Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Looks like a done deal

The Roy Halladay deal looks like it is done, Halladay has reportedly agreed to a 3-year $60 million extension, which will make him a Phillie for the next 4 seasons. The Phillies will send Kyle Drabek, Travis d'Arnuad and Michael Taylor to the Blue Jays. Taylor will immediately be moved over to Oakland with Toronto getting Brett Wallace.

The other part of the deal will send Cliff Lee to the Mariners with the Phillies receiving 3 prospects in return, thus easing the toll on the farm system and making it a net 4 prospects for Halladay, much more reasonable than the 7 it appeared to be yesterday. The Mariners are sending pitcher Phillipe Aumont, Seattle's first rounder in 2007 who had a good season at 2 levels of A ball, as well as making a splash in the AFL, outfielder Tyson Gillies (.341 at high-A High Desert in the California League), and pitcher J.C. Ramirez (8-10, 5.12 also at High Desert).

In other notes, Zack Segovia has been released by the Nationals. Hopefully he can now get invited to another spring training. Also R.J. Swindel has signed with the Rays, who had released him last season. Swindel made 6 appearances for the Indians in 2009 bouncing back and forth from AAA-Columbus to the majors.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Halladay price too high

The reports this morning have the Phillies acquiring Roy Halladay in a 3-team deal with Cliff Lee going to Seattle and Kyle Drabek, Michael Taylor and Travis d'Arnuad going to Toronto. If you add in Carlos Carrasco, Jason Donald, Lou Marson and Jason Knapp, who the Phillies sent to Cleveland last summer for Lee, the Phillies have given up 7 prospects to land Halladay. If they were going to trade Drabek and Taylor anyway, why didn't they just trade them to Toronto at the deadline last year?

The A.P. initially reported that Jay Happ, Domonic Brown and Joe Blanton were the players dealt, so we will have to await the official announcement to see who actually is going, but, in my opinion, either combination is too much if you add in the price for Lee.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Rule 5 news

We lost another HomeSider in the Rule 5 draft last week as Carlos Monasterios was selected by the Mets and immediately traded to the Dodgers. Los Angeles said Carlos will have the opportunity to compete for a spot in the rotation this spring!!

Good Luck, Monte, we will be watching!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Sunday's highlights

In Mexico-

John Mayberry belted his 5th home run of the winter season on Sunday, raising his average to .301 and his RBI total to 20, but Obregon's 3-run 9th innings was not enough to overcome Hemosillo, who took a 4-3 decision.

Brian Schlitter gave up a run on a hit and 2 walks, striking out 2 in 1.1 innings of work for Mexicalli, in the Aguilas' 9-5 win over Guasave.

In the DR-

Zack Segovia threw another scoreless inning for Escongido, lowering his ERA to a splendid 0.71 as the Leones topped the Gigantes, 5-0 on Saturday. Walter Tejeda tossed a scoreless/hitless inning for Oriente in their 15-5 loss to Licey. Juan Richardson was 1 for 4 in that game.

Puerto Rico-

Quintin Bery had a single, a walk and stole a base for Caguas, but the Criollos lost to Arecibo 9-3.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Nothing like fall in Arizona!

Domonic Brown, Julian Sampson, Troy Hanzawa, Tuffy Gosewisch, Bob Milacki , Scott Mathieson and Travis d'Arnaud in Scottsdale over the weekend. How did Steve Susdorf escape this opportunity? Photo courtesy of HomeSide correspondent Kathy Palamara.

Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rican winter league kicked off this week, and the HomeSide is represented here, also. Quintin Berry is playing for Caguas, and has 2 hits and 2 walks in the first 2 games. Also playing for the Criollos is Andy Baldwin, who spent 2009 in Tacoma in the Mariner's system. Andy started game 2 for Caguas and went 3 innings, allowing 3 runs on 3 hits and 3 walks in Caguas' 6-3 loss to Carolina.

Darren Byrd made his first start for Mayaguez on Friday, and was roughed up by Arecibo. Byrd gave up 5 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks in just 2 innings of work.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Bourn golden

The National League awarded their golden glove awards for 2009 this afternoon and Michael Bourn is a first time recipient. Michael had 11 assists and a .992 fielding percentage for the Astros this year.

Congratulations, Michael!!


Zack Segovia is having a fine winter playing for Escongido, allowing just 1 run in 9.2 innings of work (0.93 ERA) , recording 5 saves and 2 wins for the Leones.

Original BlueClaw (and Lakewood home run king) Juan Richardson is spending this season with Oriente and is hitting .294 in 20 games so far. Walter Tejeda is also on that roster, being used a left handed specialist to get out 1 or 2 hitting at a time, logging just 2 innings of work in 5 appearances.

Fabio Castro (5 starts, 24 IP, 2.63 ERA) and Alex Concepcion (0-1, 5 runs allowed in 6.2 IP) are toiling for Cibao.


Harold Garcia is spending this fall playing for Zulia, hitting .274 so far in 21 games. Also on that roster are Erick Arteaga (3.86 in 11.2 innings) and Freddy Ballestas (0-3, 10.24 in 3 starts).

Carlos Monasterios is leading the league with 5 victories in 5 appearances, 4 starts, with an excellent 2.45 ERA in 25.2 innings of work for Margarito.

Yoel Hernandez is 2-0, 2.50 with 1 save in 18 innings of work for league-leading Magallanes. Cedric Bowers, who spent last summer mostly in Lehigh Valley, is seeing limited action, logging just 3.2 innings in 7 appearances. Jesus Merchan is also playing with Magallanes, batting .337 with a .416 on-base percentage.

Kevin Howard is hitting .263 playing for La Guaira with 2 home runs and 11 RBI in 25 games so far.

Victor Moreno (3-0, 4.32 in 13 appearances) and Francisco Butto (0-3, 11 earned runs in just 10 innings) are pitching for Aragua.


Some familiar names in the Mexican Winter League playing for Obregon. Niel Sellers in the Yaquis' leading hitter. Sellers, who played 3rd base in Reading last summer, is hitting a torrid .371 with 18 RBI in just 23 games. Michael Taylor continues to hit .300 wherever he plays, posting a .308 mark in 19 games played, and John Mayberry has popped 3 home runs and driven in 14 runs, hitting .268 in 21 appearances.

B.J. Rosenberg has saved 2 games in despite giving up 5 runs in 7 games. The fact here is that 4 of those runs were surrendered in 1 game.

Brian Schlitter has made 14 appearances for Mexicali, saving 5 games and picking up a victory. Brian was a BlueClaw in 2007 and spent the 2009 summer playing in the Southern League for the Cubs affiliate, saving 22 games.

Sebastian Valle is tearing the league up, belting 8 home runs and driving in 21 runs to post a .333 average in just 19 games playing for Mochis. Valle, who was a NY-Penn League All Star this summer for Williamsport, will probably be the everyday catcher for Lakewood in 2010.

Chris Roberson has just joined the Hermosillo team, going 0 for 3 in his debut on Tuesday.

Scottsdale Scorpions

The HomeSide has 6 members playing in Arizona for Scottsdale this year. Phillies #1 prospect Domonic Brown, who I saw on TV last Saturday night in the "Rising Stars Game", which is essentially the AFL all-star game, is the most prominent. Domonic was 1 for 4 and a walk in the contest, the one was a bullet line drive double down the right field line in his team's 7-run first inning. He also hit another hard line drive in his final at bat, a shot down the left field line which was caught. Dom is hitting .256 in 90 at bats for the Scorpions with 8 doubles, a triple, 2 home runs and is tied for the team lead with 16 RBI.

Also playing for the Scorpions is Tuffy Gosewisch (.313 in 8 games) and Troy Hanzawa. Troy is very young to be in the AFL, and is not playing much. Although 0 for 12 in his 4 appearances, Hanzawa has managed 1 walk, 3 runs scored and 2 RBI in his limited play.

Among the pitchers, Edgar Garcia has logged the most innings, making 8 appearances including 1 start, and posting a 2-2, 6.75 mark in 13.1 innings of work. Mike Cisco has thrown 11.2 frames in his 4 starts, going 0-1, 3.68 in the process, and Scott Mathieson has given up just 2 runs on 6 hits in 9 innings of work (2.00) and seems to have fully recovered. Scott has once again been placed on the Phillies' 40-man roster. Also playing with the Scorpions is Mike Schwimer, who spent most of 2009 with Clearwater before being moved up to Reading in August. The University of Virginia alum posted 20 saves for the Threshers last summer, and has made 8 appearances for Scottsdale, throwing 10.2 innings for a 3.38 ERA.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Fall Ball

The fall and winters leagues are heating up and our boys are all over the place. First off, the all- star game from the Arizona Fall League will be televised tonight at 8:00 on MLBN.

In the coming days, I will try to catch up on where our boys are and how they are doing. Baseball has become a year round sport and some of our guys are still going at it

Congratulations to

1.-the Phillies for giving us another good post-season, falling just 2 wins short of repeating as World Champions.

2.- Jay Happ for being named NL rookie of the year by the Sporting News.

3.- Ryan Howard for being named MVP of the NLCS.

4.- Mike Durant on the birth of his daughter, Milan, this week. Mother (Aimee) and child are both doing well!!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Wednesday night in Miami, Cole Hamels pitched well, but 7 innings were not enough for a win as the bullpen (Madson and Lidge) gave up 3 runs in the last 2 frames and the Marlins won, 7-6. Hamels gave up 4 runs on 8 hits, NO walks, over his 7 innings throwing 100 pitches and leaving with the Phillies ahead, 6-4. Ryan Howard had 2 hits, including his 42nd home run, and drove in 4 (130) for the Phils.

On Thursday, Howard drove in 2 more to back a good effort from Jay Happ, as Philadelphia beat Milwaukee 9-4. Happ, gave up 2 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks, striking out 7 to improve to 11-4, 2.79 for the year.

In Cleveland Thursday, Carlos Carrasco made his 4th start for the Indians against the Tigers. Carlos went 5 innings, and looked good for 4 of them. Detroit's 4-run 4th cost him the game, and the decision (he is 0-3), but he looked more comfortable to me, and mixed his pitches well most of time. He also got some help for his friends in the outfield running down some hard hit outs. In all, I think progress continues to be made.

Friday's games include: Matt Maloney, his first big league win now under his belt, and the Reds go into Houston to face Michael Bourn and the Astros, and Robinson Tejeda (4-1, 2.94) will take the hill in Kansas City against the Twins.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Phillies split with fish

The Phillies split a doubleheader with the Florida Marlins on Tuesday, winning the opener 9-3. Ryan Howard (.272) had 2 hits and drove in 3 runs (126) in the victory. Sergio Escalona came on in the 8th and had his first sub-par performance. In 8 prior outings, Escalona had allowed just 2 runs, but on Tuesday he faced 4 hitters, retiring only 1, and all 3 scored.

The Marlins won game 2, 3-0 with Chase Utley recording the only 2 hits for Philadelphia.

In Pittsburgh, Jason Jaramillo did not start, but had a single in his only at bat in the Pirates' 10-4 loss to Cincinnati. It has been a good year for "JJ", who has spent the entire season with Pittsburgh, even playing regularly while Ryan Doumit was injured. Jaramillo is hitting .259, with 3 home runs and 24 RBI in 59 games so far. In Cleveland, the Indians are getting a look at all of the young pitching prospects they accumulated at the trade deadline so Carlos Carrasco has not made a start in 2 weeks, but Lou Marson continues to play a few games a week. Last night, Marson had 2 walks in 4 appearances. In DC, the Dodgers pummelled the Nationals, 14-2, but Zack Segovia stopped the bleeding for Washington, throwing 2 scoreless innings at LA. Zack has been in 5 games; 3 good, 2 not-so-good. He will definitely be in the mix for a bullpen job in spring training. North of the border, Randy Ruiz (.274) had a double in 3 at bats in Toronto's 6-5 10-inning win over Baltimore.

Although he did not pitch on Tuesday, a shout out to an original BlueClaw and one of my favorite people: Robinson Tejeda, who is pitching great right now for Kansas City. Robinson has won his last 3 starts, 2 of them over Detroit, and has allowed only 2 earned runs in his last 30 innings of work. If healthy, Robinson has shown maturity and talent, and at 27 years old seems to have found a comfortable spot!! Go, Robinson!! We are still watching from Lakewood!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

here and there

Lets start with once around the major leagues,

In Atlanta, the Braves beat the Phillies, 6-4. Ryan Howard belted his 41st home run of the year, a 2-run shot in the 9th inning to give Ryno 123 RBI. Sergio Escalona retired all 4 hitters he faced, including 1 strike out. Escalona has pitched 7.2 innings for the Phillies this year, allowing just 2 runs on 5 hits and 2 walks.

In Milwaukee, the Brewers beat the Astros 7-2. Michael Bourn was 0 for 4 for Houston. Mike is hitting .293 for the Astros, with a league leading 58 stolen bases. In Tampa, the Rays topped the Jays, 4-0. Randy Ruiz came into the game in the 9th to play defense. Randy is hitting .273, with 7 home runs and 14 RBI in 88 at bats for Toronto.

In the baseball world cup, which is going on in Europe right now, the Australian team is benefiting from Joel Naughton's hot bat. Naughton is off to an 8 for 14 (.571) start, with 2 doubles and a home run. Tim Kennelly has been playing the outfield and is hitting .364 in 5 games, with 3 home runs and 9 RBI. Brad Harman and Drew Naylor (1-0) are also on the Austalian side.

B.J. Rosenberg is our only member on team USA, Chris Kissock and R.J. Swindel are suiting up for Canada, and Erick Arteaga is on the Venezuela roster.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

BlueClaws Champions again!!

The Lakewood BlueClaws have won their second S.A.L. championship in the past 4 seasons with a 5-1 victory over the Greenville Drive in South Carolina Friday night. Anthony Gose led the way with 2 hits, 2 runs scored, an RBI and 3 stolen bases. Gose, who finished the regular season in a bit of a slump, hit .407 in the 6 playoff games. Troy Hanzawa and Vladimir De Los Santos also had 2 hit apiece, and Lakewood used the strong pitching of Korey Noles (7 ip, 1 run, 6 hits, NO walks) and Austin Hyatt to finish off the Drive.

As good as the pitching was, if I had to pick an MVP of the playoffs, I would have to split it between Gose and Travis d'Anaud. d'Arnaud, who struggled through the first half, hitting under .200 at the All-Star break, had a fantastic second half, raising his average over 60 points, and driving in runs seemingly whenever they BlueClaws needed them. Travis continued his hot hitting in the playoffs, hitting .391 in the post-season.

In my perspective, this title is even more impressive than the first one. In 2006, the Phillies assigned some more experienced players, guys who had played at higher levels, to Lakewood to help the young nucleus. Lakewood does not win in 2006 without the contributions from Mike Spidale, John Urick and Avelino Aprilla. This year's team had no such help, and won the title with the youngest group of players we have had here in the 9 years of BlueClaws baseball!!

Congratulations to the team, the coaching staff, and the Phillies front office for a job well done. I am especially excited for Lakewood hitting and first base coach, Greg Legg. Greg has been a great asset to the Phillies organization, over 25 years as a player or a coach. He was the manager of of Piedmont Bol Wievels in 2000, and moved with the Phillies affiliate to Lakewood to be the first BlueClaw's manager. He was selected by the Phillies in the 1982 draft and has been in the organization ever since, working at all different levels of the minors. He has always had a few minutes to talk to me, and never made me feel like I was intruding. Great job, Legger, congratulations!!

So, where do I get my 2010 Clearwater Thresher season tickets?

Friday, September 18, 2009

Drive stays alive against Lakewood

The Greenville Drive took a 3-2 decision from the Lakewood BlueClaws in game 3 of the SAL Championship Series Thursday night in South Carolina. Jacob Diekman was the losing pitcher, allowing all 3 runs in the 6th inning. This was after Trevor May tossed 5 shut out frames to start the contest.

Anthony Gose and Jim Murphy had 3 hits apiece for Lakewood, but the BlueClaws stranded 12 runners and were always 1 hit short of what they needed.

Lakewood still leads Greenville, 2 games to 1 with game 4 Friday night, weather permitting, in Greenville. Korey Noles (1-0, 1.17 for Lakewood) will get the assignment for the BlueClaws.

Maloney gets 1st big league win

Matt Maloney, one of the heroes of the 2006 SAL Champion BlueClaws, won his first major league decision Thursday night in Cincinnati in the Reds' 3-2 win over the Marlins. Matt gave up 2 runs on 7 hits and just 1 walk over 5 innings. The Reds bullpen got the final 12 outs, without allowing a run and Maloney got his elusive first win.

In Philadelphia, Cole Hamels won his 10th game of the year, with 8 solid inning against Washington. Cole allowed just 1 run on 5 hits and 1 walk, striking out 10. Just for good measure, he also had an RBI single in the Phillies' 4-2 win.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Lakewood takes game 2, 1 win away!

Using the now familiar formula of great pitching and clutch hitting, the Lakewood BlueClaws beat Greenville 3-0 on Tuesday night in Lakewood to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-5 game series.

Jesus Sanchez, who won 10 games during the season, was the starter and winning pitcher, a result of 6 innings of 3-hit ball. Jesus walked 3 and struck out 5 to record the victory. Austin Hyatt was very good, recording 6 outs, 4 by Ks, and Santo "lights out" Hernandez has been living up to the nickname, posting his 3rd post-season save!!

The BlueClaws broke the scoreless tie in the 5th on a single by Jeremy Hamilton and another RBI hit, this one a double, by Troy Hanzawa. Harold Garcia and Sebastian Valle had RBI in the 2-run 6th and it proved to be enough. Jim Murphy had 2 excellent plays, one digging out a throw from Greg Dobbs at third, saving a run when the game was still scoreless, and a running catch of a foul ball down the right field line. The BlueClaws need only 1 more win to secure their second S.A.L. Championship in the last 4 years.

Game 3 is in Greenville Thursday night.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Anthony Gose leads off for Lakewood. He hit this pitch into the "Rat Trap" Bar in center field, to get Lakewood off to a 1-0 lead.
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Anthony Gose, Harold Garcia, Jim Murphy, Sebastian Valle and Brian Gump ready for actionPosted by Picasa

Claws take game 1 of final

The Lakewood BlueClaws got 2 hits each from Harold Garcia (double, home run, 2 RBI) and Travis d'Arnaud (.545 in playoffs) and spread the pitching a round well enough for a 6-3 win in game 1 of the SAL finals. Matthew Way struggled through 4.1 innings, allowing 2 runs on 6 hits and 4 walks, and was working out of trouble almost constantly. Luke Wertz was awarded the win, pitching 1 clean inning and stranding 2 inherited runners to keep Lakewood in a 3-2 lead at the time. Jacob Diekman finished off the 6th inning, Clay Condrey made a rehab assignment and allowed a run in the 7th, before Austin Hyatt and Santo Hernandez each threw a scoreless frame to end it.

Lakewood now hold a 1-0 advantage in the best-of-5 series. Game 2 is tonight in Lakewood, with Jesus Sanchez (10-6 this year)making his playoff debut.

Tonight in Memphis, Adrian Cardenas and the Sacramento River Cats take on the RedBirds in game 1 of the PCL final.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The weekend action

Ok, if you have not heard by now, Reading was swept out of the playoffs by Akron, the Aeros winning 9-3 Saturday night in Baseballtown. The R-Phils had a memorable season, but were trounced in the 3 games in the playoffs by a combined 24-9 tally.

Some of the notable performances for 2009-

Kyle Drabek- 8-2 for Reading, 12-3 overall coming off his surgery

Michael Taylor- .333 in his 86 games with Reading

These 2 were the Paul Owens award winners for this year!!

Quintin Berry posted a .355 on base percentage and stole 48 bases!

Domonic Brown hit .279 in 39 games after his promotion from Clearwater and certainly showed he could play at this level.

Joe Savery - 12-4 in 20 starts before being bumped up to Lehigh Valley, where he won 4 more!

In the Sacramento v Tacoma series out west, Adrian Cardenas and the River Cats took games 3 and 4 to advance to the PCL finals for the 3rd time in a row. Friday, Cardenas had 3 hits and 3 RBI, as the River Cats took it to Andy Baldwin and the Rainiers, 13-2. Andy tailed off towards the end of the season, and lasted just 2.1 innings Friday night, giving up 6 runs on 8 hits and 2 walks. Cardenas had 2 more hits and a walk as the Cats finished off Tacoma Saturday, 13-8. Adrian was 7 for 15 (.467) in the series with 2 doubles, 4 walks, 8 runs scored and 3 RBI as Sacramento scored 36 runs in the 4 games!

The River Cats advance to the PCL finals for the 5th time in 7 years, and will travel to Memphis to play the RedBirds in game 1 on Tuesday.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Lakewood to finals!!

The Lakewood BlueClaws swept the Kannapolis Intimitadors out of the playoffs with a convincing 9-0 win on a rainy night in Lakewood to advance to the SAL finals for the second time in the last 4 years. Solid pitching from Trevor May (6 IP 2 hits, 3 walks, 8 Ks) and a 14-hit attack puts the BlueClaws in the finals beginning Monday at home against the Greenville Drive. Designated hitter Sebatian Valle (pictured) had 3 hits, including a big 3-run home run to cap off the scoring, and 4 RBI and Troy Hanzawa also added 3 hits to the attack. Lakewood got contributions up and down the line-up, Travis d'Arnaud had 2 doubles and an RBI, Harold Garcia added 2 hits and an RBI, and Jacob Diekman, Ryan Bergh, and Freddy Ballestas each threw a scoreless inning of relief.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Reading game rained out

Reading's first home playoff game of 2009 has been rained out. They will try to play game 3 again Saturday night at 7:00.

Aeros go 2 up on R-Phils

The Akron Aeros defeated the Reading Phillies Thursday night, 6-2 in game 2 of their best-of-5 series to take a 2-0 stranglehold on the series. Reading will try to stay alive in game 3 tonight in Reading. Mike Cisco will be the starter.

Yohan Flande started and took the loss in game 2, going just 4+ innings and giving up 3 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks. It could have been worse, but Scott Mathieson came in with 2 on and no outs and retired the side without allowing a run in the 5th. Then, Mathieson gave up 3 in the 6th. Carlos Monasterios threw 2 clean innings to finish it for Reading.

Ozzie Chavez (2 doubles), Mike Taylor and Neil Sellers all had 2 hits for the R-Phils.

In Tacoma, the Rainiers even their series with Sacramento, defeating the River Cats, 5-2. Adrian Cardenas was 1 for 4 for Sacramento. The series, tied at a game apiece, shifts to California tonight for game 3.

In Asheville, Ryan Lavarnway and Will Middlebrooks hit back-to-back home runs in the top of the 9th inning to give the Greenville Drive a 3-2 come-from-behind win in game 1 of their SAL South Division Series. That series moves to Greenville for games 2 & 3 beginning tonight.

Speaking of tonight, Game 2 between Lakewood and Kannapolis is scheduled for 7:00 tonight, but the weather is not promising. We will need at least a 3 hour window, to get the field ready and play this one. If it stops, we will play.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

sorry, Zack!

How could I miss it??!! The Washington Nationals have called up Zack Segovia to the majors, completing the journey from the disabled list back to the major leagues!! Good Luck, Zack, I will try to be watching a little more closely in the future. Zack was called up 3 days ago.

The Phillies have recalled lefty Sergio Escalona to help out in the bullpen down the stretch.

Claws win game 1 behind Way

Travis d'Arnaud congratulates Santo Hernandez as BlueClaws win in Kannapolis, 4-2.

Matthew Way threw 7 strong innings in Kannapolis Wednesday night, and the Lakewood BlueClaws won game one of their opening round series, 4-2 over the Intimidators. Way allowed a run on 3 hits in the 1st inning, but settled down and put up 6 scoreless frames after that, giving up just 7 hits in all, 1 walks, and struck out 7 to give Lakewood a 1-0 advantage in the best of 2 series. Games 2 and 3 (if necessary) will be here in Lakewood Friday and Saturday nights.

Anthony Gose snapped a 1 for 25 slump that ended his regular season with 3 hits, Travis d'Arnaud, Brian Gump and Travis Mattair had 2 hits each, and D'Arby Myers had 2 walks, and scored twice as everyone in the line-up reached base at some point in the game.

Lakewood will look for the clincher on Friday when they send Trevor May to the mound.

The news was not so good in Akron, as the Aeros pounded 12 hits en route to a 9-4 win over Reading in game 1 of their series. Akron pitcher Josh Tomlin allowed Reading 2 runs on 3 hits in the 2nd inning, but then proceeded to retire 17 R-Phils in a row while his offense rocked Mike Stutes for 6 runs (only 3 earned) on 9 hits in just 5.1 innings. Reading looks to even the best of 5 series tonight in game 2, and will send Yohan Flande to the hill.

In Tacoma, Adrian Cardenas had a single, 2 walks, and scored 2 runs to help the Sacramento River Cats to an 8-2 win over the Rainiers to grab a 1-0 lead in their best of 5 series. The River Cats, 2-time defending PCL champions, look to grab a stranglehold on the series in game 2 tonight, before returning home for the remainder of the games.

In Kansas City last night, Robinson Tejeda threw 6 shut out innings against the Detroit Tigers and recorded his 2nd win of the season. Tejeda allowed just 3 hits and 2 walks, striking out 8, and lowering his ERA to 3.21. Robinson has now thrown 19 consecutive scoreless innings for the Royals, will start again next week in Detroit and is being considered for a spot in the Kansas City rotation for 2010!

Tuesday night in Denver, Matt Maloney made his best start of his young major league career, going 5 innings against the Rockies and yielding just 1 run on 4 hits, NO walks, 2 Ks. It was the 5th start this year for Matt, and the first time he did not allow 2 home runs in an outing. He did absorb a loss, as Colorado topped Cincinnati, 3-1.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Carrasco's 2nd start

Carlos Carrasco made his 2nd start for the Cleveland Indians Tuesday in the opening game of their doubleheader with Texas. Carlos was scheduled to go on Monday, but the game was rained out. He threw 5 innings tonight, allowing 5 runs on 8 hits, 3 walks (1 intentional), striking out 4. He pitched better today than last week in Detroit, this time managing to get ahead of the hitters. Now if we can just keep those 2-strike pitches away from the fat part of the plate....O well, baby steps...Lou Marson was his catcher tonight, and Lou had a double and scored a run in the bottom of the 5th. So it is Rangers 5, Indians 3 going to the 6th.

In another note, Matt Maloney, Carrasco's 2006 teammate here in Lakewood, is going tonight for the Reds in Denver. It will be Matt's 5th start for the Reds this year.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Happ scratched, Moyer to make spot start

The Phillies have scratched Jay Happ from his start today due to a strained oblique suffered 2 days ago during a batting practice drill. Jamie Moyer will come out of the bullpen to make the start in place of Jay.

3 hits for JJ

Jason Jaramillo had 3 hits, including a single to lead off the 9th inning to start the winning rally, as the Pittsburgh Pirates came from behind to beat the Cardinals, 6-5 Sunday.

In Toronto, Randy Ruiz was 1 for 3, and drove in 2 runs to help the Blue Jays top the Yankees, 14-8. For Ruiz, he now has 11 RBI in 20 games since being called up to the Jays after knocking in 106 in Las Vegas.

Hamels falls to Astros

Michael Bourn had 2 more hits and is 5 for 13 against his former team the last 3 days, as the Astros beat the Phillies again Sunday, 4-3. Mike also stole 2 more bases, increasing his league leading total to 52, and raising his average to .298 on the year as Houston made it 3 in a row over the Philles. Cole Hamels allowed 4 runs on 8 hits and 2 walks over 6 innings of work, striking out 6, and is now 8-9, 4.32 for the year.

Jay Happ (10-4) will look to help Philadelphia avoid the sweep in the finale of the series Monday afternoon. Tonight in Cleveland, Carlos Carrasco will make his 2nd major league start against the Texas Rangers.

Garcia home run enough for Lakewood

After the bats have been carrying the Lakewood BlueClaws the last few days, Lakewood rode the strong arms of Trevor May (5 IP, 3 hits, 2 walks, 7 Ks), Freddy Ballestas (3 IP, 2 hits, NO walks) and Jacob Diekman (1 IP, 1 hit, 1 K, save #2) to a 1-0 win over Delmarva Sunday, winning a game in which they managed just 4 hits. Harold Garcia's 8th home run of the year in the top of the 1st was the difference. Sebastian Valle had a single and a double, and D'Arby Myers pick up the other hit (and stole his 16th base). The BlueClaws wrap up the regular season tonight in Maryland before heading to Kannapolis to open the playoffs Wednesday.

Drabek, Taylor win Owens awards

Kyle Drabek and Michael Taylor have been awarded the 2009 Paul Owens Awards, as the top pitcher and position player, respectively in the Phillies minor league system for the year.

R-Phils clinch it!!

The Reading Phillies will join the BlueClaws in the playoffs this year, winning over the Connecticut Defenders, 6-0 Saturday behind strong pitching from Mike Cisco (6 IP, 5 hits, NO walks), Scott Mathieson (2 IP 2 hits, 4 Ks) and Mike Zagurski (1-2-3 9th). Hitless through the first 5 frames, Reading exploded for 6 runs in the 7th. Freddy Galvis had a 2-RBI single, Steve Susdorf an RBI hit and Domonic Brown a 2-RBI double to highlight the rally.

Antonio Bastardo has been activated and added to Reading's roster for the playoffs, and Brad Harman and Tim Kennelly have been placed on the temporary inactive list for the purpose of representing Australia in the upcoming Baseball Wold Cup.

Reading will open the playoffs Wednesday night in Akron.

Kendrick recalled

The Phillies have recalled Kyle Kendrick now that he will no longer pitch for the IronPigs this year. Speaking of Lehigh Valley, Tuffy Gosewisch had 2 hit Sunday, and Joe Savery had a pinch-hit single in their 5-4 win over Buffalo. The Pigs led the game 2-1 going to the 9th inning, when the Bisons rallied for 3 to take a 4-2 lead. But a double by Gus Milner scored 1 run and then scored the tying run, on a 2-out, 2-run game winning single by J.J. Furmaniak. The IronPigs are 70-73 on the year and will wrap up the season tonight at home against the Bisons.

The International League playoffs will featured Scranton (Yankees), Durham (Rays), Gwinnett (Braves) and Louisville (Reds). Matt Maloney will not pitch for Louisville, and will probably be recalled to Cincinnati this week.

Adrian Cardenas had 3 hits and 3 RBI the last 2 days for the Sacramento River Cats, and is hitting .247 in 50 games for the Oakland AAA affiliate. "A.C." has had a good year, hitting .298 with 79 RBI in 129 games for Midland and Sacramento. Sacramento will look for their 3rd straight PCL title when the playoffs start Wednesday, their opponent will be determined today. Memphis (Cardinals) will face Albuquerque (Dodgers) and Tacoma (Mariners) and Colorado Springs (Rockies) will square off today for the final berth, with the winner taking on the River Cats.

In the Southern League, Brian Schlitter and the Tennessee Smokies (Cubs) will take on first half winner Huntsville (Brewers). Schlitter has made 59 appearances for Tennessee, posting a 1-7 mark and recording 22 saves. The Jacksonville Suns (Marlins) and Birmingham Barons (White Sox) in the other series starting Thursday.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Floyd struts his stuff; 76 and still counting

Former BlueClaw Gavin Floyd showed his stuff again Saturday, this time on national TV, retiring the first 17 Boston Red Sox in a row before yielding a single, and in all threw 8 innings of 3-hit, 1-run ball in Chicago's 5-1 win over Boston. Floyd is now 11-9 on the season for the ChiSox.

In Houston, Michael Bourn had 2 hits and stole his league leading 50th base of the season in the Astros 5-4 win over the Phillies. Houston led the game 3-0 going into the 7th, when the Phillies rallied for 2 (including 1 on a pinch single by Carlos Ruiz) and 2 more in the 8th to take a 4-3 advantage into the 9th. Ryan Howard added an RBI (#114) in the 8th inning rally, but the Astros came back to win in the bottom of the 9th against former teammate Brad Lidge, who blew his 10th save of the year and fell to 0-7.

In Toronto, Randy Ruiz hit his 6th home run of the year off Andy Pettite, after having one called back earlier on replay. The Yankees prevailed, 6-4. Randy, a Bronx native, has hit 3 of his 6 home runs this year off of New York.

In Norwich, the Reading Phillies swept a doubleheader from the Defenders which, combined with Erie's 5-4 loss to Akron moved the R-Phils into a commanding 2 game lead with 2 games remaining in the battle for the final playoff spot. Either 1 win in the last 2 games, or 1 loss by Erie will clinch the berth for Reading.

In Delmarva, the Shorebirds defeated the BlueClaws 13-7. The good news here is that Lakewood has now scored 24 runs in the last 3 days and appears to have heated up their bats right on time for the playoff which begin Wednesday. D'Arby Myers had 2 hits and 2 stolen bases, Anthony Gose swiped #76 and Troy Hanzawa stole home!!

Austin Hyatt made his debut for Lakewood and started out with 4 scoreless frames before running into trouble in the 5th. Ryan Bergh absorbed most of the punishment (8 runs, 7 earned in just 1.1), and outfielder Brian Gump threw a 1-2-3 inning to spare the bullpen staff.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Way, Murph lead Claws to win

Matthew Way (pictures above) did not give up a hit until the 6th inning, and Jim Murphy had 4 hits, including 2 doubles, and 3 RBI to help lead the BlueClaws to a 9-3 win over Delmarva Friday night. Murphy now has 67 RBI, and is 7 for 9 in the series so far! Way is now 4-1, 3.11 in 6 starts and has been named starting pitcher for game 1 of the playoffs Wednesday night in Kannapolis. (Trevor May, who makes his final regular season start tomorrow, will go in game 2, and Jesus Sanchez will get the assignment if the series goes to a third game.) Luke Wertz came on to make his Lakewood debut when Matt got in trouble in the 6th, and after walking in 1 run and allowing a 2-run single, Wertz seemed to find his rhythm, striking out 4 of his 7 outs recorded.

The BlueClaws offense is heating up right on time. Travis d'Arnaud had 4 more hits for Lakewood, driving in his team leading 71st run. Troy Hanzawa (.264) had 2 hits, including his 2nd triple in 2 days, and knocked in 2 runs. Harold Garcia shook off what looked like a left leg problem which forced him out of the game in Lakewood Wednesday and had an RBI double.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Noles sharp in debut for Claws

Korey Noles gave the Lakewood BlueClaws a much needed shot in the arm Thursday night in Salisbury, throwing 6.2 innings, allowing only 1 run on 3 hits and 2 walks while striking out 7. For Noles, it was his 15th win at 3 different levels so far this year. Jacob Diekman retired all 4 hitters he faced, before Ryan Bergh finished off the Shorebirds with Lakewood winning, 8-2.

Jim Murphy (.271) had 3 hits and 2 RBI (64), and Troy Hanzawa drove in 3 with a triple and a sac fly. Travis d'Arnaud had 2 hits and his team leading 70th RBI, and Jeremy Hamilton added a single and a double as the middle of the batting order has regained their batting eye just in time to start the playoffs.

Matthew Way (3-1, 2.81 in 5 starts) will make his final start of the regular season tonight as Lakewood and Delmarva go at it in game 2 of the 5-game set. Sebastian Valle, recently recalled from Williamsport will catch tonight, d'Arnaud will DH.

Manatees top Threshers in 11

They just love those extra innings in Clearwater. The Threshers fought back from a 4-0 deficit to tie the game in the bottom of the 9th, only to fall 6-4 in the 11th. Jon Velasquez started and gave up 4 runs on 9 hits and 2 walks in just 5.2 innings, but Clearwater would not go away. Home runs by Matt Rizzotti (his 13th) in the 4th and Jesus Villegas (# 4) in the 5th cut the lead in half. A Yonderman Rodriguez single made it 4-3 in the 8th (his third hit of the night) and Gus Milner hit a sac fly to score Villegas in the 9th to tie it. Meanwhile, Esmelvin Jimenez shut down Brevard County, pitching 3.1 innings and allowing just 1 hit and 1 walk. Walter Tejeda threw a scoreless 10th, but was touched for the winning runs in the 11th. Javis Diaz stole base #33 on the year for Clearwater.

Chapman shines again

Chance Chapman has done everything right since joining Reading. Last night, Chance started in New Britain and threw 5 scoreless innings as the Reading Phillies got back on the winning track with a 3-1 win over the Rock Cats. Chapman is now 7-1, 2.26 since being promoted from Clearwater, and 10-2, 1.80 overall in 75 total innings of work this year. I am sure he has opened some eyes around the organization.

Mike Zagurski (2 IP, 3 Ks, 0 hits) and Scott Mathieson (1 IP, 1R, 2 walks, 1 hit, +save) finished off the Rock Cats. Tim Kennelly had a hit and 2 RBI to help the Reading attack.

With Harrisburg defeating Erie, 4-3, the R-Phils are now a game in front of the Sea Wolves in the race for the final playoff spot! Vance Worley (7-11) will go tonight in Norwich against the North Division leading Defenders, while the Sea Wolves will face South Division pace-setter Akron in Ohio.

here and there

Wednesday night in Arlington, Randy Ruiz had 2 hits, including his 5th home run for the Blue Jays, in their 6-4 loss to the Rangers. In Philadelphia the same evening, Brad Penny shut out the Phillies, giving Jay Happ his 4th loss of the year, as the Giants won their one game of the 3-game set, 4-0. Jay is 10-4, 2.77 on the year.

On Thursday, the Indians announced they are shutting down Jason Knapp, who is still experiencing soreness in his shoulder. Unsure as to the extent of damage to his shoulder, the Indians had Jason go for an MRI Wednesday, and will seek a second opinion.

In Tacoma, Andy Baldwin threw 5 shut out innings, before tiring and giving up 4 runs, in the Rainier's 4-0 loss to Salt Lake. Andy (6-11) struck out 8 in his 5.2 innings. In Toledo, Jesus Merchan had a single and a double and drove in a run for Columbus and Lou Marson had 2 walks, but the Mud Hens won the game, 4-2. In Allentown, Tuffy Gosewisch had a single and scored a run, and Joe Bisenius tossed a scoreless frame in the IronPigs 8-1 win over Syracuse. Joe Savery will pitch in game 1 of Friday's doubleheader for the Pigs.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Moose home run gives Claws a win

Travis "Moose" Mattair has been testing the far reaches of the First Energy Park outfield lately, with most of his long fly balls finding the warning track in deep center. So Tuesday night he hit one into left centerfield and just kept running, providing the Lakewood BlueClaws with the margin of victory in their 3-2 win over Hagerstown. It was the 3rd home run of the year for Moose, who drove in a run earlier on a sac fly. Eryk McConnell was the winning pitcher, after a great effort from Trevor May, who threw another 5 shut out frames to start the game. May is 3-1 in 14 starts for Lakewood, posting a very impressive 2.74 ERA in 74 innings of work.

Travis d'Arnaud continued his hot hitting, smacking a single and a double, and is 5 for his last 11. While they have not been as impressive as they were in the first half, the good starting pitching, and the hot hitting lately of d'Arnaud, Harold Garcia, Jim Murphy, Jeremy Hamilton, Anthony Gose and D'Arby Myers give this team as good a chance as any in the upcoming SAL playoffs.

Lakewood has also added pitcher Austin Hyatt from Williamsport. Hyatt, out the University of Alabama, was selected in this June's draft and has pitched 54.1 innings for the Crosscutters, allowing just 4 earned runs (That is a 0.66 ERA) with 81 strike outs!!

Threshers win marathon

The Clearwater Threshers outlasted the Brevard County Manatees, 4-3 in 17 innings Tuesday night. Drew Naylor was excellent, tossing 7 shut out frames, giving up just 4 hits and 1 walk. After Julian Sampson gave up 2 runs to tie it at 2-2, the bullpens took over. Chris Kissock struck out 4 in 2.1 innings, and after Dan Brauer gave up a run in the 14th, his 4th inning of work, Fidel Hernadez got a big 2-out single to score Mike Durant and the game continued. Esmelvin Jimenez threw 3 more shut out innings and picked up the win when Derrick Mitchell singled home Fidel with the winning run in the 17th!! It was Mitchell's only hit in 8 at bats. Joel Naughton had a double and 2 singles, and Mike Durant had 4 walks.

Reading falls to New Britain

The New Britain Rock Cats defeated the Reading Phillies, 2-0 Tuesday night behind excellent pitching from Mike McCardell. McCardell went 7 innings, giving the R-Phils just 5 hits and 3 walks, striking out 8. He is now 4-2 with the Rock Cats and 13-4 overall for the season in the Twins' system. Mike Cisco was the hard luck loser for Reading, despite a stellar effort of his own. Cisco went 6.2 innings, surrendering only 1 run on 3 hits and 1 walk. Kevin Mahar (307) had 3 more hits for Reading, and Domonic Brown had 2 hits to raise his AA average to .298. Reading stays 1.5 games ahead of Erie, thanks to Harrisburg's 8-7 win over the Sea Wolves. Reading has 7 games left, Erie has 6. Mike Stutes (8-7) will go tonight.

The Phillies have announced that they are shutting Kyle Drabek down for the year. Playoffs notwithstanding, the front office has decided that 158 innings is enough for the 21 year old who sat out more than a year after surgery. Kyle compiled a 12-3 season with Clearwater and Reading.

In another note, Carlos Monasterios has been promoted from Clearwater.

Kendrick wins again

Last night in Allentown, Kyle Kendrick was strong for 7 shut out innings, before tiring in the 8th. Jacob Woods came on and allowed both runners to score, before Brett Myers came on to close it out in the 9th and preserve a 3-2 win for Lehigh Valley. Kendrick is now 9-7, 3.34 this season for the IronPigs.

In Oklahoma City, Greg Golson had 2 hits and an RBI, and stole his 19th base of the year in support of Elizardo Ramirez, as the RedHawks took a 3-0 decision from New Orleans. Ramirez threw 6 clean innings, allowing just 5 hits, NO walks, striking out 3 to improve to 9-10, 4.47 for the Texas affiliate.

In Vegas, Kevin Howard belted his 13th home run to help the 51s take a 7-3 win over Fresno. Kevin now has 58 RBI on the year. In Reno, Adrian Cardenas was 1 for 2, an RBI triple, for Sacramento, but the Aces topped the River Cats, 8-6. In Columbus, Jesus Merchan had 2 hits and Lou Marson added another as the Clippers beat Louisville, 9-2. Marson will reportedly stay with the Clippers until Monday and then join the Indians for the rest of the season.

Cole being Cole

It has not been the best baseball season for Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels, but I would have to say he has come around at the right time. Cole threw a complete game 2-hit shutout at the Giants in Philadelphia last night in the Phillies 1-0 win, to win his 8th game of the year. He also picked off a runner and stole a base!! In his last 2 starts, Hamels has thrown 17 straight scoreless innings. Ryan Howard had 2 hits for the Phils, including an RBI (#112) double for the lone run.

In Detroit, Carlos Carrasco made his major league debut for the Cleveland Indians, and let's just say we hope it was a learning experience. The first place Tigers smacked Carlos around for 6 runs on 9 hits (3 homers) in just 3 innings, en route to an 8-5 win. Carrasco will pitch in the rotation, barring a repeat of last night's performance, for the remainder of the Indian's schedule. His next start will be Monday, against the Texas Rangers.

In Chicago, Michael Bourn had 3 for 4 and stole #49, but the Cubs managed to overcome his efforts to post a 4-1 win over Houston. Bourn is hitting .296 now for the Astros.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Roth promoted

Rob Roth has been promoted to Clearwater, and is replaced on the roster by 2008 draftee Korey Noles. Noles, who has been with both the GCL Phillies and Williamsport this season, is another much needed lefty and will pitch Thursday night in the opener of the 5-game season ending series in Delmarva. The Phillies continue to tweak the roster for the playoffs.

BlueClaws fall to Frias, again

Marcos Frias seems to be the only Hagerstown Suns pitcher to be able to beat the BlueClaws, and he did it again Monday night in Lakewood. Frias improved to 9-4 on the year as the Suns beat Lakewood, 5-3. Anthony Gose had 3 hits, 2 RBI and a stolen base #75 to pace the Lakewood attack. Harold Garcia and D'Arby Myers had 2 hits each for Lakewood, who have been hitting the ball better lately and look to get the ship going in the right direction by the time the playoffs start next Wednesday.

A quick word about Garcia. Harold has been having a very consistent season, leading the team with a .293 average, and his 40 steals would be a bigger story if not for the season Gose is having. Garcia has been out of the line up a couple of times with injuries and the line up has suffered each time he was out. The combination of Gose and Garcia (or Garcia and Gose) at the top, along with the emergence of Myers in the #9 slot, has really set the table for Travis d'Arnaud and Jim Murphy and will be key if the 'Claws are to have post-season success.

Justin De Fratus left the game in the second inning, looking as if he pulled something in his left side (an oblique?). I have not heard about the nature of the injury, but Justin did give me a "thumbs up" later when I caught his eye.

Reading sweep has them back on track

Monday night, Reading won both games of a doubleheader from Bowie, winning both games in extra innings. In game 1, Mike Spidale, Domonic Brown and Tim Kennelly had 3 hits each, with Brown getting a triple and 2 RBI, and Spidale the game winning hit in the 11th inning of the 5-4 victory. After Yohan Flande got through 5.2 innings allowing 4 runs, B.J. Rosenberg, Mike Zagurski, Sergio Escalona and Mike Schwimer all pitched scoreless relief.

Kevin Mahar got the game winning hit in the bottom of the 9th to give Reading a 4-3 win and the walk off sweep. The 2 wins put Reading at 71-63, 1.5 games ahead of Erie in the race for the final playoff spot. The R-Phils will finish with 8 games in the final 7 days on the road, 3 in New Britain, and 5 in Norwich against the first place Defenders.

here and there....

In Oklahoma City, Greg Golson (.262) was 0 for 3, with a walk, but drove in 2 runs to help the RedHawks defeat New Orleans, 9-4. Greg has hit his worst slump of the season, and is 5 for his last 35.

Since pitching a complete game shutout back on August 5, Andy Baldwin's stuggles have left him in Tacoma's bullpen. Andy threw 2 innings in relief last night, allowing 1 run on 4 hits in the Rainier's 5-3 loss to Salt Lake City. In 5 relief appearances, covering 6.2 innings, Andy has just 2 runs on 8 hits, NO walks, with 6 Ks. For the season, Baldwin is 6-10 with a 4.50 ERA in the hitter friendly PCL. The Mariners have yet to expand their roster for September, but I am watching the transaction wire.

In Las Vegas, Kevin Howard was 4 for 4 and a walk, including 2 doubles, and 3 runs scored as the 51s edged the Fresno Grizzlies, 9-8. Kevin has upped his average to .314 for the Toronto affiliate and could also get the call with the Blue Jays out of the hunt.

In Reno, the Sacramento River Cats were all over the Aces, 17-6. Adrian Cardenas had 2 doubles and scored a run for Sacramento, while Chris Roberson had a hit and a walk for Reno.

After a good start for the Jacksonville Suns, Brett Harker had a nightmare last Wednesday. Brett came into a game against Mobile in the 7th inning, and faced 6 hitters, all of whom reached base (3 hits, 3 walks), and scored!! E-Gads!! He has since returned to Jupiter. Hang in there, Brett.

in the majors

In Wrigley Field, Michael Bourn had a double, a walk, scored a run and drove one in, in the Astros' 5-3 win over the Cubs. Michael is hitting .292, and while he didn't steal a base yesterday, still lead the NL with 48!!

In Arlington, the Blue Jays pounded the Rangers 18-10!! When I saw this score I got very exciting, thinking Randy Ruiz could have had a big game. Randy was 0 for 2 with 2 walks, and was hit by a pitch, scoring 1 run, so I was a little let down. O well, go get 'em today, Randy!!

In Minnesota, Gavin Floyd once again had grounds to sue his mates for non-support, as the Twins topped the White Sox, 4-1. Floyd went 6 innings, allowing 3 runs on 9 hits, NO walks, striking out 4, and absorbing the loss to fall to 10-9, 3.97 on the year.

O yea, the Reds have messed up Matt Maloney's post season. Matt has been optioned to AA, the Carolina Mudcats. I believe he is now ineligible for the International League playoffs.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Rosenberg tabbed for team USA

B.J. Rosenberg has been named to play for Team USA in the upcoming baseball World Cup in Europe. "Rosie", out of University of Louisville, has been fantstic this year, with a 7-3 record, 22 saves and a 1.23 ERA in 58.2 innings with Lakewood and Reading.

Maloney recalled; Carrasco to make debut

Matt Maloney was recalled by the Cincinnati Reds and pitched against the Dodgers Saturday night. Matt did not pitch badly, but suffered the loss, allowing 5 runs on 8 hits over 6 innings. He has been plagued by the long ball, giving up 2 more home runs Saturday, for a total of 8 in 23 major league innings this year. I have to admit, the timing of the call-up was curious to me, with Louisville on the verge of the IL playoffs, and Maloney being a mainstay in the Bats' rotation.

The Cleveland Indians have announced that both Carlos Carrasco and Lou Marson will be called up to the big team Tuesday, with Carrasco being slated to make his debut Tuesday night in Detroit against then Tigers.

I will not try to catch up on the all the weekend action that I missed being out of town, but I will mention that Anthony Gose stole #74 in Lakewood's 8-3 loss to Lake County on Sunday.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

have a good weekend

I will be away from the computer for the weekend attending my family reunion. Enjoy the games if the weather allows!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

AFL rosters announced

The rosters have been announced for the Arizona Fall League, with several HomeSiders getting the nod. The Phillies players will represent the Scottsdale Scorpions this year. Pitchers Mike Cisco, Scott Mathieson, Mike Schwimer, and Mike Zagurski were named to participate, and outfielders Domonic Brown and Steve Susdorf, catcher Tuffy Gosewisch, and BlueClaw's shortstop Troy Hanzawa were also selected. BlueClaws pitching coach Bob Milacki will be on the Scottsdale staff!

Chase d'Arnuad, Travis' brother, will also suit up for the Scorpions.

73 and counting

Some of Thursday's highlights before Friday's games start-

Travis d'Arnaud and Travis Mattair had 3 hits each for the BlueClaws as Lakewood completed the sweep in Hagerstown, defeating the Suns, 7-2. Lakewood got great pitching again, this time from Trevor May (5 IP, 1 run, 3 hits, 6 walks-a little high, and the victory to go to 3-1, 2.94 on the year), Freddy Ballestas (2 IP, 1 hit, 1 walk) and Jordan Ellis (2 IP, 1 run on 2 walks, 5 Ks), and Anthony Gose stole #73!!

Javis Diaz had 2 hits, a walk, and stole his 30th base, and Gus Milner had 2 hits, including a home run, but the Manatees topped Darren Byrd and the Threshers, 7-2 as Clearwater made 5 errors. Ouch! Jesus Villegas has taken over as the everyday shortstop with Freddy Galvis being promoted.

In Reading, the R-Phils rallied from an early 6-2 deficit to tie the game at 6-6 in the bottom of the 9th, only to fall in the 13th, 9-6 to Erie. This reduces the Phillies lead to 1.5 games in the wild card playoff race. Neil Sellers had 4 hits, including his 15th home run, and Mike Spidale had 3 hits and a stolen base. Mike Stutes had a tough outing, giving up 6 runs in the first 3 innings, before settling down. Excellent relief from Alex Concepcion (2.1 perfect innings), Pat Overholt (.2 IP, 2 hits), Mike Zagurski (2 IP, 1 hit, 1 walk, 3 Ks) kept reading in the game. Sergio Escalona tossed 2 scoreless innings, before allowing 3 runs (2 earned) in the 13th.

In Louisville, Carlos Carrasco won again for Columbus, throwing 7 strong innings for the Clippers, giving up just 1 earned run on 4 hits and 1 walk. Carlos threw 98 pitches, 71 for strikes in Columbus' 7-2 win. Not to be outdone, Kyle Kendrick threw 7.2 great innings for Lehigh Valley as the IronPigs won in Rochester, 11-2. Kyle gave up 7 hits, but NO walks, to improve to 8-7, 3.38 for the season. In Las Vegas, Kevin Howard (.304) had a single, a walk, and scored the game's lone run as the 51s topped the Reno Aces, 1-0. Chris Roberson (.264) was 1 for 3 for Reno.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ryno does it again;72 and counting for Gose

After Ryan Madson blew a save for Cole Hamels, who flashed some of his old brilliance against the Pirates Wednesday, Ryan Howard came through for the Phillies, blasting a game winning 3-run homer in the 10th inning. "Ryno" now has 35 dingers and 107 RBI on the year. As for Hamels, he threw 8 shut out innings, allowing just 7 hits and 2 walks, striking out 7 along the way, and was only 2 outs from the victory when Madson gave up the game tying home run to pinch hitter Brandon Moss. Cole remains at 7-8 on the year.

In Boston, Gavin Floyd gave it another good effort for the White Sox, going 6 strong frames against the Red Sox, allowing 2 runs on just 5 hits and 2 walks, and receiving no decision in Boston's 3-2 win. Floyd remains at 10-8 (3.95) for Chicago on the year.

In Reading, Mike Cisco recorded his first win with the R-Phils in a 6-4 Reading win over Erie. The victory moves Reading 2.5 games ahead of the Sea Wolves in the battle for the final playoff spot in the Eastern League's South division. Freddy Galvis had 3 hits, including a home run, driving in 2, and is hitting .417 (5 for 12) in 3 games since his promotion. Mike Spidale (.293) also had 3 hits, and Quintin Berry stole his 48th base of the year.

Cisco went 5.1 innings, giving up 4 runs on 7 hits, NO walks, before yielding to Chance Chapman. "Chappy" got 2 outs facing only 1 hitter, and Brett Myers came on for the next 2 innings, fanning 5 of the 7 hitters he faced. B.J. Rosenberg, who actually gave up a few runs earlier this week, recorded save #3 for Reading, striking out 3 in 1 inning.

In Hagerstown, the Lakewood BlueClaws got a fantastic pitching performance from Justin De Fratus en route to a 3-1 win over the Suns. Justin pitched 7 innings, allowing only 1 run on 5 hits, NO walks, and 10 Ks! Jacob Diekman threw a scoreless 8th, and picked up the victory, his 2nd, when Lakewood rallied for 2 in the 9th to win it. Anthony Gose and Harold Garcia got RBI hits in the winning rally. Gose had 2 hits and 2 more stolen bases (that's 72 steals), and Travis d'Arnaud and D'Arby Myers got 2 hits each.

OK, time for me to get on my soapbox again. D'Arby Myers has just been great this year. Early in the season, when Zack Collier was here, Myers did not get in many games. But D'Arby stayed positive, worked hard, took extra batting practice, and when he got a chance to play has been excellent. He has hit consistently, played stellar outfield (playing the corners when he was used to playing center), and run the bases well. The maturity he has shown over the course of what has to have been a tough year for him has been excellent. Way to go, D'Arby!!

I believe if the team is to have success in the upcoming playoffs, D'Arby Myers has GOT to play.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Galvis promoted

It seems I overlooked that shortstop Freddy Galvis has been promoted to Reading. Freddy is playing his 3rd game for the R-Phils tonight!!
Posted by PicasaFreddy Ballestas, Vladimir De Los Santos, Santo Hernandez, Jesus Sanchez and Harold Garcia with Lena and I on Sunday afternoon. Thanks for posing, boys!!
Posted by PicasaPhillies pitcher Brett Myers shows Lakewood's Trevor May the grip for his curve ball Sunday afternoon in Lakewood. Myers was in town for a rehab assignment Sunday, but a rainout forced the appearance back to Monday. Phillies minor league pitching guru Gorman Hiemmuller looks on

some observations, including #70

Here are some of the highlights from the last few days while I have been busy and away from the computer....

Monday in Toronto, Randy Ruiz had 3 hits, including his 4th home run for the Blue Jays, in Toronto's 12-7 defeat at the hands of the Tampa Rays. Randy is up to .348 for the Jays!!

Also Monday, in New York, Ryan Howard had the 21st multi-home run game of his great career, belting his 33rd and 34th homers of the year, driving in 5 runs in the Phillies 6-2 win over the Mets. Ryan now has 104 RBI, breaking to 100 mark each year he has played the whole season for the Phillies. The 05 rookie of the year, and 06 MVP has 211 home runs and 603 RBI in about 4 and a half seasons!

The BlueClaws started their road trip on the right foot, pounding the Suns in Hagerstown Tuesday, 8-0. Jesus Sanchez won his 10th game, throwing 7 strong innings, allowing just 5 hits and 1 walk, with Ryan Bergh and Santo Hernandez chipping in a scoreless frame each. Anthony Gose and Troy Hanzawa had 3 hits each for the BlueClaws with Gose stealing base #70, incresing his team record. Travis d'Arnuad added 3 RBI, upping his team leading total to 66, and Jim Murphy (who hit 2 home runs Monday) and Vladimir De Los Santos (3 RBI) had 2 hits each as the 'Claws broke out a 14-hit attack!

Lakewood has also added left handed hitting outfielder Brian Gump, who had a hit and 2 walks in his debut. Gump was at the GCL, after being drafted in the 26th round out of UC-Santa Barbara in June of this year.

The Reading Phillies came up with 5 in the bottom of the 8th inning Tuesday, to snatch an 8-5 win over Erie and take a 1.5 game lead in the race for the final playoff spot. Quintin Berry had a big, 2-RBI single in the rally and Mike Spidale also dove in a run as the R-Phils came from behind 5-3 to post the victory. Spidale and Domonic Brown had 2 hits each in the game for Reading, and Scott Mathieson was the beneficiary of the rally, posting his 2nd win.

In Indianapolis, the Indians rallied for 3 in the bottom of the 9th to beat the Columbus Clippers, 8-7. Jesus Merchan had 3 hits for the Clippers. In salt Lake City, Kevin Howard had an RBI-double and scored twice as the Las Vegas 51s beat the Bees, 11-6. Howard is hitting .304 with 54 RBI this season.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Happ wins again

Jay Happ continues his bid to be NL rookie of the year with another gem against the Mets. Happ went 7, allowing only a single run on 8 hits and 2 walks, defeating New York 4-1 to improve to 10-2, with a 2.59 ERA. Jay has been the most steady influence in the rotation since joining it early in the season, and has now went at least 6 innings in 12 straight starts for Philadelphia.

In Toronto, Randy Ruiz had 2 more hits in the Blue Jays 7-3 loss to the Angels. Randy is hitting .316 in his first 10 games with Toronto.

Harker wins first start for Suns; 68 & counting

Brett Harker made his first AA start Saturday night for the Jacksonville Suns in Mobile, and led his team to a 10-4 win. Brett went a solid 6 innings, allowing just 2 earned runs on 6 hits and a walk, striking out 5. He has really taken to starting games again, and looks to help the Suns in their quest for the Southern League playoffs!

In Fresno, Andy Baldwin threw 1.2 innings of scoreless relief, recording a "hold" as the Rainiers shut out the Grizzlies, 2-0. Baldwin has made 26 appearances for the Rainiers, including 21 starts (1 shut out), logging 142 innings, with a 6-10 record and a 4.56 ERA in the hitter friendly PCL.

In New Britain, the Rock Cats made it 2 in a row over the R-Phils, defeating Mike Stutes and reading, 3-2. Stutes (8-7) lasted 6.1 innings, allowing 3 runs on 8 hits on 2 walks. Mike Zagurski struggled, facing 3 hitters, walking 1, hitting 1 and retiring 1, before being bailed out by Scott Mathieson ,who retired 4 straight hitters. Catcher Kevin Nelson was 4 for 4, including his 6th home run.

In Clearwater, Derrick Mitchell continued his hot hitting, belting a double and his 11th home run, but it could not help the Threshers overcome Dunedin, who roughed up our pitchers en route to a 17-2 victory. Jon Velasquez, Carlos Monasterios, Esmelvin Jimenez, and Tyson Brummett all gave up at least 4 runs each in a game to forget.

In Lakewood, the BlueClaws made it 3 wins in 4 games on the home stand, with a come from behind 4-3 win over Lake County. RBIs by Travis d'Arnuad, Jim Murphy and Vladimir De Los Santos keyed a 3-run rally in the bottom of the 8th, as the BlueClaws won a game in which they managed only 4 hits. Anthony Gose had a hit and a walk and stole 2 more bases, increasing his league leading and team record total to 68. Matthew Way (2.88 ERA) started and worked through 6 innings, yielding 3 runs on 9 hits and only 1 walk, while striking out 8. Jordan Ellis picked up the win, his 4th, by tossing 2 clean frames, and Ryan Bergh recorded his 13th save, giving us all some heart palpitations with 2 walks, a hit batsman, and a single. He was unscored upon thanks to d'Arnaud throwing out Delvi Cid trying to steal, and a game ending double play grounder to Harold Garcia. Garcia also stole his 36th base, making he and Gose the only teammates in minor league ball to combine for over 100 steals!!

Phillies pitcher Brett Myers will start today for the 'Claws, before giving way to scheduled starter Hietor Correa.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Claws late night walk-off

After an hour and 15 minute rain delay before the start of the game, the Lakewood BlueClaws rallied to defeat Hagerstown, 3-2 Friday night. Winning once again on the strength of their pitching, no BlueClaw player had more than 1 hit. It was a strong effort for Trevor May, after a shaky start. Trevor surrendered his only run right off the bat, as the first 4 Hagerstown hitters reached base. But with a run in and the bases loaded with no one out, May slammed the door, keeping Lakewood in the game. In all, Trevor went 5 innings, allowing just the 1 run on 5 hits, striking out 6, receiving no decision. Freddy Ballestas got the next 4 outs, before giving way to Jacob Diekman. Diekman also got 4 outs, and was charged with the first earned run in his second half, before Santo Hernandez came on to close the door on the Suns. Santo improved to 5-2, 1.93 on the season. Korby Mintkin has a single, 2 walks, and drove in a run to lead the Lakewood offense.

once around the minors

The Clearwater Threshers rallied for 3 in the bottom of the 9th inning to defeat Dunedin, 5-4 Friday night. Gus Milner had the game winner, a 2-out RBI single to cap the rally. Mike Durant and Derrick Mitchell had 2 hits each for the Threshers, with Mitchell knocking in 2 runs. It has been a difficult campaign for Mitchell, but he is hot now, hitting .343 in the last 10 games, with hits in 9 of them. Darren Byrd had another good outing, throwing 5 shut out innings, and giving up just 4 hits and 3 walks. Walter Tejeda gave up 1 run in his inning, and Chris Kissock was touched up for 3 runs in his 2 innings of work. Dan Brauer threw a 1-2-3 9th and was beneficiary of the rally, improving to 2-1 on the year.

In Delmarva, Jason Knapp started for the Captains against the Shorebirds. Jason went 4 innings, giving up only 1 hit and 3 walks, and was charged with 1 earned run in the Captain's 7-6 win. The Captains will be in Lakewood for the next 3 nights, and the way it is set up right now, Jason will miss pitching against his former mates both in this series and in the set in Lake County next weekend.

Greg Golson had 2 hits and stole his 17th base of the year for Oklahoma City in the RedHawks' 4-1 loss to Colorado Springs on Friday night. Golson is hitting .268 for Oklahoma City and could be called up with the rosters expanding come September 1.

In Las Vegas, Kevin Howard was 3 for 4 with an RBI (#53) as the 51s topped Round Rock, 5-4. Kevin is hitting .318 in 74 games since joining Las Vegas.

In Buffalo, Zack Segovia came on and struck out the only batter he faced for Syracuse as the Chiefs won the back end of their doubleheader against the Bisons, 2-1. It was the 5th save for Zack since joining Syracuse, and in 20 games, he has posted a stellar 1.86 ERA. He is another candidate for a late season call up, so look for him in DC in September.

Kyle Kendrick has resumed his good AAA season with a nice performance Friday in Allentown. Kyle went 6 innings against the Yanks, allowing only 1 run on 3 hits and 2 walks to even his record at 7-7 with a good 3.45 ERA as the IronPigs pounded the Yankees, 9-1.

Carlos Carrasco lost his first start since being moved to Columbus, but did not pitch badly. Carlos was out dueled by Toledo's right-hander Nate Bump. Carrasco went 6.2 innings, allowing 4 runs (3 earned) on just 5 hits and 1 walk, but on this night, Bump was just better. The Clippers managed just 1 UNearned run in 7.2 innings against Toledo's ace, who is now 7-1 for the Detroit affiliate. Carrasco is now 10-10 on the year, and 4-1 since the trade.

The Reading Phillies dropped a 6-3 decision in New Britain on Friday. Mike Cisco started for Reading. Mike has struggled since his promotion to AA, after posting a 7-3 mark with Clearwater, and fell to 0-3 with the R-Phils. He allowed 6 runs on 6 hits and 3 walks in just 5 innings before yielding to Chance Chapman. Chance threw 2 clean frames and Pat Overholt pitched a scoreless 9th. Domonic Brown (.320 since promotion) had 2 hits and 2 RBI, and Quintin Berry had a walk and stole 2 more bases, raising his league leading total to 47.

Floyd, Hamels both fall Friday

In Chicago, Gavin Floyd pitched another good game against Baltimore, only to be let down by both his offense and his bullpen. Gavin pitched into the 8th inning when he ran into some trouble in a 1-1 tie. After giving up the go-ahead run, and leaving with runners on base, both of the Sox' relievers let inherited runners score. In the end, Floyd was charged with 4 runs, on 7 hits and 2 walks (1 intentional) and absorbed the loss in a 5-1 Orioles win. He is now 10-8, with a 3.98 ERA on the season as the Sox battle with the Tigers for the AL Central crown.

In New York, Cole Hamels struggled through an hour and 16 minute rain delay to the start of the game, and then seem to battle himself. Never looking entirely comfortable, Cole lasted just 5 innings, giving up 4 runs on 10 hits, NO walks, striking out 6 against a Mets line up that has been decimated by injuries this year. The Phillies were just 3 for 9 with runners in scoring position and left 11 men on base in the New York's 4-2 win. Ryan Howard did have 2 more hits, and drove in run #99 on the year.

In Toronto, the Blue Jays edged the Angels, 5-4. Randy Ruiz had a hit and 2 walks, and STOLE A BASE!! Go, Homie, Go! In Houston, Michael Bourn had a hit and a walk in the Astros' 1-0 win over Arizona.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Harker promoted

The Florida Marlins have promoted Brett Harker, and he will start for the Jacksonville Suns in Mobile on Saturday night!!

Ryno time again-no Knapp in Lakewood

Something just goes off inside Ryan Howard every year around this time. He just seems to lock in, regardless of what his stats have been all season long, when the calendar turns to August, and the stretch run is upon us, Ryan gets hot with the weather!! Ryno belted another 3-run home run, #32, Wednesday night, driving in 4 runs helping the Phillies to a 12-3 mashing of the Diamondbacks. Ryno is 15 for his last 41 (.366) since August 8, and has homered 6 times in the last 10 games. His 98 RBI is 3rd in MLB, trailing only Prince Fielder (108) and Albert Pujols (105).

Today's MLB action includes Gavin Floyd (10-7) for the White Sox, and Cole Hamels (7-7) for the Phillies.

My calculation was incorrect, Jason Knapp will start tonight in Delmarva for the Lake County Captains, and miss the 3-game series against Lakewood which starts tomorrow. This at least makes it easier to root for him than if he were pitching against the 'Claws!

In case you have been wondering about Chris Roberson, he has been sitting as a result of the Diamondbacks sending Chris Young down to Reno to work some of the kinks out of his game. "Robey" has played 115 games for Reno, posting a .267 mark, with 24 doubles, 8 triples, 7 home runs, 54 RBI and 27 stolen bases.

In another note, Michael Taylor suffered an oblique strain when the team was in Buffalo, and has been sitting out. Latest reports have him trying to return this weekend. In the meantime, Lehigh Valley and Scranton split a doubleheader Thursday in Allentown, with the Yankees winning the opener, 4-3 and Pigs grabbing the nightcap, 9-4 behind Drew Carpenter (10-4, 3.20).

Thursday in Nashville, Adrian Cardenas had 2 more hits in Sacramento's 6-1 win over the Sounds. "A.C." is now hitting .252 for the River Cats after a terrible start!!

In Portland, Kyle Drabek threw 7 shut out innings at the Sea Dogs, allowing only 3 hits and 1 walk to improve to 8-2 for Reading (12-3 overall). Alex Concepcion completed the shut out with 2 clean frames, as the R-Phils won, 6-0. Quintin Berry and Domonic Brown had 2 hits each for Reading, who moves to 67-56, 2.5 in front of Erie in the race for the final playoff spot. The R-Phils head to New Britain next for 4 games, with Mike Cisco (0-2) getting the ball Friday.

In Clearwater, the Threshers swept a doubleheader from Dunedin, 1-0 in the completion of a game suspended on August 7, and 4-2 behind Drew Naylor in the regular game. It was Naylor's 8th win of the season, and Derrick Mitchell homered in each game (he now has 10). Arlon Quiroz had 3 hits in the nightcap, driving in 2 runs, and Gus Milner and Jesus Villegas chipped in with 2 hits apiece.

In Lakewood, the BlueClaws were shut out, 2-0 by Hagerstown, in an outstanding pitching performance by the Suns' Marcos Frias. Frias, an SAL all-star, threw 6 shut out frames, allowing just 2 hits and a walk, striking out 7 to improve to 8-4 on the year. Justin De Fratus, battled through 6 innings, allowing only 1 run to absorb the hard luck loss. Justin was in trouble all night, but found his way out of almost all of it on a night where he gave up 8 hits. No walks, and 8 strike outs helped him avoid further damage. T.J. Warren and Jeremy Hamilton had 2 hits each for Lakewood. Trevor May (2-1, 3.14) will get the assignment tonight in the finale of the 3-game series.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bourn sparks Astros over Fish, HomeSiders hot

The Houston Astros took a 6-3 decision over the Florida Marlins Wednesday, in no small part due to the play of Michael Bourn. Bourn (.291) had 3 hits, including his major league leading 11th triple, scored twice, drove in another and stole 2 more bases, raising his National League leading total to 46.

In Philadelphia, Ryan Howard smashed his 31st home run, a 3-run shot in the 5th inning off Arizona's Dan Haren, helping Cliff Lee to his 4th straight win since his trade over from Cleveland. Howard now has 94 RBI, placing him 3rd in the NL.

Who is hot, you ask? Lets start with Adrian Cardenas. Adrian got off to a slow start at AAA-Sacramento, but has found his stroke lately. He had 3 more hits in Sacramento's 11-1 win in Nashville Wednesday, his 3rd 3-hit game in the last 4, and 4th in the last 6, going 13 for 24 over the week. (that's .542). I can't help myself: Yo, Adrian!!

Not to be outdone, Lou Marson is also smoking hot. Lou had a double and a home run in 3 at bats for Columbus Wednesday, but the Clippers lost to Toledo, 7-6. Lou is hitting .360 since the trade, .405 over the last 10, and is 6 for his last 10!! LOUUUUUU!

Reading scored 18 runs on 20 hits in Portland Wednesday night, and HomeSiders were all over it!! Quintin Berry (.285) had 3 hits and a walk, and scored 3 runs, Mike Spidale (.281) had 2 hits and 2 walks, scored 3 and drove in 2, and Tim Kennelly and Brad Harman added 2 hits and 2 RBI each. Yohan Flande got the win, his 3rd for Reading and 10th overall, going 6 innings and giving up just 1 run on 3 hits and 2 walks, and Mike Zagurski, Sergio Escalona and B.J. Rosenberg all threw clean innings.

Matt Rizzotti had 3 for 3 Wednesday, is 8 for his last 11 (.727) and 14 for his last 34 (.412) the last 9 games. Joel Naughton had 3 more hits, driving in a pair of runs, and is 8 for 16 the last 4 nights (.500). The Threshers did drop a 10-7 decision at Lakeland, despite the 17-hit outburst. Freddy Galvis, Fidel Hernandez and Gus Milner added 2 hits each, Fidel and Gus both going deep!

That is a total of 37 hits between Reading and Clearwater Wednesday night!!

In Lakewood, Jesus Sanchez won his team leading 9th game of the year, as the BlueClaws beat Hagerstown, 3-2 Wednesday. Travis d'Arnaud (2 doubles, HBP, walk, RBI, run) was on base in every at bat, and Jim Murphy (RBI triple, run scored) and Jeremy Hamilton (RBI double) drove in the runs for the 'Claws. Eryk McConnell came into trouble in the 6th when Sanchez tired, retiring 2 hitters and stranding 2 runners, before throwing 2 more clean frames. It was as good as I have seen Eryk throw. Santo Hernandez picked up the save by striking out the side in the 9th. Did someone say "lights out!"?