Saturday, June 7, 2008

Devries shines (again) in Miracle Win

Fort Myers Miracle

Fort Myers 2 at Brevard County 0

W: C. Devries (5-5, 3.11); L: A. Periard (5-5, 4.41); SV: A. Slama (10)
HR: FTM: B. Dinkelman (2), E. Tintor (1).

I'm not sure if I should be more excited by yet another stellar pitching performance by Cole Devries, or by the fact that Eli Tintor knocked his first home run of the season over the left field wall in top of the sixth.

While Mr. Devries' showcase of strike outs is happening with more or less clockwork regularity, one can hope that the home run is the first of many that Sir Sweet Cheeks will clock over the wall in the second half of this season for the Miracle.

Oh yeah... and the Fort Myers Miracle blanked the Brevard County Manatee 2-0 to draw closer to that playoff berth.

While Devries has yet to go nine, he did work eight inning this time out, striking out five and limiting the Manatees to four hits. Anthony Slama would finish off on the mound, allowing 1 hit and strike out 2.

Unlike last Monday's performance, Devries got some help from his team mates who did manage 10 hits. The only two runs however, came off home runs by Brian Dinkelman and Tintor.

Dinkelman put a ball over the right field fence to open up the top of the 3rd. Edward Ovalle and Danny Valencia would follow that with a pair of ground outs, but Whit Robbins singled and Wilson Ramos reached on a fielding error. Juan Portes singled to load the bags before Tintor lined out to end the inning.

Tintor would redeem himself by opening up the top of the 6th by going yard.

Dinkelman finished off the game 2-for-4 with a walk, a run and an RBI. Portes went 2-for-5 at the plate.

Valencia, Robbins, Rocky Palacios and Yancarlos Ortiz were all one hit wonders, Ramos picked up a double in the top of the 9th.

The two teams finish off the series on Sunday. The Miracle magic number is reduced to two. They can clinch with a win over Brevard and a Dunedin loss to Jupiter. (Go Marlins!)

Jeff Manship (7-2, 2.72) takes to the mound for the Miracle, his last start before the All-star break, possibly his last in a Miracle uniform, while the Manatees will counter with Josh Butler (1-7, 5.88).

News Press
NP - Robbins

B-Mets rally past Rock cats

New Britain Rock Cats

New Britain 2 at Binghamton 3

W: E. Brito (2-1, 3.54); L: J. Sawatski (1-4, 8.53); SV: E. Kunz (15)
HR: BIN: A. Concepcion (6).

Despite an outstanding performance by Oswaldo Sosa that saw him allow only 1 run on 7 hits and 2 walks while fanning 4 over 6 inning, the New Britain Rock Cats still fell, 3-2 to the Binghamton Mets.

Brock Peterson would draw a walk in the top of the 4th inning. One out later, David Winfree would double him home to give the Rock Cats the early lead.

The B-Mets were quick to answer back however, with Emmanuel Garcia drawing a walk off Sosa. Jose Coranado found out single out to right that got Garcia to 3rd. Rafael Arroyo would ground into a double play that brought in Garcia.

Peterson walked again in the top of the sixth. Erik Lis and Winfree hit back-to-back singles to load the bags. Following a strike out to Plouffe, Felix Molina singled to drive in Peterson, making it 2-1.

Jay Sawatski would relieve Sosa for the seventh inning. In the bottom of the 8th, Nick Evans would take a walk off Sawatski. Ambriorix Conception then went yard over the center field fence to score a pair of runs and the win.

Peterson was 0-for-2 at the plate but with a pair of walks and a pair of runs. Winfree was 2-for-4 with an RBI. Steve Tolleson was 3-for-5 but did not factor into the scoring.

Toby Gardenhire, Jeff Christy and Matt Moses were all one hit wonders, although Moses went for an extra base with his hit and drew a talk as well. Gardenhire also found a free pass for a walk in the top of the 9th.

Dustin Martin, pinch hitting for Christy would smack a line drive double, but Gardenhire would be taken out at the plate to save the run. It was close, but Tolleson would follow the play with a strike out that ended the contest.

The two teams rematch tonight. The B-Mets are reporting that Jose Sanchez (5-4, 5.02) will start for the B-Mets against lefty Kyle Aselton (2-0, 3.69) of New Britain.

Rock cats
Press Connects

Rochester Red Wings

Rochester 4 at Buffalo 3

W: B. Korecky (3-1, 2.95); L: R. Rundles (5-3, 3.75); SV: T. Lahey (8)
HR: ROC: H. Clark (2). BUF: B. Snyder (5), M. Aubrey (1).

The visiting Rochester Rock Cats tied the game late and went on to win in the 11th inning, 4-3 over the Buffalo Bisons.

Phil Humber lasted 5 innings, allowing 3 runs, earned on 3 hits while striking out 6. He gave up both of the Bison's home runs. Caisy Daigle worked 2 innings of relief, walking 2 and striking out 1.

Bobby Korecky would pick up the win, going 2.1 innings, allowing 1 hit and 2 walks while striking out 2.

Howie Clark would double in the top of the 2nd, moving to 3rd on Randy Ruiz follow up single. Jose Morales would ground into a double play that plated Clark to put the Wings on the board.

In the top the ninth inning, Garrett Jones would single and Clark would go yard over the right field fence to tie up the game.

Jones and Clark both drew walks in the top of the 11th. Following a strike out to Ruiz, Morales would single to score Jones for the game winning run.

Jordan Brown would single in the bottom of the inning and following a sac bunt to Aaron Herr, Mariano Gomez would walk Brad Snyder. Tim Lahey would replace Gomez and get Mulhern out on strikes. A wild pitch would move the pair and pinch hitter James Cooper would take a walk to load the bags. But after a few tense moments, Lahey would get Josh Barfield to strike out to end the game.

Ruiz now has an eight-game hitting streak, and has hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games.

Clark was 2-for-4 in the contest with a pair of runs and two RBIs.

The Wings stay on the road, going for three games against the Lehigh valley Iron Pigs. Right-hander Danny Graves (2-0, 3.20 ERA) gets the start against IronPigs righty Gary Knotts (1-1, 3.76) at 7:05 tonight.

Red Wings
B-News II
Extra Bases Blog

RHP Heath Totten was given his release after yesterday’s 8-3 win in Buffalo. Totten was 0-2 with a 5.79 ERA in 16 games (four starts) for Rochester. Totten had just one appearance (took the loss allowing four runs in 2.0 innings pitched vs. Scranton on June 2) in the last 12 days.

In the end, Matt Macri never even got on plain. Nick Punto was placed on the DL and Macri was recalled from the Minneapolis-St. Paul airport to rejoin the Twins. Punto has a strained left hamstring and will likely be sent back to Fort Myers for rehab.

Snappers bat past Kane County

Beloit Snappers

Beloit 8 at Kane County 4

W: B. Kirwan (4-3, 5.22); L: S. Deal (3-2, 3.53); SV: S. Steedley (7)
HR: BEL: C. Parmelee (11), S. Singleton (4). KCC: C. Brown (9), G. Dowling (5).

The Beloit Snappers overcame an early deficit and batted their way to victory as they doubled up the Kane County Cougars, 8-4.

Ben Revere and Chris Cates hit back to back singles to start out in the top of the 1st inning. Garrett Olson would ground into a double play, but Revere still crossed the plate to put Beloit on the board.

Adam Klein bunted his way onto base for Kane County. Following a pop out by Matt Ray, Greg Dowling took Snappers starter Brian Kirwan deep, sending a ball over the right field wall to put the Cougars on top. Larry Cobb would be called out on strikes, but Justin Frash was issued a walk. Corey Brown then launched a ball over the center field wall to make it 4-1 Cougars.

Steve Singleton decided to play launch-a-ball as well, putting a Scott Deal pitch over the right field wall to cut the Snappers lead in half.

With one out on the board, Ozzie Lewis' ground ball to center got him on base while Singleton and Jair Fernandez drew walks. Danny Lehmann would pop out before a Ramon Santana line drive brought in Lewis and Singleton to tie up the game.

Cates doubled in the top of the 5th, then moved to 3rd on a passed ball by Jonathan Johnston. Olson walked and Parmelee said goodbye to his 3rd ball in two days, putting his 11th home run over the left field wall. He would also say goodbye to Deal, who was dealt off the mound in favor of Charles Kerfoot.

Kirwan would give up 4 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks while striking out 5 over six innings before Charles Nolte came in for the next 2.2 innings.

In the top of the 7th, Parmelee would walk, and come home on an Ozzie Lewis double to finish off the scoring for the Snappers.

5'3" Cates was 3-for-5 at the plate with a run, Lewis was 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Parmelee was the hero for the second straight game, going 1-for-3 with a walk, 2 runs and 3 RBIs. Singleton was 1-for-3 with 2 runs, 1 walk and 1 RBI, while Santana was 1-for-4 with 2 RBIs.

Kane County's Scott Hodsdon (3-4, 4.38) will face Snapper Santos Arias (2-2, 2.59) Saturday for game 3 of the series, with a 6:00 central time start.

BDN - Cates & Van Mil

Cates and Van Mil on ESPN: Chris Cates and Loek Van Mil have been making quite a splash in the national spotlight recently. The two have been in local publications around the Beloit area, and even appeared in the most recent issue of Sports Illustrated. Now the duo is gearing up for their biggest coverage yet.

ESPN's popular morning show "First Take" will be in Belot to talk with Cates and Van Mil this Monday morning. ESPN First Take is on the air from 9:00am to 11:00am central time and then again from 11:00am to 1:00pm central on ESPN2.

Cates, at 5'3" is the smallest and Van Mil, at 7'1" the tallest professional baseball players in the country. While it's nice that the duo is getting coverage, I'd rather it would be for their baseball prowess than because of their size.

DSL Twins 7 at DSL Orioles 3

W: R. Acosta (1-0, 0.00); L: J. Nunez (0-1, 36.00)
HR: None.

The DSL Twins staged a late inning rally to defeat the DSL Orioles, 7-3.

The Twins got on the board first with Willy Gil taking a walk in the top of the 1st, then moving to 2nd on a wild pitch. He would advance to 3rd on a balk, and come home on Jairo Perez's sac-fly.

However, the Orioles answered back in the bottom of the inning. A fielding error by Yorby Martinez at second base allowed Jaynnertt Melenciano to reach. Gil would make an error that allowed Nivar to reach and Melenciano to score.

Ramon Acosta would allow 3 runs over 7 innings on 5 hits, but none of them would be earned. An error by Felix Caro at 3rd would lead to two more Orioles runs in the fifth inning.

Manuel Soliman drew a walk off Julio Nunez in the top of the 7th and Oswaldo Arcia walked after him. Jairo Rodriguez reached on a failed force attempt that loaded the bags. Cairo then singled to score Soliman. Carlos Vasquez hit into a double play that scored Arcia to tie up the game.

Martize would single in the top of the 8th, and Perez would get hit by a pitch. Yancarlo Franco singled to load the bags. Leonaldo Abad would see Soliman triple off him to clean off the bases. Soliman would then come home on Arcia's follow up single to finish off the scoring.

The DSL Twins host the DSL White Sox on Saturday for a 10:30 AM (local time) game.


Dismantling begins as Miracle fall in 12th inning

Fort Myers Miracle

Fort Myers 1 at Brevard County 2

W: T. Wendte (3-0, 4.91); L: M. Allen (0-1, 6.75)
HR: None.

It was old friends day at Spacecoast Stadium as Henry Reyes took the start against the Brevard County Manatee and Mike Allen took the loss. It also appears that the Twins have started to move players as Heath Totten was given his release today from AAA Rochester.

On the whole though, it was a pitcher's duel. It just involved a lot of different pitchers. Reyes worked 2.1 innings, allowing 1 hit and walking 4. Frank Mata took over for the next 3.2, allowing 3 hits and fanning 3. Jose Lugo worked 2, allowing 1 hit and striking out 4. Blair Erickson worked the next inning, striking out 2.

Meanwhile Brevard's Jeremy Jeffress pitched 7 innings, allowing 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out 8.

Rob Delaney would be on the mound for the Miracle, and Casey Baron for the Milwaukee farm with the game still scoreless when the 10th inning rolled around.

Juan Portes and Danny Santiesteban hit back-to-back singles that got Portes all the way to 3rd. Yangervis Solarte then hit a sac-bunt, scoring Portes to give the Miracle a run.

Darren Ford would single off of Delaney and steal 2nd. With 2 outs on the board, Delaney intentionally walked Tyler Green. Charlie Fermaint's line drive scored Ford to tie up the game.

Edward Ovalle would reach on a fielding error in the 11th but the Miracle left him stranded.

Mike Allen would allow a single to Martin Muldanado and hit Brent Brewer with a pitch. A wild pitch put a runner on 3rd, but Darren Ford would fly out to end the inning.

Whit Robbins singled in the top of the 12th, but Wilson Ramos ground into a double play. In the bottom of the stanza, Lorenzo Cain would single, then steal 2nd. Following a fly out ot Jimmy Mojica, Charles Fermaint doubled off Allen to drive in Cain, ending the game.

Yancarlos Ortiz was 2-for-4 at the plate while Robbins was 2-for-5. Valencia was 1-for-3 with a pair of walks and Ovalle was a one hit wonder through 5 at bats, with a pair of strike outs.

The two teams rematch Saturday with Cole Devries (4-5, 3.50) on the mount for the Miracle. Brevard County will send Alexandre Periard (5-4, 4.55) to throw out first pitch at 7:00 P.M.

News Press
Fla Today
Let's Go Miracle Blog

"Big Henry" Reyes pitched a total of 13 games last year, 11 in Elizabethton, 2 in Beloit before being injured. Allen, a native of Orange Park, Florida, pitched 13 games for E-Town last season.

Tyler Robertson was placed on the 7-day DL with tendinitis, which freed up the roster spot for Allen. The Miracle already had one free roster spot following the retirement of Danny Vais ealier this week.

Lakeland's Ryan Strieby and Jeff Kunkel were added to the Florida State League West All-star team. More at Florida State League Log.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Parmlee Powers Snappers; Cats derail Curve

Beloit Snappers

Beloit 8 at Kane County 6

W: M. McCardell (2-1, 3.82); L: J. Richmond (5-4, 3.78); SV: S. Steedley (6)
HR: BEL: C. Parmelee 2 (10). KCC: L. Cobb (3), J. Frash (1).

Chris Parmelee, the Goodbye Kid, said goodbye to a pair on Thursday, going 3-for-4 at the plate with 3 runs and 4 RBIs to lead the Snappers to a 8-6 victory over the Kane County Cougar.

Ben Revere would single in the top of the first to get the game underway. Chris Cates would ground out. A wild pitch got Revere to 3rd while Garrett Olson drew a walk. With Parmelee at the plate, Jamie Richmond would miss-throw the ball on the pickoff attempt which allowed Revere to score. It hardly mattered as Parmelee put the first of two over the fence, giving the Snappers a 3-0 lead.

Kane County would get on the board when Justin Frash when yard off starter Michell McCardell for his first home run of the season.

Cates would get hit by a pitch in the top of the 3rd, then move to second on Olson's line drive. Pop outs to Parmelee and Singleton would follow before Jair Fernandez's single drove in the two runners.

The Cougars took a pair back in the bottom of the 4th when Adam Klein walked and Larry Cobb homered over the left field wall, his 3rd of the season. The yard balls were being helped by a 20 MPH wind out to left, which may account for the four home runs in one game.

Parmelee would power his own ball, this time over the right field fence for a single shot in the top of the 5th.

A double by Daniel Hamblin started off Kane County's answer back in the bottom of the 5th. Jonathan Johnston singled and advanced on a throwing error by Revere. Matt Ray would sacrifice out to right to drive in Hamblin, making the score 6-4 Snappers.

Beloit would get their final two in the seventh with Ramon Santana and Revere singling. Olson would reach on a field error and Parmelee would single with the bags loaded to drive in Santana. Singleton's sac fly to right brought in Revere.

A pair more were all that awaited a short lived Cougar rally in the 9th before Spencer Steedley finished off the game for his 6th save of the season. McCardell picked up the win allowing 4 runs, earned, on six hits and a walk while fanning 5 over 5.2.

The two teams rematch Friday night with Danny Berlind (4-4, 4.11) on the mound for Beloit.

Beacon News
BDN - cates

Outfielder Ben Revere, the Twins' first-round draft pick in 2007, was named the organization’s minor league player of the month after batting .433 with 18 RBI, 21 runs and 14 stolen bases for Beloit.

New Britain 4 at Altoona 2

W: E. Simonitsch (1-3, 9.39); L: K. Bloom (0-4, 6.46); SV: B. Julianel (11)
HR: NBR: S. Tolleson (5).

After a couple of really bad outings, Errol Simonitsch returned to form on Thursday, allowing only 1 run on 3 hits and 3 walks while fanning 3 over six innings to lead the New Britain Rock Cats to a 4-2 win over the Altoona Curve.

Toby Gardenhire would single to start off the top of the 3rd inning and Drew Butera followed him onto the bags with a walk. Steve Tolleson would go yard to drive in the pair, as the Rock Cats pounced on a three run lead.

Felix Molina would bunt his way onto base in the 4th, steal 2nd and move to 3rd on Gardenhire's sac-bunt. Drew Butera would then single to plate Molina for an additional New Britain run.

In the bottom of the sixth, Shelby Ford would draw a walk, then steal 2nd and 3rd. Joniel Pacheco would then walk. With two outs on the board, Brad Corley hit a ground rule double that scored Ford, but Jason Delaney would fly out to strand the other two runners.

Jason Miller would work two scoreless innings of relief, walking one and fanning 2. Ben Julianel would give up a run late in the bottom of the 9th when Anthony Webster singled with 2 outs on the board and came home on Luis Cruz's triple. Jason Bowers would fly out, however to cut short the Curve's rally.

Next up for New Britain is a 3-game series against the Binghamton Mets.

Rock Cats
Altoona Mirror
Sandlot Swashbucklers Blog

DSL Diamonbacks 2 at DSL Twins 10

W: E. Cardenas (1-0, 0.00); L: Y. Camacho (0-1, 1.59)
HR: None.

Cesar Ciurcina worked 5 innings allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and no walks while fanning three, but would get a no decision as the DSL Twins Used a sixth inning run and a 7-run eighth inning to put the game against DSL Diamondbacks way.

After two straight scoreless games, the DSL Twins got onto the board first. Jhonatan Arais would single in the bottom of the 3rd. Xavier Gonzalez would ground out, sending Arias to 3rd, before second baseman Carlos Valquez was hit by a pitch. Vasquez then stole 2nd. Oswaldo Arcia would reach on a fielder's choice as Arias was taken out at the plate to save the run. However Jairo Perez doubled in Vasquez and Arcia for a pair of runs.

The D-Backs tied it up in the top of the fourth when Gerson Montillo singled and Astolfo Inciarte tripled him in. Raywilly Gomez would ground out before Ruben Felix singled out to center to plate Inciarte.

Perez singled his way onto base in the bottom of the sixth. Following a line out to Eliel Sierra, he'd steal 2nd base. Felix Cairo's single to center scored Perez for the game winning run. The fireworks 2 innings later were just for fun.

With Ruben Serrano on the mound for the D-Backs, Aracia singled then moved to second on a passed ball by Ruben Felix. Perez and Sierra would both draw walks, loading the bags. Serrano would then be called for a balk, which scored Arcia. Cairo would be hit by a pitch before Eduardo Gomez was called in form the bullpen. Manuel Soliman flew into a sacrifice double play that scored Perez. Leather Falvin then singled to being in Sierra. Arias singled and Gonzalez walked to load up the bases. Gomez would be called on a balk, that again scored a run. Vasquez would single to drive in Arias and Gonzalez, while Vasquez would get an extra base on a throwing error by D-Backs right fielder Jose Jose.

Arcia doubled bringing in Vasques and Perez would again draw a walk. Danny Leon would be brought into the game and got Sierra to ground into a force out for the final out of the inning.

(There's something about the way the Latin Americans throw that draws a lot balks under MLB rules. One of the reasons for the academy is is to work these glitches out of their system, but you'll still see young Latin American hurlers at the Rookie levels making more mistakes than the domestic pitchers do.)

Eliecer Cardenas picked up the win allowing 1 run and fanning 2 over 2.2 innings, while 2007 VSL All-star Edison Alvarez worked .1 inning to finish off the 8th.

Perez was 3-for-3 at the plate with a pair of walks, and two runs and two RBIs. Arcia and Arias were both 2-for-4, Arcia with 2 runs and 1 RBI, and Arias with 1 run.

The DSL Twins visit the DSL Orioles on Friday for a 10:30 AM local time start.


Miracle down Brevard County, move closer playoff berth

Fort Myers Miracle

Fort Myers 6 at Brevard County 4

W: A. Burnett (5-2, 3.34); L: Z. Braddock (2-3, 3.90); SV: R. Delaney (13)
HR: BRE: S. Chapman (8).

The Fort Myers Miracle got back on track against the Brevard County Manatee at Spacecoast Stadium, picking up a 6-4 win.

A Manatee, for those not from around Florida, is a slow moving aquatic mammal that eats sea grass in coastal waters and inland rivers.

Alex Burnett allowed 4 runs on 6 hits and 3 walks while fanning 2 over six. He had however, lots of run support, which started in the top of the 3rd inning.

Yangervis Solarte and Yancarlos Ortiz would both be taken out on strikes. Brian Dinkelman would walk and Edward Ovalle would be hit by a pitch to follow him onto base. Danny Valencia then walked to load up the bags. Whit Robbins would walk to force in a run. Wilson Ramos would then hit a line drive that brought in Ovalle and Valencia. Juan Portes would be taken out on strikes to end the inning.

The Manatees would take on back in the bottom of the 3rd when Darren Ford drew a walk with 2 outs, then stole 2nd base. He'd advance to 3rd on a throwing error by Wilson Ramos, and would then be doubled in by Larenzo Cain.

Danny Santiesteban would reach on a fielding error in the top of the 4th, then move to second on a wild pitch by Tees starters Zach Braddock. Solarte would get him to 3rd on a sac-bunt and Ortiz would sacrifice him home to make it 4-1 Miracle.

In the top of the fifth, Rafael Lluberes would come out to replace Braddock on the mound. He'd get Ovalle to ground out, but Valenica singled to get on base. Robbins walked and Valencia moved to 3rd on a throwing error. A line drive single by Ramos brought in Valencia for yet another Miracle run.

The bottom of the sixth would prove troublesome for Mr. Burnett. He'd get Ford out on strikes, but Cain singled and Taylor Green walked. Andy Bouche's line drive then brought Cain in. Charlies Fermaint would fly out to right before Chuck Caufield singled. Green would try to make it home, but would be taken down at the plate for the final out.

Stephen Chapman would take Burnett deep over the right field wall in the top of the 7th. Yohannis Perez then walked before Anthony Slama replaced the failing Burnett on the mound. Perez would advance to 2nd on a ground out and a wild pitch by Slama got him to 3rd. Ford's single to center brought him in. That would be all the Manatees would get however, despite a walk to Cain and three stolen bases.

With two outs on the board in the top of the 8th, Yancarlos Ortis would reach on a throwing error by Green. Dinkleman and Ovalle would hit back-to-back singles which plated Ortiz for an insurance run.

Ramos finished up the game 3-for-4 with 3 RBIs.

The two teams rematch at 7:00 on Friday with southpaw Tyler Robertson (4-2, 2.76) on the mound for the Miracle. The Manatees will counter with right hander Jeremy Jeffress (2-2, 6.98).

Fla Today

Fort Myers Miracle

The Florida State League and Fort Myers Miracle are pleased to announce the addition of Wilson Ramos to the Florida State League All-star Game, which will be played on June 14, 2008 at Spacecoast Stadium in Viera, Florida.

Ramos replaced Lakeland catcher James Skelton who will miss the game due to an injury.

Ramos is the 7th Miracle player named to the 2008 All-star team. It is a record number for the Fort Myers Miracle. Ramos joins second baseman Brian Dinkelman, third baseman Danny Valencia, outfielder Rene Tosoni, starting pitcher Jeff Manship and relievers Anothny Slama and Robert Delaney on the team.

A 21-year old native of Valencia, Venezuela, Ramos compiled a .236 batting average, a team-high eight home runs and 38 RBI. Signed as a non-drafted free agent, he is in his first season with Fort Myers. Last season, he hit .291 with eight home runs and 42 RBI for the Beloit Snappers of the Midwest League.

Let's Go Miracle
News Press

Fort Myers Miracle

Ramos was not the only player honored this week as reliever Anthony Slama was named the Minnesota Twins minor league pitcher of the month. The 24-year old posted a 1.20 ERA in 11 games during the month of May. Drafted out of the University of San Diego, Slama has been lights out for the Miracle this season, compiling a 2-0 record with 9 saves, a 0.62 ERA, and 47 strike out over 29 innings.

Slama was a 39th round pick in the 2006 MLB draft. He spent his rookie season split between Elizabethton of the Appalachian League and Beloit of the Midwest League.

All in the Family?

The Minnesota Twins are holding a try out camp this Saturday at the Lee County Sportsplex. Eddie Santiesteban, the brother of current Miracle outfielder Danny Santiesteban and his brother-in-law, a grad from Judson College, Ill., will be participating in the camp. While Eddie says he as no plans for become a professional baseball player at this time of his life, it was the only way he could get his brother-in-law to participate and feels the kid has a chance to make the team.

Registration for the camp begins at 8:00 Am in front of the Hammond Stadium Ticket Office.

Anyone eligible to sign a professional contract may register, but players must be high school graduates who have not previously been drafted. They also may not fall under the restriction of major league baseball’s college agreement.

Participants should bring their own gloves and shoes, while the Twins will provide bats and balls. Tryouts are expected to last the entire day. Participants are encouraged to bring their own lunches.

The camp is conducted by the Twins player development staff.

Meanwhile, the Twins are wrapping up extended spring training for their rookie league players. The last game will be played Saturday, June 7th at the City of Palms Complex against the Boston Red Sox rookies. The Twins will then take two days off and go into a six day mini-camp. The players that will be assigned to the Elizabethton Twins will break camp on Sunday, June 15th.

Elizabethton begins their season on Tuesday, Just 17th against the Bluefield Orioles. The GCL Twins begin playing their short season schedule at the Lee County Sportplex, Thursday June 19th against the GCL Pirates.

More information on the Minnesota Twins rookie system can be found at

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Twins select outfielder first

The Minnesota Twins selected outfield Aaron Hicks of Wilson HS, Long Beach, California with their first pick, 14th overall, in the MLB entry daft.

A magnet for scouts since his sophomore season, Hicks is the finest prep outfielder/pitcher prospect in the greater Los Angeles area since Daryl Strawberry in the early 1980s. He most resembles Adam Jones, who was a first-round talent as both an outfielder and pitcher. As an outfielder, Hicks projects as a five-tool player, and his arm grades out to near 80 on the scouting scale. With his plus speed (6.6 seconds over 60 yards), Hicks is a daring and aggressive baserunner. His speed, easy range and arm mean Hicks will begin his career as a center fielder. Prior to the 2008 season, many scouts had reservations about his hitting ability. A switch-hitter, he's shown improvement by lowering his hands. His hitting mechanics and lightning reflexes permit scouts who believe in him to project him as an above-average hitter with above-average power. As a pitcher, Hicks' fastball sits in the 92-94 mph range, and in a mid-May start he was at 94-97. His curveball shows wicked movement and he adds a hard cutter and a change. There is no indication on whether the Twins want Hicks to pitch or hit.

With the 27th pick overall, the Twins took Garlos Gutierrez, a right handed pitcher out of the University of Miami.

A casualty to Tommy John surgery, Gutierrez redshirted at Miami last season. He is back to form this season, and is considered the top closer in the ACC. Pitching for one of the top-ranked college teams in the country, Gutierrez has gotten plenty of chances to show off his low-90s fastball. The pitch has late life with heavy sink and Gutierrez commands it well, down in the zone, causing hitters to swing over the top of it. He throws a slider on occasion but it currently can't be considered average and he does have an arm recoil that follows his delivery both of which raise red flags. However, upon developing and refinement of a second pitch, Gutierrez could be a fast mover as his sinker is a current major league plus pitch. Gutierrez is one of many quality college closers in this year's draft. He was not drafted out of high school as he began playing baseball just before his senior year.

In the Compensation round, the Twins took Right handed pitcher Steven Hunt from Tulane Univeristy, 31st overall. With a strong junior season, Hunt has moved himself into serious first-round contention. While the right-hander doesn't always command his pitches well -- he's walked a few too many this year -- he's got terrific stuff, most notably his fastball and curve, both of which are above average. He hasn't needed a changeup much, but he has the feel for one. There might be one or two right-handers who rank ahead of Hunt heading into the Draft, but he's not too far behind them in the pecking order.

For the second round, 60th overall, the Twins selected Tyler Ladendorf from Howard Collage. A shortstop, Ladendorf was drafted by the Giants in the 34th round last year (the second year in a row he'd been drafted in that round), but he opted to return to Howard for another season. There's little question his Draft stock has risen since then as he's shown the ability to run, hit for power and field his position pretty well for a player his size. He may not be a shortstop long-term, but he's more than athletic enough to handle a switch. Wherever he plays defensively, his size and athleticism should see him get drafted for a third time much earlier than the previous two.

Click HERE for the day one draft list.

Liriano gets first win

Rochester Red Wings

Rochester 8 at Buffalo 3

W: F. Liriano (1-2, 4.22); L: D. Reichert (0-2, 9.00); SV: R. Barrett (1)
HR: ROC: R. Ruiz (6). BUF: R. Mulhern (5).

Francisco Liriano held the Buffalo Bisons to only 4 hits and 4 walks over six innings, while his team mates doubled their effort at the plate to get the Dominican lefty his first win of the season.

He gave up three runs to the Bisons, and fanned 7 of the 26 batters he faced.

Buffalo's runs came in the bottom of the first inning when Chris De La Cruz opened the proceedings by taking a walk. Jorge Velandia would be hit by a pitch. Following a fly out to Michael Aubrey and a strike out to Todd Linden, Ryan Mulhern would go yard over the left field wall for a 3-0 Bisons lead.

Liriano's batters came back for him in the top of the 3rd with Tommy Watkins walking and Jason Pridie singling to lead off. Darnell McDonald singled to load the bases and Garrett Jones hit a line drive to right to plate two. Howie Clark would triple in McDonald and Jones to put the Wings ahead. Following a pop out to Randy Ruiz, Jose Morales singled in Clark to make it 5-3 wings.

Jeff Stevens would take over the Bison's mound in the top of the 7th, and with a pair of outs on the board, gave up a walk to Clark. Ruiz then homered out to left to score 2. Morales and Sergio Santos would hit back-to-back doubles to bring in one more run, making it 8-3 Wings.

Ricky Barrett handled the final three innings, picking up his first save of the season, allowing no hits or walks, and fanning 5 during his tenure on the mound.

Pridie, McDonald, Jones and Ruiz were all 2-for-5 in the contest with a run each, Jones and Ruiz also had 2 RBIs each. Morales was 2-for-3 with a walk, a run and a run scored. Clark was 1-for-4 with a walk, a pair of runs and a pair of RBIs.

The teams finish up Friday with a 7:35 PM game. Philip Humber (3-5, 5.53) will get the start for the Wings.

Red wings
Extra Bases (Blog)

The Twins will reinstate righthanded pitcher Scott Baker from the 15-day disabled list in time to start Thursday's game vs. Baltimore. Baker was originally placed on the disabled list May 7 (retro to May 4) with a right groin strain. To make room for Baker on the 25-man roster, the Twins optioned infielder Matt Macri to Triple-A Rochester after Wednesday's game. Since being recalled on May 23, Macri appeared in four games, batting .429 (3-for-7) with a double and one rbi.

Guerra soggy in Miracle loss

Dunedin Blue Jays

Dunedin 7 at Fort Myers 2

W: G. Chacin (1-6, 7.78); L: D. Guerra (6-2, 4.89); SV: R. Gonzalez (1)
HR: DUN: J. Arencibia (11). FTM: Y. Solarte (2).

To use a horse racing term, Deolis Guerra is not a mudder.

After a start delayed by rain, Guerra got on the mound to allow 7 runs (5 earned) on five hits and 3 walks in 1.2 innings.

Guerra opened up the game by issuing back-to-back walks to Chris Emanuele and John McDonald. J.P. Arencibia then took him yard, putting his 11th home run of the year over the left field wall. After Brian Dopirak popped out, Bradley Emaus would triple. Jesus Gonzalez also hit a pop out before Adam Calderone's line drive plated Emaus. Calderone would be caught stealing for the 3rd out.

Gustavo Chacin made short work of the Miracle in the bottom of the inning, allowing a single to Danny Valencia.

Kevin Nelson would get plunked by a Guerra pitch to open the 2nd inning. Sean Shoffit doubled out to center, and Emanuele walked to load the bags. Following a fly out to McDonald, Arencibia reached on a fielding error by Valenica, driving in Nelson and Shoffit. Dopirak would fly out to left and Emaus would single to score Emanuele before field manager Jeff Smith had seen enough and called Matt Fox from the mound. Fox would get Gonzalez to fly out to end the inning.

For a man who's not seen much work on a 12-man pitching staff, Fox threw well through the next three innings, allowing only 3 hits and fanning 2.

Yangervis Solarte would hit a solo shot home run, his second of the season, off Chacin in the bottom of the 3rd.

The rains would start again in the and the game was halted in the bottom of the 5th. The Miracle had been held to 3 hits through five, with Ovalle collecting a single in the bottom of the 3rd.

TRe conclusion of the game would see the Miracle rally back. Ovalle tripled to lead off the bottom of the sixth and came home, one out later on a Wilson Ramos line drive.

Ovalle and Rocky Palacios were the only two Miracle with multi-hit games, both went 2-for-4, Ovalle with a run.

The Miracle head out on the road and will play tomorrow in Spacecoast Stadium, home of the Brevard County Manatees. Alex Burnett (4-2, 3.07) will handle the Miracle pitching chores. For the Manatees, lefty Zach Braddock (2-2, 3.46) will toss out the first pitch at 7:00 PM.

News Press

Quad Cities 11 at Beloit 6

W: W. Daman (2-1, 3.00); L: M. Tarsi (3-7, 5.62)
HR: QC: M. Arburr (8).

The Quad Cities River Bandits annihilated the Beloit Snappers 11-6 on Wednesday. Southpaw Mike Tarsi would get roughed up for 6 runs, 3 earned on 8 hits while striking out 3 over five innings.

Tarsi and Ramon Santana each had a pair of errors in the game, and Ben Revere was also tagged for missing a catch for his 5th error of the season.

Revere would go 1-for-4 at the plate with a walk, a pair of runs and 2 runs scored. Chris Cates was 2-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. Ozzie Lewis, Joe Benson and Santana were the one hit wonders of the night, with Lewis collecting 3 strike outs, and Benson 4.

Danny Lehmann also collected a single on 3 at bats, and picked up a walks and a pair of runs as well.

Reliever Luke Van Mil gave up a pair of runs on 3 hits and 1 walk while fanning 3 over 3 innings; Charles Nolte allowed 3 runs on 4 hits and a walk striking out only 1 in an inning's worth of work.

Beloit now heads out on the road to face the Kane County Cougars for a four game series.

QC Times

New Britain 7 at Altoona 10

W: J. Sues (2-0, 3.27); L: Z. Ward (2-1, 2.29)
HR: None.

The Miracle weren't the only soggy team on the diamond Wednesday night. The New Britain Rock Cats and the Altoona Curve got off the a late start after a rain delay. And the Red Wings weren't the only team to suffer a bullpen collapse, as Zach Ward gave up 5 runs on 4 hits and 1 walk in .2 innings to let the Curve rally past the Cats for a win.

Starter Anthony Swarzak kept the Cats in the game through six, allowing 3 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks whiles striking out 2.

Meanwhile the Cats got their bats working early, with Dustin Martin singling out to center and Trevor Plouffe drawing a walk with one out on the board. A passed ball by Altoona Catcher Ryan Doumit moved the pair, and a Felix Molina single would score Martin. Following a fly out to Drew Butera, Steve Tolleson doubled in Plouffe for the early Rock Cats lead.

Plouffe would double in the top of the 4th. Following a Felix Molina fly out, Drew Butera would single to plate him, giving the Cats yet another run.

Molina would reach on a fielding error and Butera would double. Following a fly out to Tolleson, Matt Moses singled to score the pair.

After the damaging 7-run eighth inning, Brock Peterson, Erik Lis and David Winfree all hit doubles to put another run on the board. Dustin Martin would sacrifice in Lis, but the attempt to tie the game fell short.

Peterson and Lis were both 3-for-5 with a run, Lis also had the 1 RBI. Tolleson was 2-for-5 with an RBI, and Butera was 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI.

The teams rematch tomorrow with Jay Rainville (5-5, 6.02) on the mound for New Britain. Yoslan Herrera (3-6, 4.14) is expected to make the start for the Curve.

Altoona Mirror
Sandlot Swashbucklers Blog

Rochester 7 at Buffalo 8

W: E. Buzachero (2-2, 3.29); L: M. Gomez (1-1, 2.41)
HR: ROC: D. McDonald (8), G. Jones (6), R. Ruiz (5), J. Pridie (4).

Brian Duensing worked 8 innings for the Rochester Red Wings, allowing 4 hits and fanning 3. It was a pity he couldn't go for nine. The Red Wings bullpen suffered a major breakdown, allowing 6 runs in the 9th inning to allow the Bisons to tie up the game. The would go on to win 8-7 in 10.

Bobby Korecky gave up 4 runs on 3 hits and a walk, and former Miracle closer Tim Lahey gave up 2 more on 3 runs. He would eventually strike out 3 to get out of the inning.

Mariano Gomez took the loss, allowing 2 runs - 1 earned - on a run and a walk.

Garrett Jones was 2-for-4 in the game with a walk, a pair of runs including a solo shot home run, and a run scored. Howie Clark was 3-for-5 with a run and a RBI, Randy Ruiz was 2-for-3 with a walk and a run in the designated hitter role, driving in 3, including 2 on his 5th home run of the season.

Jason Pridie and Darnell McDonald also when yard for the suddenly mighty Red Wings and were each 1-for-5 at the plate.

The series continues with a 1:05 afternoon game with southpaw Francisco Liriano (0-2, 4.18) on the mound for the Red Wings and looking for his first win of the season.

Red Wings

DSL Twins 0 at DSL Rockies 7

W: E. Cabrera (1-0, 0.00); L: O. Villaroel (0-1, 0.00)
HR: None.

Orlando Villaroel was the hard luck looser for the DSL Twins, allowing only one unearned run on 2 hits and a walk while fanning three over five innings. He got virtually no run support from the DSL Twins, who were held to just 2 hits in the contest.

The Rockies' Dewar Cabrera fanned 10 over 7 innings, sat down 7 on ground outs and 4 on fly outs to leave the Twins offense in shambles.

Manuel Soliman and Jairo Rodriguez were the two one-hit wonders for the DSL boys, although Soliman did draw 2 walks. Eliei Sierra also had a pair of walks for the Twins who got runners to 3rd in the 4th inning and 6th innings, but who could progress no further.

The DSL Twins host the DSL Diamondbacks on Thursday for a 10:30 AM (Dominican Time) game.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Domincian Summer League

Somewhere between the Neurologist, the MRI and the EEG, the DSL Twins began playing and I missed it.

This may not seem important to even the die-hard prospect watchers, but these are the new kids on the block that I will see next year for the GCL - or at least some of them.

So, I figure no better time to get acquainted. Because of the political unrest in Venezuela, the Twins are not operating an academy there this year, so the Dominican school is the primary Latin American feeder for our system.

The 2008 DSL Twins are managed by Julio Paula, the batting coach is Claudio Almonte and the pitching coach is Pablo Frias.

And now we are ready to begin...

May 31: DSL Diamondbacks/Reds 6 at DSL Twins 7

W: R. Doran (1-0, 27.00); L: V. Navarro (0-1, 6.75)
HR: None.

The Twins took an early lead and held it up until the 9th inning when relievers Edison Alvarez and Raynard Doran, who is listed as an outfielder, combined to allow 6 runs, tying up the game.

However, Yancarlo Franco would be hit by a pitch, and moved to 2nd on a sac-bunt by Daniel Santana. A wild pitch off Dia-Reds starter Victor Navarro moved him to 3rd. The Dia-Reds would pull Navarro, replacing him with Eddy Santana. With Jhonatan Arias batting, a wild pitch by Santana scored Franco for the game winning run.

It as destiny.

In the first inning, Arias would reach on a fielding error by Dia-Reds second baseman Yermis Mijia. Jairo Perez was then hit by a pitch and Eliel Sierra walked to load the bags. Oswaldo Arcia would be called out on strikes before a single by Manuel Soliman brought in Arias and Perez. Sierra would be taken out at 3rd to end the inning, with the Twins ahead by two.

Franco would single in the bottom of the fifth, and move to second on a throwing error by Elvin Silvestre as he tried to pick Franco off first. Danny Santana then singled and stole 2nd. Arias would ground out before Perez singled to bring in Franco. Following a pitching change, Sierra doubled to bring in Santana and Perez, making it 5-0 Twins.

Sierra would double in Perez in the bottom of the 7th for the sixth Twins run.

Sierra finished up the game 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs.

Starter Ramon Acosta worked 5 innings, allowing 3 hits and 1 walk while fanning 1. Jose Gonzalez worked 2 innings in relief, striking out 2.


June 2: DSL Twins 6 at DSL Cubs1 8

W: A. Ruiz (1-0, 0.00); L: L. Vargas (0-1, 13.50); SV: A. Florentino (1)
HR: DSL TWI: J. Perez 2 (2), E. Sierra (1). DSL CUB: J. Medina (1), A. Mejia (1).

The DSL Cubs1 took 5 runs in the third inning off Twins starter Pedro Guerra who allowed 5 hits and fanned 2 in the three innings he was out on the mound. Guerra hit two batters with pitches, and allowed a double and 2 home runs to put the five runs on the board.

He would be replace in the bottom of the fourth by Eliecer Cardenas after allowing back-to-back singles. Cardenas would get out of the jam however, allowing 3 hits over three innings while fanning 3.

Jairo Perez homered in the 1st to put the Twins on the board. Walks to Carlos Vasquez, Daniel Santana, Yorby Martinez and Perez would force in a run in the fifth inning.

Santana would double and Martinez single in the top of the 7th before Perez's second homer of the game, and the season, drove in three to tie up the score.

It was short lived however. Lesmire Vargas trotted out to the mound for the bottom of the 7th, and with one out on the board, allowed a single to Francisco Guzman. A steal and a wild pitch put Guzman at 3rd and he'd come in on Ramon Bonilla's ground out. Back-to-back singles, a steal and two unexplained plays - most likely a pair of wild pitches - brought in two more runs to make it 8-5 Cubs1.

Rightfielder Eliel Sierra would go yard in the 9th to add one more the Twins total, but the rally was short lived as Arias ground out to end the contest.

Santana, the Twins second baseman, was 2-for-3 with a walk and a run, Perez was 2-for-4 with a walk, 2 runs and 5 runs scored in the designed hitter role, and Sierra was 2-for-5 with a run and a run score scored. Five other Twins had runs, including centerfieder Oswaldo Arcia with a double.


June 3: DSL Reds 4 at DSL Twins 0

W: J. Marizan (1-0, 0.00); L: A. Salcedo (0-1, 3.60)
HR: None.

Jose Marizan and two relievers combined to 5 hit the DSL Twins, keeping them from home plate and posting a 4-0 victory for the visiting DSL Reds.

Right hander Adrian Salcedo allowed 2 runs, earned, on 6 hits and 1 walk while fanning 3. Jose Gonzalez would give up 1 earned run on 2 hits in 2 innings. Daivi Germosen surrendered the final Reds run, earned on 1 hit, a double after he hit Mario Martinez with a pitch, and advanced him to second when he unleashed a wild one.

2nd baseman Juan Blanco, 1st baseman Jairo Perez, 3rd baseman Manuel Soliman, centerfielder Oswaldo Arcia and catcher Jhonatan Arias all had single hits for the Twins.

Soliman and Arcia hit in the bottom of the second and walk to Arias loaded the bags, but with 2 outs on the board, a ground out by Xavier Gonzalez kept them from scoring. It was their best chance although they did get runners to 2nd base on two separate occasions.


That brings us up to Wednesday, as the DSL Twins are at the DSL Rockies for a 10:30 AM (Dominican Time) game.

The Elizabethton Twins begin play on June 17 against the Bluefield Orioles. The GCL Twins begin play on Thursday, June 19, at home against the GCL Pirates.

Roger, I have not forgotten you and will get a profile written on the new kids in the town for 2008 shortly. I had meant to do it this weekend, but as always find myself with too much to do and not enough time to do it all in.

The Miracle are on the road this weekend at Brevard County, and there is an extended game on Saturday at the Boston Complex, so I should be able to get to it by this weekend at the latest.

Beloit shuts down Quad Cities; Red wings, Rock Cats lose

Beloit Snappers

Quad Cities 0 at Beloit 5

W: D. Bromberg (4-3, 4.60); L: B. King (1-4, 4.33); SV: S. Steedley (5)
HR: BEL: R. Santana (5).

Unlike his High-A counterpart, David Bromberg did not go the distance, but he did blank the Quad City River Bandits for six innings, holding them to 3 hits and 4 walks while fanning 8.

Fellow Midwest League All-stars Steve Hirschfield and Spencer Steedley would be called upon to finish the game, taking the Beloit Snappers to a 5-0 victory.

Chris Cates would take a walk with one out in the bottom of the first. Garrett Olson hit into a force out that took Cates out at 2nd, and Ozzie Lewis would knock a fly ball to left to move him to 2nd. Steve Singleton then doubled out to right to plate Olson for the first Snappers run.

Ramon Santana hit a solo shot home run in the 5th, shortly before the R-Bandits batting coach was ejected by the home plate umpire.

In the bottom of the 8th, Lewis knock a line drive to right to make his way onto the base paths, and Singelton reach on a fielding error by Quad Cities 2nd baseman Mike Folli. Joe Benson would fly out to right to advance the pair. Chris Parmelee was then intentionally walked, and Jair Fernandez drew a walk to force in Lewis. Following a strike out to Santana, Ben Revere's ground ball to center drove in Singleton and Parmelee.

Lewis was 2-for-3 in the game with a walk and a run, raising his average to .198. Santana was 2-for-4 with a run and a RBI, but with a pair strike outs as well.

Lefty Mike Tarsi (3-6, 5.64) takes to the mound Wednesday at 7:00 PM Central Time for the Snappers for the final game in the series.

River Bandits

New Britain 3 at Altoona 4

W: C. Hamman (2-5, 3.92); L: R. Mullins (5-4, 3.48); SV: E. Meek (1)
HR: NBR: L. Hughes (13).

Luke Hughes hit his 13th home run of the year, bringing Steve Tolleson and Toby Gardenhire home with him, but it was not quite enough as the New Britain Rock Cats fell to the Altoona Curve, 4-3.

Ryan Mullins gave up 4 runs (3 earned) on 5 hits and 2 walks while striking out 2 over six innings, suffering his 4th loss of the season.

Gardenhire was 3-for-3 at the plate. Brock Peterson, Trevor Plouffe, and Dustin Martin were all one hit wonders for the Rock Cats.

Game two of the 3 game series is Wednesday at 7:05 Pm with Anthony Swarzak (3-2, 4.18) on the mound for the Rock Cats.

Rock Cats
Altoona Curve
Sandlot Swashbucklers Blog

Rochester 3 at Buffalo 4

W: J. Tomlin (1-0, 3.86); L: K. Mulvey (3-7, 3.82); SV: O. Perez (2)
HR: ROC: R. Ruiz (4), J. Pridie (3).

Randy Ruiz hit his 4th home run of the season, a single shot over the right field fence, in the bottom of the fifth inning. But the Red Wings were already playing catch up at that point.

Kevin Mulvey had allowed 4 runs (only 1 earned) on 5 hits and 3 balls while striking out 4 over six. Garrett Jones fielding error in the bottom of the fourth lead to the 3 unearned runs.

In the top of the 7th, Jason Pridie would go yard, his 3rd of the year. Jones would double, move to 3rd on a Chris Basak ground out and be plated by Ruiz's line drive to center.

Jones finished up 2-for-3 with a walk and a run, while Ruiz was 2-for-4 with a run and a pair of runs scored.

McDonald and Buscher each had a hit for the Wings, but did not factor into the scoring.

The Red Wings pitching staff had allowed at least one home run (eight total home runs) in seven straight games, a streak that ended Tuesday.

Rochester has a 19-9 record when the Wings score four runs or more in a game, but only a 5-27 record when the Red Wings score three or fewer runs.

The two teams rematch on Wednesday for a 7:05 PM start. Jeff Harris (2-3, 5.11) will start for Buffalo. Former Miracle Brian Duensing (2-5, 4.43) will be on the mound for the Red Wings.

Red Wings
Extra Bases Blog
Inside Pitch Blog

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Manship masterful against Jays

Fort Myers Miracle

Dunedin 0 at Fort Myers 5

W: J. Manship (7-2, 2.72); L: K. Rodriguez (4-6, 3.84)
HR: FTM: J. Portes (4).

Jeff Manship validated his ticket to the Florida State League All-star game Tuesday night, dominating the Dunedin Blue Jays from the first pitch through the last out, allowing only 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out five during a complete, 9-inning game.

Rather unfortunately, also All-star bound is home plate umpire Sean Barber who made some questionable calls last night at 1st base, and continued the trend tonight.

With one out on the board in the first Edward Ovalle would would reach on a throwing error by Jays shortstop Luis Sanchez. Danny Valencia then drew a walk. Whit Robbins ground ball brought in Ovalle, and put Valencia on second, although it was a close, and Valencia was a little slow getting back to his feet. Ramos then singled to load up the bags. Juan Portes hit a ground ball to left that brought in Valencia. Robbins would be called out at home, although he certainly looked safe from where I was sitting. Yangervis Solarte would then get plunked by a pitch, but Barber ruled that Solarte had leaned into the ball, and he was called out on strikes.

Since the ball hit Mr. Solarte on the hand, he was taken out as a precaution and replaced by Eli Tintor in right field.

Valencia would double in the bottom of the third and move to third on Robbin's ground out. Following a strike out to Ramos, Portes went yard over the left center field wall to add two more runs to the total.

Dunedin had their best scoring opportunity in the top of the 5th, when Jonathan Diaz singled on a line drive then got to 3rd base on a Luis Sanchez double. But Robbins would handle Chris Emanuele's pop ball in foul territory for the final out, preserving the shut out.

Valencia hit a line drive in the bottom of the fifth to get on base. Robbins double to plate him for the final Miracle run.

Manship would not let Dunedin get even a whiff of a base during the last four innings. Brian Dopirak would ground out to Yancarlos Ortiz to end the game with just under two hours of playing time.

Valencia was 3-for-3 at the plate with 3 runs and a walk, a validation of his All-star ticket as well - not that he needed it. Robbins was 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs, and Portes was 2-for-4 with a run and 3 RBIs.

On a side note, Ortiz was 1-for-3 at the plate, but he's been just phenomenal at shortstop, vacuuming up anything that comes near him.

For the Dunedin All-stars, Dopirak was 0-for-3 with a walk in the designated hitter role, catcher J.P. Arencibia was 1-for-4 and reliever Conner Falkenbach pitched the bottom of the 8th, strike out Portes.

The final game of the brief homestand is Wednesday with lefty Gustavo Chacin (0-6, 8.59) on the mound for the visiting Jays against righty Deolis Guerra (6-1, 4.23) in the battle of the Venezuelan pitchers.

News Press
Photo Gallery

Hey Now, you're an All-star: Seven players from the Beloit Snappers will be going to the Midwest League All-game this year, which is being played Tuesday, June 17, at Dow Diamond in Midland, Michigan, home of the Great Lakes Loons. Infielders Steve Singleton (.314 AVG, 30 runs, 61 hits, 24 RBIs) and Garrett Olson (.248 AVG, 24 runs, nine doubles, 30 RBIs) have been named to the team along with catcher Danny Leahmann (.273 AVG, 10 runs, 24 hits, three triples), Outfielder Ben Revere (.420 AVG, 22 runs, five triples, 16 stolen bases), and starting pitcher David Bromberg (3-3, 5.08 ERA, 65 strikeouts, 1.36 WHIP).

Relievers Spencer Steedley (2-2, 2.35 ERA, 40 strikeouts, .191 BAA) and Steven Hirschfield (4-1, 1.20 ERA, 22 strikeouts, 1.20 WHIP) were also named to the game. Furthermore Singleton and Olson have the honor of being named starters for the West Division All-Star team. They are also the players most likely to be joining the Miracle after the All-star break. (Press Release)

One Less Danny: Reliever Danny Vais retired today at around 3:00 PM. The reasons given were that he wasn't having any fun, the hated the travel, and he wanted to be with his wife, who is pregnant with their first child. There are no immediate plans to replace him.

All-star Year: Word has it the Fort Myers Miracle will announce their plans to host the 2009 Florida State League All-star game during this year's showcase. Fort Myers last hosted the game in 2003 when Joe Mauer, Jason Kubel and J.D. Durbin were honored with their selection to the West Division All-star team.

Snappers help Bandits out of slump

Beloit Snappers

Quad Cities 4 at Beloit 2

W: N. Additon (5-2, 2.49); L: S. Arias (2-2, 2.59); SV: M. Diapoules (2)
HR: QC: P. Vazquez (1).

Santos Arias has pitched quite well since his promotion from Extended Spring Training, but last night, against the Quad Cities River Bandits, he found that he needs his teammates to lend him a bat from time to time. Unfortunately, the Beloit Snappers only managed four hits, being stoned through the first five innings by Davie, Florida, native Nick Additon, falling to the Cardinals farm team 4-2.

Paul Vazquez would go yard on Arias in the top of the 2nd for a single shot home run, his first of the season. In the top of the 3rd. Adrion Chambers singled and Peter Kosma doubled him in. Kosma would get an extra base on the throw, and a wild pitch by Arias lead to Kozma coming home, making it 3-0 River Bandits.

Arias would work six innings through, giving up three earned runs on 6 hits and a walk while fanning 6 for a quality start. A quality start was nothing to Additon though, who has not allowed a run since May 10, or a hit since May 24.

Charles Nolte worked the next two innings, allowing 2 hits and striking out 2 before giving way to Aussie closer Brad Tippett.

With 2 outs on the board in the bottom of the seventh, Steve Singleton hit a ground ball to get on base and Joe Benson followed with a grounder of his own. Chris Parmelee's line drive to right brought in the pair. A throwing error by Chambers gave Parmelee an extra base, but he could not capitalize as Greg Yersich lined out to end the inning.

The only other hit Beloit had would a single by Ben Revere in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Tippett would get Paul Vazquez and Thomas Pham out on strikes before allowing a single to Nick People, who when stole 2nd. Domnit Bolivar singled out to center to bring in People, and advanced to 2nd on a throwing error by Revere. However, Tippett would get Mike Folli to ground out to retire the side.

Mark Dolenc, Ozzie Lewis and Parmelee each struck out twice, while Ramon Santana went 0-for-3 with 3 K's. Everyone in the batting order had at least one strike out, except for Revere who finished up 1-for-3 with a walk.

The teams rematch Tuesday with David Bromberg (3-3, 5.08) throwing out the first pitch at 7:00 PM central time. The R-Bandits pitcher is T.B.D.

With the Midwest League All-Star Game set to be played on Tuesday, June 17, it may not be a stretch to say you will find Additon on the mound for Palm Beach when the Miracle bus trip rolls in on Sunday, June 22.

QC Times
Future Redbirds Blog

Rain, Dunedin hault Miracle at home

Fort Myers Miracle

Dunedin 5 at Fort Myers 0

W: R. Ray (5-2, 4.22); L: C. Devries (4-5, 3.50); SV: C. Polanco (2)
HR: None.

Perhaps they were feeling a bit cocky after their sweep of the Tampa Yankees or perhaps they honestly believe they can't beat Dunedin, but the Fort Myers Miracle were shut out at home by the Dunedin Blue Jays.

Cole Devries was slightly less than his usual brilliant self, allowing one run on 7 hits and one walks while striking out only one in six innings.

The run would come in the top of the 3rd inning, when Jesus Gonzalez doubled. He'd move to 3rd on Adam Calderone's ground out, and came in off a Luis Sanchez single.

Danny Vais would take over in the top of the 7th. With one out on the board, Sanchez singled, then stole 2nd. Chris Emanuele walked as lightning as seen in the sky and the crowd began leaving the stadium bowl. Sean Shoffit hit a ground rule double that brought in Sanchez. Vais issued an intentional walk to J.P. Arencibia. Brian Dopirak would strike out swinging before a double by Cory Patton cleared the bases for 3 more runs.

Mother nature stepped in at that point as the game was halted due to rain.

Frank Mata would take over for Vais, and Eli Tintor would replace Santiesteban in the contest, but except for Juan Portes who made his way onto base on a missed catch, the Miracle could find little offense.

Yangervis Solarte was 1-for-3 at the plate with a beautiful little ground rule double. Brian Dinkelman, Danny Valencia and Whit Robbins all had singles for the mostly hitless Miracle.

The two teams rematch tomorrow. All-star Jeff Manship (6-2, 3.11) will throw out the first pitch at 7:05 PM. The Jays will send Kenny Rodriguez (4-5. 3/58) to the mound.

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New Britain - Off

The New Britain Rock Cats had Monday night off as they head over to Blair County Ballpark in Pennsylvania to take on the Altoona Curve. The Pirates affiliate picked up several Twins players in the Rule V Draft, including former Miracle starter and fan favorite Josh Hill who carries a 4-5 record with a 3.81 ERA in 11 games for the Curve. Hill pitched Sunday against Erie, and will miss the current series against this former team.

Scranton/WB 10 at Rochester 6

W: K. Igawa (5-4, 4.07); L: H. Totten (0-2, 5.79)
HR: SWB: G. Porter (2), C. Stewart (1). ROC: J. Pridie (2), S. Santos (1).

The Rochester Red Wings squandered an early 5 run lead to fall, 10-6 to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. Danny Graves pitched well through four innings, but had some trouble in the fifth, finishing up with 4 runs, 2 earned, on 5 hits and 4 walks over 4.2 innings. Casey Daigle and Heath Totten added another six runs between them over 3.1 combined innings.

Tommy Watkins walked to lead off the bottom of the first inning for the host team. Jason Pridie and Darnell McDonld both singled to load up the bases. Former Miracle Garrett Jones would hit a sac-fly that brought in Watkins. Pride and McDonald would then orchestrate a twin steal, moving to third and second respectively. A wild pitch by Yankee starter Kei Igawa allowed Pridie to score. Brian Buscher then took a walk. Igawa would get Randy Ruiz to strike out before Sergio Santos homered to add 3 runs to the total.

Pridie would homer in the bottom of the second inning, his second yard ball of the season. That would finish it for the Wings scoring however.

McDonald would finish up 3-for-5 at the plate with a run, Buscher was 2-for-3 with a run, Ruiz was 2-for-4 but did not factor into the scoring and Pridie was 2-for-5 with 2 runs and 1 RBI.

Eric Duncan was 2-for-4 with 2 runs in the designated hitter role for the Scranton. Cody Ransom was 3-for-5 with a run, and Justin Christian would go 2-for-5 with 2 runs and 3 runs scored.

The friendly confines of Frontier Field were not so friendly with Scranton in town as the Wings won only one game against the Yankees farm team. The road kill Wings (8-21 Away) now head over to Buffalo for a Tuesday game against the Bisons (Cleveland). First pitch is 7:05 PM with Kevin Mulvey (3-6, 4.07) on the mound for Rochester.

Not surprisingly, Howie Clark cleared waivers and has been reassigned to Rochester from Minnesota. Clark batted .250 (2-for-8) with two doubles and one RBI in four games for Minnesota. Prior to his promotion Clark was batting .284 with one home run and 21 RBI in 37 games for Rochester. To make room for Clark, the Red Wings optioned infielder Felix Molina to Double-A New Britain. Molina was 0-for-2 in three games for Rochester.

Watkins had his seven-game hitting streak snapped after going 0-for-4 with a walk. Watkins had four multi-hit games during the hitting streak.

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Monday, June 2, 2008

Olson's grand slam helps Beloit power past River Bandits

Beloit Snappers

Quad Cities 5 at Beloit 10

W: D. Berlind (4-4, 4.11); L: J. Wilson (1-1, 4.98); SV: M. Williams (5)
HR: BEL: G. Olson (3).

In case your missed it, Quad Cities is once again the River Bandits, having reverted back to their old name. Evidently, the Swing of Quad Cities was just not hip enough. It also appears that Rookie Racoon is back at work again and that Clyde has been giving his walking papers.

In any case, Beloit used a 7-run third inning ot take a huge lead from the River Bandits and hung onto it, going on to win, 10-5.

Danny Berlind picked up the win, despite giving up 4 runs on 8 hits and 4 walks while striking out 1 over five innings. Just last week I was thinking he might be ready for a promotion. Now I need to re-evaluate that thinking.

The River Bandits took an early lead in the first inning when Adron Chambers doubled. Mike Foli would hit a single to center to plate him, and then advanced to 3rd on a throwing error by Ben Revere. One out later, Francisco Rivera singled to bring in Foli. I believe that should be an unearned run, then, and someone needs to fix the line score.

Ramon Santana doubled to start out the bottom of the 3rd, and Revere walked. Chris Cates singled to load the bags before Garrett Olson hit one over the left field fence for a Grand Slam Home run. Ozzie Lewis took a walk and Steve Singleton's line drive moved him to 2nd. Joe Benson's line drive to center brought Lewis in and also lead to a pitching change for the Snappers, with Dylan Gonzalez replacing the hard hit Joshua Wailson. Gonzalez would get Parmelee to line out before Greg Yersich singled to load the bags again. Back at the top of the order, Santana would knock a line drive to left that plated Singleton and Benson. Yersich would be taken out at 2nd when he was caught off the base. Santana then stole 2nd and advanced to 3rd on a throwing error by Luis De La Cruz. Revere would ground out to end the inning.

Quad Cities would answer back - sort of - in the top of the 4th when Jose Garcia singled and was plated by a Chambers triple. Foli would then sacrifice in Chambers, but despite a double to Rivera, it was all the Bandits could take in that inning.

Beloit regained the two in the bottom of the fifth when Benson walked, then scored on a Parmelee triple. Yersich would reach on a fielding error before Santana would sacrifice in Parmelee. Cates would ground into a force out that took Yersich out at 3rd and Olson would fly out to end the stanza.

Danny Hernandez took over from Berlind in the top of the 5th, and allowed walks to Chambers and Foli as he once again struggled to find the strike zone. Charles Kingrey and Rivera both popped out before Nicholas People and Domnit Boliviar drew walks to force in a run. Neslon Prada had seen enough at that point and brought Aussie reliever Matt Williams in to get the final out.

In the bottom of the 8th, Garrett Olson would reach on a fielding error and progress to 2nd on the same play. Ozzie Lewis then hit a line drive to center to bring in Olson for the final run of the game.

Lewis was 3-for-4 in the contest with a walk, a run and a run scored. Benson was 2-for-3 with a pair of walks and a pair of runs, plus a run scored. Santana was 3-for-3 with a run and 3 RBIs. Singleton and Parmelee were both 2-for-5 with a run each. Parmelee also had an RBI.

Game two of the four-game series is on for Monday night at Pohlman field. Brian Broderick (2-3, 3.88) is probable for the River Bandits, while the Snappers will counter with Brian Kirwan (3-3, 5.13).

River Bandits

From the Midwest League Notebook by Stephanie Storm:

Beloit Snappers (Minnesota Twins)

THE SEASON SO FAR: The Snappers are 29-26 and are tied with Quad Cities for third place in the Western Division.

WHO'S HOT: IF Ramon Santana is batting .444 (12-for-27) over his last nine games with a home run and six RBIs. In 45 games this season he's hitting .270 (37-for-137) with seven doubles, two triples, four home runs and 12 RBIs. ... OF Ben Revere continues to swing a scorching bat, hitting .463 (19-for-41) with a home run and nine RBIs over his last 10 games. In 31 games this season, he's batting a team-high .427 (56-for-131) with 11 doubles, five triples and 20 RBIs.

WHO'S NOT: OF Mark Dolenc is batting just .222 (2-for-9) over his last six games to drop his season average to .214 (25-for-117) with 29 strikeouts in 42 games.

DID YOU KNOW: IF Garrett Olson is batting just .200 (7-for-35) over his last 10 games but has 11 RBIs over that span.