the trick for the Squirrels, handing the loss to Hector Nelo. Starter Paul Demny gave up the first four runs on six hits and a walk over five and 2/3rds while striking out seven. Harrisburg plated four on just seven hits and no walks, going 2-for-4 with RISP and leaving five runners on base. Roster moves: RHP Rafael Martin was transferred from the GCL, with RHP Zech Zinicola placed on the 7-Day DL (ankle).

Wilmington 6 Potomac 2
• Swynenbeg 4⅓ IP, 10H, 5R, 4ER, BB, 2K, HR
• Holland 2⅔ IP, 1H, 1R, 0ER, BB, 2K
• Keyes 1-4, 2RBI
• King 1-4, RBI

The Blue Rocks put up a pair of crooked numbers in the first two innings en route to a 6-3 win and a four-game sweep of the Potomac Nationals. Matt Swynenberg made his return to the rotation but was lit up for five runs on 10 hits and a walk over four and a 1/3rd innings. Kevin Keyes and Stephen King accounted for all three runs driven in as the Potomac lineup was held to six hits total. Potomac returns to Woodbridge on Monday for a seven-game homestand against the Lynchburg Hillcats and Myrtle Beach Pelicans.

Hagerstown 9 Lexington 4
• Meyer (W, 7-4) 6IP, 4H, 0R, 0BB, 9K
• Eusebio 6BF, 0IP, 4H, 4R, 4ER, 0BB, 0K, HBP
• Bates (SV, 1) 3IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 0K, 2-0 IR-S
• Goodwin 2-3, 2R, 2BB, HR, 3RBI, SB(15)
• Dykstra 3-6, 2R, 2-2B, RBI
• Ortega 3-4, 3B, BB, RBI

After a 100-minute delay to get the field playable, Alex Meyer threw six shutout innings and struck out nine, including the side in the 6th as Hagerstown survived a 7th-inning Lexington rally to win 9-4. Wilson Eusebio faced six batters in the frame and retired none of them, coughing up four runs on four hits, a walk, and a hit batsman. Colin Bates was summoned to douse the flames and delivered for his first save. Seven of the Suns’ 14 hits went for extra bases, with Brian Goodwin homering, Cutter Dykstra doubling twice, and Bryce Ortega tripling. Roster moves: C Adrian Nieto was transferred from the GCL, LHP Bobby Hansen Jr. was placed on the Temporary Inactive List

Connecticut 3 Auburn 1
• Jordan (L, 0-2) 4IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 4K
• Medina 3IP, H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Schill 2-4, RBI
• Kieboom 1-2, R

The night after smacking 15 hits, Auburn was held to just three in a 3-1 loss to the Connecticut. Wes Schill singled twice while Spencer Kieboom singled once, but the rest of the Doubledays lineup was 0-for-23. Taylor Jordan was charged with the loss, giving up all three Tigers runs on four hits over four innings. He walked none and struck out four. Roster moves: IF James Brooks was promoted from the GCL, replacing Johnson on the Doubledays roster.

GCL Astros 8 GCL Nationals 6
• Vasquez (L, 0-5) 4IP, 8H, 6R, 1ER, BB, K, HR
• Mendez 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K
• J.C. Valdez 3-4, 2R, 2B, 2RBI, BB, SB
• Mesa 2-5, 2R, 2-2B
• Eusebio 2-5, RBI

A five-run third by the G-Astros erased an early G-Nats lead as the Houston affiliate held off a late charge by the Washington squad for an 8-6 win. Daury Vasquez took the loss with six runs (one earned) allowed on eight hits and a walk. Jean-Carlos Valdez led the G-Nats offense with a 3-for-4 afternoon, including a pair of doubles, two runs scored, two RBI, a walk and a stolen base.

DSL NATIONALS — ALL STAR BREAK
The DSL All-Star Game is today but which DSL Nationals, if any, will be participating is unknown because there is no list of players named to the two teams, which will be the A.L. affiliates vs. the N.L. affiliates.

Jul 142012
 

Three Doubledays pitchers combined on a one-hit shutout as Auburn pummeled Aberdeen, 10-0 to complete a three-game sweep.

Nick Lee retired the first nine batters in order before giving up a leadoff single to start the 4th. He quickly erased that baserunner with a nifty 1-3-6-4 pickoff play then finished the inning.

The no-hit bid was an academic exercise by that point as the Doubleday batters were having their way with the Ironbird pitchers, scoring in each of the first four innings and highlighted by Wander Ramos’s two-run shot in the second inning.

The game was blown wide open in the 8th and Ramos was once again in the spotlight, reaching base on a disputed HBP call. Mike McQuillan tripled him in with a liner over the centerfielder’s head for a triple, with Josh Johnson singling him in, then Shawn Pleffner doubling Johnson in, and following a pitching change, Estarlin Martinez finishing the scoring binge with an RBI single ripped up the middle, too hot for the Ironbird SS to hold on to.

The Doubledays pounded out 15 hits, with every batter reaching base and eight of nine batters hitting safely, with Jordan Poole as the “beer man,” though he did draw two walks. Martinez led the hit column with a 3-for-5 night.

Lee lasted six innings, giving up just the one hit and two walks while striking out three. Jack McGeary was the first man out of the bullpen, and worked around a two-out HBP, a stolen base, and a wild pitch by striking out the last of the four batters he faced to preserve the shutout bid.

Cody Davis sealed it by retiring the last six Aberdeen batters in order, striking out the side in the 9th and four overall.

With the win, the Doubledays hit the road and head up I-95 to I-395 to Norwich, CT for three games against the Connecticut Tigers before returning home to Auburn on Tuesday.

Jul 142012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Postponed “@” Scranton/WB,
7:00 p.m.
Roark (4-11, 5.11) vs.
Ortiz (6-3, 2.83)
Harrisburg Lost, 4-0;
Won, 3-2
vs. Richmond,
7:00 p.m.
Demny (6-4, 5.14) vs.
Gloor (2-1, 2.25)
Potomac Lost, 3-1 @ Wilmington,
6:05 p.m.
Swynenberg (4-4, 5.79) vs.
Pimentel (0-1, 6.28)
Hagerstown Lost, 7-2 @ Lexington,
7:05 p.m.
Meyer (6-4, 3.32) vs.
Perez (0-0, 0.76)
Auburn Won, 10-0 @ Connecticut,
7:05 p.m.
Jordan (0-1, 4.82) vs.
Briceno (0-2, 9.72)
GCL Nationals Won, 1-0 @ GCL Astros,
12:00 p.m.
Vasquez (0-4, 2.50) vs.
Rivera (0-0, 0.00)
DSL Nationals Won, 6-2 ALL STAR
BREAK
N/A

SYRACUSE — PPD
A power failure postponed the game until August 12, the fireworks until next Saturday night.

Richmond 4 Harrisburg 0 — GAME ONE
• Wang 4+ IP, 7H, 3R, 2ER, 0BB, 3K
• VanAllen 1IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K
• Perez 1-3
• Kobernus 1-3, SB(35)

Chien-Ming Wang proved again he can lose at any level, giving up seven hits and three runs in a 4-0 loss in the opening game of the Harrisburg-Richmond doubleheader. The Senators were held to just four hits and a walk, with just three (3) baserunners getting into scoring position and all five men stranded.

Harrisburg 3 Richmond 2 — GAME TWO
• Perry 5IP, 5H, R, ER, BB, 6K
• Davis (W, 7-2) 1⅓ IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, K
• Nelo (SV, 13) ⅔ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K, 1-0 IR-S
• Perez 2-3
• Van Ostrand 2-3
• Walters 1-3, R, HR, 3RBI

Zach Walter’s three-run HR in the bottom of the 6th broke up a streak of 12 scoreless inning as the Senators salvaged a doubleheader split with a 3-2 win in the nightcap. Ryan Perry’s conversion to starting continues to succeed as the 25-y.o. lowered his ERA to 1.66 with a run over five innings, but had a no-decision. Erik Davis got the win, though he was touched for a run in the 7th and needed some help from Hector Nelo, who got the last two outs for his 13th save.

Wilmington 3 Potomac 1
• Grace (L, 4-9) 6IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 5K
• Barthmaier 2IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 2K
• Keyes 1-3, R, HR, RBI
• Sanchez 2-2, CS
• Ramirez 1-3, 2B

The Blue Rocks struck for two runs early and held on for a 3-1 win. Kevin Keyes provided the “1” with his 12th HR, homering in back-to-back games for the fourth time this season. Matt Grace turned in second quality start since back-to-back 10-run outings last month but was the losing pitcher despite allowing just two runs on five hits and two walks over six innings. He also struck out a season-high of five.

Greensboro 7 Hagerstown 2
• Hansen 3+ IP, 6H, 6R, 4ER, 4BB, 0K
• Holt 3IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 4K, 3-1 IR-S
• Souza 2-4, RBI
• Burns 1-2, R, 2BB, RBI, SB

No need to tell Bobby Hansen Jr. it was Friday the 13th yesterday — he faced eight batters in the fourth without retiring any of them, committing two errors after back-to-back singles, then another single, then walking three in a nightmarish six-run inning. The Suns lost this one 7-2, as the Hagerstown batters were limited to just six hits. Steve Souza Jr. extended his hit streak to nine games with a 2-for-4 night.

Auburn 10 Aberdeen 0
• Lee 6IP, 1H, 0R, 2BB, 3K
• Davis 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• McQuillan 3-4, R, 3B, BB, RBI
• E. Martinez 3-5, 2B, 2RBI

Three Doubledays pitchers combined on a one-hit shutout Last Night In Aberdeen.

GCL Nationals 1 GCL Astros 0
• Pineyro 5IP, 1H, 0R, 2BB, 5K
• Barrientos 3IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Dicharry (W, 2-1) 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Foat 1-3, RBI

With two outs, James Brooks was hit by a pitch, took second on a wild pitch, and scored on Matt Foat’s RBI single for a 1-0 walkoff win by the GCL Nationals over the GCL Astros. The unlikely run made a winner out of Kevin Dicharry, the third of three G-Nats pitchers, who combined on a four-hit shutout with two walks and nine strikeouts. Foat’s safety was just the fifth of the game as the G-Nats were held to five singles and no walks.

DSL Nationals 6 DSL “Redbacks” 2
• Silvestre (W, 3-2) 5IP, 4H, 1R, 0ER, 2BB, K
• Acevedo (H, 1) 2IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Bautista 2-4, R, BB, 2SB
• Marmolejos-Diaz 2-4, 2B, 2RBI

With two runs in the 5th and three in the 6th, the D-Nats broke open a 1-1 game and cruised to a 6-2 victory over the Arizona/Cincinnati DSL squad. Hector Silvestre got the win with an unearned run on four hits and two walks. Rafael Bautista and “Orange” Marmolejos-Diaz both went 2-for-4, with Bautista swiping two bags and Diaz driving in two runs.

Jul 132012
 

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

SYRACUSE CHIEFS 44-48, T5th place I.L. North, 8 games behind

Good Erik Arnesen 20 scoreless IP since June 4
Bad Carlos Rivero 14BB in 81G
Interesting Jeff Mandel 1.06WHIP in 26⅓ IP

HARRISBURG SENATORS 48-42, T1st place E.L. West, .038 W% behind

Good Jimmy Van Ostrand .934OPS in 35G
Bad Marcos Frias 1.75WHIP in 33G
Interesting 681K Pitching K’s, 2nd in E.L.

POTOMAC NATIONALS 10-11, T3rd place C.L. North Division, 1 game behind (41-50 overall)

Good David Freitas .813 OPS, 9.5 RAA (runs above average), #1 for Car. Lg. Cs
Bad Jason Martinson 12E in 20G
Interesting Jimmy Barthmaier 0.77 ERA, 0.77 WHIP in 10G

HAGERSTOWN SUNS 14-7, T1std place Sally League North Divison, 2 games ahead (56-34 overall)

Good Steve Souza .263/.326/.600, 7HR, 23RBI since All-Star Break (21G)
Bad Bobby Hansen Jr. 15BB in 28⅓ IP
Interesting Billy Burns 12BB in 16G since All-Star Break

AUBURN DOUBLEDAYS 16-7, 1st place Pinckney Division, N.Y.-Penn League, 1½ games ahead

Good Shawn Pleffner .341/.383/.500 in 21G
Bad Gregory Baez 1-1, 9.64 ERA, 2.25 WHIP in 3 starts
Interesting Craig Manuel .385/.455/.436 in 12G

GCL NATIONALS 9-13, T3rd Place GCL East, 7 games behind

Good Gilberto Mendez 0-0, 3.29ERA, 0.80WHIP in 13⅔ IP
Bad Hayden Jennings 28K in 52AB
Interesting Wilmer Difo .313/.432/.433, 8SB in 20G

DSL NATIONALS 17-18, 6th Place Boca Chica South Division, 8 games behind

Good 19 y.o. Rafael Bautista 20SB in 35G
Bad 18 y.o. Jorge Tillero .553 OPS in 15G
Interesting 19 y.o. Elisaul Gomez 2.75 ERA, 1.17WHIP, 4.81 BB/9
Jul 132012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 3-0;
Lost, 1-0
(14 inn.)
vs. Scranton/WB,
7:00 p.m.
Roark (4-11, 5.11) vs.
Ortiz (6-3, 2.94)
Harrisburg Lost, 12-3 vs. Richmond,
6:00 p.m. (DH)
Wang (rehab) and
Perry (1-1, 1.62) vs.
Fitzgerald (4-6, 4.19) and
Maday (3-5, 3.44)
Potomac Lost, 8-3 @ Wilmington,
7:05 p.m.
Grace (4-8, 6.12) vs.
Adam (1-9, 3.94)
Hagerstown Lost, 4-3
(10 inn.)
@ Greensboro,
7:05 p.m.
Hansen (2-0, 4.13) vs.
Brice (6-3, 4.24)
Auburn Won, 6-3 @ Aberdeen,
7:05 p.m.
Lee (0-0, 2.93) vs.
Vader (0-2, 7.31)
GCL Nationals Won, 7-6 vs. GCL Astros,
12:00 p.m.
Pineyro (0-0, 3.06) vs.
Barrios (1-0, 1.59)
DSL Nationals Won, 8-0 @ DSL Ariz./Cincy,
10:30 a.m.
Silvestre (2-2, 4.97) vs.
Aybar (0-5, 5.34)

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 3 Syracuse 0 — GAME ONE (comp.)
• Atkins 9IP, 5H, 3R, 1ER, 6BB, 4K
• Maldonado 1-3, 2B, BB
• Rivero 1-3
• Negrych 1-2

After a 92-day hiatus, Syracuse lost to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the completion of the suspended game, 3-0. The loss went to Mitch Atkins, who threw the unusual complete game, giving up all three Yankees runs on five hits and six walks while striking out four. Syracuse mustered one more hit (six) with the Carloses (Maldonado and Rivero) both going 1-for-3.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 1 Syracuse 0 — GAME TWO
• Mandel 5IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Arnesen 3⅓ IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 6K
• Bibens-Dirkx (L, 0-2) 1IP, 1H, R, ER, 2BB, 0K, HBP,
• Rivero 2-6, 2B
• Marrero 1-3, BB

What was supposed to be one reliever making a spot start and possibly another finishing it up for a light night, the Chiefs ended up emptying the bullpen as they dropped the second game, 1-0 in 14 innings. Jeff Mandel flirted with a no-hitter for four and 2/3rds and finished with a one hit allowed over five innings. Austin Bibens-Dirkx took the loss when he walked the leadoff batter, gave up a single, hit a batter, then walked in the game’s lone run. The Chiefs collected 10 hits total, but left on 11 while going 0-for-8 with RISP.

Richmond 12 Harrisburg 3
• Holder 1⅔ IP, 6H, 7R, 7ER, 2BB, K, 2HR
• Tatusko 5⅓ IP, 6H, R, ER, 2BB, 6K, 1-0 IR-S
• Kobernus 2-5, R, 3B, 2RBI
• Lozada 1-2, R; ⅓ IP, BB, 1-1 IR-S

Trevor Holder’s AA debut was a tale of two innings. The first was the best of times (1-2-3), the second… not so much. Richmond scored seven times against the 25-y.o., including a grand slam that ended his night as the Flying Squirrels went on to a 12-4 triumph. Ryan Tatusko turned in a masterful piece of relief, allowing just a run on six hits and two walks over five and a 1/3rd innings. Jeff Kobernus led the Senators offense with a single and a triple and two RBI.

Wilmington 8 Potomac 3
• Ray (L, 3-6) 4IP, 5H, 5R, 4ER, 2BB, 4K, HR
• Storen 2IP, 3H, R, ER, 0BB, 5K, HR
• Ramirez 2-3, 3B
• Soriano 2-3, R, BB

A four-run fourth by the Blue Rocks knocked Robbie Ray from the game and helped send the P-Nats to an 8-3 loss. Ray gave up five runs on five hits and two walks over the first four innings. Drew Storen finished out the game with two innings, but was touched for a home run by Wilmington’s Matt Fields, who also took Ray deep in the 4th. Francisco Soriano and J.P. Ramirez both went 2-for-3 as the offense registered eight hits total, but the defense committed three errors.

Greensboro 4 Hagerstown 3 (10 inn.)
• Hill 6⅔ IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 2K
• Hawkins (L, 3-2) 1⅓ IP, H, 2R, ER, BB, 2K, HR
• Burns 0-2, 3BB
• Souza 1-5, R, HR, RBI

After taking the lead in the top of the 10th, the Suns were eclipsed in the space of three batters in the bottom of the 10th as a one-out HR gave the GreenJackets the 4-3 win in extras, stopping the Hagerstown win streak at seven. The Suns managed just five hits total, including Steve Souza’s 16th home run. Taylor Hill had just one bad inning, giving up two runs in part of the 7th after tossing six scoreless to begin the game. The loss went to Ben Hawkins who gave up just the big fly over an inning and a third, walking one and striking out one.

Auburn 6 Aberdeen 3
• Mooneyham 3IP, H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Fischer (W, 1-1) 4IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, BB, 2K
• Ramos 2-3, 2B, 2BB, 3RBI
• Pleffner 3-5, R, 3B
• E. Martinez 2-5, RBI

A pair of two-run rallies in the 6th and 7th innings pushed the Doubledays past the Ironbirds for a 6-3 win in Aberdeen. David Fischer got the win in relief of Brett Mooneyham, who tossed three scoreless inings with a walk, a hit and two strikeouts. Fischer gave up two runs on two hits and a walk over four innings. Derek Self got the last four outs of the game for his second save. Wander Ramos reached base four times: a single, a double, and two walks and drove in three to pace the Auburn offense, which tallied 10 hits total. Roster move: IF Josh Johnson assigned to Auburn from Syracuse.

GCL Nationals 7 GCL Marlins 6
• Hudgins 4+ IP, 5H, 4R, 0ER, BB, K
• Hollins (BS, 1; W, 1-0) 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K, IR-S 3-1
• Boyden (SV, 1) 1IP, H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Difo 3-5, 2R, RBI
• Brooks 3-5, R, RBI

After blowing leads of 3-0 and 5-4, the G-Nats put up single runs in the 7th and 8th and held on for their third straight win, 7-6 over the G-Marlins. Starter Will Hudgins gave up four unearned runs on five hits and a walk, but struck out just one. Leonard Hollins let in one run on a groundout but got the win when G-Nats went ahead for good. Wilmer Difo and James Brooks both went 3-for-5 with an RBI as the G-Nats pounded out 16 hits total for the afternoon.

DSL Nationals 8 DSL “Redbacks” 0
• Gomez (W, 4-2) 8IP, H, 0R, 3BB, 2K
• Chavez 1IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 0K
• Bautista 2-4, R, BB, RBI, 2SB (20)
• Mercedes 2-4, 2R, RBI

Elisaul Gomez and Jose Chavez combined on a two-hit shutout as the D-Nats downed the Arizona/Cincinnati co-op, 8-0. Gomez allowed just a single in the 7th while walking three and striking out two over eight frames. Jose Chavez gave up a double and a walk in the 9th, but preserved the shutout with the help of a double play. Rafael Bautista and Yermin Mercedes both went 2-for-4 as the D-Nats made their 10 hits count, going 5-for-13 with RISP.