Apr 092013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 8-1 @ Buffalo,
6:05 p.m.
Ohlendorf (1-0, 0.00) vs.
Germano (1-0, 7.94)
Harrisburg Lost, 9-2 vs. New Britain,
7:00 p.m.
Broderick (0-0, 5.40) vs.
Darnell (0-0, 0.00)
Potomac Lost, 7-6 vs. Salem,
7:05 p.m.
Hill (0-0, 0.00) vs.
Cuevas (8-2, 1.40 @ SS-A)
Hagerstown Won, 7-6
(10 inn.)
@ Lakewood,
6:35 p.m.
Anderson (0-0, 3.60) vs.
Guth (0-1, 9.00)

Syracuse 8 Buffalo 1
• Rosenbaum (W, 1-0) 5IP, 4H, 0R, 2BB, 2K
• Tatusko (H, 1) 3IP, 4H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 4K
• Van Ostrand 4-5, 2R, 2B
• Kobernus 3-5, 2R, 2B, 3B, RBI
• Perez 2-6

Danny Rosenbaum tossed five shutout innings to win his AAA debut as the Chiefs stampeded the Bisons, 8-1. A four-run first also gave Rosenbaum room to breathe, as the 25-year-old gave up just four hits and two walks while striking out two. Jeff Kobernus was a homer shy of the cycle while going 3-for-5, while Jimmy Van Ostrand went 4-for-5 as eight of the nine Syracuse batters hit safely in the 16-hit assault. Ryan Tatusko rebounded from a rough outing on Saturday to turn in three bullpen-saving innings and earn his first hold of the season. Roster moves: RHP Jeremy Accardo was placed on the 7-Day DL; LHP Bobby Bramhall was assigned from XST

New Britain 9 Harrisburg 2
• Karns (L, 0-1) 3⅔ IP, 7H, 7R, 7ER, 3BB, 3K, 2HR
• Frias 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Goodwin 2-5, R, 3B, OF assist at 3B
• Johnson 2-5, 2B, RBI

Nathan Karns’s AA debut was one to forget as the 2012 Nats Minor League Pitcher of the Year was torched for seven runs on seven hits, including a pair of home runs in just three and 2/3rds innings in a 9-2 Harrisburg loss to New Britain. Elevated fastballs and poor command was to blame, said manager Matt LeCroy in the Patriot-News gamer. Brian Goodwin and Josh Johnson combined for four of the five Senators hits, including a leadoff triple in the ninth by Goodwin followed by an RBI single by Johnson for the final Harrisburg run.

Salem 7 Potomac 6
• Turnbull (L, 0-1) 4⅓ IP, 9H, 7R, 6ER, BB, K, HR
• Hawkins 2⅔ IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 2K, 1-1 IR-S
• Mirowski 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Burns 2-4, R, 2B, 2RBI
• Oduber 2-3

The bullpen put out the fire, but damage was done early Last Night In Woodbridge.

Hagerstown 7 Lakewood 6 (10 inn.)
• Encarnacion (ND) 5IP, 3H, R, ER, 2BB, 5K
• Hudgins (BS, 1; W, 1-0) 1IP, 2H, 3R, 3ER, BB, K, 0HR
• Benincasa (SV, 1) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K
• Manuel 2-4, 3R, BB, RBI
• Perez 2-3, R, 2B, 2BB, SB

A 10th-inning rally took the edge off a 9th-inning meltdown as the Suns won in extras, 7-6. Hagerstown starter Pedro Encarnacion allowed just a run on three hits and two walks while striking out five and was in line for a win when the BlueClaws rallied for three in the 9th to tie at 6-6. Craig Manuel led off the 10th with a single, took second on a walk by Stephen Perez and was bunted over to third by Mike McQuillan. Lakewood intentionally walked the next batter to set up a double play but after a strikeout, Wes Schill drew a two-out walk to force in Manuel. Robert Benincasa set down the side in the 10th to earn the save and “give” Will Hudgins the dreaded blown-save-win.

Apr 082013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 8-6 @ Buffalo,
6:05 p.m.
Rosenbaum (8-10, 3.94 @ AA) vs.
Redmond (8-11, 3.63)
Harrisburg Won, 5-4
(11 inn.)
vs. Bowie,
2:00 p.m.
Karns (8-4, 2.26 @ A+) vs.
TBD
Potomac Lost, 11-6 vs. Salem,
7:05 p.m.
Turnbull (4-5, 5.16 @ A-) vs.
Aguilera (1-3, 4.42 @ SS-A)
Hagerstown Lost, 2-1 @ Lakewood,
6:35 p.m.
Encarnacion (0-1, 6.06) vs.
Mecias (0-2, 2.16 @ GCL)

Syracuse 8 Lehigh Valley 6
• Perry 5IP, 9H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 2K
• Crotta (W, 1-0) 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K
• Brown 2-5, 2R, 2HR. 4RBI
• Walters 2-4, R, 2B, HR, 2RBI
• Rhymes 2-4, R, BB, 2RBI

Two-run homers by Zach Walters (third of the year) and Corey Brown (second of the game), turned a 6-4 deficit into the eventual 8-6 decision as Syracuse took two of three from Lehigh Valley. Jeff Mandel and Mike Crotta combined for four scoreless innings in relief of starter Ryan Perry, who gave up all six Iron Piugs runs on nine hits and two walks over the first five innings. Eury Perez extended his hit streak to 21 games with an infield single in the 9th.

Harrisburg 5 Bowie 4 (11 inn.)
• Clay 5IP, 8H, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 4K, HR
• Krol 2IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 0K
• Lehman 2IP, 1H, 0R, 2BB, 1K
• Goodwin 1-3, R, 2BB, HBP
• Bloxom 2-4, R

The Senators broke up a combined no-hit bid in the 8th, rallied for three in the 9th, then took a gift-wrapped 5-4 win from Bowie in the 11th. Ricky Hague, who had broken up the no-no with an infield single, reached on an error (#5 for the Baysox) with two outs, took second on a single by Brian Goodwin, third on a wild pitch, and scored the gamewinner on a single by Sean Nicol. Aaron Barrett, who tossed a scoreless top of the 11th, got the win following five combined shutdown innings from Ian Krol, Rob Wort, and Pat Lehman. Senators starter Caleb Clay gave up all four Bowie runs on eight hits and and two walks in five innings.

Lynchburg 11 Potomac 6
• Cole (ND) 5⅓ IP, 7H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 7K
• Self (BS, 1; L, 0-1) ⅔ IP, 3H, 4R, 3ER, 2BB, 1K, HR
• Martinson 2-3, R, BB, HR, 2RBI, SB
• Burns 1-2, 3BB
• Sacnhez 2-4, 3B, BB, RBI
• Ramsey 2-4, R, RBI

Lynchburg did all it could to lose, but Potomac was a too-gracious host on Sunday Afternoon In Woodbridge

Delmarva 2 Hagerstown 1
• Pena 5IP, 3H, R, ER, 2BB, 2K
• Dupra 3IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Miller 2-4, R, HR, RBI
• Martinez 1-3, BB
• Rest of lineup 0-for-20

Delmarva pitchers walked eight, but allowed just three hits in a 2-1 pitcher’s duel in Salisbury, Maryland. Just five Hagerstown batters reached second, two by stolen base, as only Estarlin Martinez and Brandon Miller hit safely, with Miller’s solo shot in the 7th accounting for the lone Suns run. Hagerstown starter Ronald Pena gave up the first Shorebirds run on three hits and two walks over the first five innings. Brian Dupra followed with three scoreless frames before giving way to Travis Henke. Delmarva got the gamewinner on a leadoff single, sacrifice, and another single with two outs.

Apr 072013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 5-4
(11 inn.)
@ Lehigh Valley,
1:35 p.m.
Perry (1-1, 4.50) vs
Martin (5-0, 3.18 @ AA)
Harrisburg Won, 6-1 vs. Bowie,
2:00 p.m.
Clay (3-3, 4.61) vs.
Gamboa (8-4, 3.33)
Potomac Lost, 10-6 vs. Lynchburg,
1:05 p.m.
Cole (0-7, 7.82) vs.
Pope (7-8, 6.13)
Hagerstown Won, 5-3;
Lost, 7-3
@ Delmarva,
2:05 p.m.
Pena (1-0, 2.84 @ SS-A) vs.
Kline (0-0, 4.50 @ SS-A)

Lehigh Valley 5 Syracuse 4 (11 inn.)
• Maya (ND) 6⅓ IP, 7H, 3R, 2ER, BB, 4K
• Davis 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Tatusko (L, 0-1) ⅓ IP, 1H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 1K
• Kobernus 3-4, R, HR, 3RBI, CS, E (in LF)
• Owings 2-4

After a wild ninth in which the Chiefs scored a run to tie without hitting the ball out of the infield, the Iron Pigs had the last laugh. Syracuse reliever Ryan Tatusko loaded the bases with three straight one-out walks then gave up the gamewinner when a grounder trickled through a drawn-in infield to give Lehigh Valley a 5-4 win in 11 innings. Jeff Kobernus homered and drove in three to pace the Chiefs’ offense, which struggled with RISP at 1-for-12. Yunesky Maya pitched into the 7th, allowing seven hits and a walk while striking out four.

Harrisburg 6 Bowie 1
• Demny (W, 1-1) 5IP, 2H, 1R, 0ER, 2BB, 6K
• Holder (SV, 1) 4IP, 1H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Nicol 2-4, R, 2B
• Souza 1-3, R, BB, HR, 2RBI, OF assist at 3B
• Hague 1-3, BB, 2RBI

The Senators put up three straight crooked numbers with two-run rallies in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th innings and cruised to a 6-1 win over the Baysox. Steven Souza got the barrage going with a two-run shot as he rocked this pitch over the wall in left-center. It was, however, an all-or-nothing night on offense as Harrisburg also struck out 13 times. Paul Demny’s return to the starting rotation was a good one: an unearned run on two hits and two walks with six strikeouts. Trevor Holder went the rest of the way for a four-inning save, his first as a professional. Geoff Morrow of the Patriot-News is reporting that Matt Skole will go on the D.L. with “a wrist sprain with a small fracture” with a roster move expected sometime today.

Lynchburg 10 Potomac 6
• Jordan (ND) 6IP, 3H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Meza 4BF, 4H, 4R, 4ER, 0BB, 0K, HR
• Bates (L, 0-1) 3BF, 1H, 3R, 0ER, BB, 0K, 1-1 IR-S
• Burns 3-5, R, 3B, SB
• Martinson 2-5, R, 2B, 3B, 2RBI
• 14K’s by Potomac hitters

After six strong innings from Taylor Jordan, the wheels came off the bus in the seventh inning
Last Night In Woodbridge

Hagerstown 5 Delmarva 3 — GAME ONE
• Mooneyham 4IP, 3H, R, ER, 4BB, 2K
• Schwartz (W, 1-0) 3IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 5K, HR
• McQuillan 2-3, R, RBI
• Renda 2-4, 2R, 2B
• Lopez 2-4,

The Suns took full advantage of the Shorebirds’ miscues with two unearned runs being the difference in a 5-3 win over Delmarva. Table-setters Tony Renda and Mike McQuillan combined to go 4-for-7 with three runs scored to lead the Hagerstown “O.” Brett Mooneyham went four innings but also walked four, allowing a run on three hits while fanning two. Blake Schwartz got the win in relief, though he allowed two-run shot in the last of the 6th to cut a 4-1 lead to 4-3 before the Suns tacked on an insurance run in the 7th.

Hagerstown 3 Delmarva 7 — GAME TWO
• Pineyro (L, 0-1) 3IP, 5H, 4R, 4ER, BB, 3K, 3WP
• Harper 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K, 2-0 IR-S
• Martinez 1-2, R, 2BB, RBI, CS
• Miller 2-4, 2B, RBI
• Perez 2-3, R

Ivan Pineyro’s Low-A debut was an ugly one, as the 21-year-old Dominican was rocked for four runs on five hits and a walk as the Suns dropped the nightcap, 7-3. Estarlin Martinez reached base three times, scored a run, and drove in a run while Brandon Miller singled and doubled as all three Hagerstown runs came in the last at-bat in the 7th.

Apr 062013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 11-0 @ Lehigh Valley,
6:35 p.m.
Maya (11-10, 3.88) vs.
Morgan (4-1, 3.53 @ AA)
Harrisburg Lost, 15-7 vs. Bowie,
7:00 p.m.
Demny (6-8, 5.46) vs.
Gausman (0-1, 6.00 @ A+)
Potomac Won, 12-1 vs. Lynchburg,
6:35 p.m.
Jordan (3-4, 4.05 @ A-) vs.
Holland (5-9, 4.04 @ A-)
Hagerstown Postponed @ Delmarva,
4:35 p.m.
Mooneyham (2-2, 4.55 @ SS-A) and
Pineyro (3-2, 5.50 @ SS-A) vs.
Taylor (5-7, 4.33) and
Blackmar (4-3, 3.57 @ SS-A)

Syracuse 11 Lehigh Valley 0
• Roark (W, 1-0) 6IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 7K
• Mandel 1IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Costanzo 3-4, 2R, HR, BB, 4RBI (GS)
• Walters 2-5, R, 2B, HR, RBI
• Perez 2-5, 3R, 3B, SB, 2RBI

The Chiefs continued their butchery of Iron Pigs’ pitching with another 11-run outburst for their second straight win, 11-0. Tanner Roark pitched six no-hit innings and was perfect for 3⅔ before giving up the first of his two walks in the 4th. Jeff Mandel lost the no-no by giving up a leadoff single in the 7th but turned in the first of three scoreless frames from the ‘pen to preserve the shutout. Zach Walters homered again while Mike “Don’t Call Me George” Constanzo hit a grand slam to cap a five-run 6th.

Bowie 15 Harrisburg 7
• Treinen (L, 0-1) 2⅓ IP, 9H, 8R, 8ER, BB, K, 0HR
• Barrett 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Hood 2-4, R
• Skole 1-2, R, 2B, BB, 2RBI

Bowie scored on Harrisburg in eight of nine innings en route to a 15-7 stabbing. Starter Blake Treinen took the brunt of it, giving up eight runs on nine hits and a walk in his AA debut. Aaron Barrett was the sole Senator pitcher to go unscathed, tossing a 1-2-3 ninth. Destin Hood led the Harrisburg offense with a 2-for-4 night. Matt Skole doubled in two in the 1st inning and walked in the 7th but left in the 8th after a collision at first base with a Bowie baserunner. Mayflies and Big Flies has the details plus some color from a real weenie shrinker cold night on City Island.

Potomac 12 Lynchburg 1
• Ray (W, 1-0) 5IP, 3H, 1R, 0ER, BB, 5K
• Holt 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Martinson 1-3, R, HR, RBI, 3BB
• Dykstra 3-5, R, 2B, RBI
• Oduber 3-5, 2R, 2RBI

Potomac’s 2013 home opener turned out to be a laugher Last Night In Woodbridge

HAGERSTOWN — PPD
The heavy rains that swept through eastern Maryland on Thursday night into Friday morning rendered the playing field at Perdue Stadium unplayable, forcing a doubleheader on Saturday.

Apr 052013
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 11-2 @ Lehigh Valley,
7:05 p.m.
Roark (6-17, 4.39) vs.
Familia (4-1, 2.55)
Harrisburg Won, 4-3 vs. Bowie,
7:00 p.m.
Treinen (7-7, 4.37 @ A+) vs.
Pettit (11-3, 3.86)
Potomac OFF DAY vs. Lynchburg,
7:05 p.m.
Ray (4-12, 6.56) vs.
Moore (8-3, 3.86 @ A-)
Hagerstown Lost, 4-3 @ Delmarva,
7:05 p.m.
Pineyro (3-2, 5.50 @ SS-A) vs.
Blackmar (4-3, 3.57 @ SS-A)

Syracuse 11 Lehigh Valley 2
• Ohlendorf (W, 1-0) 6IP, 2H, 0R, BB, 4K
• Romero 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Kobernus 3-4, 2R, 2BB, RBI
• Owings 2-6, 2R, HR, 4RBI
• Marrero 1-3, R, 2BB, 2RBI, SF
• Rosenbaum PH BB, R

Highlighted by a back-to-back jacks from Micah Owings and Zach Walters, Syracuse broke open a 1-0 game with a five-run 3rd and cruised to an 11-2 opening night win. Ross Ohlendorf tossed six shutout innings, allowing just two hits and a walks while striking out four. Jeff Kobernus led the 14-hit parade with a trio of singles and a pair of walks, followed by Owings and Eury Perez, who both went 2-for-6. RHP Chris Young has re-signed with the Nats while RHP Christian Garcia successfully threw from 60 feet; both will report to Viera with the goal of getting to Syracuse later this month, per WaPo’s James Wagner.

Harrisburg 4 Bowie 3
• Broderick 5IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 5K, 2HR
• Krol 2IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Souza 3-4, 2R, 2B, SB
• Rendon 1-2, R, 2BB

Destin Hood’s two-run single in the bottom of the 8th sealed the deal as Harrisburg cut down Bowie, 4-3. Rob Wort got the win in relief while Pat Lehman earned the save as each turned in a 1-2-3 frame with a strikeout. Brian Broderick got the start and pitched five mediocre innings, giving up three runs on six hits including a pair of solo shots in the 4th and 5th innings. Steve Souza paced the offense with a 3-for-4 night, including a double and a stolen base while Anthony Rendon also reached base three times with a single and two walks.

Delmarva 4 Hagerstown 3
• Anderson 5IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 4K, HBP
• Rauh (BS, 1; L, 0-1) 3IP, 2H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 3K, BK, WP
• McQuillan 2-5, R, BB, RBI
• S. Perez 2-4

Delmarva seemed determined to give this one away, committing two errors in the Suns’ three-run 5th and a third in the 9th, but held on to hand Hagerstown a 4-3 loss. Dixon Anderson got the start and turned in a career-high five innings, a good sign for the 2011 ninth-rounder in his recovery from shoulder woes, allowing two runs on four hits and no walks. He hit a batter but struck out four. Brian Rauh finished the game but took the loss, giving up single runs in the 7th and 8th innings on two hits and two walks. Mike McQuillan led the seven-hit attack with a pair of singles and a walk, followed closely by Stephen Perez’s 2-for-4 night.

Apr 042013
 

Finally. Three of the Nats’ four full-season affiliates begin play today, with Syracuse visiting Lehigh Valley, Harrisburg hosting Bowie, and Hagerstown visiting Delmarva. Provided the rains aren’t too heavy, Potomac hosts Lynchburg tomorrow night.

Team Today’s Game Pitching Matchup (’12 Stats at Level)
Syracuse @ Lehigh Valley,
7:05 p.m.
Ross Ohlendorf (5-4, 4.52) vs.
Tyler Cloyd (12-1, 2.35)
Harrisburg vs. Bowie,
7:00 p.m.
Brian Broderick (2-0, 3.99) vs.
Mike Wright (5-3, 4.91)
Hagerstown @ Delmarva,
7:00 p.m.
Dixon Anderson (1-1, 2.79) vs.
Parker Bridwell (0-3, 7.06)

Because it’s a common misnomer, I’ll trot out the annual reminder that these are not the team’s #1 starters, but rather, how the organization wants to align pitchers for future promotions and assignments.

For those wondering about the rotations, here’s what I have found, been told, or am predicting for the next four games:

Team Friday Saturday Sunday Monday
SYRACUSE Roark Maya Perry Rosenbaum
HARRISBURG Treinen Demny Clay Karns
POTOMAC Ray Jordan Cole Turnbull
HAGERSTOWN Pineyro Mooneyham Pena Encarnacion

A couple of small surprises… Demny back in the Sens rotation after finishing 2012 in the ‘pen… Pena, a 16th rounder last June who made just two appearances in Auburn and threw only 12⅓ innings total, assigned to the Suns.

Potomac has only announced its first three starters, Turnbull is the best guess based on age and prior usage for the one of the remaining two spots. As mentioned in the P-Nats roster reveal last week, Taylor Hill and Matt Grace are the other two likely candidates.

News & Notes, the daily rundown and highlights from the previous day’s action, starts back up tomorrow.

Mar 302013
 

As noted in the comments, the Syracuse Chiefs “revealed a preliminary roster” yesterday, beginning with a feature on the starting pitchers.

If you have a fixation for uniform numbers, you’re going to have to wait a few more days — just only handful of players have numbers listed so far. Otherwise, here’s how the active roster looks like (watchlist players in bold, notables in italics):

PITCHERS INFIELDERS OUTFIELDERS CATCHERS
Fernando Abad Mike Constanzo Corey Brown Carlos Maldonado
Jeremy Accardo Jeff Kobernus Micah Owings Jhonatan Solano
Michael Crotta Chris Marrero Eury Perez
Erik Davis Will Rhymes Jim Van Ostrand
Jeff Mandel Carlos Rivero
Yunesky Maya Zach Walters
Pat McCoy
Ross Ohlendorf
Ryan Perry
Tanner Roark DISABLED LIST
J.C. Romero Bill Bray Jerad Head Cole Kimball
Danny Rosenbaum Erik Komatsu Brad Meyers Chris Rahl
Ryan Tatusko Matt Torra Sean West

Like the AAA club of most contenders, Syracuse is laden with replacement-level veterans. Three of the five starting pitchers have significant MLB experience (Maya, Ohlendorf, Perry), as do three of the active relievers (Abad, Accardo, Romero) and fourth on the D.L. (Bray).

Both catchers have served as injury fill-ins and will probably split time, which is the best explanation for Leon starting in Harrisburg (not to mention his limited AA experience of 40 games).

For us, the eyes are on the infield: all four projected starters (Rivero-Walters-Kobernus-Marrero) are at the top of their columns on the 2013 watchlist. Unfortunately, they’re (take your pick) stuck/blocked/stranded behind their counterparts in D.C.

Never mind there’s a 22-year-old in Harrisburg that everybody and their grandmother wants to see in a Chiefs uniform yesterday, if not sooner.

Corey Brown returns for his third season and will probably play in right field, given the duo of LF-1B types in Owings and Van Ostrand and the presence of true CF Eury Perez, though it shouldn’t surprise anyone if both Brown and Perez are used in multiple OF spots in preparation for their most likely usage as a defensive replacement off the bench if/when they’re called up to Washington.

Finally, it should probably come as no surprise to see the large contingent starting on the D.L. including the law firm trio of Kimball, Komatsu, and Meyers. As we saw in the comments, some of those guys won’t leave Viera and will cool their heels in “Extended Spring Training.”

UPDATE: Per Byron Kerr, the Syracuse Opening Day roster includes Ryan Tatusko while Sam Palace has been removed from the D.L. and Jason Michaels apparently will be strictly coaching.

Feb 122013
 

After taking a guess at which position players will end up where, last year I tried it for the pitchers for the first time and now it’s time to see how I did.

Of course, with the roles of “Big Nats” largely set going into camp, this was not exactly courageous of me. But the goal is not about being right so much as keeping the conversation going (though being right is nice!).

So, let’s take a look at who I picked last February:

STARTERS SWINGMEN RELIEVERS
Yunesky Maya Craig Stammen Ryan Perry
Erik Arnesen Austin Bibens-Dirkx* Ryan Mattheus
Matt Buschmann* Ryan Tatusko Atahualpa Severino
Mitch Atkins* Rafael Martin
Gaby Hernandez* Waldis Joaquin*
Mike Ballard* Josh Wilkie
Jeff Mandel
Lee Hyde
Bold = On 40 Man Roster Italics = Non-Roster Invitee * = ’11-’12 Minor-League FA Signing

Granted, no matter what I was going to be wrong on at least five because I “overpicked,” selecting 17 names for roughly 12 slots. I did this at every level because that’s the nature of the beast; pitchers and catchers report first because there are always a lot more of ’em than spots available.

I got nine wrong — two made the big club (Stammen, Mattheus), two started the season at AA instead (Mandel, Ballard), a third joined the Senators a couple weeks later (Tatusko), and the rest never played for the Nationals in 2012. The most obvious thing as I apply that 20/20 hindsight is that it appears I put too much stock in the FAs (though I might have gotten Zach Duke right had he been signed in the offseason). Otherwise, I pretty much feel like Blinkin.

We’ll see next year if I do any better with this set of picks:

STARTERS SWINGMEN RELIEVERS D.L.
Yunesky Maya Ryan Tatusko Erik Davis Brad Meyers
Ross Ohlendorf* Fernando Abad* Pat Lehman  
Tanner Roark   Pat McCoy  
Jeff Mandel   Hassan Pena  
Matt Torra*   Cole Kimball  
Ryan Perry      
Bold = On 40-Man Italics = Non-Roster Invitee * = ’12-’13 MLFA

This time around, I’m hedging my bets a lot less. I added a “DL” column as a nod to the M*A*S*H unit on this year’s Watchlist. And I’m leaning back towards the “OGs” and away from the FAs — especially the retread relievers such as Jeremy Accardo and Will Ohman, who I think are longshots (Bill Bray is probably the NRI with the best chance).

“Swingmen” isn’t a literal or old-school definition — basically, it pitchers that can (or have) start(ed) or relieve(d), or I feel may be changing roles — especially in the lower minors. A kind of neither-here-nor-there category, if you will.

The top-to-bottom order is intentional — which does mean that I was on the fence about Ryan Perry beginning at Syracuse or Harrisburg, but with Cole Kimball it’s more a gut feeling that he may not be fully healthy yet. Shoulders, as the old saw goes, are harder to fix than elbows.

Finally, a shout-out to Ben Meyers at the Auburn Citizen, who also took a stab at the candidates for the Syracuse Chiefs’ pitchers and position players.

Sep 042012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 6-4 END OF SEASON N/A
Harrisburg Lost, 7-2 END OF SEASON N/A
Potomac Won, 3-0
(5½ inn.)
END OF SEASON N/A
Hagerstown Lost, 3-2 END OF SEASON N/A
Auburn Won, 5-3 @ Williamsport,
7:05 p.m.
Monar (2-3, 2.96) vs.
Joaquin (1-4, 4.14)

Rochester 6 Syracuse 4
• Maya (L, 11-10) 7⅓ IP, 11H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 2K, HR
• MacDougal ⅔ IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 2K
• Brown 2-4, R, HR(25), 2RBI
• Carroll 2-3, RBI

Rochester opened up a 4-0 lead early with a pair of runs in each of the first two innings and held off Syracuse late for a 6-4 win. Yunesky Maya gave up all six runs on 11 hits over seven and a 1/3rd innings, walking two and striking out two. Corey Brown smacked his 25th home run and drove in two (nos. 70, 71), both of which led the Chiefs in 2012. Syracuse finished the season 70-74, 14½ games off the pace in 5th place in the I.L. North.

Bowie 7 Harrisburg 2
• Olbrychowski (L, 0-1) 4⅔ IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 5K
• Rendon 2-3, R, HR, RBI
• Bloxom 1-4, R, HR, RBI

The Baysox got three runs early off recently promoted Adam Olbrychowski and pounded the Sens late for a 7-2 win. Adam Olbrychowski allowed three runs on five hits and two walks and struck out five in his first career AA start, but suffered the loss. Anthony Rendon and Justin Bloxom hit back-to-back home runs with two out in the 9th to break up the shutout. Harrisburg dropped 36 of its last 52 games to fall from 1st to 5th, ending the season at 64-78 and 18½ games behind.

Potomac 3 Wilmington 0 (5frac12; inn.)
• Hill (W, 1-1) 5IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 6K
• Keyes 1-3, R, HR(21), 2RBI

Rain shortened this one to five and a 1/2 innings, with Potomac shutting out Wilmington for the second straight game, 3-0. Taylor Hill got the win in his third Carolina League start, allowing just one walk and three hits while striking out six. Kevin Keyes drove in two with his 21st HR in the 4th to lead the P-Nats offense. Potomac won six of its last ten but finished the second half 33-36 and went 64-75 overall.

Asheville 3 Hagerstown 2
• Jordan (L, 3-4) 4IP, 10H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 3K
• Holt 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K
• Newsome 3-4, 2R, 2-2B
• Dykstra 2-4, SB(32)
• Jimenez 2-4, 2-2B, RBI

Asheville peppered the field with ten hits over the first four innings, scoring three times en route to a 3-2 victory over Hagerstown in the regular-season finale for both playoff-bound teams. Taylor Jordan took the loss, giving up the aforementioned three on ten over four with no walks and three strikeouts. Brett Newsome led the 11-hit Suns attack with a single and two doubles, scoring both Suns runs. Hagerstown won the 2nd half with a 40-28 mark and went 82-55 overall, two games better than 1st-half champion Greensboro and third-best overall in the South Atlantic League.

Auburn 5 Batavia 3
• Lee (W, 3-1) 5⅓ IP, 6H, 2R, 1ER, 3BB, 5K
• Benincasa (H, 3) 2⅔ IP, 1H, 0R, 0BB, K, 2-1 IR-S
• Self (SV, 14) 1IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 0K
• Pleffner 3-4, 2R, HR, BB, RBI
• Ramos 3-4, 2B, RBI

Home runs by Shawn Pleffner and Estarlin Martinez highlighted a three-run 6th, as Auburn stopped Batavia’s nine-game win streak with a 5-3 triumph to put themselves in the driver’s seat for the Pinckney Division title. The win gives the Doubledays the first division-title tiebreaker (head-to-head, 7-5), effectively lowering the magic number to clinch at one. Nick Lee earned the win with two runs allowed on six hits and three walks over five and a 1/3rd. Derek Self withstood a pair of two-out doubles to record his 14th save. Pleffner and Ramos both went 3-for-4 with an RBI to lead the 12-hit Auburn offense. The Doubledays wrap up their 10-game road trip (and the regular season) with a pair of games in Williamsport.

Sep 032012
 
Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Won, 8-7 @ Rochester,
1:05 p.m.
Maya (11-9, 3.72) vs.
Martis (3-3, 5.40)
Harrisburg Lost, 11-5 vs. Bowie,
2:00 p.m.
Olbrychowski (1st AA start
of ’12) vs. TBD
Potomac Won, 4-0
(11 inn.)
@ Wilmington,
1:35 p.m.
Hill (0-1, 7.20) vs.
Ridings (6-1, 2.67)
Hagerstown Lost, 7-3 vs. Asheville,
1:05 p.m.
Jordan (3-3, 3.75) vs.
Gagnon (0-0, 2.84)
Auburn Lost, 8-7 @ Batavia,
1:05 p.m.
Lee (2-1, 3.97) vs.
O’Shea (3-2, 2.91)

Syracuse 8 Rochester 7
• Atkins 5IP, 7H, 6R, 6ER, 0BB, 5K, HR
• Davis (W, 1-0) 2IP, 2H, R, ER, 0BB, 2K, HR
• Garcia (SV, 14) 1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 0K
• Valdez 2-4, R, HR, 2RBI
• Marrero 2-4, R, 2RBI
• Walters 2-4, R, RBI

The Chiefs rallied from a 6-0 deficit to win their home finale, 8-7 over the Red Wings. Erik Davis got the win in relief, his first in AAA, while Christian Garcia threw a 1-2-3 ninth for his 14th save. Every Syracuse batter hit safely with Jesus Valdez, Chris Marrero, and Zach Walters each going 2-for-4 with a run scored. Roster moves: LHP Zach Duke and RHP Christian Garcia recalled to Washington.

Harrisburg 11 Bowie 5
• Holder (W, 4-3) 7IP, 6H, R, ER, 0BB, K, HR
• Frias 2IP, 2H, 4R, 1ER, BB, 4K, HR
• Hood 3-5, 2R, RBI
• Lozada 2-3, 2R, 2B, HR, BB, 3RBI

The Senators filibustered for nine runs en route to an 11-5 win over the Baysox. Trevor Holder closed out 2012 with seven strong innings, giving up a run on six hits with no walks and one K for his fourth win. Destin Hood led the hit column with a 3-for-5 afternoon, scoring twice and driving in one. Roster moves: RHP Adam Olbrychowski promoted from Potomac; LHP Danny Rosenbaum placed on the 7-Day DL. Manager moves: Anthony Rendon was benched for not running out a fly ball.

Potomac 4 Wilmington 0 (11 inn.)
• Grace 8IP, 6H, 0R, BB, 2K
• Holland (W, 7-1) 2⅓ IP, 2H, 0R, 2BB, 2K
• Barrett (SV, 1) ⅔ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, K, 3-0 IR-S
• Souza 1-5, R, HR, 4RBI, OF assist at HP

Steve Souza’s grand slam in the 11th broke up a 0-0 tie as the P-Nats finally won a game in Delaware with 4-0 shutout of the Blue Rocks. Matt Grace, Neil Holland and Aaron Barrett combined on the eight-hit shutout, with Holland earning his 7th win and Barrett earning his first Hi-A save.

Asheville 7 Hagerstown 3
• Estevez 4IP, 5H, 5R, 5ER, 6BB, 2K
• Meza 2IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 3K
• Burns 1-4, RBI, SB
• Ramsey 1-4, R, HR, RBI

Wirkin “For The Weekend” Estevez labored through four innings Last Night In Hagerstown.

Batavia 8 Auburn 7
• Encarnacion 3⅔ IP, 6H, 4R, 3ER, 2BB, 4K
• Medina 1IP, 3H, 3R, 3ER, 0BB, 0K, 2HR
• Kieboom 2-4, R, RBI
• Alvarez 1-3, R, 2RBI

The Doubledays couldn’t stop the hottest team in the minors, losing 8-7 to the Muckdogs — the 9th straight win by Batavia and 19th triumph in 21 games. Silvio Medina gave up two home runs in the 7th to turn a 6-5 lead into an 8-6 deficit. Auburn got the tying run to second with no outs in the 9th, but lined out and struck out twice to end it. The loss drops Auburn into a tie with Batavia for the Pinckney Division lead, and three-way tie with Brooklyn for the wild card. Brooklyn holds the tiebreakers with both Auburn and Batavia in the event of a tie for the wild card; Auburn holds a 6-5 advantage in head-to-head play going into today’s game but it’s not clear how that would be resolved in the event of a Batavia win today and tie at the end of the season.