Due to complications yesterday, today's recap's going to look a bit more sparse than usual. We'll be back to normal by tomorrow.
A: Cedar Rapids 4, Clinton 1
Kenn Kasparek: 3 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, walk, 5 K, 2 wild pitches
Cheyne Hann: 3 IP, 1 H, walk, 2 K, hit batter
Bobby LaFromboise: 3 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, walk, 2 K
Denny Almonte: 1-4, double, 2 K
Nate Tenbrink: 2-4, double, RBI
rest of Lumberkings lineup: 3-24, 9 K
Key: Kenn Kasparek got beat down by the Kernels in the 3rd, and a wild pitch late in the frame didn’t help, as Cedar Rapids built a 3-0 lead that proved more than enough behind six strong innings from Jayson Miller.
A+: Lake Elsinore 9, High Desert 0
Michael Pineda: 6.1 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, 2 walks, 3 K, hit batter
Travis Mortimore: two outs, 1 H, 1 ER
Anthony Varvaro: two outs, 2 H, 3 ER, 4 walks
Steven Richard: one out
Jamie McOwen: 1-4, double, K
Alex Liddi: 2-3
Joe Dunigan: 1-2, double, walk, K, SB
Key: Despite opening the game by allowing a run off back to back doubles, Michael Pineda actually had a halfway decent outing despite the numbers. The 1st and a 2 run 4th off an RBI triple from Danny Payne were his only blips until the 7th. The offense just gave Pineda no support against Corey Kluber, and he ran out of gas trailing 3-0 with one out in the 7th, getting pulled after a double and a walk.
Groundballs: 12 (plus 2 bunts)
Line Drives: 1
Pop Ups: 1
Walks: 2 (plus 1 hit batter)
Reliever Travis Mortimore then gave up a bases clearing triple and another run on a suicide squeeze to make it 6-0, and Anthony Varvaro came in with poor control in the 8th, giving up three more runs with the help of two walks to put the game out of reach.
On a positive note, Alex Liddi shows no signs of slowing down with two groundball singles up the middle, and Joe Dunigan added a double with a stolen base. But no one else in the Mavs lineup came along for the ride.
AA: Jacksonville 3, West Tenn 2
Robert Rohrbaugh: 5.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 5 K (75 pitches, 55 strikes)
Doug FISTER: 1.2 IP, K (16 pitches, 11 strikes)
Marwin Vega: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, walk, 2 K (20 pitches, 11 strikes)
Yamid Haad: 2-4, 2 run HR
Jeff Dominguez: 2-3, walk, K, SB
Rest of DIAMOND JAXX lineup: 3-24, R, 5 walks, 8 K
Thanks to six shutout innings from Graham Taylor, West Tenn’s offense showed up too little, too late in the top 9th down 3-0. Javier Brito led off with a walk and Yamid Haad took Matt Peterson deep to make it 3-2. But Matt Mangini flew out to left, Johan Limonta struck out and, while Jeff Dominguez did draw a 2 out walk, Ezequiel Carrera struck out to end the game.
Keys: Momentum swings aren’t common in a static game like baseball, but the 6th inning sure looked like one. With the game still at 0-0, Adam Moore got a groundball into center field with two out. Javier Brito walked, and Yamid Haad lined a single to right. Moore, not the fleetest of foot, turned the corner, broke for home and got thrown out at the plate by RF Scott Cousins for the 3rd out to end the top 6th. Now, Matt Mangini isn’t the strongest hitter, and Moore plus the 3rd base coach might have decided that testing Cousins and trying to get on the board then and there was worth the risk.
It didn’t pan out, and in the bottom half, with Robert Rohrbaugh humming along, Bryan Petersen lined a single to lead off, Kevin Randel doubled him over and, with one out, Lorenzo Scott got a grounder into RF to bring both runners home and give Jacksonville a 2-0 lead to chase Rohrbaugh.
As for Graham Taylor, one of the top 10 prospects in the Marlins organization, he did get tattooed here and there, but West Tenn couldn’t string together enough offense to get on the board. He did make a late season jump to AA last year, but he starts 2009 in AA to maintain a steady path to the bigs.
Line Drives: 4
Pop Ups: 2
Rohrbaugh, meanwhile, worked with a much thinner margin for error. While Taylor was getting groundballs and giving West Tenn little to work with, Rohrbaugh high wired through innings with several flyball outs, not recording a single groundout until the 3rd inning. That it came apart in the 6th was no surprise, especially when Jacksonville opened the bottom 6th with back to back line drives, but Rohrbaugh ironically watched it come apart on a groundball: Lorenzo Scott’s two run single snuck between Jeff Dominguez and Javier Brito into RF.
Line Drives: 2
Pop Ups: 2
AAA: Fresno 5, Tacoma 3
Jason Vargas: 6 IP, 7 H, 4 ER (HR), walk, 5 K (85 pitches, 64 strikes)
Sean White: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, hit batter (22 pitches, 13 strikes)
Mike Carp: 2-4, double, solo HR, K
Bryan LaHair: 1-4, solo HR
Mike Morse: 1-4, double, R
Callix Crabbe: 1-3, RBI, K
Key: Fresno got comfy with a 2 run 2nd and another run in the 3rd to stake a 3-0 lead off Jason Vargas. Even after the Rainiers battled back to tie, Jesus Guzman took Vargas deep to lead off the bottom 6th and give the Grizz a 4-3 lead they would not relinquish.
Vargas may be one level away, but he is a long way from a big league callup. He got ONE groundball in six innings, while getting tattooed for plenty of line drives and flyballs. You get an idea of why the Marlins and Mets gave up on him.
Flyballs: 7 (1 HR)
Line Drives: 6
Pop Ups: 2