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7/11 Minor League Wrap-Up

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I am back in Seattle!  This would've been up sooner, but a funny story.

So I usually write this at work (I'm an office temp who specializes in data projects).  I come in, a bit late thanks to unusually heavy traffic, settle in, start and get as far as the Everett recap before my boss comes in and tells me that her boss is on her phone and wants to talk to me (I don't have a phone in my closet office).

They don't want to talk to you like this unless they're canning you, but whatever.  I pick up and the big boss profusely apologizes, but says there was a bad miscommunication and that my last day with them was actually the day before my vacation.  My agency had never bothered to tell me and the big boss had no idea why, she was so sorry, she'd buy me lunch if I wanted, etc.

I didn't mind.  I was bemused by it all.  I certainly need to work but if worse came to worse and I couldn't get another assignment before next week, I still have enough money socked away to pay the bills with room to spare.  Call me fortunate, call me prepared.  I told the big boss it was cool and I wasn't mad.

If anything, I was thrilled to be done for the day at 10:30 am... but I still had a recap to write.  So after finding a little cafe with wi-fi, I settled in with coffee and finished this up.

So anyway, to make this somewhat relevant... imagine if Jose Vidro opened up the paper or checked the internet this morning and found out for the first time that his sorry ass was being benched, in effect, for Adam Jones.  Whether or not it's the right thing to do competitively, imagine how upset he'd be that he wasn't told in advance by his team.  Imagine his teammates found out the same way, and how upset some of them would be that he was thrown under the bus like that, that he had to find out from the news because the org didn't bother to tell him.

Not to say that's exactly what happened, but in trying to make sense of why news of an Adam Jones callup and subsequent lineup reorganization was leaked... then suddenly scrapped... the aforementioned educated guess and reasoning makes as much sense as any other.  Keep in mind that players are people too, and they'd like to be treated with respect like anyone else.

Flame on if you wish, but on with the wrap-up!

They played two in VENEZUELA~!

Game 1:  VSL Mariners 4, VSL Cardinals 2, 7 innings

Leonardo Rodriguez:  5 IP, 4 H, (2 R) 1 ER, 3 walks, 2 K, hit batter
Reynaldo Sabala:  1 IP, 1 H, 2 walks, 2 K
Jose Jimenez:  1 IP, 2 K, 2 hit batters.  Easy there, Jose.
Yidid Batista:  1-3, triple
Rigoberto Rangel:  1-3, double, R, 2 RBI
Jorge Agudelo:  1-3, RBI (.222/.373/.306)
Larry Gonzalez:  1-2, RBI

A 4 run 4th inning keyed an easy victory where Leo worked a shaky but effective minimum, and a bullpender* got some work in before Jose Jimenez came in and shut down game one for his 10th save.  Being a closer in the VSL means about as much as being a closer in a Pony League, so don't read TOO much into it, but Jose Jimenez has done the job well.

* - guy who sits at end of bullpen and doesn't pitch too much.  See:  Davis, Jason.

Game 2:  VSL Mariners 5, VSL Cardinals 0, 7 innings
VSLM's:  34-15... VSL Cards:  15-34

Jean Tome:  6 IP, 5 H, 4 walks
Oberth Guanire:  1 IP
Yidid Batista:  1-3, RBI double (.289/.366/.356)
Jonathan Loaisiga:  2-3, double, 2 R, walk, K (.306/.398/.417)
Jose Rivero:  2-4, double, R, K (.292/.400/.441)
Cesar Fuentes:  3-4, double, R, 2 RBI, K (.327/.400/.439)
Rigoberto Rangel:  1-3, double, 2 RBI (.261/.353/.466)
Roberto Velasquez:  2-3 (.248/.331/.305)

Shutout!  Sweep!  Easy game and some good performances in the nightcap.  It looked like the VSL Cards just packed this one in, as they only managed 5 hits while the VSLM's tacked on runs when they could.  Jean Tome almost went the distance despite every out being in play, and Oberth Guanire, hardly an imposing force, had no problem finishing.

One thing I notice about pitchers who get promoted from Venezuela... they usually have posted impressive K numbers and K/BB rates in their VSL season.  Despite the VSLMs' success, only 4 HRs allowed all season (though, granted, you don't see many power hitters among the kids in the VSL) and the low ERAs, there isn't a single pitcher whose K/BB is at 3.00 or above.

Jean Tome has been one of the team's better SPs and as you saw in the line above, he walked 4 and struck out none.  His 1.86 ERA in 38.2 IP comes with a 28/15 K:BB.  Rhonny Acosta strikes out about a batter an inning as a reliever but also walks 3.6 guys per 9.  You don't see blow-away numbers with this staff.

This is by no means any sort of indictment or death knell.  I admit it's nothing more than a curious observation.  With 9 pitchers among the 16 that have worked for the VSLM's this year holding sub-2 ERAs after 49 games, you have to believe that their abilities played some sort of role, and that several of these guys will be pitching at the next level for the M's org next season.

Dominican:  Mariners 3, AthleticsUno 1
DSLM's:  18-12... DSLA's1:  20-11

Henry Perez:  6 IP, 4 H, walk, 5 K, wild pitch
Victor Duarte:  2 IP, 2 H, 3 K
Bruno Mercedes:  1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 walks, 2 K
Ramon Morla:  2-4, R (.188/.330/.250)
George Soto:  1-3, RBI (.250/324/.417)
Emmanuel Familia:  1-3, solo HR (.282/.384/.465)
Joel Mendez:  2-3 (.309/.374/.392)

Aside from having one of the best names in the minors, catcher Emmanuel Familia is showcasing his abilities in the early going on the DSL season, with an .849 OPS, easily the best among the DSLM regulars, and a solid 13:11 K/BB ratio.  But be wary:  4 of his 5 XBH's have been HRs.  Has he had some good fortune, or are the DSL parks just too small to contain him?  As the sample size increases, time will tell, but I like what I'm seeing from the kid.

OF Joel Mendez has also showcased some useful ability:  12 SBs with a .374 OBP in 97 ABs.  5 doubles and a .392 SLG show he's got at least a bit more pop than Juan Pierre ;P

After that, there isn't much statistically to crow about.  Infielder Amelis Carvajal and outfielder Angel Zapata have shown an ability to draw walks, but you don't get off the island with a walk, so they say.  Neither is hitting for any power, combining for a grand total of 3 XBH's, all doubles, in 127 combined ABs.

Arizona:  The AZLM's had Wednesday off.  They're in progress against the AZL Padres, a wing of our hated natural rivals.

a:  Eugene 4, Everett 3
Eugene:  15-7... Everett:  10-12

Juan Carlos Ramirez:  6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 walks, 8 K, wild pitch
Aaron Brown:  0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 3 walks, K
Bryan Harris:  1 IP, 1 H
Nick Hill:  0.1 IP
Ryan Moorer:  no outs recorded, 2 H, 2 ER, 3 walks
Greg Halman:  2-4, double, R, K (.333/.388/.639)
Kalian Sams:  0-4, 4 K: The Golden Sombrero (.157/.200/.257)
Joe Dunigan:  2-4, R, K (.231/.250/.308)
Ogui Diaz: 1-3, 2 run HR, K (.319/.347/.478)

Juan Carlos Ramirez commenced pwnage over six innings, striking out a third of the batters he faced and allowing his only run on a wild pitch with men on the corners in his final inning.

Flyballs:  3
Groundballs:  5 (plus 1 bunt)
Line Drives:  1
Pop Ups:  3
Walks:  3
Strikeouts:  8

With a 3-1 lead in the 7th, reliever Aaron Brown walked three batters, the third forcing in a run to cut the lead to 3-2, and allowed a single on a bunt before ceding to Bryan Harris with two outs.  Harris got Luis Martinez to tap back to the mound and that was that.

It stayed 3-2, and the Aquasox bats remained silent.  In the bottom 9th, reliever Ryan Moorer came on and gave up, in exact order, walk, walk, bunt single, infield single, walk, to give up the game.  JCR's quality start was undone mostly by six walks from two relievers.

A:  Wisconsin had another day off.  They (8-10) are on their way to Lansing for a series with the Lugnuts (10-9).

A+:  Bakersfield 8, High Desert 4
Bakersfield:  7-13... High Desert:  6-14

Cibney Bello:  4 IP, 9 H, (8 R) 4 ER, 3 walks, 3 K, 3 wild pitches
Juan Zapata:  3 IP, 1 H, walk, 4 K
Aaron Cotter:  1 IP
Carlos Triunfel:  1-5, 2 K
Jesus Guzman:  2-5, R, K (.284/.347/.500)
Adam Moore:  2-5, double, 3 run HR, K (.293/.375/.567)
Johan Limonta:  2-3, double, R, walk (.303/.375/.476)
Jeff Flaig:  2-4, K (.211/.263/.293)
Omar Peña:  0-3, sac fly RBI (.239/.268/.313)

Cibney Bello....

...

Flyballs:  4
Groundballs:  7
Line Drives:  5
Pop Ups:  1
Walks:  3
Strikeouts:  3
Hairs torn out by Mavs fans/coaches/players who had to watch or listen to this:  countless

...

... he allowed 3 runs in the 2nd and 5 more in the 4th, putting the Mavs behind 8-0 in short order.  The Mavs showed life, as Adam Moore took a Michael Ballard suck pitch deep for a 3 run bomb in the 5th, and the Mavs cashed in another run in the 8th, but it honestly was never competitive.  Thanks, Cibney.

AA:  West Tenn 5, Carolina 1
WTN:  8-13... CAR:  8-13

Travis Chick:  6 IP, 3 H, 2 walks, 8 K, wild pitch
Aaron Troila:  1 IP, 1 H, K, hit batter
David Asher:  1 IP, K
Mumba Rivera:  1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER (HR), 2 K
Brent Johnson:  1-5, double, RBI (.295/.374/.410)
Marshall Hubbard:  3-4, solo HR (.252/.343/.408)
Charlton Jimerson:  2-3, double, RBI, walk, K (.272/.333/.558)
Matt Tuiasosopo:  1-3, RBI, walk, K (.272/.388/.417)
CoachOwens' favorite Waste of Space player in the whole world:  0-4, 2 K (.180.253/.272)

Travis Chick struck out the side in the 1st and that basically set the tone for another awesome outing.  Can you imagine if this guy made it all the way back to whatever the Reds thought he'd be before he got hurt?  Advantage: team that doesn't have Eddie Guardado.

Flyballs:  5
Groundballs:  4
Line Drives:  1
Pop Ups:  2
Walks:  2
Strikeouts:  8

By the time Chick took a seat, it was 4-0 DIAMOND JAXX, a comfortable lead that Carolina never really threatened to dent.

AAA:  With the AAA All Star Game in Albuquerque, Tacoma's Rainiers of course had no game.  As we know, Adam Jones played, and thus probably isn't coming up to the big club for the time being... but SOON, PEOPLE!  SOON!

The Rainiers kick off the 2nd half tonight at 7:05 pm PDT in Cheney against Fresno.