Monday, July 14, 2008

Holy Johnson Batman! Wings split weekend games with Bulls

Jason Pridie

Saturday: Rochester 9 at Durham 8 (13 innings)

W: T. Lahey (5-5, 5.17); L: K. Birkins (2-2, 5.19)
HR: ROC: J. Pridie 2 (7). DUR: D. Johnson (14).

When we left our heroes last, Randy Ruiz was attempting to equal Omir Santos 21 game hitting streak from earlier this season. Without much ado, let me tell you that in fact, he did accomplish this feat, going 2-for-4 on Saturday with a double, a walk, a run and a run batted in.

The Rochester Red Wings took a win as well, which is always nice, although it took them 13 innings to overcome the Durham Bulls.

Danny Graves took the start for the Wings, and Durham took advantage of him early. After getting Dan Johnson to fly out, he'd walk Chris Richard, then advance him to 2nd on a wild pitch. Joel Guzman ground out, but Nathan Haynes singled to scored Richard. Haynes then stoled 2nd and scored on Andy Cannizaro's fly ball to center. Mike DeFelice knocked a grounder to right to follow Cannizaro on base and Fernando Perez's grounder brought in Cannizaro, due to a throwing error by Graves, who had fielded Perez's hit. Jon Weber then reached on a catching error by Ruiz allowing DeFelice to score. Weber would steal 2nd before Elliot Johnson struck out swinging to retire Durham with a 4-0 lead.

Dan Johnson then homered off Graves in the bottom of the 3rd to give the Bulls a 5-0 lead.

Jason Pridie singled out to center, then stole 2nd base in the top of the fourth. Following a fly out to Trevor Plouffe that moved him to 3rd, Darnell McDonald ground out, plating Pridie to put the Twins-to-be on the board.

Haynes tripled in the bottom fo the sixth and Mike DiFelice sacrificed him in one out later. A follow up single to Perez would do it for Graves, who was replaced by Carmen Cali, who got Weber to strike out to end the inning. Graves left after allowing 6 runs, 4 earned on 9 hits and a pair of walks while striking out 5 over 5.2 innings.

Meanwhile, Durham's Jeffrey Niemann and Dale Thayer gave up only a pair of hits and 4 walks to the Wings over the first eight innings. Things were looking bleak with the Wings down by five coming into the ninth.

Scott Dohmann replaced Thayer on the mound and allowed a lead off double to McDonald. Jones would go down swinging, but Ruiz singled out to center to plate McDonald. Howie Clark singled and Matt Macri doubled to bring in Ruiz putting another run on the board before Sergie Santos flew out to left. Ryan Jorgensen then took a walk and was replaced by Tommy Watkins as a pinch runner. Jason Pridie then hit a grand slam to put the Wings on top by one.

Bobby Korecky was called in to close out the game, and allowed a single to Perez instead. Weber's sac bunt moved him to 2nd and Elliot Johnson's ground out pushed him to 3rd. Dan Johnson then singled him in to tie up the game again. Richard would reach on a fielding error by Ruiz before Joel Guzman was called out on strikes.

Pridie homered in the 11th to put the Wings on top again, but the Bulls came right back with Perez singling and moving to 2nd on Weber's sac bunt. Elliot Johnson would go down on strikes before Ricky Barrett went in to replace Korecky. Dan Johnson took a single off him to score Perez, tying up the game again.

Howie Clark would single in the 13th and move to 3rd on Matt Macri's sac bunt. Calvin Medlock would replace Durham's Kurt Birkins on the mound and Santos would double off of him to plate Clark for the game winning run. This time, the Bull stayed down after Weber was ejected for arguing a called strike out with the umpire and took Bulls Manager Charlie Montoyo with him. Elliot Johnson would double, but Dan Johnson ground out and Richard flew out to end the inning and the game.

Pridie lead the team, going 4-for-7 with 3 runs, a pair of homers and 5 RBIs. Clark was 2-for-5 with a walk and a pair of runs.

Ruiz’s hitting streak is tied for the longest in Triple-A this season. (The only Red Wings hitting streak longer is outfielder Luis Mercedes' 22-game hitting streak that stretched over two seasons. Mercedes had a 21-game hitting streak August 4-24, 1991 when he was suspended by International League for the last 11 games of the 1991 season for throwing his helmet and hitting Syracuse third baseman Tom Quinlan in the mouth during the August 24th game. Mercedes would extend his hitting streak to 22-games on Opening Day April 9, 1992.

Red Wings

Sunday: Rochester 3 at Durham 9

W: M. Prochaska (3-4, 6.70); L: B. Duensing (5-10, 4.28)
HR: ROC: J. Pridie (8).

Brian Duensing fell to 5-10 on the season after allowing 4 runs, earned, on six hits and 4 walks while fanning 4 over 4 innings. The Durham Bulls were equal opportunity opponents though and also took advantage of Casey Daigle and Carmen Cali in their 9-3 drubbing of the Rochester Red Wings.

Fernando Perez tripled in the bottom of the 1st then came home, one out later, on Joel Guzman's sac fly to put the Bulls on the board.

The Wings answered right back however, with Trevor Plouffe singling and moving to 2nd on Jeff Christy's ground out. Tommy Watkins then singled to plate Plouffe, tying up the game.

Dan Johnson (hereinafter referred to as D.J.) took a walk in the bottom of the 3rd and Chris Richard singled to move him to 2nd. Following an Andy Cannizaro fly out, Elliot Johnson (E.J.) doubled out to left to score D.J. Nathan Haynes sacrificed in Richard, and a Josh Johnson (J.J.) single plated E.J.

Randy Ruiz extended his hitting streak to 22 games, doubling in the top of the fourth then moving to 3rd on a wild pitch by Mike Prochaska. Matt Macri's ground out would push him over the plate, to make it 4-2 Bulls.

Pridie would homer - this 8th of the season and 3rd in two days - over the right field wall in the top of the 5th to make it 4-3 Bulls.

Durham didn't want the upstart Wings to get any bright ideas about a rally though, so Richard took a walk off Daigle in the bottom of the 5th then, one out later, moved to 3rd on E.J.'s single. Haynes would ground out to score Richard before J.J. struck out swinging.

The bottom of the seventh would see Cannizaro reach with 2 outs on the board on a fielding error at third by Trevor Plouffe. E.J. then reached on Sergio Santos fielding error. Carmen Cali would be called in to pitch and E.J. would steal 2nd. Haynes then singled to plate Cannizaro and E.J., making it 7-3 Bulls.

Perez would single and steal 2nd in the bottom of the 8th, and Weber singled to move him to 3rd. Philip Humber was called in to replace Cali and got Guzman to ground out before he intentionally walked D.J. Richard ground into a force out that allowed Perez and Weber to score and took D.J. out at second. Cannizaro would strike out to retire the side.

This time, there would be no ninth inning heroics, although Dale Thayer did allow a double to Santos before getting Plouffe to fly out to end the contest.

Matt Macri and Jeff Christy were the only two Wings without at least a single in the game, while Santos was 2-for-4 at the plate with a double.

Ruiz’s hitting streak is the longest in Triple-A this season. With Saturday’s win the Red Wings moved to 9-6 in extra-inning games this season. Rochester has won six of their last seven extra-inning games and the 15 extra-inning games played are the most of any team in the IL.

Minnesota Twins shortstop Adam Everett's scheduled rehab stint with the Class A Ft. Myers Miracle began Sunday, with three at-bats in the first game of a doubleheader. The infielder is scheduled to play in three games during the Miracle’s upcoming home stand, then play a couple of games for the Red Wings in Rochester.

The teams now head into the All-star break. Rochester's next game is July 17th when they kick off an 8-game homestand with a four-game series against the Norfolk Tides at Frontier Field. First pitch is due out at 7:05 PM.

Red Wings

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