Archive for May, 2015

Sousa Leads Rays Over O’s

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Chris Tillman did just enough to lose, issuing two critical walks, the second one leading to a Stephen Sousa three run homer that gave the Tampa Bay Rays a 9-5 win over the Baltimore Orioles. The Rays Jake Odorizzi battled for six innings but giving up his third long ball in the seventh led to his departure. He still picked up the win, his fourth. For Tillman it was his seventh loss, and his sixth straight.

The first walk issued by Chris Tillman in the second inning resulted in the first two runs for the Rays. With two outs and Logan Forsyth on third, who had led the inning off with a double, Nick Franklin and his .077 average faced Tillman. Franklin walked on five pitches bringing up the .152 hitting Bobby Wilson. Wilson blooped one into right field for a single to score Forsyth. Delmon Young threw to third to try to get Franklin but the ball skipped past Manny Machado, allowing Franklin to score.

The Orioles scored their first two runs on solo homeruns from Delmon Young, the first two homeruns he has hit this year. He bombed one into the left field bleachers in the first inning and in the third he blasted one into the left field corner.

Tillman was able to strand runners on third in the third and fourth innings to keep the game at 2-2. In the fifth he struck out the first two hitters he faced. A walk to Evan Longoria was his second walk that began his nightmare. David Dejesus singled up the middle, Flaherty making a nice diving stop but unable to get the ball out of his glove. Logan Forsythe lined a single in front of both David Lough in center and Steve Pearce in left to score Longoria. Tillman ran the count to 3-2 to Sousa who buried the next pitch deep over the Orioles bullpen into the Rays bullpen to put the game away.

David Dejesus lined a homerun in the seventh inning to increase the Rays lead to 7-2. In the bottom frame Manny Machado crushed a line drive into right centerfield for a two run homer. Machado would hit his second homer of the game in the ninth inning, a solo shot just over the right field scoreboard.

The Rays continued to pile on the runs against the Orioles bullpen, getting single runs in the eighth and ninth innngs. They were all needed after the Manny Machado leadoff homerun in the ninth and the Orioles putting two runners on base. Brad Boxberger had to come in to retire the last two hitters to pick up his 15th save.

Game Notes: After the game the Maryland high school North versus South game was played. Recently called up catcher Steve Clevenger, who played in this game, handed out bats to each of the players. Even the pitchers got bats…20 of the 36 runs Chris Tillman has given up have been with two outs. All six of his runs today came after two outs were recorded…Keven Kiermaier had a rough day, striking out in his first four at bats. He doubled in his fifth at bat in the eighth, later scoring on a fly ball by Evan Longoria…Stephen Sousa had a good day, hitting two doubles and a homerun. The second double resulted in the last Tampa run. The homerun was his third in three days…The Rays shifted on both Jimmie Paredes and Tim Flaherty to pull, leaving only the shortstop on the third base side…Delmon Young almost hit a third homerun, sending a ball deep to the warning track in centerfield in his fourth at bat in the eighth inning. He finished the day with two homeruns, a walk, single and fly out to center…Joey Butler had a career high four hits in the game.

KBO Leaders

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Below are the top players in the KBO leaderboard courtesy of myKBO.net

Batting Average

1. Han-Joon Yoo (Nexen) .389, 2. Min-Sung Kim (Nexen) .368, 3. Byung-Heon Min (Doosan) .352, 4. Kyung-Eon Kim (Hanwha) .352, 5. Eric Thames (NC Dinos) .349, 6. Sung-Hoon Jung (LG Twins) .348, 7. Taek-Guen Lee (Nexen) .345, 8. Yong-Kyu Lee (Hanwha) .344, 9. Eui-Ji Yang (Doosan) .336, 10. Jae-Kyun Hwang (Lotte) .335

Homeruns

1. Eric Thames (NC Dinos) 18, 2. Yamiaco Navarro (Samsung) 17, 3. Hyung-Woo Choi (Samsung) 17, 4. Byung-Ho Park (Nexen) 15, 5. Min-Ho Kang (Lotte) 15

RBIs

1. Ho-Jun Lee (NC Dinos) 62, 2. Eric Thames (NC Dinos) 55, 3. Hyung-Woo Choi (Samsung) 47, 4. Jae-Kyun Hwang (Lotte) 47, 5. Han-Joon Yoo (Nexen) 46

ERA

1. Hyun-Jong Yang (Kia) 1.67, 2. Eric Hacker (NC Dinos), 2.80, 3. Josh Lindblom (Lotte) 2.97, 4. Alfred Figaro (Samsung) 3.25, 5. Tyler Cloyd (Samsung) 3.32

Wins

1. Alfred Figaro (Samsung) 7, 2. Josh Lindblom (Lotte) 7, 3. Min-Han Son (NC Dinos) 6, 4. Kwang-Hyun Kim (SK Wyverns) 6, 5. Hyun-Hee Han (Nexen) 6

Saves

1. Chang-Yong Lim (Samsung) 13, 2. Gil-Hyun Yoon (SK Wyverns) 12, 3. Chang-Min Im (NC Dinos) 11, 4. Seung-Lak Son (Nexen) 10, 5. Suk-Min yoon (Kia) 9, 5. Hyuk Kwon (Hanwha) 9

Fisher with 12 RBI Debut Breaks California League Record

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Derek Fisher hit .305 in Low A with 6 homeruns and 24 RBIs. That resulted in a promotion to High A. In his debut he showed he was ready for the higher level. The Astros 2014 supplemental first round pick drove in 12 runs in his debut with three homeruns. The production is half of what he did in 39 games in Low A in both homeruns and RBIs. A solo homerun in the first and two grand slams in the next two innings gave him three homeruns and 9 RBIs in his first three at bats. Things slowed down a bit after that, but in the seventh he had a bases clearing 3-run double to break the California League RBI record of 11 held by Robert Rivich since 1954.

Normally a 4 for 6 day with 5 RBIs and two homeruns would get you the minor league player of the day. For the Padres Jose Rondon he will have to settle for the bridesmaid award. He was a double short of the cycle, the Venezuelan hitting his third triple in addition to his second and third homeruns. Jose also scored three runs. The first four hit game of the year for Jose raised his average to .269.

Cuban potential superstar Yoan Moncada hit his first homerun and first double of the year in a 2 for 5 day. He drove in three runs. The Red Sox prospect has gotten off to a slow start in Low A hitting just .257 with a .297 OBA. A propensity for striking out (11 in 9 games) has hurt his average.

After watching Kyle Schwarber scatter line drives all over the Tennessee Smokie ballpark on Thursday he powered two over the fence yesterday, number 11 and 12 for the season. The Cubs 2014 first round pick has almost surpassed the 14 homeruns he hit last year in his professional debut. Kyle has three consecutive multiple hit games in which he has gone 6 for 12 with 5 RBIs and 5 runs scored and is now batting .322. Myworld saw too many pitches end up at the backstop, but much of that was with no men on base.

Clint Frazier, the Indians 2013 first round pick, also went deep twice. He has hit all six of his homeruns in the month of May, driving in 23 runs. The strikeouts (53 in 48 games) are a bit of a concern leaving his average at .262.

Brewers prospect Michael Reed was a double short of the cycle. He drove in four runs in a 4 for 6 day, hitting his fourth homerun. The Brewers 2011 fifth round pick is hitting an impressive .340 courtesy of an 8 game hitting streak.

The Rockies 2013 sixth round pick Dom Nunuz also had a 4 for 6 day. The catcher had been struggling with a .194 average until the outburst. He drove in three runs and the double was one of five extra base hits he has hit all season, all of them doubles. For the year his line is .219/.292/.263. More days like the 4 for 6 of yesterday will improve that line.

Alen Hanson does not have an opening in Pittsburgh. In five at bats he failed to make an out, going 3 for 3 with two walks. He hit his seventh double and his third homerun to drive in three runs. Four of the last six games in a six game hitting streak have been multiple hit games for a 11 for 22 streak. The Pirates could use a .309 average with a .457 slugging and 13 stolen bases in their middle infield.

On the pitching front Matt Wisler was the most dominant. The Braves most recent acquisition tossed eight plus innings of two hit shutout ball, striking out seven. After an April in which his ERA was 6.75 Matt has bounced back with a 1.78 ERA in May.

Amir Garrett was the K man of the day, striking out 12 in his seven innings of work. He did allow two unearned runs to cross the plate, but still picked up his second win. With a 2.40 ERA you would think Amir would be better than 2-4, but his previous outing he gave up three unearned runs in a loss and a lack of offensive support has resulted in his three other losses.

Tyler Beede, the Giants first round pick in 2014, tossed seven innings of four hit shutout ball striking out 11. Beede had originally been a first round selection of the Blue Jays in 2011 but never signed. This was his second consecutive shutout outing. In his previous outing he had thrown six shutout innings. His ERA now sits at a healthy 2.24. Tyler still gives up too many hits against lefthanders (.269 average compared to .232 against righthanders).

The Blue Jays may ultimately regret not signing Beede, but their 2014 second round pick, Sean Foley-Reid threw five innings of one hit shutout ball, striking out 10 of the 19 hitters he faced. Born in Guam but attending high school in Jacksonville, the five plus innings was his longest outing of the year.

College Baseball 64 has Begun

Saturday, May 30th, 2015

It may not be as popular as basketball, but the college baseball playoffs have begun, starting with 64 teams in 16 regionals. The top team from each regional will advance, knocking it down to 16 teams. Those teams will break off into a best two out of three to have eight teams advance to Omaha for the College World Series.

There were triple plays, inside the park homeruns, walk offs and steals of home to win games. San Diego State won their opener scoring the winning run on a steal of home by Stephen Pallares in their 4-3 win over Santa Barbara. Tim Arakawa had a walk off single to give Oklahoma a 4-3 win over St. Johns. Indiana turned a triple play after a strikeout in their 7-1 win over Radford. Erven Roper blasted a two run walk off homerun to give Charleston an 11 inning 8-7 win over Auburn.

The only number one seeds to fall in games yesterday were Dallas Baptist, who lost to VCU 7-2 and Santa Barbara who lost to San Diego State. The biggest blow out was the 19-0 thrashing the number one seed Florida gave to Florida State.

You can read about all the action at the link below:

college baseball 64

Johnson Perfect for Six

Saturday, May 30th, 2015

Myworld has returned from our three park minor league jaunt. We’re a little late with the minor league review. The pitchers were dominant in the minor league performances yesterday.

The Red Sox could use some pitchers. Brian Johnson is a pretty good pitcher. Yesterday he was perfect for six innings, striking out half the hitters he faced (9). He has had two clunkers in May but in his four other starts he has given up just one run or less in six or more innings. His April ERA for four starts was a sterling 0.86, bringing his overall ERA to 2.60. Lefthanders are only hitting .160 in at bats against the Red Sox 2012 first round pick.

Cody Martin was close to perfect in his start in AAA. The Braves began the season with Cody in their major league bullpen but after blowing two saves in two appearances demoted him to AAA to return him to the rotation. He has only give up one run in his nine plus innings of AAA work for a 0.96 ERA. With the Braves he gave up four homeruns in just 20 innings of work. No one has cleared the fence off him in AAA.

The Reds Robert Stephenson has some lightening in his fastball. After a slow start when his ERA was up at 8.31 the Reds first round pick of 2011 has settled down a bit. This is his third season in AA so the Reds expect some improvement. Yesterday he threw seven innings of three hit shutout ball, striking out 10, lowering his ERA to 4.47. In his previous outing he had struck out 11 of the 21 hitters he faced but a high walk count (5) put him over 100 pitches before the fifth inning ended.

The Dodgers Jose Deleon keeps appearing here because of his high strikeout counts. In his second AA start he struck out 11 in seven innings, allowing just three hits and one run. It was his fourth start with double digit strikeout numbers. His 77 whiffs in nine starts leads the minor leagues.

The Yankees Bryan Mitchel went 8 innings without allowing a run, giving up just two hits. The strikeout numbers were not there (4) but that is not his thing. Batters are only hitting .224 against him and are slugging less than .300. He has yet to give up a homerun in his 50 innings of work. One stinker of an outing has kept his ERA at 3.20. Take away that one start and it would sit at an impressive 2.14.

The Rays Taylor Guerrieri was another pitcher with a perfect day. He only went three innings in his third start of the year, striking out five of the nine hitters he faced. In his three starts Taylor has yet to go more than three innings or face more than 13 hitters. Taylor is still recovering from the Tommy John surgery that forced him to miss the second half of the 2013 season. He started just five games last year but only worked nine innings.

On the hitting front, Reds outfielder Phillip Ervin had the only day that opened eyes. He went 4 for 6, driving in four runs. The Reds 2013 first round pick got off to a hot April, hitting .346 with seven of his nine homeruns. May has found him in a funk, hitting under .200 with only two multiple hit games. The Reds hope the 4 for 6 day will lead to a June outburst.

Smokies Hang on for Win

Saturday, May 30th, 2015

With a 10-3 lead the Tenessee Smokies brought on Gerardo Concepcion to mopup against the Mobile Baybears. Concepcion could retire only one of the six hitters he faced, giving up a grand slam homerun to pinch hitter Gerson Montilla. P.J. Francescon came in to close out the game but he gave up a walk and a single to put the tying run on base. Brandon Drury lined one into the left centerfield gap, but Alberto Almora Jr. was able to track it down to end the game. Smokie fans all gave a sigh of relief after that catch.

Myworld was impressed with two players for the Cubs not considered top prospects, though they may be higher rated on other teams. The talkative Wilson Contreras is always gabbing with someone, whether it is the umpire or the third base coach, but he looked good at the hot corner and at the plate sending one over the fence for a two run homer that proved to be the difference in the game. Elliot Soto had two good bunts, one for a sacrifice and another he beat out for a single. He also played excellent defense at shortstop, looking very smooth when fielding the ball, but doesn’t stand much hope of playing there with the Cubs depth.

The Baybears struck first after a single by Socrates Brito and a stolen base. Brandon Drury drove him in with a single. A strike him out throw him out double play ended the inning earlier than expected for the Baybears.

The Smokies answered back with a leadoff single by Elliot Soto and a line shot double by Kyle Schwarber down the right field line. Soto showed his speed by scoring on the hit. When Schwarber makes contact everything is a line drive.

Both starters Braden Shipley and Corey Black seemed to settle down after that. Shipley had the bullpen on its toes throughout the game, loading the bases in the second and put two runners on in the third. In the fifth a Wilson Contreras one out single and Billy McKinney double put two runners on again and ended the day for Shipley. Seth Simmons gave up a slow line drive infield single up the middle to Anthony Giansanti. Baybears shortstop Sean Jameson made a nice play to keep the ball in the infield but McKinney was streaking home as Jameson flipped the ball to the pitcher as his momentum carried him into right field. McKinney scored easily.

The Smokies appeared to break the game open in the sixth, scoring five runs. McKinney had the big hit with a two run triple after back to back walks put two runners on. Three walks, two wild pitches and four hits created the chaos.

The Baybears bounced back with two runs in the seventh. Zach Borenstein crushed a ball to the wall in centerfield that Albert Almora Jr. was just short of reaching. Two runs scored on the triple. The Baybears could not bring Borenstein home for the third run after a strikeout and double play grounder ended the inning. Starling Peralta came in from the bullpen after a walk and got the double play grounder with his first pitch.

Wilson Contreras got the runs back in the bottom of the inning crushing a ball into centerfield for a two run homer. It was his second hit of the game with two walks. It did not seem that big a hit at the time, expanding the score to 10-3.

The Smokies brought in Cuban Gerardo Concepcion to mop up in the ninth. Two singles and a walk loaded the bases for pinch hitter Gerson Montilla, who deposited a ball into the left field patio area to make the score 10-7. After giving up another single Concepcion was asked to take a shower and P.J. Francescon came on to close. He walked one to put the crowd on edge but got the final two outs to close out the victory for the Smokies.

Game Notes: Myworld had a fried bologna sandwich at the game. We had a late lunch and wasn’t really hungry but it is not everyday you see a fried bologna sandwich at a ball game. It’s been a long time since myworld has even had bologna in a sandwich. Don’t know if my lack of appetite influenced my taste for the sandwich. It is pretty messy so bring napkins…Billy McKinney was playing right field and made a nice sliding stop of a ball heading for the gap, turning a double into a single. He has centerfield skills but may not have the power for right field…Starling Peralta was throwing the ball 96…The Baybears manager was tossed in the ninth after the second called third strike. He was walking toward the home plate umpire after the second called third strike of the inning. The home plate umpire put up the stop sign with his hand but the manager continued his stride toward home. The umpire tossed him. That got the manager into a sprint to home plate and a heated argument ensued over the umpires strike zone…Corey Black had a solid outing for the Smokies, going five innings and allowing just three hits and the first inning run. He struck out six, including the side in the fourth…Everything Kyle Schwarber hits is a line drive…Baybear shortstop Sean Jameson made the defensive play of the trip with a diving catch on a line drive in the hole.

Historic Engel Stadium

Friday, May 29th, 2015

While in Chattanooga myworld accidentally ran across the historic Engel Stadium along O’Neal and Third Streets. It seems to be in a bit of disrepair. It was built in 1930 and housed the minor league team Chattanooga Lookouts. Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Henry Aaron, Willie Mays, Satchel Paige, Harmon Killebrew and Roger Hornsby are some of the Hall of Famers that played there.

The stadium was also used as the field for the Jackie Robinson movie “42″. It holds about 12,000 and the Wikipedia website stated it is used by a local college and high schools for ball games, but looking at the field conditions weeds seem to have replaced grass as the greenery there. Myworld would be surprised if any ball had been played there recently.

It has a pretty cool brick fa├žade surrounding the field. Left field is a titanic 470 foot shot from home plate. There is still advertising along the outfield fences. The seats all appear to have the concrete bleacher seating. When myworld first saw it our first thought was this looked like a pretty cool field to film an old fashioned baseball movie. Maybe another one will come along to give the field a little more life.

Seager with the Sixes

Friday, May 29th, 2015

Myworld is in Knoxville, or more precisely Kodak, outside the Tennessee Smokies stadium. There is thunder in the background and some rain but most natives I talk to are confident they will get the game in. Hope so. Myworld would be on our way home if not for this stop.

Corey Seager had a remarkable day, going 6 for 6 with 6 RBIs. Those would be numbers foreboding for those with religious inclinations, but this is baseball. He raised his average to .324, smashed two doubles for the season to put him at six and hit his third homerun. The six RBIs puts him at 15 for the season, equaling the number of RBIs he hit in AA. In his last three games Corey is 11 for 14.

The Orioles have two Cuban outfielders playing on their AAA Norfolk team. The two combined for three homeruns, Dariel Alvarez hitting two of them and Henry Urrutia hitting one. For Urrutia it was only his second homerun. The leftfielder needs to hit for more power if he wants to return to the Orioles and that means pulling the ball more. For Alvarez he hit homers five and six, but his average rests at .237. He needs to show more consistency before he gets a promotion to the Orioles.

It is rare you see complete games in the minor leagues. John Richy, the Dodgers third round 2014 pick, tossed a complete game, giving up only four hits and not allowing a base on balls in his nine innings of work. He struck out five. John has gone 37 innings in his last five starts, averaging just over seven innings per start. He also picked up his sixth victory against two losses.

The Brewers number one pick of 2014, Kodi Medeiros had his longest outing of the 2015 season, going seven innings. He allowed only two hits and struck out five in the outing. Earlier in the season Kodi had tossed a no hitter in six innings walking just one.

The Diamondbacks got two good outings. The first was from their supplemental 2013 first round pick Aaron Blair. He tossed seven innings of three hit ball, striking out four. The outing reduced his ERA to 2.07. To date Blair has only one start in ten that have failed to meet the minimum 6 innings pitched, and he only needed to retire one hitter to meet that feat. In his last three starts covering 20 plus innings he has yet to give up an earned run. The other is Mexican Manny Banuelos who threw five innings of four hit shutout ball. His won loss record in AA is now 4-0. After a slow start Manny has not given up more than one run in his last six starts giving him a May ERA of 1.11.

The Angels Kyle McGowin had his best outing of the year, pitching seven innings of scoreless ball. He allowed just three hits and lowered his ERA to 4.84. In his last five outings Kyle has improved his outings by one less run, giving up 4, 3, 2, 1 and now zero. It is no longer possible for him to get any lower.

The Pirates Cody Dickson would like to find some consistency. He threw five innings of one hit shutout ball, striking out five. That is nothing new to him. He has had three other outings in which he has gone at least five innings without allowing a run. There have been three outings in which he has allowed four or more runs. His ERA has settled into an acceptable 3.33.

Astros Sign Cuban Quiala

Friday, May 29th, 2015

The Astros signed Cuban Yoanis Quiala. He only played one season in the Cuban professional league during the 2012-2013 season with the Holquin Dogs. The upside to him is he is young (22) and has a mid-90s fastball. He pitched in both a starter and relief capacity in Cuba but the Astros will convert him to a starter. Since he is covered by the international salary cap and Houston had exceeded their 2014/2015 cap the bonus had to be $250,000 or less. He still must under go a physical before the signing becomes official.

MLB rumors and Scout.com reported on this signing.

Is the United States Ready

Friday, May 29th, 2015

The Premier 12 will be played in Taiwan and Japan. Japan and Korea have already said they will be playing their best. No word yet on the United States team. Bringing their best has not had too much success in the World Baseball Classic where they have yet to appear in the finals. They are number two behind Japan in the baseball rankings. Below is the link to the video “Is your country ready?”

Just hope the WBSC does not become the criminal enterprise that FIFA has become. Money and power corrupts. FIFA has been corrupted.

Video