Saturday, June 20, 2009

Florida State League All-Star Game Preview

FSL All-Star GameThe Charlotte Stone Crabs and the rest of the Florida State League have the weekend off to enjoy a well-deserved All-Star break. Representing the second place Stone Crabs for the South Division in tonight's 7:35 pm game from Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers, home of the Fort Myers Miracle, are four players.

Darin Downs, a fifth round pick of the Chicago Cubs in the 2003 draft, is the lone starting pitcher from the Stone Crabs. Downs has been dominate this season, with a league leading 7 wins at the break. His 2.50 ERA has him ranked 10th in the Florida State League. Although Downs is old for pitching in the Florida State League, he has certainly done enough to merit a promotion to AA Montgomery afterthe break. He has struck out 62 and walked only 10, one of the best K-BB ratios in the league. Downs final start before the break was a 7 inning, 10 strikeout affair in a 1-0 win vs. Lakeland.

Matt GorgenMatt Gorgen, one of the quickest moving players from the Rays' 2008 draft, will also appear. Gorgen was an 18th round selection out of UC Berkeley and has thoroughly dominated his competition in the FSL. Serving as the Stone Crabs' closer, Gorgen has racked up 10 saves, good enough for second in the league. His ERA stands at 0.27. He has allowed only 1 earned run in 33.2 innings this year. Gorgen's WHIP is currently at 0.86, great considering he often works 2 innings at a time. He will almost certainly move up to AA Montgomery very soon.

Cody Cipriano has been one of the most consistent threats in the Stone Crabs lineup. Cipriano was drafted in the 9th round of the 2007 draft. His .313 average leads the Crabs, and his 5 home runs also lead the team, although Matt Fields slugged 11 before his promotion. His .889 OBP is also team leading. Cipriano has played all around the infield for Charlotte, but has recently settled in at first base. He will be the lone Stone Crab to partipate in today's Home Run Derby.

Greg Sexton is the final Stone Crab who will appear tonight. Sexton, who plays third base, was a 10th round pick out of William & Mary in 2007. Sexton has driven in 33 runs in 53 games for Charlotte, and has hit 3 home runs. His only struggle thus far has been with his defense, where he has committed a team lead-sharing (with Shawn O'Malley) 12 errors.

Nevin Ashley, promoted to Montgomery recently, was also selected to the All-Star team, but will not appear because of his promotion. Ashley hit 2 home runs and drove in 16 runs before his promotion.

Check back tomorrow for a recap of the All-Star Game, which can be followed live on

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