Posts Tagged ‘Rome Braves’

Friday Night Was The Right Night For Pitching

For whatever reason, there were a bunch of good pitching performance across the minors last night, with several starters taking no-hitters late into games.

For the second night in a row, New Hampshire’s bats were silenced, this time by Altoona’s Tim Alderson.  Alderson pitched six no-hit innings, walking one and striking out three, before being pulled after reaching his pitch count.  It was the second time this season he shut down the Fisher Cats – back on May 10, he struck out ten and took a no-hitter into the seventh.

There was no no-hitter drama in the Harrisburg-Trenton game, just a good old-fashioned pitchers duel.  Jeff Mandel went eight shutout innings for the visiting Senators, allowing three hits, walking two, and striking out four.  He was outdone by Ryan Pope, however, who allowed two hits and struck out eleven without walking a batter.  Both pitchers came out after the eighth and did not factor into the decision (the Thunder won it in the ninth on a single, sacrifice bunt, and a walkoff RBI single).

David Bromberg scattered three hits and struck out nine in a complete game shutout for Fort Myers, improving to 11-1 and taking over the Florida State League’s strikeout lead.

Anibal Sanchez made a rehab start in the Florida State League for the Jupiter Hammerheads, and he was pretty good.  6.2 innings, two walks, five strikeouts, no hits.  Daniel Jennings got three outs in relief before allowing a two-out single in the eighth.

And finally, just so you don’t think that all the good performances came from the Florida State and Eastern Leagues, Randall Delgado pitched seven no-hit innings for the Rome Braves in the South Atlantic League.  He struck out nine and walked one to earn his fourth win of the season.

(Oh, and just a slight hint of offense: Layton Hiller went 4-for-5 with three doubles and eight RBI for the GCL Braves.  Elys Blanco also had a fun game for the Braves, finishing 1-for-2 with four runs scored.)

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The Z-Meter: 5/15/2009

The Z-meter tracks the story arcs of 25 top prospects (or players we just like) on their way to the bigs. It is named after current Washington Nationals star Ryan Zimmerman, who made the transition from anchoring the University of Virginia to starring in MLB in one year.

Promoted:

Jordan Zimmermann: Syracuse Chiefs (AAA) to Washington Nationals (MLB)
Matt LaPorta: Columbus Clippers (AAA) to Cleveland Indians (MLB)
Daniel Bard: Pawtucket Red Sox (AAA) to Boston Red Sox (MLB)
Mat Gamel: Nashville Sounds (AAA) to Milwaukee Brewers (MLB)

Madison Bumgarner: San Jose Giants (A) to Connecticut Defenders (AA)

Just a quickie update in the wake of Mat Gamel’s callup to Milwaukee. Gamel and Matt LaPorta were teammates before LaPorta got traded. It always seemed like they’d both be in the majors this year, and it sure worked out that way. Good luck to the Wonder Mat(t)s!

Replacing Mr. Gamel will be Ezekiel Spruill, who makes it on merit (6-0 start with a 1.91 ERA), and on name quality. That’s right, double threat.


The top level. These prospects are in AAA in the prime of their youth, waiting for the call that will change their lives.

Andrew McCutchen, CF – Indianapolis Indians (Pirates): .276 AVG – 29 R – 1 HR – 12 RBI – 13 BB – 7 SB – .488 SLG – .833 OPS

Wade Davis, RHP – Durham Bulls (Rays): 7 Games – 3W – 1L – 3.71 ERA – 20 BB – 25 K

Kila Kaaihue, 1B – Omaha Royals – .240 – 24 R – 5 HR – 18 RBI – 33 BB – 0 SB – .470 SLG – .880 OPS

Alcides Escobar, SS – Nashville Sounds (Brewers): .265 – 23 R – 2 HR – 10 RBI – 10 BB – 18 SB – .346 SLG – .665 OPS

Carlos Carrasco, RHP – Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (Phillies): 7 Starts – 0 W – 4 L – 6.62 ERA – 8 BB – 37 K

Ramiro Pena, SS – Scranton-Wilkes Barre Yankees: .280 – 5 R – 0 HR – 4 RBI – 4 BB – 1 SB – .360 SLG – .693 OPS

Matt Wieters, C – Norfolk Tides (Orioles): .270 AVG – 18 R – 3 HR – 16 RBI – 16 BB – 0 SB – .430 SLG – .798 OPS

Fernando Martinez, CF – Buffalo Bisons (Mets): .273 AVG – 12 R – 3 HR – 17 RBI – 7 BB – 0 SB – .479 SLG – .795 OPS

Austin Jackson, OF – Scranton Wilkes-Barre (Yankees): .360 – 17 R – 0 HR – 13 RBI – 12 BB – 7 SB – .441 SLG – .870 OPS


These guys also have the potential to skip straight to the majors, but may get promoted to AAA first.

Antonio Bastardo, LHP – Reading Phillies (Phillies): 8 Games – 4 Starts – 2 W – 1 L – 2 SV – 1.63 ERA – 6 BB – 32 K

Lars Anderson, 1B – Portland SeaDogs (Red Sox): .232 AVG – 14 R – 2 HR – 15 RBI – 12 BB – 0 SB – .357 SLG – .661 OPS

Jhoulys Chacin, RHP – Tulsa Drillers (Rockies): 7 Starts – 3 W – 3 L – 3.23 ERA – 13 BB – 28 K

Carlos Santana, C – Akron Aeros (Indians): .270 AVG – 21 R – 6 HR – 22 RBI – 23 BB – 0 SB – .528 SLG – .945 OPS

Justin Smoak, 1B – Frisco RoughRiders (Rangers): .345 AVG – 20 R – 5 HR – 20 RBI – 26 BB – 0 SB – .534 SLG – 1.003 OPS

Madison Bumgarner, LHP – Connecticut Defenders (Giants): 1 Start – 1 W – 0 L – 1.50 ERA – 0 BB – 2 K

These guys have vast potential but need to work out some kinks in A-ball before they can advance.

Ian Gac, 1B – Bakersfield Blaze (Rangers): .217 AVG – 7 R – 2 HR – 13 RBI – 7 BB – 0 SB – .349 SLG – .621 OPS

Mike Moustakas, SS – Wilmington Blue Rocks (Royals): .275 AVG – 23 R – 5 HR – 25 RBI – 7 BB – 2 SB – .467 SLG – .779 OPS

Pedro Alvarez, 3B – Lynchburg Hillcats (Pirates): .200 AVG – 16 R – 6 HR – 26 RBI – 20 BB – 0 SB – .383 SLG – .694 OPS

Che-Hsuan Lin, OF – Salem Red Sox: .175 AVG – 15 R – 0 HR – 5 RBI – 12 BB – 4 SB – .216 SLG – .491 OPS

Josh Vitters, 3B – Peoria Chiefs (Cubs): .309 AVG – 15 R – 3 HR – 13 RBI – 3 BB – 1 SB – .445 SLG – .793 OPS

Shooter Hunt, RHP – Beloit Snappers (Twins): 6 Games – 0 W – 1 L – 10.34 ERA – 30 BB – 15 K

Collin Cowgill, OF – Visalia Rawhide (Diamondbacks): .298 AVG – 26 R – 5 HR – 25 RBI – 14 BB – 5 SB – .529 SLG – .912 OPS

Mauricio Robles, P – West Michigan Whitecaps (Tigers): 6 Starts – 2 W – 1 L – 2.56 ERA – 13 BB – 47 K

Tim Beckham, SS – Bowling Green Hot Rods (Rays): .298 AVG – 13 R – 2 HR – 23 RBI – 4 BB – 1 SB – .439 SLG – .758 OPS

Ezekiel Spruill, RHP – Rome Braves (Braves): 7 Games – 6 W – 0 L – 1 SV – 7 BB – 35 K


NCAA: Only used if a prospect in college shows really, truly, immensely, hugely inescapable potential.

Stephen Strasburg, RHP – San Diego State: 11 Starts – 11W – 0L – 1.24 ERA – 17 BB – 164 K

Visit SDSU’s Strasburg Central for more.


Prospects chosen from Diamond Cutter’s Top 25, Baseball America, and our trademark irrational sense of whimsy.

Baseball and Pancakes – What More Could a Fan Want?

Any time I read about some intrepid soul venturing out to see as many baseball games as possible, I get a little bit jealous. But when I read about an RV that will be hitting 60+ minor-league ballparks across the United States, and also chowing on pancakes, I just have to write about it.

It seems that the International House of Pancakes will be celebrating a 50th anniversary soon. To share the wealth, they’ve loaded up that beautiful machine you see above, and they’ll be driving cross-country bringing breakfast joy to the bus leagues. They’ll be driving over 8,000 miles before it’s all said and done, and in this time of spiraling gas prices, that’s true dedication.

The Pancake Express (my choice of name) will hand out T-shirts, sponsor games, and enter fans in a sweepstakes as part of the celebration of their half-century of “breakfast any time”. As a guy who has a five-year-old with a pancake jones, I’m most excited about the 2-for-1 coupons they’ll be offering, as well as the nine new pancake flavors. In addition, the “Most Valuable Pancake” mascot will be along for the ride, so I’m really, really hoping they make it to Montgomery, AL so the Pancake can meet the Biscuit.

We do know the first few stops of the tour. Jacksonville Suns (Dodgers) fans will get the first taste:

May 31/June 1 – Mobile BayBears @ Jacksonville Suns (7:05/3:05pm). The Suns are giving away emergency lamps on Saturday and having wooden bat day for the first 1,500 kids through the gates on Sunday.

June 2 – Rome Braves @ Charleston RiverDogs 7:05pm.

June 5/6 – Pawtucket Red Sox @ Charlotte Knights (both 7:15 starts). Might Justin Masterson pitch? Sweeter than syrup!

June 7/8 – Charlotte Knights @ Durham Bulls (7:05/5:05). The Knights are going to be eating a LOT of pancakes, if I’m any judge.

June 12-14 – Charlotte Knights @ Norfolk Tides (Thursday and Friday 7:15 starts) and Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees (Saturday 7:15). See what I mean about the Knights? It’s like they’re following the Pancake Express on purpose.

June 16/17 – Charlotte Knights @ Richmond Braves (7pm on Monday, double-header starting at 1pm on Tuesday). Getting mighty greedy, Knights. That’s all I can say.

Starting Monday, IHOP will be running a sweepstakes on their website, and putting up photos and tracking the progress of the Pancake Express. Check back to see when they’ll be in your neighborhood.

Oh, and please pass the syrup?