Tuesday’s News and Notes

Four wins, four losses on Tuesday in the Nats’ minors

The Quick Rundown…

Team Yesterday’s Result Today’s Game Pitching Matchup
Syracuse Chiefs W, 5-4 vs. Buffalo, 7:00 p.m. Jones (1-2, 3.63) vs.
Misch (8-3, 3.40)
Harrisburg Senators W, 3-2 vs. Richmond, 7:05 p.m. Kown (2-4, 4.91) vs.
Westcott (0-0, 3.00)
Potomac Nationals L, 2-0 @ Frederick, 7:00 p.m. Holder (0-1, 3.48) vs.
McCurry (3-2, 3.59)
Hagerstown Suns L, 7-3 vs. West Virginia, 7:05 p.m. Smoker (1-8, 7.18) vs.
Irwin (3-1, 2.64)
Vermont Lake Monsters W, 3-2 (15 inn.) OFF DAY N/A
GCL Nationals L, 6-4 @ GCL Cards (comp.);
W, 9-2 vs. GCL Cards (7 inn)
@ GCL Mets (comp.);
vs. GCL Mets (7 inn)
TBA vs. TBA
DSL Nationals L, 3-2 vs. DSL Yankees1 @ DSL Mets1, 10:30 a.m. Estevez (2-0, 3.00) vs.
Arias (4-1, 2.17)

Syracuse Chiefs, W, 5-4 vs. Buffalo
Starting Pitcher: Mandel 3IP 7H 4R 4ER 1BB 0K
Pitching Star: English (W, 2-1) 3IP 1H 0R 0BB 1K
Hitting Star #1: Bynum, 2-3, R, 2B, RBI
Hitting Star #2: Lopez 1-4, 2B, 2RBI
Notes: It was a nail-biter, but the Chiefs were able to hold on to a 5-4 win versus Buffalo. Starting pitcher, Jeff Mandel got a no-decision, pitching three complete innings and allowing all four of Buffalo’s runs to score on seven hits and a walk. Jesse English, however, came om in relief in the 4th inning and pitched a magnificent three innings, allowing only one hit. Seth Bynum and Pedro Lopez were the hitters of the game, collectively going 3-7, scoring two runs, hitting two doubles, and driving in thee runs.

Harrisburg Senators W, 3-2 vs. Richmond
Starting Pitcher: Detwiler 4IP 8H 2R 2ER 0BB 2K
Pitching Star: James 2IP 1H 0R 0BB 2K
Hitting Star #1: Espinosa  2-4, R, 3B, HR, 3RBI
Hitting Star #2: Valdez 2-3, BB
Notes: Richmond started the scoring in the 3rd with a run, but the Sens answered with two of their own in the bottom of the inning. Richmond knotted things up in the 4th with another run, and the game remained tied until the 7th, when Harrisburg added the go-ahead run thanks to a Danny Espinosa triple. With that the Sens were able to take this one 3-2. Starter Ross Detwiler went four innings giving up two runs on eight hits and no walks, striking out two. Rafael Martin earned the win with two innings of scoreless relief, while Zech Zinicola pitched a scoreless ninth for save #9 at the AA level.

Potomac Nationals L, 2-0 vs. Wilmington
Starter/Pitching Star: Bronson (L, 3-6) 7IP 9H 2R 2ER 1BB 1K
Hitting Star: Steve Lombardozzi 2-4, 2-2B
Notes: See Sue’s take in Last Night In Woodbridge

Hagerstown Suns L, 7-3 vs. West Virginia
Starting Pitcher: Hicks (L, 1-1) 5⅓ IP 4H 1R 1ER 3BB 7K
Pitching Star: Arnold 1IP 1H 0R 0BB 0K
Hitting Star #1: Bloxom 1-4, R, HR, 2RBI
Hitting Star #2: Soriano 1-4, R, 3B, RBI
Notes: The Suns didn’t fare too well today as they were downed 7-3 by West Virginia. They were able to keep the Power shorted through five innings but then West Virginia flipped the switch in the 6th and scored three, then added a single run in the 7th, and three more in the 8th to run the score up to 7-0. Hagerstown made a three-run charge in the 9th, highlighted by a two-run homer by Bloxom but it was too little too late as West Virginia held on and took this one. Starter Graham Hicks went 5⅓ innings giving up only four hits, one run, three walks with seven strikeouts in the loss.

 Vermont Lake Monsters W, 3-2 (15 inn.) vs. Williamsport
Starting Pitcher: Swynenberg (ND) 6IP 4H 0R 1BB 7K
Pitching Star: Eusebio 3IP 2H 0R 0BB 2K
Pitching Un-Star: Crane ⅔ IP 1H 2R 2ER 2BB 0K
Hitting Star #1: Freitas 2-4, BB, RBI 
Hitting Star #2: Jones 1-5, 2BB, GWRBI
Notes:  The game was scoreless until the seventh inning as hits were hard to come by for both teams in this game, just 19 in 30 half-innings. One of the big hits was Freitas’s RBI single in the sixth inning to give the Lake Monsters a 1-0 lead. Williamsport thought they had won the game, scoring two runs off Dustin Crane with one out in the ninth inning, but Vermont fought back in their half of the inning to push the game into extras, tied at 2-2.

The Lake Monsters official site describes the sequence that ended the game in the 15th:

Blake Kelso led off the 15th with a walk and moved to second on a Cole Leonida sacrifice bunt, the Lake Monsters fifth sac bunt of the game. Leonida was safe at first on a throwing error by pitcher Kyle Carr on the play and moved to second when Kelso was forced at third base on a Wade Moore bunt attempt.

That brought Jones to the plate and he laced an 0-1 pitch over the head of leftfielder Miguel Alvarez to end the game. Jones’ single was the first Vermont hit in 12 at bats with a runner in scoring position in the game.

GCL Nationals L, 6-4 vs. GCL Cardinals (comp. of susp. game
Starting Pitcher: Gregory Baez 3IP 2H 0R 2BB 3K
Pitching Star: Billy Ott 3IP 2H 0R 0BB 3K
Hitting Star #1: Roberto Perez 2-4, R
Hitting Star #2: Derrick Phillips 1-3, 2B, RBI
Notes: The GCL Nationals could hold the 3-0 lead they built last week, coughing up two runs in the 7th and four more in the 8th to fall 6-4 to the GCL Cardinals. Four errors led to four unearned runs.

GCL Nationals W, 9-2 @ GCL Cardinals (7 inn.)
Starting Pitcher: Brandon King 1⅓ IP 1H 0R 1BB 1K
Pitching Star: Nick Serino (W, 1-1) 2⅔ IP 1H 0R 1BB 3K
Hitting Star #1: Wander Nunez 4-5, 2R, 3B, SB
Hitting Star #2: Hector Taveras 2-3, 2R, RBI
Hitting Star #3: Johan Rodriguez 2-3, R, BB
Notes: In the regularly scheduled game, The G-Nats broke open an early 1-0 lead with a four-run fifth inning, highlighted by a three-run double by Estarlin Martinez. Nick Serino, the 37th-round draftee out of UMass, got the win with 2⅔ innings of relief.

DSL Nationals L, 3-2 (10 inn.) vs. DSL Yankees1
Starter/Pitching Star: Antonio Guzman (ND) 7IP 9H 2R 1ER 4BB 6K
Hitting Star: Nelalexfred Ortega 1-3, 2BB, RBI
Notes: The DSL Yankees1 squad outhit the DSL Nationals 12-3 but it took 10 innings to get the win, as the D-Nats somehow managed to score twice on three singles, five walks, and three D-Yank1 errors to stay close.

Last Night In Woodbridge

Shutout #8 for Potomac (batters)

It’s a familiar story to Nationals fans at nearly every level: When the pitching is there, the hitting is not. Evan Bronson was the latest victim on Tuesday night, allowing just two runs on nine hits over seven innings with one walk.

But he still lost 2-0.

While by no means overpowering, Bronson was throwing strikes: 58 out of 87 pitches, which is more than good enough to beat a young team with only one true batting threat (Eric Hosmer, who collected three of the Blue Rocks’ 10 hits). It was his third consecutive quality start and second straight outing of seven innings.

Offensively, the team was shut out for the eighth time in 82 games, collecting just seven hits and 12 baserunners overall. Ten times runners reached second or third, and all ten times the batters behind them made an out.

With the loss, Potomac falls to 5-7 in the 2nd half, tied with Lynchburg for last place in the Carolina League’s North Division. The team heads north to second-place Frederick for three games before heading to Fenway Park to face the Salem Red Sox as part of the fifth annual “Futures at Fenway” on Saturday.

Monday’s News and Notes

Vermont’s win streak is snapped, Peacock tosses a 5-hit shutout to highlight Monday night in the Nats’ minors

Syracuse Chiefs W, 8-6 vs. Buffalo
Starting Pitcher: Chico  6IP 6H 4ER 2BB 1K
Pitching Star: Severino (W, 4-1) 1.1IP 0R 1BB 2K
Hitting Star # 1: Botts  4-5, 2R, HR, 2RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Bynum 2-2, R, HR, 2RBI
Notes: Syracuse began the scoring in the bottom of the first with 3 runs and remained in the lead throughout this one. Buffalo drove in 1 run in the 4th but Syracuse matched it with 1 of their own in the 5th. In the 6th the Chiefs continued their assault scoring 2 more. The top of the 7th Buffalo made a comeback scoring 4 runs to cut the lead to 1, and then in the 8th Buffalo tied it all up at 6 all. It looked like it was going to extras but thanks to a 2 run homer by Bynum the Chiefs were able to win this one 8-6. Starter Chico went 6 innings giving up 6 hits, 4 runs and 2 walks with the win.

Harrisburg Senators L, 5-1 vs. Richmond
Starting Pitcher: Lannan (L, 1-2) 7IP 9H 4ER 1BB 4K 1HR
Pitching Star: Carr 1.1IP 0H 0R, 0BB, 1K
Hitting Star # 1: Coon 2-4
Hitting Star # 2: Martinez, 1-4, R, RBI
Notes: Both teams remained scoreless until the 4th where Richmond opened up the scoring with 1 run. Richmond then added 3 more in the 5th while the Sens were only able to answer with 1 run in the 6th. Richmond added 1 more run in the 8th to insure victory as they beat up Harrisburg 5-1. Starter Lannan went 7 innings giving up 9 hits, 4 runs, and 1 walk with the loss.

a href=”http://www.minorleaguebaseball.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?sid=t436&t=g_box&gid=2010_07_05_wilafa_potafa_1″>Potomac Nationals W,5-0 vs. Wilmington
Starter/Pitching Star: Peacock (W, 3-9) 9IP 5H 0R 1BB 4K
Hitting Star #1: Moresi 2-4, 2B, 2RBI
Hitting Star #2: Lozada 2-4, 3B, 2RBI
Notes: See Sue’s take on a masterful pitching performance in Last Night In Woodbridge

Hagerstown Suns W, 9-7  vs. West Virginia
Starting Pitcher: Applebee (ND) 4IP 3H 2ER 2BB 5K
Pitching Star #1: Graham (W, 1-0) 3IP 0H 0R 0BB 3K
Pitching Star #2: Weaver (S, 11)  1IP 1H 0R 1BB 0K
Hitting Star # 1: Souza 2-5, R, HR, 3RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Kobernus 2-5, R, 2-2B, 3RBI
Notes: The Suns started this one guns-a-blazin’ as they scored a whooping 8 runs in the 2nd inning. They then proceeded to add 1 more run in the 2nd to amass a 9-0 lead. West Virginia chopped away at the Suns lead in the 3rd with 2 runs but the score remained that way until the 8th. Virginia scored 5 runs to make it 9-7 but couldn’t get any closer then that as Hagerstown won 9-7. Starter Applebee went 4 innings giving up 3 hits, 2 runs and 2 walks getting 5 strikes.

Vermont Lake Monsters L, 4-3 vs. Williamsport
Starting Pitcher: Jenkins (L, 1-2) 5IP 5H 4R 2ER 1BB 7K 1HR
Pitching Star: Cahill 2IP 0H 0R 0BB 1K
Hitting Star # 1: Labrie 2-4, R, 2B
Hitting Star # 2: Freitas 2-4, 2B, BB, RBI
Notes: Despite scoring 2 runs in the bottom of the first inning, the Lake Monsters were not able to hold on to their lead and loss against Williamsport by a score of 4-3. Jenkins too his 2nd loss, going 5 complete innings, allowing 4 runs (2 earned) off of 5 hits and 2 walks. Cahill and Herrera relieved him, both pitching magnificently, allowing only 3 hits and 2 walks in just under 4 innings. Labrie and Freitas were the offensive players of the game, both going 2-4 with doubles.

GCL Nationals — OFF DAY
Notes: The GCL Nationals are just 2-8 after their first 10 games, with completions of suspended games scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday against the GCL Cardinals and GCL Mets, respectively. They travel to Kissimmee on Thursday to face the GCL Astros, then return to Viera on Friday to face the GCL Marlins.

DSL Nationals W, 4-2 @ DSL Marlins
Starting Pitcher: Adalberto Mieses (ND) 7IP 5H 2R 1ER 3BB 5K 1HR
Pitching Star: Inocencio Heredia (W, 2-0) 2IP 1H 0R 0BB 1K
Hitting Star #1: Wilmer Difo 2-4, 2R, SB
Hitting Star #2: Victor Chavez 2-3
Notes: An error and a wild pitch plated two ninth-inning runs to help the DSL Nationals defeat the DSL Marlins 4-2. The D-Nats pitchers combined to limit the D-Marlins to just two runs on six hits, the only earned run coming on home run. Shortstop Wilmer Difo paced the nine-hit attack with two hits and a stolen base and turned a double play on defense.

Last Night In Woodbridge

A complete-game shutout for Brad Peacock

Power took a back seat to efficiency, as Brad Peacock struck out just four but went the distance on 99 pitches to record a five-hit shutout against the Wilmington Blue Rocks last night.

Sixty-four of those 99 pitches were for strikes, but more impressive: just five of the 27 outs were flyballs to the outfield, though the final one had folks holding their breath as Mike Burgess chased down a deep drive to right-center off Wilmington’s cleanup hitter Jamie Romak. Twelve of the 27 outs were on the ground, with Peacock dashing over to first three times on balls that first baseman Bill Rhinehart had snagged or knocked down, twice beating speedy lefthanded batters.

Peacock faced just four batters over the minimum, thanks in no small part to Chris Curran gunning down Eric Hosmer at second to lead off the fourth, and a round-the-horn double play in the sixth. He would retire the last 11 batters he faced and had five 1-2-3 innings en route to winning his third game of the season.

It was the first nine-inning shutout thrown by a Potomac pitcher since Michael O’Connor blanked the Kinston Indians on August 27, 2005.

Meanwhile, on offense, the P-Nats gave Peacock five runs of support on ten hits, highlighted by a two-out double by Nick Moresi in the first and two-out triple in the bottom of the eighth, which sat down Dan Leatherman who had been warming up to pitch the top of the ninth.

With the win, Potomac improves to 5-6 in the 2nd half and takes a 2-1 series lead against first-place Wilmington. Lefty Evan Bronson (3-5, 3.94) is scheduled to face off against Ivor Hodgson (4-6, 4.97) in the finale tonight.

Sunday’s News and Notes

Vermont wins its 8th straight, Suns out last Power to highlight Sunday’s action

The Quick Rundown…

Team Yesterday’s Result Today’s Game Pitching Matchup
Syracuse Chiefs Lost, 10-2 vs. Buffalo, 7:00 p.m. Matt Chico (3-4, 4.24) vs.
Tobi Stoner (4-7, 5.28)
Harrisburg Senators Lost, 5-2 vs. Richmond, 7:05 p.m. John Lannan (1-1, 4.85) vs.
David Mixon (8-4, 3.40)
Potomac Nationals Lost, 13-4 vs. Wilmington, 7:03 p.m. Brad Peacock (2-9, 4.52) vs.
Timothy Melville (2-9, 5.74)
Hagerstown Suns Won, 11-9 vs. West Virginia, 7:05 p.m. Mitchell Clegg (8-1, 2.60) vs.
Jason Erickson (5-4, 2.88)
Vermont Lake Monsters Won, 4-3 vs. Williamsport, 7:05 p.m. Chad Jenkins (1-1, 2.70) vs.
Eric Pettis (2-0, 0.53)
GCL Nationals Lost, 8-5 vs.
GCL Marlins
OFF DAY N/A
DSL Nationals OFF DAY @ DSL Marlins, 10:30 a.m. Adalberto Mieses (2-2, 3.52) vs.
Helpi Reyes (1-2, 3.63)

Syracuse Chiefs L, 10-2 vs. Buffalo
Starting Pitcher: Arnesen (L, 2-5) 4⅓ IP 7H 7ER 2BB 3K 1HR
Pitching Star: Wilkie 1IP 1H 0R 1BB 1K
Hitting Star # 1: Maxwell 2-4, R
Hitting Star # 2: Davis 2-4
Notes: Despite being able to outscore their opponents dramatically in yesterday’s game, the same could not be said for the Chiefs today as they lost by a score of 10-2 versus Buffalo. Falling to 2-5, Arnesen took the loss, going 4⅓ innings, allowing a whopping seven runs on seven hits and two walks. The only pitcher to have a decent outing was Wilkie, who pitched a scoreless inning, surrendering a hit and a walk while striking out one.

Harrisburg Senators L, 7-2 vs. Trenton
Starting Pitcher: Milone (L, 6-4) 4+ IP 3H 2R 2ER 3BB 7K
Pitching Star: Kimball 2IP 0H 1R 0ER 2BB 3K
Hitting Star # 1: Pahuta  2-4, RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Solano 2-4, RBI
Notes: The Sens took an early 1-0 lead in the fifth, but couldn’t hold it as the Thunder struck for two in the fifth, one in the sixth, and two more in the seventh to go up 7-1. Harrisburg cut away at that lead in the 9th with one run but it was a little too late as Trenton took this one 7-2. Starter Tom Milone went four-plus innings giving up three hits, two runs and three walks in his fourth loss against six wins.

Potomac Nationals L, 13-4 vs. Wilmington
Starting Pitcher: Frias (L, 2-4) 2IP 7H 6R 6ER 1BB 1K 2HR
Pitching Star: Dill 1IP 0H 0R 0BB 1K
Hitting Star #1: Jacobsen 2-3, R, 2RBI
Hitting Star #2: Lozada 2-4, R
They Call Me The Breeze: Moore 0-4, 4K
Notes: See Sue’s take on the smackdown in Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown Suns L, 5-2 @ Trenton
Starting Pitcher: Demny (W, 6-2) 5⅓ IP 5H 2R 1ER 1BB 6K
Pitching Star: Wort, R (H, 4) 1⅔ IP 0H 0R 0BB 1K
Pitching Un-Star #1: Garcia 1IP 3H 3ER 1BB 1K
Pitching Un-Star #2: Vasquez ⅓ IP 2H 4R 3ER 1BB 1K
Hitting Star # 1: Kobernus 2-5, 2B, 3RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Ramirez 2-5 2R 1HR, 1RBI
Notes: Thanks to four runs in the fifth inning, Hagerstown grabbed an early lead and didn’t let go, beating West Virginia by a score of 11-9 (Although… it did get scary in the late innings!). Paul Demny earned his 6th win, pitching 5⅓ innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits and a single walk. Pitching got a little ugly as Luis Garcia coughed up three runs on three hits and Wanel Vasquez managed only one out before giving up four runs (3 earned). Fortunately, however, the offense proved strong enough to overcome the poor relief pitching. Hitters of the day were Jeff Kobernus, who went 2-5 with a double and 3RBI, and J.P. Ramirez, who homered in the sixth inning — his eighth of the year.

Vermont Lake Monsters W, 4-3 vs. Williamsport
Starting Pitcher: Jordan (ND) 5⅓ IP 5H 3R 2ER 2BB 5K 1HR
Pitching Star: Bates (W, 1-0) 2⅔ IP 1H 0R 0BB 0K
Hitting Star #1: Freitas 2-4, R, 2B, RBI
Hitting Star #2: Moore 1-3, BB, RBI
Notes:  Despite Williamsport taking an early 3-0 lead, Vermont did not let that get to them, and bounced back, scoring a single run in the 4th, and three runs in the 6th to win the game by a score of 4-3, their eighth straight victory. Taylor Jordan got the no decision, going 5⅓ innings, allowing three runs (2 earned) on five hits and two walks. Colin Bates got the win, pitching until the ninth, allowing only one hit.

GCL Nationals L, 8-5 @ GCL Marlins
Starting Pitcher: Tyler Hanks 3IP 5H 1R 1ER 1BB 2K
Pitching “Star”: John Santiago ⅔ IP 1H 0R 1BB 0K
Hitting Star #1: Roberto Perez 2-3, R
Hitting Star #2: Wander Nunez 2-4, R, RBI
Notes: The bullpen just couldn’t stop the bleeding after starter Tyler Hanks left the game, as four of the five relievers that followed him were charged with runs. The GCL Marlins posted a picket fence with single runs in the third through seventh innings before breaking out with a three-run inning in the bottom of the eighth to turn a 5-5 game into an 8-5 win. Two of three errors came in the fateful eighth, making all three runs unearned. The loss was the seventh straight for the G-Nats, who are now 2-8 in the GCL East Division.

DSL Nationals — OFF DAY
Notes: The D-Nats stand at 16-14, four games off the pace in the Boca Chica South Division, with home games this week against the Yankees1, Phillies and Orioles2 while visiting the Marlins, Mets1 and Giants.

Last Night In Woodbridge

A five-run first got the fireworks started a little early…

Eric Hosmer homered twice in his first two at-bats to lead the 19-hit assault against the Potomac Nationals, as the Wilmington Blue Rocks pummeled the Potomac Nationals 13-4 in Woodbridge, VA.

Starting pitcher David Lamb was outstanding, striking out 10 batters over 6⅔ innings and allowing just three hits as the Potomac nine looked helpless against his 94mph heater and…

Psst.

What?

What are you doing? This is a site for the Nationals prospects.

But they were awful, can’t I just write it front-runner style? You know, like they do on TV?

No.

Aw, crap…

*ahem*

The fireworks started early last night in Woodbridge, as the visiting Wilmington Blue Rocks exploded for five runs in the first inning and put up three spots in the third and fifth innings en route to a 13-4 victory.

Marcos Frias’s first home start for Potomac in nearly two months was a disaster, as he allowed six runs on seven hits over two innings, including both Hosmer home runs. The Wilmington batters had no trouble with his arrow-straight fastball and laid off his secondary pitches, which were also flat.

Jesse Estrada, who followed Frias on the mound, was also no mystery to the Blue Rocks, as they battered him for six runs on eight hits over 2⅓ innings. Relievers Patrick McCoy, Clayton Dill, and Carlos Martinez did managed to stem the bleeding, combining for 4⅔ innings of relief with one run (a home run, naturally) on four hits.

As previously reported, Wilmington’s starter was dominant, working his mid-90s heater with a low-80s change and a high-70s curve to baffle the PNats. The 2008 fifth-rounder lowered his ERA to 1.55 and registered his seventh quality start in 10 appearances with Wilmington.

Potomac would score its four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning, highlighted by a Steve Lombardozzi double for an RBI, a two-run single by Robby Jacobsen and a sac fly by Mike Burgess, giving the reported crowd of 9,250 something to cheer about before the team’s signature Fireworks show.

###

Unfortunately, the old saw “well, at least no one got hurt” did not apply either, as catcher Derek Norris took a foul tip to his left forearm in the first and left the game two innings later. Robert Daski of the News & Messenger reports that the team will take a wait-and-see approach to the injury. Norris has already spent two stints on the DL: The first for his left wrist, injured in Spring Training; the second for his beaning in May.

Saturday’s News and Notes

Three wins, four losses on Saturday in the Nats’ minors

The Quick Rundown…

Team Yesterday’s Result Today’s Game Pitching Matchup
Syracuse Chiefs Lost, 5-3 vs. Buffalo, 6:30 p.m. Erik Arnesen (2-4, 4.08) vs.
Dillon Gee (7-5, 5.00)
Harrisburg Senators Lost, 6-4 @ Trenton, 7:05 p.m. Tom Milone (6-3, 3.34) vs.
Hector Noesi (5-1, 1.90)
Potomac Nationals Won, 4-2 vs. Wilmington, 6:35 p.m. Marcos Frias (2-3, 5.75) vs.
David Lamb (3-2, 1.77)
Hagerstown Suns Lost, 4-2 vs. West Virginia, 7:05 p.m. Paul Demny (5-2, 2.63) vs.
Kyle McPherson (5-6, 3.97)
Vermont Lake Monsters Won, 8-1 vs. Williamsport, 4:05 p.m. Taylor Jordan (1-0, 1.23) vs.
Kevin Angelle (2-0, 0.47)
GCL Nationals Lost, 2-1 vs.
GCL Astros
@ GCL Marlins, 12:00 p.m. TBD vs. TBD
DSL Nationals Won, 10-1 vs.
DSL Cubs2
OFF DAY N/A

Syracuse Chiefs L, 5-3 @ Scranton/Wilkes-Barre
Starting Pitcher: Martis (ND) 5IP 4H 2R 2ER 2BB 0K 1HR
Pitching Star: Villone 1IP 1H 0R 0BB 0K
Hitting Star # 1: Orr 3-4, 2R, 2B, BB, HR, RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Botts 2-4, R, 2B
Notes: Syracuse scored two early in the 2nd, but Scranton kept up with them and scored two in the same inning to keep things square. In the 4th Syracuse took the lead scoring one run, but when the 6th rolled around Scranton was able to score three of their own to take the lead and the game from the Chiefs 5-3. Starting pitcher Shairon Martis pitched five innings, giving up four hits, two runs and two walks but received a no-decision the loss.

Harrisburg Senators L, 6-4 @ Trenton
Starting Pitcher: Thompson (L, 4-10) 5⅔ IP 9H 5R 5ER 2BB 2K 3HR
Pitching Star: Martin 2⅓ IP 2H 1R 1ER 1BB 5K
Hitting Star # 1: Coon 2-3, R, 2B, RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Espinosa 2-4, R, 2B, RBI 
Notes: The long ball was Aaron Thompson’s downfall, as all five runs he allowed scored via the home run, taking his league-leading 10th loss and raising his ERA to a second-worst 5.79ERA. He was staked to an early 2-0 lead with a pair of runs in the top of the first but allowed the Thunder to tie in the 2nd and go ahead with another two runs coughed up in the 3rd to make it 4-2. Harrisburg scored one in the 5th to cut the Thunder lead to 4-3, but that’s as close as they would get as the Trenton bullpen pitched three hitless and scoreless frames to nail this down at 6-4.

Potomac Nationals W, 4-2 vs. Wilmington
Starting Pitcher: Zimmermann 2IP 2H 0R 0BB 0K
Pitching Star: Alaniz 6IP 3H 2R 0ER 1BB 5K
Hitting Star #1: Norris 1-3, 2B, BB, 2RBI
Hitting Star #2: Lombardozzi 1-3, 2R, 2B, RBI
Notes: See Sue’s take in Last Night In Woodbridge

Hagerstown Suns L, 4-2 @ Lakewood
Starting Pitcher: Rosenbaum (L, 1-5) 6⅔ IP 7H 3R 1ER 3BB 6K  
Pitching Star: Morrison 1⅓ IP 1H 1R 0ER 0BB 1K
Hitting Star # 1: Ramirez 2-4, R, 2B
Hitting Star # 2: Souza 2-4
Notes: Dan Rosenbaum’s hard luck continues, as he took his 5th loss last night thanks to two unearned runs. He still managed to record a quality start, going 6⅔ innings and allowing three runs overall on seven hits and three walks while striking out six. The Suns offense also struggled, scoring just two runs on eight hits and stranding nine runners. Neither team was a defensive stalwart; the Blue Claws committing four errors, the Suns three.

Vermont Lake Monsters W, 8-1 @ Lowell
Starting Pitcher: McCatty (W, 1-1) 5IP 1H 0R 3BB 3K
Pitching Star: Eusebio 3IP 2H 1R 1ER 2BB 2K
Hitting Star # 1: King  3-5, R, 2B, 4RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Moldenhauer 1-4, R, BB, HR, RBI
Notes: The Lake Monsters remain red hot, taking their 7th straight last night against the Lowell Spinners 8-1. Vermont’s pitching staff kept Lowell batters quiet throughout this one. Starter Shane McCatty went five innings giving up only one hit and three walks with three strikeouts in this one. The Spinners moundsmen weren’t so efficient, walking six to enable the Lake Monsters to score eight times on eight hits, though that included two doubles and a home run.

GCL Nationals L, 2-1 vs. GCL Astros
Starter/Pitching Star: A.J. Morris 4IP 1H 0R 0BB 3K
Hitting Star #1: Jeremy Mayo 2-4, R
Hitting Star #2: Angel Montilla 2-4
Notes: It was a good old-fashioned pitchers’ duel in Viera, with a dozen doughnuts on the scoreboard before the GCL Astros pushed across a run in the top of the seventh. They would add another in the ninth to make it 2-0 before the G-Nats would stage a two-out rally to pull within one, but that would be the final: GCL Astros 2, GCL Nationals 1. Rehabbing A.J. Morris went four innings and allowed just one hit while striking out three.

DSL Nationals W, 10-1 @ DSL Cubs2 [Box score not available on MiLB.com]
Starter/Pitching Star: Silvio Medina (W, 2-2) 6IP 5H 0R 2BB 4K
Hitting Star #1: Edgar Gonzalez 2-6, R, 2B; OF assist
Hitting Star #2: Nelalexfred Ortega 2-6, R, RBI
Hitting Star #2: Bienvenido Valdez 3-6, R, RBI
Notes: After taking a 16-2 beating on Friday, the DSL Nationals put the boot to the head of the DSL Cubs2 by a 10-1 count. The top third of the order went 7-for-18 combined, while starting pitcher Silvio Medina tossed six scoreless innings to even his record at 2-2.

Last Night In Woodbridge

’08 teammates Zimmermann and Alaniz combine for eight strong innings to down the Blue Rocks 4-2

The Potomac Nationals returned home last night to host the Wilmington Blue Rocks for their traditional cash cow 4th of July festivities and sent the reported crowd of 5,908 home happy with a 4-2 win.

Jordan Zimmermann returned to Woodbridge for the first time since early 2008, pitching two scoreless innings in a rehab start from last year’s Tommy John surgery. The surprise #5 starter in the ’09 Washington rotation threw 25 pitches, 16 for strikes. His velocity appeared fine, but his location was a little lacking.

Zimmermann was quoted by Robert Daski in the News & Messenger as believing that he’ll be with the team for a total of three or four appearances, which would have him pitching on the road in Frederick and against Salem in Boston, then again in Woodbridge against the Kinston Indians on Wednesday, July 14th.

Adrian Alaniz, a teammate of Zimmermann’s in ’08 at Potomac, followed the righthander with six solid innings of relief, allowing just two unearned runs on three hits with one walk and five strikeouts.

The offense would leverage the mistakes of the Wilmington Blue Rocks pitchers to score a pair of runs in the third, with Dan Lyons and Steve Lombardozzi drawing walks and Derek Norris driving them in with a double over the head of the centerfielder to take a 2-0 lead.

They would take advantage of poor Blue Rocks defense in the fifth. With a runner on first and one out, Lombardozzi would lay down a bunt to the third baseman, who threw wide of first, enabling the runner to score and Lombardozzi to take second. After a passed ball and a walk, Mike Burgess bounced a hard grounder over the Wilmington first baseman for an RBI single that would give the PNats a 4-1 lead.

They would return the favor for the game’s final run in the top of the 8th as a two-out error and triple broke up a streak of eight batters set down by Alaniz, but Zach Dials snuffed any hopes of a comeback by striking out the side in the 9th to earn the save.

With the win, Potomac improves to 4-5 in the second half, 1½ games behind Wilmington and Frederick for the Northern Division lead. The two teams will meet again tonight, with Marcos Frias taking the hill for the PNats against John Lamb for the Blue Rocks.

Friday’s News and Notes

News & Notes from Friday’s action in the Nats minors

The Quick Rundown…

Team Yesterday’s Result Today’s Game Pitching Matchup
Syracuse Chiefs Won, 7-0 @ Scranton/Wilkes-Barre,
7:05 p.m.
Shairon Martis (5-5, 4.07) vs.
Zach McAllister (6-5, 4.24)
Harrisburg Senators Lost, 7-2 @ Trenton, 7:05 p.m. Aaron Thompson (4-9, 5.63) vs.
D.J. Mitchell (6-3, 4.70)
Potomac Nationals Lost, 4-2 vs. Wilmington, 6:35 p.m. Jordan Zimmermann (rehab) vs.
Buddy Baumann (2-0, 1.97)
Hagerstown Suns Lost, 8-7 (10 inn.) @ Lakewood, 11:05 a.m. Dan Rosenbaum (1-4, 2.14) vs.
Joshua Zeid (5-2, 3.07)
Vermont Lake Monsters Won, 7-3 @ Lowell, 5:05 p.m. Shane McCatty (0-1, 5.40) vs.
Roman Mendez (1-2, 6.55)
GCL Nationals Suspended vs.
GCL Mets
vs. GCL Astros, 12:00 p.m. Tyler Hanks (1-0, 0.00) vs.
Francis Ramirez(1-0, 2.70)
DSL Nationals Lost, 16-2
vs. DSL Giants
@ DSL Cubs2, 10:30 a.m. Silvio Medina (1-2, 3.33) vs.
Amaury Paulino (1-0, 0.84)

Syracuse Chiefs W, 7-0 vs. Lehigh Valley
Starter/Pitching Star: Jones (W, 1-2) 8IP 1H 0R 0BB 4K
Hitting Star # 1: Mench 2-3, 1R,1-2B, 1HR, 2RBI, 1BB
Hitting Star # 2: Botts  2-4, 1R, 1-2B, 2RBI,
Notes: Syracuse had control of this one all the way to the end, starting pitcher Jason Jones did an amazing job, pitching eight scoreless innings while giving up just one hit, no walks and striking out four. The Chiefs began their scoring in the top of the 1st with one run and added two in the 4th, three more in the 8th and one more in the 9th to sweeten the win all the more as they cruised to the 7-0 victory.

Harrisburg Senators L, 7-2 vs. Trenton
Starting Pitcher: Kown (L, 2-4) 2⅓ IP 6H 7R 7ER 3BB 3K 1HR
Pitching Star: Spradlin 3⅔ IP 0H 0R 1BB 2K
Hitting Star # 1: Martinez 2-4, R, SB
Hitting Star # 2: Lowrance 2-4
Notes: In this one, Harrisburg outhit Trenton but did not outscore them. The Sens kept the game scoreless until the bottom of the 3rd when the Thunder rolled, scoring a whopping seven runs. Harrisburg was able to score two runs, one in the 5th and one in the 8th to make this one look less of a blow out. Starter Andrew Kown went 2⅓ innings giving up six hits, all seven runs, three walks and one home run.

Potomac Nationals L, 4-2 @ Winston-Salem
Starter/Pitching Star: Holder (ND) 5⅓ IP 6H 1R 1ER 0BB 3K
Pyrotechnician: VanAllen (BS, 3; L, 1-3) ⅔ IP 3H 2R 2ER 0BB 0K 0HR WP 1-1 IR-S
Hitting Star #1: Rhinehart 1-3, R, 2B
Hitting Star #2: Burgess 1-4, R, HR, RBI
Notes: Trevor Holder pitched into the sixth with a 1-0 lead, but reliever Cory VanAllen was a welcome sight to the Dash batters, who uncorked a wild pitch and gave up a single and double before retiring a batter. The Dash would go up 3-1 before Mike Burgess answered with a solo home run in the top of the seventh to make it 3-2. Back-to-back two-out doubles in the bottom half of the seventh gave Winston-Salem the insurance run for a 4-2 win.

Hagerstown Suns L, 8-7 @ Lakewood (10 Innings)
Starting Pitcher: Smoker (ND) 4IP 6H 5ER 4BB 3K
Pitching Star: Erb 2IP 1H 0R 0BB 1K
Reversion To The Mean: Garcia (L, 1-1) 4BF 3H 1R 1ER 1BB 0K
Hitting Star # 1: Kobernus 2-3, 2BB, 2RBI
Hitting Star # 2: Nieto 2-3, R, BB, RBI
Notes: Lakewood started the scoring with one in the 1st and added four more in the bottom of the 2nd. Hagerstown answered with six of their own scoring two runs in each of the 4th, 5th and 6th innings. Lakewood wouldn’t stay down though as they added another run in the 5th to put them back on even ground. The Suns regained the lead in the 8th at 7-6. A throwing error on a steal of second set up a sac fly to enable Lakewood to, um, claw back to even at 7-7. Luis Garcia did not retire a batter in the tenth, as all four batters he faced reached base for the 8-7 walkoff win.

Vermont Lake Monsters, W, 7-3 vs. Lowell
Starting Pitcher: McKenzie 4IP 3H 2R 2ER 1BB 2K
Pitching Star: Graham (W, 1-0) 2IP 0H 0R 1BB 2K
Hitting Star #1: Freitas 2-5, BB, 2RBI
Hitting Star #2: Moore 2-3, 2B, 2BB, RBI
Notes:  Despite Lowell taking an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first, Vermont bounced back and fought hard to earn a 7-3 victory. McKenzie got the no-decision, going four complete innings, allowing two runs off three hits and a walk. He also struck out two. Ben Graham got the win, pitching two scoreless innings, allowing only one base runner via a walk. David Freitas and Wade Moore were the players of the games, going collectively 4-8, with three BBs and three RBIs.

GCL Nationals vs. GCL Mets — Suspended
Notes: The two teams will finish things when they next meet on July 7th.

DSL Nationals L, 16-2 vs. DSL Giants
Starting Pitcher: “Slim” Diaz (L, 2-3) 3⅓ IP 5H 5R 4ER 1BB 4K
Pitching Star: None
Hitting Star: Jean Valdez 2-2, R, 2B
Notes: An eight-run sixth turned a 6-1 beating into a 14-1 laugher as the DSL Nationals eventually fell 16-2. D-Nats pitchers amazingly only gave up four extra-base hits, but perhaps that was the shock of D-Giants seeing the ball over the plate as they also walked ten batters.

Halfway There… Hagerstown Edition

A look at the Suns at the midway point of the 2010 campaign

The Potomac edition was lost in the changeover, but here’s our Hagerstown guy’s report on the Suns. And don’t forget to visit his blog Musings about Sports and other important items

Former Suns

Trevor Holder (23)
Holder walks few, but seems to be right off the non-Strasburg Washington template: college pitcher, good control, average velocity. Nothing special, nothing negative to say either. If he can keep the level of control as he moves up, I can see him as maybe a 4 or 5 starter…

Jack McGeary (21)
McGeary was starting to show signs of removing the rust from not pitching in 2008. Two bad outings inflated his numbers, but his curve was so much better than 2009 that it looked like a different pitcher. Tommy John surgery ends his 2010 season and leaves unanswered questions.

Glenn Gibson (22)
Once touted prospect has good K numbers, but the fastball was all too often straight and fat and the 8+ ERA was the expected result.

Suns Pitchers

Paul Applebee (22)
Fringy stuff limits the ceiling.

Patrick Arnold (21)
Could be a late bloomer, but seems to be stuck in no man’s land between hard thrower and sharp control pitcher

Mitchell Clegg (23)
Nice numbers,but misses few bats.Looks like long relief is his best role long term

Paul Demny (20)
Ranges from dominant to dominated.Either strikes out a lot or very few. Has shown enough flashes to be intriguing and stay on the radar.

Shane Erb (23)
Hittable and walking batters is no way to go through life, son

Luis Garcia (23)
Almost unhittable in his last five outings, Garcia was awful at Potomac. [Ed. note: “Awful” is kind]

Kyle Morrison (23)
His nice strikeout numbers (52 K in 43 innings) give me hope for him despite having pedestrian stats otherwise.

Daniel Rosenbaum (22)
Pitch-to-contact lefty, throws strikes and keeps the ball down. Poor run support is the reason for the bad W/L numbers.

Josh Smoker (21)
Horrible numbers, but occasionally fires a game that is interesting enough to make you think that he is turning things around. A 2011 return to Hagerstown might be what he needs for a full comeback.

Wanel Vasquez (23)
Ummm, no.

Dean Weaver (22)
Doesn’t throw as hard as his body frame indicates that he should, but looks solid enough as a bullpen arm that moves through the system

Rob Wort (21)
Worth following as a sleeper, strikes out more than a man an inning and has been used some as a closer.

Graham Hicks (20)
If he adds some velocity when he fills out, could be a sleeper. Not a power arm, but has nice control.

Suns Hitters

Justin Bloxom (22)
A blistering June puts Bloxom on the radar screen, but all of his homers came in June as well. I have seen this film before with Bill Rhinehart and Tyler Moore, so I’m not too excited yet.

Jeff Kobernus (22)
For a guy with zero homers, I think Kobernus will develop power. Bigger question is health: He strikes me as having the body type of a player that will struggle a lot with hamstring/leg injuries

Sean Nicol (23, DL)
Nicol looks to me to be an organizational soldier type, I just don’t see him hitting enough as the competition increases.

Francisco Soriano (23)
Think Michael Martinez with a little more speed and a hair more pop. Where’s Martinez? There’s your answer. Versatility will help him move up, much as it has Martinez.

Brett Newsome (23)
Not enough playing time for this soon-to-be 24-year-old. If you cannot find it here, then where?

Justino Cuevas (21)
Zero pop + average speed = non-prospect

Steven Souza (21)
A bad June balances out a May that showed hopeful signs. Power is up this season as is RBI (season total to date higher than all of last season), but I just am uneasy about hitching to this wagon as a prospect. I still think that he could be the type of player that will play better against higher levels of competition.

Sandy Leon (21)
Leon is a solid defensive catcher with little power. I see him as similar to the Jhonathan Solano’s that move up and down the system according to need. One of those types eventually make it as the big league backup, but none are real prospects.

Adrian Nieto (20)
Perhaps the biggest disappointment of the season. Some is not Nieto’s fault as Sandy Leon has gotten the lion’s share of playing time, to my surprise. Nieto has yet to hit a homer as a professional and isn’t strong enough defensively to overcome the lack of a bat. I do think he has room to improve and I like his arm as a plus feature. Nieto was thought to be a good hitting catcher coming into the ’08 draft, but his swing seems to be slower than I expected.

J.R. Higley (22)
Love the arm and defensive skills,but the bat has struggled. Higley has some power and I think he gains more as his body fills in. Upside: 4th outfielder with some power

Destin Hood (20)
Athletic and will develop more power,Hood looks to me to be the best position hope on this team. He has good speed, but has been caught stealing six of eight tries. The fix could be as simple as some extra instruction. Good enough defensively, but he won’t have the power of Michael Burgess, though I like him more as an all around player.

Eury Perez (20)
Speed to burn, but bad breaks in the outfield and an average (to be generous) arm make me wonder what the hype from the fans is all about. Perez’s game (and future) will be all about his plate contact. Maybe he can be Nyjer Morgan but he could also be Pedro Powell. Either way, I think he was overrated before the season.

J.P.Ramirez (20)
Love the power. Take that away and you have an organizational soldier. Defensively, he can only be a left fielder in the National League and even then, he is below-average with the arm and leather. Ramirez is vulnerable to gas high and junk low, but the bat gives you hope and it wouldn’t surprise me a bit to see Ramirez mature his plate discipline and be sent to an AL team in a few years.