Sunday, May 30, 2010

Charlotte Stone Crabs Sweep Double Header with 5-3 Win in Game Two Against Dunedin Blue Jays

Matt Joyce continued his rehab assignment by going 3 for 3 in game two of Sunday's doubleheader.The Charlotte Stone Crabs added another mark in the win column by defeating the Dunedin Blue Jays 5-3 in game two of Sunday's doubleheader, sweeping the twin bill and earning a split of the series. The Stone Crabs offense came alive in the second game, striking for 5 runs on 11 hits in the seven inning game.

The Stone Crabs broke the game wide open in the second inning by posting four runs to the scoreboard. The offensive duo of Stephen Vogt and Henry Wrigley led off the inning with back to back singles. Michael Sheridan followed with an RBI single to score Vogt. Reid Fronk drew a walk to load the bases for the Stone Crabs. Anthony Scelfo, Isaias Velasquez and Tim Beckham each picked up an RBI in the inning to give the Stone Crabs a 4-0 lead.

The Blue Jays cut the lead in half in the bottom of the second. John Tolisano drew a walk to lead off the inning then later scored on an error by Velasquez. Daniel Perales then scored on a ground out by Yan Gomes to pull within two.

Dunedin added another run in the third inning. Gomes drove home his second run of the game with a single to center that scored Travis d'Arnaud and leave the Blue Jays one run back 4-3.

The Stone Crabs picked up an insurance run in the seventh inning when Wrigley reached on an error, allowing Vogt to score and giving the Stone Crabs a 5-3 win.

Nick Barnese improved to 4-3 with the win, striking out 7 and walking 4 in 5 innings. Marquis Fleming got the save with 2 shut-out innings, striking out 4 in the process.

The Stone Crabs (26-23) are off for Memorial Day then continue the road trip with a four game series against the Daytona Cubs (24-26) at Jackie Robinson Ballpark on Tuesday. Joseph Cruz (2-4, 5.05) is scheduled to start for the Stone Crabs.

Charlotte Stone Crabs defeat Dunedin Blue Jays in Game One of Doubleheader

Leslie Anderson was the only Stone Crabs to record multiple hits during game one of Sunday's doubleheader.The Charlotte Stone Crabs snapped their losing streak by defeating the Dunedin Blue Jays 3-2 in game one of Sunday's doubleheader at Dunedin Stadium.

The Stone Crabs jumped out to an early lead from the start. Leslie Anderson delivered a two out single followed by back to back walks to Henry Wrigley and Matt Joyce that loaded the bases. Then Jake Jefferies struck a single to right that scored Anderson and Wrigley to give the Stone Crabs a 2-0 lead.

Dunedin cut the lead in half in the bottom of the first. Adeiny Hechavarria doubled to center then later scored on a sac fly to bring the Blue Jays to within a run of the lead 2-1.

The Blue Jays tied the game in the fifth inning. Brian Van Kirk triple to left to lead off the inning. Van Kirk would later score on an error to tie the game at 2.

The Stone Crabs scored the game winning run in the top of the seventh. Kyeong Kang and Anthony Scelfo drew walks to put runners aboard. Tim Beckham drove home the winning run with a single to center that scored Kang. Zach Quate took over the hill in the bottom of the seventh to secure the 3-2 victory.

Shane Dyer pitched six innings, striking out five and not allowing an earned run enroute to his second Florida State League victory. Zach Quate recorded the save, his sixth of the season.

The Stone Crabs and Blue Jays face off again in game two of the doubleheader with Nick Barnese facing Kenny Rodriguez.

Fort Wayne TinCaps 3, Bowling Green Hot Rods 2 In 10 Innings

Chris Murrill tied the game with his first pro home run.Bowling Green, KY – Chris Murrill hit a towering solo home run in the bottom of the seventh inning, sending the Hot Rods into extra-innings on Saturday night. Unfortunately, the Hot Rods couldn’t muster enough runs in a 3-2 ten-inning loss to Fort Wayne at Bowling Green Ballpark.

Murrill’s first professional home run came with two down in the bottom of the seventh inning. After Robi Estrada grounded out and Ty Morrison struck out, Murrill took a 1-0 fastball from Robert Poutier over the right-center field wall to tie the game at 2-2.

The home run was part of a good night for Murrill. In the second inning, with the Hot Rods down 2-0, Morrison tripled into deep center field to lead off the inning. A few pitches later Murrill brought him home with a groundout to second base.

Fort Wayne opened the scoring against Aaron Dott just two batters into the first inning. Fort Wayne LF Danny Payne tripled to deep center field and then scored on a Jeudy Valdez groundout a few pitches later to make it 1-0 TinCaps. They added another run in the second thanks to a lead-off single from Jon Alia followed by a passed ball, a strikeout, a groundout, and then a run-scoring single from Payne.

After the Hot Rods tied it in the seventh, Fort Wayne nearly won the game in the ninth. They loaded the bases against Deivis Mavarez with only one out. But the submarine hurler started a double play by snaring a ground ball on the mound, firing to home for the first out, followed by a perfect relay throw to first by Mark Thomas to complete the double play.

In the tenth, the TinCaps broke the scoreless tie against Kirby Yates, but did so without a hit. Jonathan Galvez reached on a fielding error by Julio Cedeno. He took second when Danny Payne walked; both runners advanced another ninety feet after a sacrifice by Valdez. Yates continued to battle striking out Everett Williams for the second out of the inning. After falling behind Nate Freiman 3-1, Yates issued ball four intentionally to load the bases for Jason Hagerty.

With the bases loaded, Yates had a chance to face the batter who broke up the Hot Rods no-hit bid on May 6, as Hagerty singled on a 1-2 pitch in the ninth inning. Yates got ahead of Hagerty again, 1-2, before hitting him in the back leg with a curve ball for drive in the go-ahead run.

The TinCaps have now won the first two games of the series, dropping the Hot Rods to their third straight loss. The season series is at 4-4 with game three coming up on Sunday at 5:05 PM. RHP Jason McEachern (2-5, 4.93) takes the ball for the Hot Rods against Fort Wayne RHP Daniel Sarria (1-0, 2.57). Sunday is Super-Mega-Prize-A-Thon where the Hot Rods will give away more than 100 random, diverse, and fun prizes throughout the game. Some of the prizes the team will give away include restaurant gift certificates, 68 rolls of toilet paper, golf balls and tees, a set of crutches, and a diamond wedding band among many, many others. To see the full set of prizes and order tickets to join the fun, visit or call 270.901.2121.

-- Team Release.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Tennessee Smokies 3, Montgomery Biscuits 0

Alex Cobb suffered the loss in Saturday's game.MONTGOMERY, AL – Tennessee’s Hung-Wen Chen hurled seven scoreless, and the Biscuits (26-22) were shut-out for a league-worst fifth time by a final of 3-0 at the hands of the Smokies (29-20) on Saturday at Riverwalk.

Blake Lalli scored Marwin Gonzalez with a two-out single off Biscuits starter Alex Cobb in the first inning to get things started. In the second, the bottom four in the Smokies order began the inning with four singles to make it 2-0. Tony Campana then completed the scoring at 3-0 with a sacrifice fly to center.

Cobb (0-1) finished his outing with three scoreless innings, striking out a personal-best six while allowing eight hits and walking one.

After beginning the season 3-0, Chen (4-5) had dropped five consecutive decisions before Saturday. He struck out four, but allowed just six Biscuits singles in equaling his longest outing of the season.

Lalli and Mark Reed each recorded two hits to lead the Smokies. No Biscuit collected more than a single hit.

Jacksonville fell to Chattanooga on Saturday as well, so the Biscuits remain four games out of first in the South Division with 21 games remaining.

Biscuits LHP Alex Torres opposes RHP Alberto Cabrera at 2:05 on Sunday, as the Biscuits look for a series victory.

-- Team Release.

Rochester Red Wings 6, Durham Bulls 4

Chris Richard picked up five hits including 3 doubles in Saturday's game.Durham, NC - The Bulls fell behind early and could not crawl out of the hole as they fell to Rochester 6-4. Chris Richard had five hits including three doubles, but a late rally fell short as the Bulls drop to 27-22 on the season.

Left-hander Carlos Hernandez got the starting nod for the Bulls, but was erratic and walked four in just 4.1 innings of work while allowing six runs (five earned). A run crossed the plate in the first inning on a two-out error by shortstop Angel Chavez. In the second inning, the Red Wings struck for four runs behind RBI singles by Matt Tolbert and Toby Gardenhire in addition to RBI doubles by Matt Macri and Danny Valencia.

In a 5-0 hole entering the third inning, the Bulls came back with three runs of their own off Rochester righty Jeff Manship. A one-out bunt single by Elliot Johnson got things started, as he moved to third on a single by Chavez. Dan Johnson brought home Elliot Johnson with an RBI force out, and back-to-back doubles by Justin Ruggiano and Richard brought home a pair of runs to cut the deficit to 5-3.

The Red Wings got another run off Hernandez in the fifth inning, as Jose Morales brought home a run with an RBI single. Jason Cromer came on in place of Hernandez, getting a double-play ball to end the inning on his way to 2.0 scoreless innings of relief.

The score remained 6-3 until the seventh inning, when the Bulls pushed a run across on an Alvin Colina RBI single. That was all the offense they would muster, as Kyle Waldrop stopped the bleeding in the seventh inning before giving way to Anthony Slama who worked the final 1.1 innings to earn his 10th save. Manship earned his fourth win of the season, while Hernandez was tagged with the loss and saw his ERA rise to 3.00 for the first time since May 2.

The Bulls had their share of chances on the evening, but left 15 men on base while going just 2-for-16 with runners in scoring position.

The Red Wings have taken two of the first three games in the series, but the Bulls send their ace to the hill tomorrow in hopes of evening weekend set. RHP Jeremy Hellickson (7-2, 2.79) takes the hill looking for his league leading eighth win, he will be matched up against RHP Deolis Guerra (0-2 5.29) for Rochester.

-- Team Release.

Charlotte Stone Crabs/Dunedin Blue Jays Postponed

Florida's typical afternoon thunderstorms led to postponement of Saturday's game against the Blue Jays.Saturday night's game between the Charlotte Stone Crabs and Dunedin Blue Jays has been postponed due to heavy rains over Dunedin Stadium. The game will rescheduled as part of a doubleheader on Sunday afternoon.

5/29: Today's Games

Durham Bulls vs. Rochester Red Wings (MIN) 7:05 ET
Starting for Durham: LHP Carlos Hernandez
Notes: Rodrigue is 3-2 with a 2.31 ERA between Durham and Montgomery... Jeff Manship is scheduled to start for Rochester... Game 3 of a four-game series

Montgomery Biscuits vs. Tennessee Smokies (CHC) 8:05 ET
Starting for Montgomery: RHP Alex Cobb
Notes: Cobb is 0-0 with a 0.63 ERA... Game 4 of a five-game series...

Charlotte Stone Crabs at Dunedin Blue Jays (TOR) 7:00 ET
Starting for Charlotte: RHP Shane Dyer
Notes: Dyer is 1-1 with a 2.25 ERA at Charlotte... Game 3 of a four-game series...

Bowling Green Hot Rods vs. Fort Wayne Tin Caps (SDP) 8:05 ET
Starting for Bowling Green: LHP Aaron Dott
Notes: Dott is 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA. He pitched 5 shutout innings last start...

Charlotte Stone Crabs shut-out by Dunedin Blue Jays 5-0

Matt Moore struck out 11 hitters on Friday night.The Charlotte Stone Crabs continued to struggle as they fell 5-0 to the Dunedin Blue Jays on Friday night at Dunedin Stadium. The Blue Jays used a five run inning to put the game out of reach for the Stone Crabs.

Despite throwing a season high 11 strikeouts, Matt Moore was unable get that first win on the season and has fallen to 0-6 on the year.

Dunedin broke the scorelss tie in the fifth inning. Three consecutive singles by Brian Van Kirk, Daniel Perales and Welinton Ramirez loaded the bases for the Blue Jays. Adeiny Hechavarria drove home the first run with a single to right field. Then Travis d'Arnaud cleared the bases with a grand slam to give the D-Jays a 5-0 lead.

The Stone Crabs offense struggled to push the run across, going 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position and stranding 6 runners on base. No hitter managed to record multiple hits and the team struck out a total of 7 times on the night.

The Stone Crabs will try to stop the slide on Saturday night against the Blue Jays at Dunedin Stadium. Shane Dyer (1-1, 2.25) will get the start for the Stone Crabs against Joel Carreno (2-3, 3.99).

5/29: The Rundown

Durham Bulls 4, Rochester Red Wings 2
Box | Recap
Notes: Durham improved to 27-21... Richard De Los Santos allowed 10 hits, but kept the damage to 2 runs in 6.1 innings. Brian Baker got the win when Durham scored 3 runs in the 7th... Those runs came on an Angel Chavez 3-run home run... They added a run on a wild pitch in the 8th... Desmond Jennings went 0-4...
The Leftovers: The Bulls failed to draw a walk... R.J. Swindle pitched a scoreless inning. For the season, he's pitching 10.1 innings and allowed just one earned run. He's struck out 11 and hasn't issued a walk. He's been absolute death on lefties, retiring all 14 faced, 9 via the strikeout...

Montgomery Biscuits 6, Tennessee Smokies 1
Box | Recap
Notes: Montgomery improved to 26-21... Jake McGee was dominant, shutting the Smokies out for 7 innings on 5 hits and a walk while striking out 11... Matt Gorgen allowed a run in the 9th but struck out the side... Cody Cipriano had 3 hits, while Drew Anderson and Emeel Salem had 2 apiece... Tennessee committed three errors, leading to three unearned runs...
The Leftovers: McGee hadn't struck out double-digit batters since August 3rd, 2007, his final start at Vero Beach. He last struck out 11 on July 9, 2007, also at Vero Beach. His career high is 13, which he recorded the start before that one, on July 2, 2007. The 7 innings pitched is his highest since June 1, 2008. Tennessee's offense, by the way, had the fewest strikeouts in the Southern League entering the game...

Dunedin Blue Jays 5, Charlotte Stone Crabs 0
Box | Recap
Notes: Charlotte fell to 24-23... Matt Moore matched Jake McGee's 11 strikeouts and 1 walk, doing that over 6 innings of work. It was the 5th inning that did Moore in, though, when he allowed 6 hits including a grand slam. Chris Andujar made his first relief appearance of the year to finish the game... The Crabs offense mustered 7 hits, and didn't really threaten to score until they loaded the bases in the 9th, but came up empty... Tim Beckham was 0-4 with a strikeout... Jake Jefferies and Matt Joyce each doubled...
The Leftovers: Moore's ERA is still ugly at 6.52, but this start could be the beginning of a turnaround. Last year, he struck out 12 (which is his career high) and walked 2 in a start on June 6 that jump-started a dominant two-month period. His K/9 is 12.85, right in line with his career average

Fort Wayne Tin Caps 5, Bowling Green Hot Rods 4
Box | Recap
Notes: Bowling Green fell to 19-29... Alex Colome walked four in 5 innings, but it was a Kyle Spraker error and a passed ball that led to the 3 runs he allowed, all unearned. He struck out 7 and lowered his ERA to 1.91... Scott Shuman struck out 4 in 2 innings of work... Brett Nommensen had 3 hits while Ryan Wiegan had 2... Ty Morrison was 1-2 with a walk...
The Leftovers: Colome has walked 7 in his last two starts, spanning 11 innings...

Friday, May 28, 2010

Montgomery Biscuits 6, Tennessee Smokies 1

MONTGOMERY, AL – Jake McGee enjoyed his best start since undergoing 2008 Tommy John surgery, fanning a Biscuits’ season-high eleven in seven scoreless innings, and the Biscuits (26-21) silenced the Smokies (28-20) 6-1 on Friday at Riverwalk.

McGee (1-4) had not gone deeper than five innings all season. He struck out the side in the first, then recorded at least one K in every inning. The Biscuits have now held the number-one offense in the Southern League scoreless through eight innings two consecutive nights, with the lone Smokies run coming in the ninth against Matt Gorgen.

After going two innings without a hit, the Biscuits got back-to-back singles from Emeel Salem and Drew Anderson to start the third against Smokies starter Chris Carpenter (3-2). Matt Fields, Matt Sweeney, and Cody Cipriano would all follow with RBI singles to make it 4-0 Biscuits.

Carpenter left the game after the third, having allowed four runs (two earned) on five hits and three walks. The Biscuits would add one in the fourth and one in the sixth off Tennessee reliever Alex Maestri.

Heath Rollins, making his first 2010 Biscuits appearance worked a one-two-three eighth. The ninth-inning run snapped a string of 13 scoreless appearances for Gorgen.

Cipriano paced the Biscuits with a 3-4 night, while Salem and Anderson each pitched in two hits.

RHP Alex Cobb will look to help the Biscuits track down a series victory against Tennessee RHP Hung-Wen Chen on Saturday at 7:05.

-- Team Release.

Durham Bulls 4, Rochester Red Wings 2

Durham, NC - A dramatic seventh inning blast by Angel Chavez put the Bulls on top in the seventh as they stole one from Rochester, 4-2 Friday night at Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Brian Baker picked up his fourth win for the Bulls tossing just 0.2 innings of relief as the Bulls improve to 27-21 on the season.

Richard De Los Santos got the start for the Bulls and held the Red Wings to two runs in 6.1 innings of work. The right-hander allowed 10 hits, but worked himself out of trouble and making timely pitches to avoid the big inning.

Rochester’s offense all came in the fourth inning, as doubles by Brian Dinkleman, Dustin Martin and Jacque Jones brought across a pair of runs to give them a 2-0 lead.

The Bulls offense stayed silent until the seventh inning, mustering just three hits against right-hander Matt Fox. Jose Lugo replaced the Red Wings starter in the seventh, and was greeted with a one-out single by Justin Ruggiano. A line-drive to center field by Chris Richard was originally ruled a home run, but after the umpire’s gathered together they ruled it was a ground-rule double which put runners at second and third. Chavez made the call irrelevant, smacking the first Rob Delaney offering he saw over the wall in left for a three-run blast.

They added another run in the eighth inning, as Rashad Eldridge doubled with one-out. After moving to third on a ground out, the Bulls designated hitter came home on a wild pitch by Delaney, increasing the advantage to 4-2.

Abreu came on in the ninth and was his solid if not spectacular self, striking out a pair to earn his team-leading fourth save of the season. With the victory, the Bulls now stand at 5.5 games ahead of Norfolk for the lead in the South Division.

The two teams continue the series tomorrow as LHP Carlos Hernandez (3-2 2.31) takes the mound against RHP Jeff Manship (2-2 4.14). Game time is set for 7:05 p.m.

-- Team Release.

Dunedin Blue Jays 5, Charlotte Stone Crabs 0

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- A five-run fifth inning rally and a good night from the men on the mound helped the Dunedin Blue Jays cruise to a 5-0 whitewashing of the Charlotte Stone Crabs on Friday night at Dunedin Stadium.

The Blue Jays scored five times in the fifth inning, with Travis D'Arnaud's two-out grand slam home run highlighting the attack. That was all the offense that was needed as three Jays hurlers combined for Dunedin's fifth shut-out of the season.

Matt Moore (0-6) was the victim of the scoring in the fifth inning. Adeiny Hechevarria collected the fourth consecutive one-out single to plate the first Dunedin run. Two batters later it was D'Arnaud who came up in a big way with two men out and the bases loaded.

D'Arnaud's fifth home run of the season allowed the Blue Jays give Charlotte a receipt for the grand slam homer belted by Matt Joyce a night earlier. It also pushed the Blue Jays advantage to 5-0.

Moore struck out a season high 11-hitters but was saddled with his sixth consecutive losing decision to start the year. The lefty went six innings and surrendered the five earned runs on eight hits and a walk.

After being shut-out for the fourth time this season, Charlotte (24-23) has now dropped four games in a row to fall into third place in the Florida State League South Division. They trail the Bradenton Marauders by 4 1/2 games in the first half division race.

The series continues Saturday as righty Shane Dyer (1-1) seeks to get the Stone Crabs back on the winning track. He will match up against right-hander Joel Carreno (2-3) of Dunedin. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.

-- Team Release.

Five Charlotte Stone Crabs Make 2010 Florida State League All-Star Team

The Florida State League has announced the rosters for the 2010 FSL All-Star Game to be played at Space Coast Stadium in Viera, Florida, on Saturday, June 12, 2010, at 7:35 p.m. Five members of the Charlotte Stone Crabs have been chosen to play for the South Division team:

Zach Quate, RHRP
Chris Andujar, RHSP
Stephen Vogt, C
Isaias Velasquez, OF
Henry Wrigley, DH

In addition, the Stone Crabs field staff will lead the South Division team. They include: Manager Jim Morrison, coaches Neil Allen and Joe Szekely, trainer Chris Tomashoff, and strength coach Scott Smith.

Congratulations to all!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

South Bend Silver Hawks 10, Bowling Green Hot Rods 2

Bowling Green, KY – The Hot Rods completed the first series of their 13-game home stand at Bowling Green Ballpark on Thursday night against the South Bend Silver Hawks. Despite a 10-2 loss on a Thirsty Thursday the Hot Rods took two out of three from South Bend, winning their second straight series.

After the Hot Rods dominated the first two games with clutch hitting and dominating pitching, South Bend returned the favor in the series finale on Thursday. Facing Kyle Lobstein (L; 1-3) for the second time this season the Silver Hawks opened the game with a pair of runs in the first inning. Keon Broxton began the game with a walk before Matt Davidson followed three batters later with a two-out, two-run home run deep to left field for a 2-0 South Bend lead.

Two innings later it was a bit of déjà-vu for the Silver Hawks. With two outs, Chris Owings worked a walk before Bobby Borchering hit the first pitch he saw into the Home Run Grill for another two-out, two-run homer to give South Bend a 4-0 lead.

Lobstein would make it through one more inning, walking a career-high six batters. He gave up just two hits, but both landed over the left field wall. Things could’ve been worse for Lobstein, who loaded the bases in the fourth with only one out, but catcher Mark Thomas picked off a runner at third base for the second out. Lobstein walked the next batter but then struck out Owings to end his night after four innings.

Charles Brewer dominated the Hot Rods line-up allowing a pair of hits, both doubles, through the first three innings. He eventually worked seven shutout frames surrendering just three hits. He struck out seven and walked two to improve his record to 3-3.

South Bend tacked on insurance runs against the Hot Rods bullpen. In the fifth, they scored an unearned run against Alex Koronis. They added two more in the seventh against Koronis before tacking on a three-run eighth against Matt Stabelfeld.

The Hot Rods got their lone runs in the bottom of the ninth inning against Rafael Quezada. Tyler Bortnick began the inning with a walk before Dustin Biell just missed a home run, doubling off the top of the right field wall.

Mark Thomas wouldn’t waste Biell’s effort, driving both Bortnick and Biell home with a double down the left field line for his 12th and 13th RBI of the season.

The Hot Rods now welcome in the Fort Wayne TinCaps (San Diego Padres) for a four-game series beginning on Friday night at 7:05 PM. RHP Alexander Colome (4-2, 2.09) takes the ball in the first game against RHP Jerry Sullivan (3-2, 3.19). Friday night is another Fireworks Friday presented by WBKO.

Immediately following the game the Hot Rods will light up the sky with an exciting display of fireworks. For tickets and a full list of upcoming promotions, visit You can follow the game with Tom Gauthier and Hank Fuerst beginning at 6:50 PM on 1340 AM WBGN and

NOTES: Hot Rods pitching allowed a season-high 11 walks, tying the club record from August 30, 2009 against Asheville.

Montgomery Biscuits 7, Tennessee Smokies 2

MONTGOMERY, AL – One night after getting shutout while giving up 17 hits, the Biscuits (25-21) got eight scoreless frames from Jeremy Hall and used 14 hits to top the Smokies (28-19) 7-2 Thursday at Riverwalk.

The Smokies didn’t collect their first hit off Hall until there were two outs in the fifth. Hall becomes the first Biscuits pitcher to pitch eight innings this season, and has now tossed back-to-back scoreless outings spanning a total of 15.0 frames. A seventh Biscuits shutout disappeared with Matt Spencer homered off Paul Phillips in the ninth.

The Biscuits’ bats came to life to record the second-highest hit-total of the season. Montgomery got single runs in the first, third, and fourth, then two in the fifth on a Matt Fields single and two in the eighth on an Emeel Salem triple.

JJ Furmaniak paced the Biscuits with his second three-hit game of the season, driving home a pair of runs. Nevin Ashley also went 3-4, and John Matulia recorded his team-leading twelfth multi-hit game with a 2-4 night.

Hall (2-2) struck out five while walking two, and after going winless over his first seven appearances, has now won his last two. Craig Muschko (2-2) took the loss for the Smokies, allowing five runs on a whopping ten hits in 4.1 tossed.

With Jacksonville’s loss to Chattanooga, the Biscuits now trail the Suns by 4.0 in the South Division with 23 first half games remaining.

LHP Jake McGee will look to pick up his first win on Friday night at 7:05 against RHP Chris Carpenter.

Dunedin Blue Jays 8, Charlotte Stone Crabs 6

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Big hitting and costly errors were the order of the night as the Dunedin Blue Jays capitalized on a pair of second inning miscues to hand the Charlotte Stone Crabs an 8-6 loss on Thursday at Dunedin Stadium.

Despite a grand slam home run off the bat of rehabbing Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Matt Joyce, the Stone Crabs could not claw their way back from a deficit that once stood at 8-1. Charlotte has now lost the first two games of a nine-game road trip and dropped three consecutive contests overall.

Things got out of control for Stone Crabs starter Frank De Los Santos in the second inning, when a fielding error by third baseman Greg Sexton opened the frame and paved the way for a three-run rally by the Blue Jays.

With two men aboard in that third inning, Brian Van Kirk laced a double to right that chase home the game's first run. The scoring on the play would not stop there, however, as Anthony Scelfo's cut-off throw skidded past shortstop Tim Beckham at the second base bag and rolled all the way into the left field corner. That error allowed both a second runner to score and Van Kirk to circle the bases, making it 3-0 Blue Jays.

Dunedin continued their scoring by adding single runs in the third and fourth innings, before putting up their second three-run frame of the night in the fifth. Travis d'Arnaud's run-scoring double and a two-run homer by Mike McCade opened up an 8-1 advantage for the Jays.

Joyce's slam at the expense of Dunedin starter Andrew Liebel came as an immediate counterpunch in the top of the sixth. Liebel had struck out Joyce in two prior at-bats before the Charlotte designated hitter grooved the bases loaded clout to bring the Stone Crabs within three runs.

Charlotte added another run in the seventh on catcher Matt Spring's third homer of the year, a towering blast that cleared the left field wall and made it an 8-6 game.

The Blue Jays bullpen answered the call from that point on. Set-up man Alan Farina pitched a scoreless eighth inning before Matt Daly slammed the door in the ninth for his 14th save of the season.

De Los Santos (4-3) surrendered eight runs - six earned - on eight hits, walking one and striking out four. It marked the third start in a row in which the Charlotte lefty has surrendered seven or more runs.

Liebel (4-4) did not fair much better, but his defense turned in an error free night in the field. The right-hander lasted six innings and allowed five earned runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out three.

Charlotte (24-22) slipped into third place in the Florida State League South Division following the loss. Though the division leading Bradenton Marauders likewise lost on Thursday, the Palm Beach Cardinals picked up a win to break the second place tie with the Stone Crabs.

This series continues on Friday as the Stone Crabs send Matt Moore (0-5) to the mound, still searching for his first win of the season. Righty reliever Chad Beck (0-1) will get a spot start for Dunedin. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m.

Rochester Red Wings 4, Durham Bulls 3

Durham, NC – Rochester plated three runs in the top of the seventh inning to erase a 3-1 Bulls’ lead and send the Red Wings on to a 4-3 win on Thursday night at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.

Rochester got on the board in the first inning when Jason Repko singled, stole second, advanced to third on a sacrifice fly then scored on a sac fly to make it 1-0.

The Bulls responded with a pair in the third inning when Desmond Jennings was hit by a pitch followed by Elliot Johnson’s double putting runners at second and third. Justin Ruggiano followed with a single up the middle scoring Jennings and Johnson to give the Bulls a 2-1 lead. Durham added another in the sixth inning when Angel Chavez singled to right field scoring Joe Dillon.

Rochester took the lead for good in the seventh inning when Danny Valencia walked and advanced to second on a groundout. Matt Macri and Repko both walked to load the bases before Matt Tolbert struck out swinging for the second out. Trevor Plouffe reached on an error by Bulls second baseman Angel Chavez allowing Valencia and Macri to score. Jose Morales then doubled to score Repko giving the Red Wings a 4-3 lead they wouldn’t relinquish.

RHP Kyle Waldrop (1-0) picked up the win in relief pitching two and one-third innings allowing no runs or hits while striking out four. LHP Jason Cromer, just activated from the disabled list today, took the loss in relief allowing three runs (none earned) on three walks and no hits.

Durham and Rochester continue their series on Friday night at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Tickets are available at or by phone at (919) 956-BULL.

5/27: Today's Games

Durham Bulls vs. Rochester Red Wings (MIN) 7:05 ET
Starting for Durham: RHP Aneury Rodriguez
Notes: Rodrigue is 3-2 with a 3.32 ERA between Durham and Montgomery... Glen Perkins is scheduled to start for Rochester... Game 1 of a four-game series

Montgomery Biscuits at Tennessee Smokies (CHC) 8:05 ET
Starting for Montgomery: RHP Jeremy Hall
Notes: Hall is 1-2 with a 3.51 ERA. He threw 7 shutout innings in his last start... Game 2 of a five-game series...

Charlotte Stone Crabs at Dunedin Blue Jays (TOR) 7:00 ET
Starting for Charlotte: LHP Frank De Los Santos
Notes: De Los Santos is 4-2 with a 4.54 ERA. He was roughed up in his previous two outings, having allowed 11 earned runs in a combined 8.2 innings... Game 1 of a four-game series...

Bowling Green Hot Rods vs South Bend Silver Hawks (ARI) 8:05 ET
Starting for Bowling Green: LHP Kyle Lobstein
Notes: Lobstein is 1-2 with a 5.59 ERA... Finale of a three-game series...

5/27: The Rundown

Durham Bulls off
Box | Recap
Notes: Durham returns to action today at home against Rochester...
The Leftovers: The Bulls are 26-20 and have a 5.5-game lead in the Southern Division...

Tennessee Smokies 3, Montgomery Biscuits 0
Box | Recap
Notes: Montgomery fell to 24-21... David Newmann took the loss despite pitching very well. The only run he allowed in 6.1 innings was unearned, though he committed the error that led to it. He struck out 5 and didn't walk a hitter... The Biscuits had just three hits... Montgomery turned 4 double plays...
The Leftovers:

Palm Beach Cardinals 10, Charlotte Stone Crabs 4
Box | Recap
Notes: Charlotte fell to 24-21... Joseph Cruz struck out 8 and walked none over 5 innings, but got hit around for 7 runs, all earned, on 10 hits... Sergio Espinosa pitched the final three innings, allowing 3 runs (1 earned). He struck out 1 and didn't issue a walk... Baserunners were 4/4 off Cruz/Jake Jefferies... Tim Beckham went 0-4 with a walk. He committed his 9th error in the field on a throw... Leslie Anderson went 3-3, all singles...
The Leftovers:

Bowling Green Hot Rods 4, South Bend Silver Hawks 1
Box | Recap
Notes: Bowling Green has won seven straight to improve to 19-27... Wilking Rodriguez shined, pitching 6 strong innings. He allowed a run on 6 hits and a walk, striking out 8... Kirby Yates got his 5th save of the season, striking out 2 over 2 innings... Julio Cedeno went 3-4 with a double and two RBIs...
The Leftovers:

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A Look at the V-Rays: Hitters

Down in Venezuela, it's time for teams to showcase their prowess in their Latin America Scouting Departments and time for players to show why they were "bonus babies" when the July 2nd signing period began. The VSL Rays, last year's league champs, are set to defend their crown and there's a few interesting prospects in the mix that may lead them on their way to repeating.

The elder statesmen, if that's even possible, of this year's V-Rays crop are Roan Salas(19.9 yrs old) and Nahum Hernandez(20.7). These guys are the "big bats" of the line-up. Last year, Roan collected 37 XBHs(15 HRs) and had a triple slash of .338/.409/.653 with his BABIP being only .339. I feel this year is a make-or-break year for both these players, seeing as they've still yet to come stateside and play in a complex/short-season league. Nahum needs to improve on last year's numbers(4 HRs, sub-.300 average), though, to even be considered for one.

Looking through the roster, Jose Paez pops out at you. At the young age of 16, Paez is the lead-off hitter and starting centerfielder for the V-Rays. He's already stolen 3 bases, scored 5 runs and has an OBP of .381 through the first 6 games. I know that's not great, but considering his age and everything, this may be a player to keep track of going on.

Wester Silva(18.3) is a name that I was telling people to keep an eye on, after his late-season debut last year. He's one of our kids from our Brazilian Academy and showed a knack for hitting and getting on base last year. I'm fairly interested in him, due to the fact that he was our first non-pitching, teenage signee from Brazil to be put in a summer league. If he can build on last year and work his way into eventually being a stateside player, it'd do wonders in recruiting teenagers in Brazil to switch from soccer to baseball.

Omar Narvaez(18.3) is another name I'm keeping an eye on, however I'm a bit pessimistic with Rays catching prospects coming out of the VSL with the way Mayobanex Acosta and Alejandro Segovia have performed stateside(though Segovia still has some time). With everything a catcher does in a game, both offensively and defensively, I won't be surprised either way with how Omar's season goes.

Next up: A look at V-Rays pitching staff
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Minor Moves: More Releases

Per Stacy Long, the Tampa Bay Rays have released two Montgomery Biscuits players, RHRP Eduardo Morlan and outfielder Cody Strait.

Morlan, 24, was originally drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the 3rd round of the 2004 draft. He came to the Rays along with Matt Garza and Jason Bartlett in the trade for Delmon Young. His career stats:
Year   Age           Tm  W  L  ERA   G GS SV    IP  WHIP  H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2004    18        Twins  1  2 2.84  11  2  1  25.1 1.382  8.9  0.4  3.6  9.9  2.80
2005    19 Elizabethton  2  0 0.82   4  4  0  22.0 0.545  2.5  0.0  2.5 12.3  5.00
2005    19       Beloit  4  4 4.38  10 10  0  51.1 1.364  6.8  0.9  5.4  9.6  1.77
2006    20       Beloit  5  5 2.29  28 18  2 106.1 1.091  6.6  0.5  3.2 10.6  3.29
2007    21   Fort Myers  4  3 3.15  41  0 18  65.2 1.096  7.5  1.0  2.3 12.6  5.41
2007    21  New Britain  1  0 2.25   2  0  0   4.0 1.500  6.8  0.0  6.8 15.8  2.33
2008    22   Montgomery  4  2 3.64  30  0  1  47.0 1.255  8.4  1.0  2.9  8.6  3.00
2009    23   Montgomery  7  5 3.99  48  0  4  70.0 1.386  8.6  1.0  3.9  8.0  2.07
2010    24   Montgomery  1  0 5.24  12  0  0  22.1 1.836 12.9  1.6  3.6  6.4  1.78
7 Seasons               29 21 3.24 186 34 26 414.0 1.227  7.6  0.8  3.5 10.0  2.89
Provided by View Original Table Generated 5/25/2010.

Strait, who will turn 27 on Friday, was originally drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 12th round of the 2004 draft. The Rays acquired him for cash considerations last summer from the Kansas City Royals. His career stats:
Year   Age                 Tm   AB   R   H  2B 3B HR RBI  SB CS   BA  OBP  SLG   OPS
2004    21           Billings   49  10  19   1  3  2  11   3  2 .388 .434 .653 1.087
2004    21             Dayton  220  15  46  10  2  0  13   3  3 .209 .266 .273  .539
2005    22             Dayton  413  63 110  16  4 14  60  25  7 .266 .349 .426  .775
2006    23           Sarasota  489  85 126  36  4 17  74  50  9 .258 .325 .452  .777
2006    23         Louisville   10   2   1   0  1  0   1   0  0 .100 .250 .300  .550
2007    24           Sarasota  266  39  64  15  4  7  39  15  7 .241 .291 .406  .697
2007    24        Chattanooga  218  31  47  15  0  7  29  11  2 .216 .282 .381  .663
2008    25         Wilmington  196  39  58  13  1 13  35  11  2 .296 .362 .571  .934
2008    25        Chattanooga  226  32  58  17  3  5  19   4  3 .257 .305 .425  .729
2009    26 Northwest Arkansas  320  59  89  22  1  4  38  14  4 .278 .340 .391  .731
2009    26         Montgomery  111  15  26   6  1  1  21   5  1 .234 .282 .333  .616
2010    27         Montgomery  133  14  26  11  0  0  10   8  2 .195 .267 .278  .545
7 Seasons                     2651 404 670 162 24 70 350 149 42 .253 .317 .411  .728
Provided by View Original Table Generated 5/25/2010.

Charlotte Stone Crabs fall to Palm Beach Cardinals

Tim Beckham was the only Stone Crabs to record multiple hits in Monday's game.The Charlotte Stone Crabs saw their six game winning streak come to an end on Monday night with a 4-3 loss to the Palm Beach Cardinals at Charlotte Sports Park.

After producing 38 runs during the previous series against Brevard County, the Stone Crabs offense fell silent against the Cardinals, going 4 for 18 with runners in scoring position and stranding 12 runners on base during the game.

The Stone Crabs took an early lead in the first inning. Isaias Velasquez reached on an error to lead off the inning. Tim Beckham and Matt Joyce drew walks to load the bases. Henry Wrigley drove home Velasquez to give the Stone Crabs a 1-0 lead.

The Cardinals took the lead in the second inning. Jarred Bogany hit a two run triple to center field that scored Alex Castellanos and Devin Shepard to give them a 2-1 lead.

Palm Beach added to their lead in the third inning. Jose Garcia led off the inning with a double to left then later scored on an RBI single by Tony Cruz to increase the Cardinal lead 3-1.

The Cardinals added an insurance run in the seventh inning. Nick Derba singled to left field to get things going. Derba would score on a ground ball by Garcia to push the lead up to 4-1.

The Stone Crabs started to rally in the eighth inning. Wrigley doubled to left field to lead off the inning. Greg Sexton would later drive Wrigley home with a single to left. The Stone Crabs would strike out back to back to end the inning and leave the bases loaded.

The rally continued into the ninth inning. Beckham doubled to left field then advanced to third on a single by Reid Fronk. Wrigley drove home Beckham with a ground ball to score Beckham. But the rally fell short as the tying run was stranded in scoring position and the Stone Crabs fell 4-3.

Nick Barnese suffered the loss, allowing 4 runs (3 earned) with 6 strikeouts and a walk in 6 innings. Michael Jarman and Zach Quate combined to no-hit the Cardinals through the final 3 frames.

The Stone Crabs and Cardinals are back at it again on Tuesday night at Charlotte Sports Park. Joe Cruz (2-4, 4.14) will be making the start for the Stone Crabs against Aruimedes Nieto (2-3, 4.53) for Palm Beach.

5/25: The Rundown

Durham Bulls 1, Pawtucket Red Sox 0
Box | Recap
Notes: Durham improved to 25-20... Jeremy Hellickson carried a perfect game into the 7th and a no-hitter into the 8th. He finished with 8 shutout innings, allowing only a hit and a walk. He struck out 5... Winston Abreu closed out the 9th inning for the save... Durham's only run came on a Ryan Shealy solo home run in the 2nd inning...
The Leftovers:

Montgomery Biscuits rained out
Box | Recap
Notes: Montgomery and West Tennessee will not make the game up...
The Leftovers:

Palm Beach Cardinals 4, Charlotte Stone Crabs 3
Box | Recap
Notes: Charlotte improved to 21-19... Nick Barnese struck out 6 and walked 1 in 6 innings, but took the loss, allowing 4 runs (3 earned)... Michael Jarman and Zach Quate combined for three scoreless innings out of the bullpen... Tim Beckham was 2-4 with a double and a walk, making it 13 hits in last 6 games... Matt Joyce drew 3 walks...
The Leftovers:

Bowling Green Hot Rods 5, Dayton Dragons 0
Box | Recap
Notes: Bowling Green has won 5 straight to improve to 17-27... Aaron Dott, Alex Koronis, and Deivis Mavarez combined to keep the Dragons off the board. Dott went 5 innings, allowed 2 hits, struck out 6, and didn't walk a batter... Chris Murrill, Tyler Bortnick, and Brett Nommensen each had 2 hits. Murrill doubled twice while Nommensen also had an extra-base hit...
The Leftovers: I thought maybe the 4-4 game would get Ty Morrison going, but he's just 1-11 since then...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Durham Bulls 1, Pawtucket PawSox 0

Durham, NC – Jeremy Hellickson tossed 8.0 shutout innings allowing only one hit as the Bulls edged Pawtucket 1-0. A second inning solo shot by Ryan Shealy proved to be the difference as Hellickson was nearly flawless to earn his league leading seventh win of the season.

Hellickson was perfect through six innings of work, but a leadoff walk to Tug Hulett ended his bid for perfection to start the seventh. The end of the no-hitter came one inning later, as Aaron Bates took a fastball the opposite way to right for a leadoff single in the eighth.

The 23-year-old righty induced 10 ground ball outs to go along with five strikeouts on the night, not allowing the PawSox hitters to get the ball in the air as he blazed through the lineup. With the eight shutout innings tonight, his ERA drops to 2.88 in 10 starts this season.

Hellickson is no stranger to a near no-hitter, as it marks the second time in his Bulls career he has one-hit an opponent through 8.0 innings. On August 30, 2009, Hellickson struck out 12 in a masterful performance over Gwinnett which also took place at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park.

Shealy was the offensive star of the night for the Bulls, as he tagged a Kris Johnson offering to dead center field for his eighth home run of the year. The blast would prove to be the difference, as Winston Abreu came on to work a perfect ninth inning for his third save of the season.

The win improves the Bulls to 25-20 on the season, increasing their lead in the Southern Division to 5.0 games over Gwinnett. The two teams conclude the series tomorrow as LHP Heath Phillips (3-4 4.58) takes the hill for the Bulls against RHP Michael Bowden (1-2 6.03) for the PawSox. Game time is set for 7:05 p.m.

Bowling Green Hot Rods 5, Dayton Dragons 0

Dayton, OH – Chris Murrill hit two more doubles and scored twice while Aaron Dott (1-1) threw five beautiful innings to lead the Hot Rods to a 5-0 victory over the Dayton Dragons on Monday night at Fifth Third Field. The win caps off a five-game series sweep of the Dragons and sends Bowling Green home for a long home stand with a 6-2 record on their eight-game road trip.

For the fourth time in the series, Bowling Green put runners across home plate first. Mark Thomas led off the top of the second with a walk before Eligio Sonoqui popped out to second. With one out, Thomas was sent in motion on a 3-2 pitch, which Brett Nommensen pulled into the right field corner for a run-scoring double and a 1-0 Hot Rods lead.

The Hot Rods made it 2-0 when Julio Cedeno followed with a bouncer to first base. The first baseman, Tommy Nurre, lunged for it but the ball deflected into right field for an error, allowing Nommensen to score standing up from second base.

The very next inning the Hot Rods tacked onto their lead with another pair of runs. Chris Murrill doubled down the left field line and then took third on a single by Tyler Bortnick. That brought up Dustin Biell who laced a single to right to score Murrill and bump the lead to 3-0. With runners at first and second, Mark Thomas grounded into a double play, advancing Bortnick to third. He would score a few pitches later on a ball in the dirt to make it 4-0 Bowling Green.

Two innings later Murrill and Bortnick produced another run. Murrill began the inning with his second double of the game into the left-center field gap. He then stole third and scored on a single by Bortnick, his second hit of the game, to give the Hot Rods their 5-0 lead.

The run support was more than enough for starting pitcher Aaron Dott, who grabbed the win in his second start for the Hot Rods. The lefty threw five shutout innings, giving up just two hits. He was perfect through 3.1 innings before Kevin Coddington singled with one out in the fourth. Dott struck out six, coming one shy of his career-high without issuing a walk.

He turned his 5-0 lead over to the bullpen, which carried the torch through the end of the game. Alex Koronis went three scoreless on a pair of hits and a walk. He was helped out by two double plays where Dragons runners were caught off base on a line drive to second and a fly ball to left field.

Murrill finished the game 2-4 with his pair of doubles, scoring a pair of runs in the process. Bortnick finished 2-4 with an RBI. Nommensen was also 2-4 with a double and an RBI. Biell picked up an RBI as well, his team-leading 18th of the season.

For Murrill, he wrapped up quite a series and road trip for Bowling Green. Against Dayton the left-fielder was 9-23 with four doubles, three RBI, six runs scored, and two stolen bases. He finished the road trip with 12 hits in 29 at-bats. He doubled four times, drove in five runs, scored another eight, and stole four bases in five tries.

Montgomery Biscuits vs. West Tenn Diamond Jaxx Rained Out, Will Not Be Made Up

JACKSON, TN – Monday's game between the Biscuits (24-20) and the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx at Pringles Park has been rained out. Because it was the final scheduled game between the teams in Jackson this season, it will not be rescheduled.

The Biscuits are 24-20, and entered the day 4.5 games behind Jacksonville. They return home for a five-game stand against the Tennessee Smokies, beginning Wednesday night at 7:05. Both Friday and Saturday's 7:05 contests will feature MAX Fireworks Spectaculars, and Sunday is Big Mo's Birthday Bash.

LHP David Newmann will throw for the Biscuits on Wednesday against Tennessee RHP Austin Bibens-Dirkx.

Minor Moves: Williams

Per the Charlotte Stone Crabs, infielder Shawn Williams asked to be released on Sunday, and the Tampa Bay Rays granted his request.

The 26 year-old infielder/designated hitter played in 96 for Charlotte last season and filled the third base hole when Greg Sexton got injured mid-season. He had gone 5-for-17 (.294) with two RBIs in six games for the Crabs this season.

Williams was originally signed as a non-drafted free agent on October 20, 2006, after playing indy ball for Fort Worth of the American Association. His final career stats in the Rays organization:
Year   Age          Team  AB  R   H 2B 3B HR RBI BB  SO   BA  OBP  SLG  OPS
2006    22    Fort Worth 164 26  52  8  0  1  23 13  41 .317 .375 .384 .759
2007    23 Hudson Valley  46  4  11  5  0  0   8  6  11 .239 .321 .348 .669
2007    23    Vero Beach  72  8  14  3  0  0   8  7  14 .194 .256 .236 .492
2008    24      Columbus 144 15  40  8  0  0  10  4  31 .278 .307 .333 .640
2009    25     Charlotte 317 32  78 18  2  3  30 30  84 .246 .330 .344 .673
2010    26     Charlotte  17  2   5  0  0  0   2  1   3 .294 .368 .294 .663
5 Seasons                760 87 200 42  2  4  81 61 184 .263 .329 .339 .668
Provided by View Original Table Generated 5/24/2010.

5/24: Today's Games

Durham Bulls vs. Pawtucket Red Sox (BOS) 7:05 ET
Starting for Durham: RHP Jeremy Hellickson
Notes: Hellickson is 6-2 with a 3.24 ERA...

Montgomery Biscuits at West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx (SEA) 8:05 ET
Starting for Montgomery: LHP David Newmann
Notes: Newmann is 1-1 with a 3.16 ERA, but he has walked more than he's struck out in half of his 8 starts...

Charlotte Stone Crabs vs. Palm Beach Cardinals (STL) 7:05 ET
Starting for Charlotte: RHP Nick Barnese
Notes: Barnese is 3-2 with a 3.94 ERA. He struggled with his control in his last outing, walking 4 in 3.2 innings...

Bowling Green Hot Rods at Dayton Dragons (CIN) 7:00 ET
Starting for Bowling Green: LHP Aaron Dott
Notes: This will be Dott's second start of the year. He allowed 4 runs in 3 innings last time out...

Charlotte Stone Crabs Sweep Brevard County Manatees with 10-3 Win

Reid Fronk reached base five times on Sunday, 3 for 3 with 3 doubles and drew 2 walks.The Charlotte Stone Crabs wrapped up the series against the Brevard County Manatees witha 10-3 win on Sunday at Charlotte Sports Park. The victory earned them a sweep of the four game series and extended the winning streak to four games.

The Stone Crabs offense came alive for the series as they pushed across 38 runs on 54 hits in the series.

The Manatees took the lead in the first inning on an RBI single by Erik Komatsu that scored Josh Prince for a 1-0 lead.

The Stone Crabs answered with a run in the second inning to tie the game. Stephen Vogt singled to short to reach base and extend his hitting streak to seventeen games. Vogt would later score when Leslie Anderson hit into a double play to tie the game 1-1.

Brevard County would retake the lead again in the third inning. Anderson De La Rosa led off the inning with a ground rule double. De La Rosa would then score on a ground out by Josh Prince to give the Manatees a 2-1 lead.

But the Stone Crabs offense came alive in the home half of the third inning, scoring four runs in the inning. Vogt doubled to right to score Tim Beckham and Matt Joyce. Anderson drove in his second run of the game with a single to right that score Henry Wrigley. Vogt then scored on a wild pitch to give the Stone Crabs a 5-2 lead.

The Stone Crabs capatilzed on wild pitching by the Manatees in the fourth inning to post two more runs to the scoreboard. Beckham drew a walk to lead off the inning then moved to third by stealing second and third after a walk issued to Joyce. Beckham scored on a wild pitch. Wrigley drew a walk the pulled a double steal with Joyce to both move into scoring position. A second wild pitch of the inning would allow Joyce to score and give the Stone Crabs a 7-2 lead.

Charlotte added a pair of runs in the sixth inning. Anderson and Fronk each hit RBI doubles to increase the lead to 9-2.

Both clubs exchanged run in the eighth inning. Brevard County added a run in the top of the inning on an RBI double by Brock Kjeldgaard. Then in the home half of the inning, Fronk doubled home Vogt to secure the 10-3 victory.

Shane Dyer picked up his first Florida State League victory by pitching six innings and allowing 2 runs on 4 hits with 3 strikeouts and a walk. Marquis Fleming pitched 1 2/3 innings and allowed a run on 3 hits. Josh Satow finished out the final 1 1/3 innings with no runs on 1 hit with 2 strikeouts and a walk.

The Stone Crabs (24-19) will kick off a three game series against the Palm Beach Cardinals (22-21) on Monday night at Charlotte Sports Park. The first two games will be played in Port Charlotte with the final game on the road. Nick Barnese (3-2, 3.94) will make the start for the Stone Crabs against a pitcher to be named later for Palm Beach.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Charlotte Stone Crabs Earn 5-4 Victory in Extra Innings Against Brevard County

Greg Sexton picked up five hits in the game and scored the game winning run on Saturday.After producing a combined 40 runs in the past two games of the series, the Charlotte Stone Crabs and Brevard County Manatees kept it close and produced innings on Saturday, fifteen of them to be exact. When the dust settled, the Stone Crabs walked away with a 5-4 walk-off win in front of the home town crowd.

Greg Sexton had a five hit night, tying Henry Wrigley for most hits in a game. Sexton’s fifth hit of the game came in the fifteenth inning, resulting in him later scoring the winning run.

The Stone Crabs broke the scoreless tie in the third inning. Tim Beckham continued his upward climb with two run home run to give them a 2-0 lead.

But the Manatees quickly answered back with three runs in the fifth inning to take the lead. Josh Prince, Sergio Miranda and Brock Kjeldgaard each drove in a run to give the Manatees a 3-2 lead.

It would not take long for the Stone Crabs to regain the lead, striking for two runs in the sixth inning. Stone Crabs offensive leader Henry Wrigley went deep to left field to lead off the inning, his ninth home run of the season to tie the game. The Stone Crabs later scored the go ahead run when a wild pitch on a Kyeong Kang strike out led to Sexton scoring from third and giving the club a 4-3 lead.

Zach Quate took over the mound in the eighth inning to preserve the Stone Crabs lead, but things did not fair so well for Quate. Prince would deliver and RBI single to right to score Michael Roberts and tie the game again. The run was only the second run allowed by Quate all season.

So the game continued on into extra innings. The Stone Crabs worked through their bullpen and in the fifteenth inning, decided to bring infielder Anthony Scelfo on to pitch. Scelfo pitched a no hit inning with a strikeout to set the table for the walk-off rally in the home half of the inning.

The winning rally was led off by Sexton’s fifth hit of the contest, a single to right field. Manatee’s pitcher Brandon Ritchie intentionally walked Kyeong Kang and Matt Hall to load the bases for the Stone Crabs. Isaias Velasquez followed through with an RBI to score Sexton and give the 5-4 win in the longest game of franchise history.

To earn the victory, the Stone Crabs used six pitchers in the contest resulting in a team high twenty strikeouts. Matt Moore made the start, one of his best starts of the season by recording 8 strikeouts and allowing 3 runs, however left the game after five innings with a no decision. Mike Jarman pitched 2 scoreless innings with 2 strikeouts. Quate allowed a run on 2 hits with 2 strikeouts in 2 innings. Sergio Espinosa made his Stone Crabs debut, throwing 3 scoreless innings. Neil Schenk struck out 5 in 2 scoreless innings. Scelfo was the winning pitcher, throwing a no-hit fifteenth frame with a strikeout.

The Stone Crabs look to sweep the Manatees on Sunday evening as they face off for the final game of the series. Shane Dyer (0-1, 1.50) will make the start for the Stone Crabs against Cody Scarpetta (2-3, 4.30) for Brevard County.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Montgomery Biscuits 5, West Tenn Diamond Jaxx 2

Matt Sweeney was 3 for 5 with 2 RBI's in Saturday's game.[From Joe Davis of the Montgomery Biscuits.]

JACKSON, TN – Matt Sweeney went 3-5 and drove home two, and five Biscuits (23-20) pitchers combined to three-hit the West Tenn Diamond Jaxx (23-20) in a 5-2 win on Saturday at Pringles Park.

Biscuits starter Alex Cobb left the game after two innings with an injury having allowed just one hit. Rayner Oliveros then came on and tossed four hitless frames before Dane De La Rosa struck out four with two hitless frames of his own.

Looking to secure a combined one-hitter and the Biscuits’ seventh shutout of the season, Paul Phillips took the mound in the ninth. After retiring the first two, he walked Johan Limonta then gave up a single to Luis Oliveros. Dustin Ackley got the Jaxx on the board by lining a triple off the top of the wall in left field. Phillips then hit Leury Bonilla with the next pitch, and Matt Gorgen (9) was called upon to record the final out with the potential tying-run at the plate. Gorgen got Joe Dunigan to bounce out to second to end things.

The big frame for the Biscuits was the fifth, when they scored four to chase double-A first-timer Jake Wild from the contest. Sweeney drove home two with a double, JJ Furmaniak recorded an RBI single, and Chris Nowak completed the scoring with an RBI triple.

Sweeney’s three-hit night was his first as a Biscuit. Drew Anderson reached all four times, scoring once while going 2-2 with a pair of singles and two walks.

Oliveros (1-4) took the win, while Wild (0-1) was tagged with the loss.

LHP Alex Torres takes the ball for the Biscuits on Sunday afternoon at 2:05 against West Tenn RHP Steve Bray.

Bowling Green Hot Rods 5, Dayton Dragons 2

Kirby Yates made his first pro start in game two of the doubleheader on Saturday.[From Tom Gauthier, Hot Rods Director of Broadcast/Media Relations.]

Dayton, OH – Tyler Bortnick smashed a two-run home run and Kirby Yates threw five strong innings in his first pro start, leading the Hot Rods to a 5-2 win over the Dayton Dragons on Saturday night. The win completes Saturday’s doubleheader sweep after a thrilling 10-7 win during the afternoon game. The Hot Rods also earn a series win by taking the first three games from Dayton with two games left in the series.

The Hot Rods began the scoring with a two-run second inning against Pedro Villarreal. Mark Thomas started with a walk, taking second on a ground out by Dustin Biell. Brett Nommensen reached on catcher’s interference to put runners at first and second. After Julio Cedeno flew out to right field, Diogenes Luis walked to load the bases. Villarreal then hit Ty Morrison, forcing in the first run for a 1-0 Hot Rods lead. Chris Murrill immediately followed with a bunt single to score Nommensen for a 2-0 lead.

Two innings later, the Hot Rods tacked on three more two-out runs. Luis had a one-out single and was still at first base with two down for Murrill. The DH lofted a fly ball into shallow left field. Shortstop DiDi Gregorius and left-fielder Cameron Satterwhite converged and then collided, allowing the ball to drop in safely and for Luis to score all the way from first base.

Murrill wound up at second base on the play as Tyler Bortnick stepped up to the plate. He wasted little time making the Dragons pay for their mistake, belting a long two-run homer to left to stretch the lead to 5-0. The homer was Bortnick’s second of the season and gave him 11 RBI.

The early run support was a big help to Kirby Yates, making his first start because of Saturday’s doubleheader. The right-hander, solid out of the bullpen this season, was just as good in the rotation. He allowed four hits over five innings of work. He nearly made it through his outing without giving up a run until Mark Fleury took him deep with two outs in the fifth inning. He struck out four and didn’t walk a batter over five full innings.

Jairo De La Rosa took over for the next three innings, keeping the lead at 5-1. He allowed just a pair of hits with three strikeouts in his longest outing of the season. He turned it over to Alex Koronis, who allowed a run in the ninth inning but left the bases loaded to preserve the 5-2 win and a sweep of Saturday’s doubleheader.

As an offense, the Hot Rods managed just seven hits, scoring five unearned runs. Luis had two of the hits while Bortnick, Murrill, and Morrison all drove in runs. For Morrison, who went 0-3 with 3 K’s and was hit by a pitch, it was a productive end to a great day. He was hit by a pitch in the second with the bases loaded to drive in the game’s first run. He finished the double-dip 4-7 with a homer, triple, and four RBI.

With a series win in hand, the Hot Rods will look to take another step closer to a sweep on Sunday afternoon at 1 PM CDT. RHP Alexander Colome (3-2, 1.97) draws the start against Dayton RHP J.C. Sulbaran (3-2, 4.65). You can follow the game with Tom Gauthier beginning at 12:45 PM CDT on 1340 AM WBGN and

Durham Bulls vs. Pawtucket Red Sox Suspended Bottom 2nd, Bulls Up 5-0

Heavy rains forced the postponement of Saturday's game.Durham, NC – Due to unplayable conditions following heavy rain at Jim Goodmon Field, Saturday’s game between the Durham Bulls and Pawtucket Red Sox has been suspended until Sunday at 4 PM. The Bulls lead the Red Sox, 5-0 in the bottom of the 2nd inning.

The regularly scheduled 5:05 PM game will take place as a seven-inning affair following the completion of the suspended game. Tickets from Saturday, May 22nd’s game may be used for any other regular season Bulls home game during the 2010 season.

Bowling Green Hot Rods 10, Dayton Dragons 7

Ty Morrison was a double shy of the cycle in game one of Saturday's doubleheader.[From Tom Gauthier, Hot Rods Director of Broadcast/Media Relations.]

Dayton, OH – Ty Morrison homered, drove in three, and fell a double short of the cycle to lead the Hot Rods to a wild 10-7 win over the Dayton Dragons on Saturday afternoon. The victory gives the Hot Rods a 2-0 series lead heading into the second game of their Saturday doubleheader.

The Dragons struck first getting a pair of runs against Kyle Lobstein in the second inning. With one out, Josh Garton and Frank Pfister stroked back-to-back doubles to give Dayton a 1-0 lead. Lobstein retired Shane Carlson but surrendered a two-out double to Chase Weems to score Pfister for a 2-0 Dragons edge.

The Hot Rods answered right back in the top of the third by using their speed to create havoc on the bases. Ty Morrison reached on an infield single behind second base and then promptly stole second and third base before scoring on an infield single from Chris Murrill to cut the defecit to 2-1.

Tyler Bortnick followed, drawing a walk to put runners at first and second. On the first pitch to Ryan Wiegand, both runners took off, with Murrill stealing third and then scoring when the throw sailed into left field to tie the game at 2-2.

Dayton answered back with a run in the last of the fourth, again with two outs against Lobstein. Pfister began the inning with a single. After a walk and a pick-off, Cameron Satterwhite produced his first hit of the season for Dayton, driving in Pfister to put Dayton back on top 3-2.

The Hot Rods answered right back in their half of the fifth. Kyle Spraker took a lead-off walk and then scored when Ty Morrison belted a hanging curve over the right-center field wall for his first home run of the season. The blast was Morrison’s second hit of the game and gave the Hot Rods a 4-3 lead.

That edge was short-lived as Kevin Coddington homered against Lobstein to begin the bottom of fifth, tying the game at 4-4. With one out, Dayton put two more runners on base before Shane Carlson delivered a two-out double to left field to push Dayton back on top 6-4.

Lobstein lasted just 4.2 innings, failing to make it out of the fifth. He allowed six earned runs, a new career-high, on eight hits and three walks. He struck out just one, hit one, and gave up his third homer of the season.

The Hot Rods offense refused to give up, bailing out Lobstein over the sixth and seventh to put the game away. In the sixth, they scored four times, starting with a triple by Dustin Biell, who scored on a wild pitch during Eligio Sonoqui’s at-bat. Sonoqui eventually doubled and took third on a balk. After Kyle Spraker was hit by a pitch, Robi Estrada hit a sac fly to center field, allowing a hustling Sonoqui to score the tying run at 6-6.

After the sac fly, Spraker took third when Chase Weems argued the Sonoqui play at the plate. He would score a few pitches later on Morrison’s triple to deep center field to put the Hot Rods up 7-6. Chris Murrill followed with a grounder to first base that was turned into an error, scoring Morrison to give Bowling Green an 8-6 lead.

They tacked on another pair of runs in the seventh, scoring more two-out runs with the help of another Dayton error, their fourth of the game. Bortnick led off the inning with a walk, stole second and took third when the ball sailed into center field. After Wiegand grounded out to first, Mayo Acosta failed to get a bunt down in a suicide squeeze attempt and Bortnick was retired in a run-down between third and home.

Acosta eventually reached on a ground ball, booted by shortstop Shane Carlson. The mistake proved costly as Biell followed with a long home run to right field, his second of the season, to put the Hot Rods in front 10-6.

From there, Jake Sullivan and the bullpen did the rest, as Sullivan pitched three innings of one-run ball for his first win of the season. His only run came in the eighth on a lead-off home run by Pfister. Deivis Mavarez recorded the final four outs for his first save of the season.

Offensively, Morrison led the way with his second four-hit game of the season, falling a double short of the cycle. He had a chance at the cycle but singled in the eighth for his fourth hit of the game. Biell was 2-5 with the home run and a triple. Murrill (two hits) and Estrada (sac fly) also drove in runs. As a team the Hot Rods tied their club record with six stolen bases.

The second game of the doubleheader comes up at 6:07 PM CDT tonight. RHP Kirby Yates (0-1, 1.42) makes his first pro start against Dayton RHP Pedro Villarreal (2-2, 3.46). You can follow the game with Tom Gauthier beginning at 5:50 PM CDT on 1340 AM WBGN and

Minor Moves: Rafferty, Espinosa

Per the Charlotte Stone Crabs, RHRP Tommy Rafferty voluntarily retired following last night’s game. He made his last career appearance on Wednesday night when he picked up the win after throwing 2 2/3 innings of relief. He bookended his career with wins as he also took the win in his first professional appearance on June 19, 2008. Here are his final career stats with the Rays organization:
Year   Age            Tm W L  ERA  G GS SV    IP  WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2008    23 Hudson Valley 2 0 4.35 15  0  0  20.2 1.258 7.4  0.0  3.9 10.9  2.78
2009    24 Bowling Green 2 0 3.90 15  0  1  27.2 1.337 9.4  0.3  2.6  7.2  2.75
2009    24     Charlotte 1 2 3.38 26  0  1  42.2 1.219 6.8  0.4  4.2  8.6  2.05
2010    25     Charlotte 3 1 2.14 13  0  0  21.0 0.905 4.3  0.9  3.9  6.0  1.56
3 Seasons                8 3 3.46 69  0  2 112.0 1.196 7.1  0.4  3.7  8.2  2.22
Provided by View Original Table Generated 5/22/2010.

To replace Rafferty on the roster, the Stone Crabs added lefty reliever Sergio Espinosa, who was signed by the Tampa Bay Rays in April. He is the second Cuban defector to be signed by the organization along with fellow Stone Crabs player Leslie Anderson. Espinosa previously served as the closer for Isla de la Juventud and defected in late 2008.

Game Pictures from 5/21: Stone Crabs vs Manatees

Tampa Bay Rays Remaining 120 Opponents Winning Percentages

Tampa Bay Rays
The Rays have 120 games left in the season. Overall, the Rays remaining schedule includes teams that are currently at a .501 winning percentage and we have two more games at the Trop than on the road.

Here is who they are against (sorted by the other team's current winning percentage), where the games will be played, and the total number of games against each team.
Team               Win% Home Away Total 
New York Yankees   .619    6    7    13 
Minnesota Twins    .595    4    4     8 
Texas Rangers      .581    3    3     6 
San Diego Padres   .571    3    0     3 
Detroit Tigers     .571    4    3     7 
Toronto Blue Jays  .568    6    9    15 
Atlanta Braves     .524    0    3     3 
Boston Red Sox     .512    9    5    14 
Florida Marlins    .512    3    3     6 
Oakland A's        .488    0    4     4 
Los Angeles Angels .455    3    3     6 
Arizona D-Backs    .442    3    0     3 
Kansas City Royals .419    0    4     4 
Chicago White Sox  .415    4    0     4 
Seattle Mariners   .381    3    0     3 
Cleveland Indians  .375    4    3     7 
Houston Astros     .357    0    2     2 
Baltimore Orioles  .326    6    6    12 
Totals             .501   61   59   120
For comparison, the Yankees remaining opponents have a winning percentage of .497, the Blue Jays .529, the Red Sox .508, and the Orioles .543.

Rays Affiliate Attendance in 2010

Rays Affiliate Attendance
Team, league, number of home games, average attendance, rank in league.
Team           League           G     Avg    LgRank
Durham         International   18   6,277    6th/14
Montgomery     Southern        19   4,562    3rd/10
Charlotte      Florida State   20   2,987    1st/12
Bowling Green  Midwest         17   3,273    6th/16
Hudson Valley  New York-Penn    0       0    -th/14
Princeton      Appalachian      0       0    -th/10
For comparison, here were the final figures from 2009:
Team           League           G     Avg    LgRank
Durham         International   72   6,783    8th/14
Montgomery     Southern        66   4,042    3rd/10
Charlotte      Florida State   60   2,855    1st/12
Bowling Green  South Atlantic  66   3,530    8th/16
Hudson Valley  New York-Penn   35   4,609    5th/14
Princeton      Appalachian     28     926    7th/10

Rays Pythagorean Records
As we have in past seasons, throughout the year we will track how the teams are doing in relation to their pythagorean expected records. Pythagorean winning percentage is an estimate of a team's winning percentage based on their runs scored and runs allowed. It can tell you whether the teams are a bit lucky or unlucky. It is calculated with this formula: (Runs Scored)^1.83/((Runs Scored)^1.83 + (Runs Allowed)^1.83).

Team, actual wins, actual losses, runs scored, runs allowed, pythagorean wins, pythagorean losses, difference between actual and pythagorean.
Team                     W   L   RS   RA  pW  pL  Dif
Tampa Bay Rays          30  12  226  130  31  11   -1
Durham Bulls            23  19  234  179  26  16   -3
Montgomery Biscuits     22  20  157  178  19  23   +3
Charlotte Stone Crabs   22  19  173  152  23  18   -1
Bowling Green Hot Rods  13  27  129  178  14  26   -1
Hudson Valley Renegades  0   0    0    0   0   0    0
Princeton Rays           0   0    0    0   0   0    0
GCL Rays                 0   0    0    0   0   0    0
VSL Rays                 2   2   36   27   3   1   -1
DSL Rays                 0   0    0    0   0   0    0

Bulls Week in Review: May 15 to May 21

The Durham Bulls struggled this week, going 1-5 on the week and ending the week on a season high five game losing streak. Despite the losses, the Bulls still lead the International League South Division by 4 1/2 games with a 23-19 record on the season. The Bulls are led by an offense that is at or near the top of every offensive category. The Bulls look to put the brakes on their skid by kicking off a week long homestand against Pawtucket and Rochester.

Hitting Leaders:
Average: Jose Lobaton (.333)
Slugging: Dan Johnson (.615, second in INT)
On Base Pct: Chris Richard (.396, seventh in INT)
Hits: Dan Johnson (42)
Doubles: Chris Richard (15, third in INT)
Triples: Fernando Perez (2)
Home Runs: Dan Johnson (11, second in INT)
RBI’s: Dan Johnson (31, fifth in INT)
Stolen Bases: Elliot Johnson (13, third in INT)

Pitching Leaders:
ERA Starters: Carlos Hernandez (2.42, sixth in INT)
ERA Overall: RJ Swindle (0.00)
Wins: Jeremy Hellickson (6, first in INT)
Saves: Dale Thayer (3)
Strikeouts: Jeremy Hellickson (55, second in INT)

Team Hitting Stats (league rank):
Average: .279 (3 of 14)
Slugging: .452 (1 of 14)
On Base Pct: .350 (3 of 14)
Hits: 411 (3 of 14)
Doubles: 93 (2 of 14)
Triples: 5 (11 of 14)
Home Runs: 51 (1 of 14)
Runs Scored: 234 (2 of 14)
Stolen Bases: 52 (tied 1 of 14)

Team Pitching Stats (rank):
ERA: 3.72 (4 of 14)
Runs Allowed: 179 (6 of 14)
Strikeouts: 293 (7 of 14)
Walks: 133 (6 of 14)

RP Top Prospect Watch:
Jeremy Hellickson: 6-2, 3.24 ERA, 50.0 IP, 55 K’s, 11 BB’s, 1.26 WHIP
John Jaso: .364 AVG, .455 SLG, .333 OBP, 1 double, 1 RBI’s
Desmond Jennings: .258 AVG, .333 SLG, .311 OBP, 6 doubles, 1 triple, 3 home runs, 21 RBI’s and 13 stolen bases.
Aneury Rodriguez: 2-2, 3.77 ERA, 28.2 IP, 22 K’s, 12 BB’s, 1.43 WHIP

Transactions: Hank Blalock promoted to Tampa Bay (5/15/10). JJ Furmaniak transferred to Montgomery (5/15/10). Justin Ruggiano activated from disabled list (5/17/10). Heath Phillips activated from inactive list (5/19/10).

Disabled List: Jason Cromer and Virgil Vasquez.

The Week Ahead: 5/22/10-5/25/10: vs Pawtucket Red Sox (19-23). 5/27/10-5/28/10: vs Rochester Red Wings (15-27).

Charlotte Stone Crabs Score Season High 12 Runs in 12-9 Win Over Brevard County

Tim Beckham was 4 for 5 in Friday's game against Brevard County.For the second time in as many nights, the Charlotte Stone Crabs outlasted the Brevard County Manatees in a 21 run slugfest. The Stone Crabs scored a season high 12 runs to defeat the Manatees 12-9 on Friday night at Charlotte Sports Complex.

Tim Beckham continued to prove that his hitting slump is behind him by going 4 of 5 driving in three runs and bringing his batting average up to just below .200 on the season.

Brevard County jumped out to a big lead in the first inning by striking for five runs in the inning. The Manatees offense was aided by wild pitching by Stone Crabs starter Chris Andujar who struck a batter and walked two in the inning. Mat Gamel picked up two RBI's with a double to center, Josh Prince singled home a run, Anderson De La Rosa drew a bases load walk to score Sergio Miranda and Josh Prince scored on a passed ball for the Manatees five runs.

The Stone Crabs pulled back into the game in the bottom of the first. Leslie Anderson hit his second home run of the season, shot to right field that scored three runs and pulled the Stone Crabs to within two runs of the lead 5-3.

The Manatees picked up another run in the second inning. Matt Cline reached base after being hit by a pitch. Cline was taken out of the game afterwards and replaced by pinch runner Sean Halton who would later score on an RBI double by Erik Komatsu to give them a 6-3 lead.

But it was in the fifth inning when the Stone Crabs struck with a five run inning of their own. Matt Spring led off the inning with a double to right and then advanced to third on a wild pitch. Kyeong Kang then drew a walk. Matt Hall followed with an RBI single to score Spring. Isaias Velasquez then laid down a sac bunt that was thrown away by the Manatees pitcher, allowing Kang to score and all runners to advance into scoring position. Beckham drove home the tying run with an RBI single to score Hall. Matt Joyce and Henry Wrigley each added RBI's to increase the Stone Crabs lead to 8-6.

Both clubs exchanged runs in the sixth and seventh innings. The Manatees picked up a run in the top of the sixth with an RBI single by Kentrail Davis to score Shawn Zarraga. The Stone Crabs matched the run in the bottom of the seventh with Wrigley driving home Beckham with a ground ball to second. The score was now 9-7, Stone Crabs on top.

The Stone Crabs added some insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth inning. Kang and Hall collected RBI doubles and Beckham drove home his second run of the game with an RBI single to give the Stone Crabs a 12-7 lead.

The Manatees rallied in the ninth to move closer to the lead. Miranda and Prince each knocked home a run but the Stone Crabs closed the door to secure the 12-9 win.

Thanks to the offensive explosion Andujar (4-1) recording the win, allowed 7 runs on 9 hits in 5 1/3 innings while striking out 2 and walking two. Marquis Fleming recorded his third hold with 2 1/3 no-hit innings, striking out 4 and walking 1. Josh Satow picked up the save, his sixth, allowing 2 runs on 2 hits in 1 1/3 innings to close out the game for the Stone Crabs.

The Stone Crabs and Manatees will play game three of the series on Saturday night at Charlotte Sports Park. It ill be a battle of the lefties, Matt Moore (0-5, 6.51) on the mound for Charlotte against Daniel Merklinger (2-1, 4.38) for Brevard County.

Check back later this weekend for photos from tonight's game.

Bulls Washed Out at Toledo

Friday night's game against Toledo was postponed due to rain.[Via e-mail from Bulls Neil Solodnz.]

(Toledo, OH) Charlie Montoyo’s Durham Bulls didn’t snap a season-long five-game win streak on Friday, but didn’t extend it either. Mother Nature led to a cancellation of the Bulls’ game with Toledo.

The contest never started, as rain begin at about 7:10, and continued until the game was called at 9:05 p.m..

This was to be the last meeting between Durham (23-19) and Toledo (24-18), so the contest will not be made up. It’s the first Bulls game lost to the schedule since May 18, 2007 at Pawtucket. Toledo, which has won six straight, took the season series, 5-2.

The Bulls finished an abbreviated seven-game road trip through Ohio at 2-5, losing the last five contests. The Bulls have scored six runs in the five games, although Durham still led the league in runs scored heading into action on Friday.

Durham will try to snap the streak on Saturday when the Bulls open an eight-game home stand against Boston’s top farm team, the Pawtucket Red Sox. Tickets are available at Either Aneury Rodriguez (2-2) or Richard De Los Santos (2-2) will start. First pitch is at 7:05, and coverage on 620 the Buzz begins at 6:50.

Hot Rods defeat Dayton 6-2

Mark Thomas returned to action on Friday with a two run home run.[Via e-mail by Hot Rods Tom Gautier.]

Dayton, OH – Mark Thomas smacked a two-out, two-run homer on the first pitch he saw in the first inning on Friday night, sparking the Hot Rods to a 6-2 series-opening win over the Dayton Dragons. The home run sent the Hot Rods on a two-out scoring binge, as they scored all six runs with two outs for their first win in Dayton in 2010.

For the fourth time in six games, the Hot Rods wasted little time by scoring a pair of first inning runs. With one out, Tyler Bortnick single to left field before Brett Nommensen flew out to center field. That brought up catcher Mark Thomas, playing in Dayton for the first time since he suffered a concussion against the Dragons on May 3. He exacted his revenge on the Dragons by smoking the first pitch he saw from Jacob Johnson into the left field seats for a two-run homer. The blast was his third of the season and gave the Hot Rods a 2-0 lead.

They added another two out run in the second inning. Kyle Spraker began with a one out single before Julio Cedeno grounded out to shortstop, advancing Spraker to second base. Robi Estrada would follow, fouling off several pitches before smacking one up the middle for a base hit to score Spraker and bump the lead to 3-0.

Two-out scoring continued in the third for Bowling Green, this time with Eligio Sonoqui doing the damage. With two down, Johnson walked Thomas and then hit Dustin Biell to put runners at first and second. Sonoqui then extended his hitting streak to four games with a single to right, scoring Thomas for a 4-0 lead.

Dayton finally answered against Wilking Rodriguez in the third and fourth innings. With one out in the third, Shane Carlson doubled off the left field wall. He took third on a groundout by Alex Oliveras and then scored on a passed ball by
Mark Thomas, cutting the lead to 4-1. An inning later it was DiDi Gregorius who hit a lead-off double, took third base on a wild pitch with one out before scoring on a groundout from Tommy Nurre to slice the lead to 4-2.

Johnson left the game after four innings for the Dragons. He allowed four runs, all earned, on six hits. He surrendered one walk and recorded one strikeout before turning the ball over to Junior Martinez and the Dayton bullpen.

The Hot Rods got to Martinez in the sixth, once again driving home another two-out run. The entire rally took place with two outs, as Cedeno knocked his fifth double to right field. He scored when Robi Estrada delivered a broken bat single into center field to push the lead back to three runs at 5-2.

Rodriguez ended up working seven strong frames for the Hot Rods, setting a new career-high in innings. He allowed five hits and only one earned run. He struck out five and didn’t issue a walk to earn his second win of the season.

In the ninth, the Hot Rods tacked on another two-out run, once again centered on Estrada. He bunted a ball over the mound to reach first with his third hit of the game. Two batters later, with two outs, Tyler Bortnick doubled into the left field corner to plate Estrada for a 6-2 lead.

Scott Shuman worked the final two innings to earn his fourth save of the season.
The series continues on Saturday with a day-night doubleheader. LHP Kyle Lobstein (1-2, 4.76) takes the ball for the Hot Rods in game one beginning at 11 AM CDT. Game two begins at 6:07 PM CDT and features RHP Kirby Yates (0-1, 1.42) making his first pro start against Dayton RHP Pedro Villarreal (2-2, 3.46). You can follow both games with Tom Gauthier beginning at 5:50 PM CDT on 1340 AM WBGN and Pre-game begins at 10:45 AM CDT for game one; 5:50 PM CDT for game two. Both games are slated as nine inning contests.

The Hot Rods return home to begin a 13-game home stand on Tuesday, May 25, against the South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona Diamondbacks). The first game of the home stand is one of six games that will benefit Warren County Parks and Recreation. Any fan that purchases a $10 regularly-priced box seat ticket for that night’s game using the promotional code “WCPARKS” (use all caps) will help recover Warren County parks damaged by recent flooding. Fans can use the code at the ticket window, by calling 270.901.2121, or at The Hot Rods will donate a portion of tickets sales from those six games to Warren County Parks and Recreation. For the complete list of dates and a full listing of upcoming promotions, visit

Poor Defense Plagues Biscuits in DH Sweep

Nevin Ashley drove the offense during Friday's doubleheader.[Via e-mail from Biscuits Joe Davis]

JACKSON, TN – Shoddy defense crippled the Biscuits (22-20), and the Diamond Jaxx (23-19) swept a doubleheader by scores of 5-3 and 3-2 Friday at Pringles Park.

For the second time in the last three games, the Biscuits faced off against a Southern League ERA-leader. This time, they tallied a run in the first off West Tenn’s Stephen Hensley with a Nevin Ashley sacrifice fly scoring Emeel Salem to make it 1-0.

The first error four errors on the night was a big one. With the bases loaded and two outs in the second, Chris De La Cruz sailed an off-balance throw over the head of the JJ Furmaniak at second, and two unearned runs crossed the plate against Jake McGee.

The Biscuits would tie it up at 2-2 with Ashley again scoring Salem, this time on a groundout.

But after Carlos Truinfel started the third by reaching on a Chris Nowak error, Jose Yepez doubled to score two and break the tie.

Chris De La Cruz recorded an RBI single in the fourth to cut it to one, but Kuo Hui Lo knocked a solo homer one frame later and the Biscuits were unable to rally, falling 5-3.

In game two, the Jaxx scored two against Darin Downs in the first, and never looked back. The Biscuits answered a third-inning Jaxx run with one in the fourth, but a ninth inning rally fell just short. After Nevin Ashley drove home a run with a single, Emeel Salem flied to center to end things at 3-2.

McGee (0-4) and Downs (4-1) were the losers for the Biscuits, with Hensley (5-1) and game two starter Luis Munoz (1-3) taking wins. Anthony Varvaro (5) and Aaron Jensen (2) picked up saves for the Jaxx.

Chris Nowak went 3-3 to lead the Biscuits in the first game, but went 0-3 with three strikeouts in the second contest. JJ Furmaniak also had three hits on the night.

RHP Alex Cobb throws for the Biscuits on Saturday, with RHP Jake Wild making his double-A debut for the Jaxx. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Biscuits Week in Review: May 14 to May 20

The Montgomery Biscuits struggled to start the week losing four straight games but finished the week with a three game winning steak for a 3-4 record on the week. The Biscuits suffered a sweep at the hands of Birmingham but also recorded their sixth shut-out win on Thursday against West Tennessee. The Biscuits are currently in second place in the Southern League South Division, four games back from first place Jacksonville.

Hitting Leaders:
Average: Nevin Ashley (.347)
Slugging: Nevin Ashley (.486)
On Base Pct: Nevin Ashley (.407)
Hits: Emeel Salem (41)
Doubles: Cody Strait (11, tied ninth in SOU)
Triples: John Matulia and Drew Anderson (3, tied fourth in SOU)
Home Runs: Matt Fields (6, tied seventh in SOU)
RBI’s: Matt Fields (25, seventh in SOU)
Stolen Bases: Cody Strait (8, tied ninth in SOU)

Pitching Leaders:
ERA Starters: Alex Cobb (0.73)
ERA Overall: Alex Cobb (0.73)
Wins: Darin Downs, Dane De La Rosa and Alexander Torres (4, tied second in SOU)
Saves: Matt Gorgen (8, first in SOU)
Strikeouts: Alexander Torres (46, tied fourth in SOU)

Team Hitting Stats (league rank):
Average: .244 (9 of 10)
Slugging: .353 (9 of 10)
On Base Pct: .320 (9 of 10)
Hits: 317 (9 of 10)
Doubles: 72 (tied 5 of 10)
Triples: 11 (4 of 10)
Home Runs: 16 (9 of 10)
Runs Scored: 152 (9 of 10)
Stolen Bases: 20 (6 of 10)

Team Pitching Stats (rank):
ERA: 3.87 (4 of 10)
Runs Allowed: 170 (3 of 10)
Strikeouts: 279 (6 of 10)
Walks: 126 (2 of 10)

RP Top Prospect Watch:
Alex Cobb: 0-0, 0.73 ERA, 12.1 IP, 13 K’s, 3 BB’s, 1.46 WHIP.
Matt Gorgen: 1-1, 8 saves, 1.83 ERA, 19.2 IP, 16 K’s, 11 BB’s, 1.37 WHIP
Jake McGee: 0-3, 6.65 ERA, 21.1 IP, 22 K’s, 10 BB’s, 1.62 WHIP
David Newmann: 1-1, 3.16 ERA, 42.2 IP, 24 K’s, 16 BB’s, 1.38 WHIP
Shawn O’Malley: .172 AVG, .172 SLG, .294 OBP, 2 RBI, 3 SB’s
Matt Sweeney: .263 AVG, .474 SLG, .342 OBP, 10 doubles, 6 home runs, 19 RBI’s*
Alexander Torres: 4-2, 2.85 ERA, 41.0 IP, 46 K’s, 18 BB’s, 1.27 WHIP
*combined stats from A+/AA

Transactions: JJ Furmaniak added to roster from Durham (5/15/10). Matt Sweeney added to roster from Charlotte (5/17/10). Greg Sexton transferred to Charlotte (5/17/10).

Disabled List: None.

The Week Ahead: 5/21/10-5/24/10: at West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx (21-19). 5/25/10: Day Off. 5/26- 5/27: vs Tennessee Smokies (25-16).