Saturday, June 20, 2009

Mariners Minor League Wrap-Up for June 20

I'm back from my week covering the minors with Mariner Central! They're fun to work with and I invite you to check out one of the better hubs for Mariners info you'll find on the net.

At right is a familiar face catching for the Rainiers. More on this later.

VENEZUELA~! VSL Phillies 5, VSL Mariners 2
VSLMs: 15-14... VSL Phils: 11-18

Mayckol Guaipe: 2 IP, 3 H, (4 R) 3 ER, 2 walks, K, 3 hit batters
Jesus Pirela: 3 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, walk, 2 K
Ricardo Pereira: 2 IP, 1 H, 2 K
Manuel Campos: 1 IP
Kenny Hart: 2-3, 2 doubles
rest of VSLMs lineup: 2-28, 3 walks, 7 K

Dominican: DSL Mariners 1, DSL Athletics 0
DSLMs: 13-6... DSLAs: 6-13

Henry Perez: 5 IP, 3 H, 4 K
Enrique Rosario: 4 IP, 2 H, walk, 8 K
Randy Perez: 1-4, RBI, 2 K
George Drullard: 1-4, double, K
Bryan Brito: 1-3, triple, R, K

A-: Everett 10, Vancouver 1

EVE: 1-0... VAN: 0-1

Opening Day Lineup (with age and 2008 numbers):

SS Anthony Phillips (Age 19, 186/283/251 in Pulaski, Everett & High Desert)
LF Ryan Royster (Age 23, 196/337/268 in Everett)
1B Gerardo Avila (Age 22, 238/279/338 in Wisconsin & High Desert)
CF Kalian Sams (Age 22, 204/295/528 in Pulaski)
C Guy Welsh (Age 24, 297/410/430 in Pulaski)
RF Welington Dotel (Age 23, 277/339/436 in Everett)
DH Ben Billingsley (Age 22, 227/308/381 in Everett)
3B Hawkins Gebbers (Age 22, 33rd round pick in 2009 draft)
2B Fred Bello (Age 21, 284/366/321 in Peoria & Pulaski)
SP Taylor Lewis (Age 21, 35.2 IP, 4 HR, 18 BB, 32 K, 4.54 ERA in Pulaski)

Taylor Lewis: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER (HR), 3 walks, 6 K, balk, hit batter
Brad Reid: 1 IP, 1 H, K
Jose Rios: 2 IP, 3 H, 3 K
Ryan Royster: 4-5, double, 2 R, 3 RBI
Gerardo Avila: 2-5, R
Kalian Sams: 3-5, 3 run HR, 3 R, K
Guy Welsh: 3-4, double, R, RBI, walk
Hawkins Gebbers: 2-5, RBI
Fred Bello: 2-3, 2 doubles, 3 R, 2 walks, K

You may not want to get attached to the current Aquasox lineup. As Jay Yencich has noted, visa concerns led Everett to scramble for anyone in the M's org who had valid documentation to make the trip north of the border into Vancouver, which led to some fish out of water. Once the Aquasox return stateside, look for some roster moves before Everett settles on their true 2009 lineup.

They may want to stick with this crew, though, because they kicked the Canadians' butts tonight.

A: Clinton 6, Cedar Rapids 0
CLI: 39-30... CDR: 40-29

Alfredo Venegas: 7 IP, 2 H, walk, 3 K
Blake Nation: 1 IP
Greg Moviel: 1 IP, walk, 2 K
Luis Nuñez: 1-3, double, 2 R, walk, K
Scott Savastano: 1-3, double, R, 2 RBI, walk
Steve Moss: 0-3, sac fly RBI
Denny Almonte: 0-3, sac fly RBI, 2 K
Ogui Diaz: 1-3, triple, R, walk

Scott Savastano doubled home a run in the 4th, Luis Nuñez's leadoff double in the 6th led to another, and Ogui Diaz's leadoff triple in the 7th set up yet another, as Alfredo Venegas had easily the best start he's had since getting demoted to the MWL, spearheading a 2 hit shutout, though he still gave up a ton of flyballs and got a ton of luck on those.

Groundballs: 6 (plus 1 bunt)
Flyballs: 13
Line Drives: 0
Walks: 1
Strikeouts: 3

A+: High Desert 15, Inland Empire 2
Mavs: 43-26... Empire: 31-38

Nathan Adcock: 8 IP, 2 H, 4 walks, 8 K, wild pitch, hit batter
Steven Richard: 1 IP, 2 H, (2 R) 0 ER, walk, K
Tyson Gillies: 1-3, R, 3 walks, SB #17
Jeff Dominguez: 1-4, 2 R, RBI, 2 walks, K
Jamie McOwen: 1-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, walk
Joe Dunigan: 3-5, GRAND SLAM, 2 R, walk
Alex Liddi: 3-6, 2 doubles, 3 R, 2 RBI
Carlos Peguero: 1-6, solo HR, 4 K: The Golden Sombrero
Travis Scott: 3-3, 2 doubles, 2 R, 3 RBI, 3 walks
Ian Bladergroen: 1-5, double, 2 RBI, 3 K

The entire lineup came to the plate for the Mavs in a four run 5th to give the Mavs a comfortable 6-0 cushion and Nathan Adcock pitched himself a fine game, no runs allowed, despite a few shaky moments.

Groundballs: 7
Flyballs: 8
Line Drives: 2
Walks: 4 (plus 1 hit batter)
Strikeouts: 8

But it went from a stomping to a full-out rout in the 9th, as four Mavs came to the plate twice and five Mavs had extra base hits in a nine run 9th inning to make the score 15-0. Joe Dunigan had the biggest hit of all, hitting a one out grand slam, though Carlos Peguero started the rally with a solo shot. Steven Richard gave up a couple runs to Empire in the 9th, presumably because he felt bad for them.

Not to be outdone, Ian Bladergroen reached base all six times he came to the plate.

AA: They played two in Jackson, because why not.

Game 1: Montgomery 4, West Tenn 3, 7 innings

Justin Souza: 4 IP, 4 H, (3 R) 2 ER, walk, K, 2 hit batters (76 pitches, 55 strikes)
Anthony Varvaro: 2 IP, walk, 2 K (35-20)
Phillippe Aumont: 1 IP, (1 R) 0 ER, K (9-6)
Ezequiel Carrera: 1-3, RBI
Colt Morton: 2-3, double, 2 run HR

In his 3rd game with the JAXX, Colt Morton had two hits, a double and 2 run HR, while starting behind the plate. After getting cut following 11 forgettable games with Lake Elsinore (and a forgettable 6.5 year career) in the Padres system, the M's picked him up and dispatched him to West Tenn to add some depth after Guillermo Quiroz skated off to join the M's.

Also notable in this game is the AA debut of Phillippe Aumont, who Jack Zduriencik's crew deemed fit for a promotion from High A. Correspondingly, the struggling Marwin Vega was sent back to High Desert.

Justin Souza had a curiously short outing, taking more pitches than he would have liked to struggle through four frames. he has struggled a bit lately after a hot stretch through much of May and June.

Groundballs: 6
Flyballs: 5
Line Drives: 3
Pop Ups: 2
Walks: 1 (plus 2 hit batters)
Strikeouts: 1

Game 2: West Tenn 2, Montgomery 1, 7 innings
WTN: 27-43... MON: 33-37

Steven Shell: 5 IP, 2 H, (1 R) 0 ER, 6 K (70 pitches, 50 strikes)
Nick Hill: 1 IP, 3 K (11-9)
Ricky Orta: 1 IP, K (7-5)
Marshall Hubbard: 1-3, double, R, K
Yamid Haad: 1-3, RBI
Oswaldo Navarro: 1-1, RBI, 2 walks, SB

Interesting are the three pitchers used in this 2-1 victory.

First of all, after being brought in as a dispatched reliever from the Nationals org, Steven Shell follows his demotion to AA by making a surprise start and giving the JAXX five surprisingly strong innings. Shell, 26, a 3rd round pick by the Angels in 2001, was a starter while working up the Angels system, but never quite cut the mustard in AAA and had moved to the bullpen when the Nats picked him up in 2008.

This was Shell's first start since he was last with the Angels in 2007. Could this be a return to the rotation for Shell? The JAXX, if they weren't seriously considering it before, may entertain it after this start.

Groundballs: 4
Flyballs: 4
Line Drives: 2
Pop Ups: 1 laughable bunt
Walks: 0
Strikeouts: 6

Secondly, his relief help was Nick Hill, the Military Man who originally was slated to serve with the military and left for that on May 26. However, he's back, and he returned to the active list (with Joey Newby getting sent to High Desert to open up the roster spot), striking out the side in the 6th. Welcome back, Military Man! The JAXX took the lead in the bottom 6th, netting Hill to win to boot.

And finally, Ricky Orta shut the game down in the 7th. Since returning from injury on June 5, the JAXX have used Orta as a reliever, but hadn't test driven him in a closer situation until tonight. Orta handled it, going flyout, pop out, strikeout to end the game.

AAA: Reno 2, Tacoma 1
TAC: 34-35... RENO: 34-36

Doug FISTER: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 ER (HR), walk, 4 K, hit batter (92 pitches, 61 strikes)
Denny Stark: 2.2 IP, 1 H, walk, 4 K (46-32)
Justin Thomas: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 2 walks, 2 K (26-13)
Mike Morse: 2-5, R, K
Bryan LaHair: 1-4, triple, RBI, K
Brad Nelson: 2-3

FISTER actually pitched himself a decent game, but just didn't get any run support, taking his first AAA loss of the season.

Groundballs: 8 (plus 1 bunt)
Flyballs: 8 (1 HR)
Line Drives: 0
Walks: 1 (plus 1 hit batter)
Strikeouts: 4

Never minding the Reno freaking Aces having Tacoma's number, notable in this game isn't Brad Nelson waking up and having another decent game, but Kenji Johjima seeing his first live action since breaking his toe, starting behind the plate and going five innings before ceding to Adam Moore. Joh singled on a groundball to left in the 2nd and flew out to right in the 4th.

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