Friday’s News & Notes

Team Yesterday Today Probable Pitchers
Syracuse Lost, 3-1 @ Indianapolis,
7:05 p.m.
Rogers (1-0, 2.45) vs.
Glasnow (7-0, 1.61)
Harrisburg Won, 6-3 @ Hartford, 7:05 p.m. Crownover (1-5, 4.59) vs.
Niebla (1-5, 6.31)
Potomac Won, 9-8 @ Frederick,
7:00 p.m.
Reyes (7-11, 4.88) vs.
Alvarado (6-8, 5.70)
Hagerstown Won, 3-1 vs. West Virginia,
7:05 p.m.
DeRosier (1-2, 5.68) vs.
Vera (5-5, 3.13)
Auburn Lost, 4-1 @ Lowell,
6:35 p.m.
Crowe (0-0, 0.00) vs.
De Jesus (3-2, 3.26)
GCL Nationals OFF DAY @/vs. GCL Mets

Indianapolis 3 Syracuse 1
• Valdez (L, 0-1) 5IP, 8H, 3R, 3ER, BB, K, HBP

Brandon Snyder broke up the shutout with a 7th-inning solo shot as the Indians tripled up the Chiefs, 3-1 in the series opener.

Harrisburg 6 Bowie 3
• G. Ross (W, 3-2) 7IP, 6H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 1K, 3HR
• Robinson (SV, 7) 1⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K, 2-0 IR-S
• Abreu 4-4, BB, CS
• Hernandez 3-5, 2R, HR, 3RBI, PO

The two teams combined for six homers, but the Sens got theirs with runners on for a 6-3 win in the series finale. Greg Ross gave up three solo shots and six hits total over seven innings to earn the win, his third at AA. Andrew Robins stranded two in the 8th and set the side down in order in the 9th for his seventh save. Yadiel Hernandez, Drew Ward, and Dan Gamache each went deep, with Hernandez connecting for an Earl Weaver special in the 2nd and Gamache and Ward going back-to-back in the 4th. Osvaldo Abreu led the Harrisburg hit column with four singles.

Potomac 9 Myrtle Beach 8
• Baez 6IP, 5H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 3K
• Orlan (BS, 1; W, 1-0) 1⅓ IP, 1H, 1R, 1ER, 0BB, 1K, HR, 1-1 IR-S
• Sundberg 2-3, 2R, BB, HR, SF, 3RBI, SB
• Wiseman 2-3, R, 2B, BB
• Johnson 1-2, 2R, 2BB, CS

Jack Sundberg smacked a two-run HR in the 9th for a 9-8 walkoff win and a P-Nats sweep of the Pelicans. Joan Baez turned in a quality start, his first at High-A, as he gave up two runs on five hits and three walks over six innings. Baez left with a 6-2 lead but the Potomac ‘pen was dinged for six runs over three innings, “led” by Mariano Rivera with three runs let in on zero retired. R.C. Orlan got the blown-save-win as he got the final four outs and let in two runs (one inherited, one of his own). Sundberg, Rhett Wiseman, and Daniel Johnson combined for five hits, five runs, and four walks to lead the P-Nats attack. Roster move: OF Matt Page reassigned to XST.

Hagerstown 3 Delmarva 2
• Davis (W, 3-4) 6IP, 4H, R, ER, BB, 3K, 2WP
• Howard (SV, 4) 3IP, 4H, 0R, 0BB, 3K
• Perkins 1-2, 2BB, RBI
• Ortiz 1-2, 2R, 2B, BB, SB

After giving up a first-inning run to West Virginia, Weston Davis settled down and in and he and Hayden Howard combined for eight shutout innings to pitch Hagerstown to a 3-1 win over West Virginia. Davis went first six innings with the lone Power run allowed on four hits and one walk to earn the win. Howard scattered four hits and walked none over the final three to earn the save. Blake Perkins singled once and walked twice while Oliver Ortiz doubled, walked, stole a base, and scored twice to lead the Suns offense.

Connecticut 4 Auburn 1
• Tetreault (L, 0-1) 4⅓ IP, 5H, 3R, 1ER, 2BB, 6K
• Rishwain 1⅔ IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K, 1-1 IR-S
• Boggetto 1-4, R, HR, RBI
• Jo. Ramirez 1-1, BB

The Tigers erased an early 1-0 lead with a two-spot in the 3rd and single runs in the 5th and 8th innings en route to a 4-1 win over the Doubledays. Jackson Tetrault took the loss with three runs allowed on five hits and two walks over four and a 1/3rd innings. Auburn was held to just four hits and two walks, with Branden Boggetto connecting for the lone extra-base hit with his second HR.

GCL Nationals – OFF DAY
The G-Nats resume play with a three-game lead over the G-Astros, who’ve they played 11 times and beaten twice, with a completion doubleheader against the last-place G-Mets.

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.

22 thoughts on “Friday’s News & Notes”

  1. gotta love the contributions to the big club over the last month from Difo, Sanchez, Goodwin and Stevenson. while none project as stars they seem to be feeding off each other’s success.

    good for them!

    1. Sanchez had never done anything at any level that marked him as anything other than an org guy. This is his 11th season in the Nats’ organization. I’m totally shocked by what he’s been doing the last week or so . . . and strongly suspect it won’t last. He’ll always have 2017, though, just as Lombo will always have 2012. Good for him.

      1. Agree that shows the importance of depth, but who thought the organization had any depth heading into this season? The consensus was that the Nats had some potential future stars (Robles, Soto and Fedde), but the consistent criticism is that the organization lacked depth, particularly after the trade for Adam Eaton.

        Also, the performance of Goodwin and even Sanchez shows the difficulty evaluating minor league talent. In his month at Cuse before getting called up to MLB, Goodwin slashed .248/.312/.367 . His AAA OPS was .693. Currently, with over 250 MLB plate appearances, Goodwin is slugging .504, and has an OPS of .816. Among rookies with that many plate appearances the only ones with a higher OPS are: Cody Bellinger, Aaron Judge and Trey Mancini.

        No one could’ve predicted that. Although the sample size is much smaller, the same could’ve been said about Sanchez. When he was called up, most thought (me included) that it showed the lack of depth in the organization as Sanchez appeared to be a career minor league with no tools that would allow to even compete on an MLB level. Sanchez was a non-prospect, and he is contributing to MLB wins. Crazy.

  2. The Matt Page reassignment seems ominous for his future. He’s hitting .221 at A+, SLG only .319 with 2 HRs, and turns 26 in October.

  3. Drew Ward is finally showing signs of life this season with 3 HR in 5 games.

    Yadiel Hernandez continues to punish the ball. He’s now hitting a remarkable .407/.462/.630 in 25 games in the 2nd half.

    Suddenly with the inclusion of Robles, Harrisburg has turned into our most interesting affiliate.

  4. Daniel Johnson in 327 AB’s in Hagerstown had a .899 OPS.
    after his (finally) promotion in 74 AB’s at Potomac his .OPS has plummeted to .890!
    Keep it going!

    Like everyone else, I thought Adrian Sanchez was a feelgood story who would last about a week in the show. He never hit enough in the minors at all.
    Probably KW is right that this won’t last long but right now he looks like he belongs with a .733 OPS even with a 1-15 start.

    I’m reminded about George Brett never hitting .300 in the minors and when he was asked about he said “the ball is a lot whiter in the big leagues”. Real lighting and all.

    Also, how about Spiderman in the 9th last night. Wow

      1. Well, in his first or second MLB AB, Sanchez got abominably screwed out of a walk on the 3-2 count with the bases loaded at STL that would have tied the game. The official pitch-track data showed the pitch 17 inches off the plate. So while the umpiring may be a little better, Sanchez has already had at least one experience where it most decidedly was not.

        As for all the call-ups, it’s starting to get interesting when you consider who will make it on the bench for the playoff roster if everyone gets healthy. Generally, they have a five-man bench. Lobaton, Lind, and Kendrick would seem to be locks. Raburn seems to be out of the picture, and Heisey has been released. So who are they going to keep from among Goodwin, Drew, and Difo? Will Sanchez get any consideration? Goodwin is looking more like a certainty. So it may come down to an interesting choice between Drew, a solid vet who hasn’t hit much this year and had a lot of DL time, and Difo, the scrappy youngster who seems to be punching above his weight class. I was horrified that he was the last man standing last year against Kershaw, but I would not be so much so this season.

        1. The Nats will have an tough call, although Stephen Drew is injured so often, wouldn’t be surprised if the decision is made for the Nats by Drew unavailability.

          That said, unless Drew is raking by the end of the season, I think Difo will make the post-season roster. He can help in more ways (pinch running, better defensively, switch hitter) than Drew. If Werth struggles upon his return, will be interested to see if Dusty gives Kendrick a start or two in LF in the playoffs.

    1. It should noted that Sanchez has not walked in 38 big league PAs. Great story–with no timetable for Drew’s return he’ll almost certainly remain on the active roster the rest of the year–but almost certainly not sustainable.

  5. Yadiel Hernandez is intriguing. Got off to a really slow start, which isn’t a surprise as he missed 2 seasons of ball after defecting.

    But as noted above, he is on a roll right now and has raised his average to a respectable .290 w/ 9 HRs.

    The question is where he would project if he was deemed good enough for a call-up next year. With Bryce, Eaton, Michael A. and Goodwin, the Nats have plenty of depth and Stevenson will be knocking on the door and Bautista, too, when healthy.

    And behind Hernandez, and much younger, you have Robles, Johnson and Soto.

    Hernandez turns 30 in October. Not sure what they’re gonna do with him long-term, though as we’ve seen lots of unpredictable things can happen and we never know how trades will impact the depth chart. But I’d like to see Hernandez bumped up to AAA to see if he can handle the more veteran pitching and to enhance any value he might have in a trade.

    1. Stevenson and Bautista have very similar skill sets, so I would expect one of them to be traded instead. Hernandez, meanwhile, has more power and doesn’t even have to be added to the 40-man this offseason. The Nats can keep him as AAA depth next year until he is needed.

  6. “reassigned to XST” always sounds like a few steps away from being released or given a coaching job. maybe a body replaces him from `hagerstown~~~? him being Page

  7. The Nats told Sanchez two years ago that they love the way he can play three infield positions with a strong arm and also the way he runs the bases (remember how he went from first to third on a little flair hit after he got his first MLB hit and then scored the walk-off run?) They added that he would be in the majors if he could just hit .250. A turning point for him was two years ago when he went from playing winter league ball in Venezuela to Columbia. In Venezuela, he played for Zulia who had several other major league infielders so he didn’t get many AB’s. Once he went to Columbia, he played every day and was league MVP his first year. Granted the Columbian winter league is a notch below the big four (DR, PR, Ven, Méx) but I think playing every day was the key. Also, the Dodgers have called the Nats the past two off seasons and inquired about Sanchez’s availability but the Nats wouldn’t consider trading him and/or even listen to an offer. Sanchez played in the WBC for Columbia (with ex Nat farmhand Jesus Valdez and Syracuse’s Jhon Solano) and was Columbia’s leading hitter. Sometimes only statistics don’t tell the whole story. Dusty loves Sanchez and the Nats front office (and apparently the Dodgers) saw things beyond just the stats. Sanchez has worked very hard to get where he is now and he’s earned it. Pls give him the credit he deserves.

    1. Good scoop, and good for Sanchez. Still, it’s hard to see him sticking with the big club for what will likely be an all-in push in 2018, barring more injuries, of course. But he’s proven himself as a valuable Syracuse-shuttle reserve.

      1. And as we know, there have been plenty of more-highly-touted guys come up from Syracuse over the years and do a lot less.

    2. “Also, the Dodgers have called the Nats the past two off seasons and inquired about Sanchez’s availability but the Nats wouldn’t consider trading him and/or even listen to an offer.”???

      good story to be sure but we traded Giolito, Lopez, Watson, Mills etc. but wouldn’t consider trading Sanchez?

        1. Good to know that the Nats properly evaluated Sanchez above the level that most others did and that evaluation has proved prescient.

          That said, the statement that they wouldn’t listen to an offer is hyperbole. If the Dodgers had offered Cody Bellinger or Corey Seager (or both) for Sanchez, the Nats would’ve considered the offer and then would’ve traded Sanchez, and would’ve included a bag of balls to seal the deal.

          1. Agreed. I believe that the Dodgers were offering minor leaguers and the Nats had no interest in that.

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