Thursday’s News & Notes

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse OFF DAY vs. Norfolk,
7:00 p.m.
Tatukso (4-5, 2.69) vs.
Wright (1-4, 6.27)
Harrisburg Won, 15-8 (10 inn.) @ Erie,
7:05 p.m.
Cole (5-2, 2.30) vs.
Saupold (3-6, 6.00)
Potomac Canceled vs. Winston-Salem,
7:05 p.m.
G. Gonzalez (MLB rehab) vs.
Bucciferro (4-5, 3.98)
Hagerstown Lost, 10-2 vs. Greenville,
7:05 p.m.
Silvestre (2-3, 4.50) vs.
McGrath (1-3, 4.76)
DSL Nationals Won, 8-7 vs. DSL Mets1,
10:30 a.m.
Baez (0-1, 3.86) vs.
Montijo (0-2, 12.00)

Syracuse — OFF DAY
The first-place Chiefs resume their seven-game homestand with four against Tides before heading out eight games in North Carolina next week (four against the Tides, four against the Bulls). Roster move: C Sandy Leon recalled to Washington.

Harrisburg 15 Erie 8 (10 inn.)
• Simmons 5IP, 10H, 7R, 7ER, BB, 5K, 2HR
• Grace (BS, 2; W, 3-1) 1⅔ IP, 2H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Ramsey 3-6, 2R, 2B, 3RBI
• Keyes 2-6, 2R, 2HR, 3RBI
• Taylor 2-5, 2R, BB, 2RBI

Make that four in a row in a wild one in Erie as the Senators dug themselves out of a 7-2 hole after five, took an 8-7 lead in the top of the 8th, lost it in the bottom of the 8th, then exploded for seven in the 10th for a 15-8 win. Kevin Keyes homered twice while Matt Skole homered once as Harrisburg pounded out 16 hits and took advantage of eight walks while striking out just six times. Starter James Simmons may have been affected by the 89-minute rain delay before first pitch, as he was knocked around for seven runs on 10 hits and a walk, and gave up two HRs (nos. 4 & 5 in just 29⅔ IP) over five innings. Matt Grace got the blown-save-win after he let in the tying run in the 8th but pitched a scoreless 9th. Caleb Ramsey, Keyes, and Mitch Canham, who cleared the bases with a pinch-hit triple in the 10th, each had three RBI.

Potomac vs. Carolina — CNCLD
Rain and thunderstorms washed out the series finale between the Mudcats and the P-Nats and creates a wrinkle in the race for the first-half title. As is often the case, the cancellation benefited the division leader because it eliminated the chance for Potomac to lose. Lynchburg lost to Southern Division champ (and truth be told, the Carolina League’s team to beat) Myrtle Beach last night to create a four-game difference in the loss column. The Hillcats have just four games left while Potomac has five. Thus, the magic number is now just two as the best that the Hillcats can do is win out for a 37-33 record while Potomac only needs to not lose twice to finish with 32 or fewer losses.

Lakewood 10 Hagerstown 2
• Rodriguez (L, 0-2) 5IP, 7H, 3R, 1ER, 0BB, 4K
• Thomas 2IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 4K
• Yezzo 2-4
• Ballou 1-3, R, BB, SB

Any hope the Suns had in coming back were eclipsed as the BlueClaws put up seven in the bottom of the 8th to prevent the sweep and win the series finale, 10-2. Ryan Ullmann became the latest victim of the GBI curse as Lakewood got to him for four hits and three walks in the space of nine batters during the 8th. Starter Jefry Rodriguez took the loss, touched for three runs on seven hits over the first five frames. He struck out four and walked none while suffering his second loss. Hagerstown was limited to six hits, with James Yezzo (2-for-4) and Isaac Ballou (1-3, BB) the only two batters to reach base twice. The magic number remains at two as Greensboro won its sixth straight last night against the Power. The Suns return home to finish the half while the Grasshoppers hit the road in Kannapolis.

DSL Nationals 8 DSL Yankees1 7
• Bermudez 3IP, 0H, 0R, 2BB, 5K
• Charlis (BS, 1; W, 3-0) 2⅔ IP, 2H, 2R, 1ER, BB, 2K, HR, 2-2 IR-S
• Agustin 3-5, 3R, 3B, 2SB
• Franco 2-3, R, BB, RBI

Turnabout is fair play, though it wasn’t as dramatic as Tuesday as the D-Nats rallied in the bottom of the 9th for an 8-7 win over the D-Yankees1. Starter Juan Bermudez tossed three no-hit innings with five strikeouts while the offense built a 4-0 lead. The D-Yankees pummeled the D-Nats ‘pen for seven runs, including five in the 7th, before the batters bailed them out in the 9th. Telmito Agustin led the 11-hit attack with a 3-for-5 game, followed by Anderson Franco, who went 2-for-3 with a walk.

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of Potomac is his home base as a season-ticket holder, but he has visited every affiliate north of Florida at least once, with multiple trips to Hagerstown and Harrisburg.

13 thoughts on “Thursday’s News & Notes”

  1. NYPL kicks off tomorrow night, interesting that Auburn and Batavia alternate home games rather than a series in one park or the other. I assume it is to save on hotels but an 80+ mile bus ride each way can’t be pleasant.

  2. Hey guys – asking for a little color on anyone who has seen Taylor play. I had a couple of questions. I guess I am trying to figure out if he has stepped into uber-prospect land, or this is just a nice, but unsustainable, run.

    But first, in the recent WaPo article, he was listed as 6’3″, 210lb. Is he really that heavy? I had heard in the past he needed to fill out, so maybe he did but looking to see if anyone has seen him.
    Second, his numbers are certainly eye popping, and the improvement in slugging seems to speak for itself as a real gain. But when I dug into the other numbers a bit, it looked like he had a decent walk rate, really high k rate and a crazy BaBIP (.450 is my back of the envelope). If I swap him into a still-high but more realistic BaBIP of .350, his slash drops to .266/.355. Still pretty good for a young, defensive first guy in AA thought to struggle with the hit tool. I could see a superior prospect putting up a ridiculous BaBIP in the minors, but would that kind of guy also have a 32% K rate? So I was hoping to get some color from someone more knowledgeable.

    1. I can buy 190 but 210? Hell, no. But I don’t think folks ought to obsess about it — he’s built like an elongated Alfonso Soriano.

      Having watched him for two seasons in Potomac, what I’m looking/waiting for is how he responds to a slump. Thus far it hasn’t happened, and if it continues not to happen, then at some point folks have ignore the BABIP stuff and realize that perhaps he’s a much skinnier Mo Vaughn.

      1. Wouldn’t mind Mo’s K% either. Still curious whether there have been any studies on how common high BaBIPs/high K% players are.

        How did he handle slumps at POT?

        1. The first year, not well. Last year, better, but what was more frustrating was watching him fall into the same habit of waving at soft/away stuff with two strikes.

          1. Michael Taylor will bump your slump with his rump and eat up all your trumps! Michael Taylor for starting CF in 2016!!!

  3. Taylor’s strikeout rate is dropping by the month:

    April 46%
    May 31%
    June 29%

    With that said, he will always be a swing and miss player. His defensive ability, power and speed, and is a rare combination. My guess is that he will be on the big league club (and playing part time) by next July, and he will be the Nats starting CF by 2016.

    1. thx Pilchard. Hard to see them bring him up as a part time player at this stage of his development cycle though (other than maybe a Sep call up). The picture you paint is of a Chris Young type. Sound about right?

      1. No change for a call-up this year; I was referring to July 2015. I am hoping a Mike Cameron type with the up-side ceiling of Tori Hunter. Both were great CF’s with power and strikeout issues. Taylor may have more speed than either Cameron or Hunter. BTW, Cameron’s son is one of the top prospects for the 2015 MLB draft.

    2. Slight (pedantic) correction, K rate is calculated by K/PA, I think you used K/AB, which skews his K% quite a bit higher, but it doesn’t change your overall point

      Month: K/PA K%
      April: 39/97 40.2%
      May: 33/122 27.0%
      June: 10/42 23.8%

      Those strikeouts from May and June are totally manageable. April- not so much. Hopefully Taylor can sustain a K% in the mid 20s, rather than the 40s. If so, his transition to the big leagues will be much easier.

      Even so, CFers with plus-defense don’t have to hit very well to be very good. Franklin Gutierrez, Juan Pierre, Peter Bourjos and our own Denard Span have shown that you don’t need a bat to start everyday in CF. But I do think Wally is right in comparing Taylor to Young. Both have big contact issues, but have good power, speed and defense.

  4. That Michael Taylor bat is looking better by the hour. Got to see this kid play in Harrisburg a couple of more times this year. He ought to pay for my tickets after he hit three HR with a BB the one time that I saw him at home.

  5. Luke: any word in theo bowe and
    On your board you remarked that Matt
    Reistetter had Tommy John surgery
    In May
    Glad to see nats drafted Jake Johansen’s
    Caddie from Dallas Baptist
    These pitching injuries are more than

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