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7/18 Minor League Wrap-Up

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So after 10 surprising hours of sleep, I finally got the call I was waiting for: I'll be back to work on Monday morning.  WOOHOO.

Meanwhile, the Rainiers were on the wrong end of an epic ballgame, capped off by a surprise guest, the DIAMOND JAXX held onto the right end of their ballgame after a nice effort from Doug FISTER, the Mavs are not having a good second half, rain saved the T-Rats from excaberating their misery, the Aquasox can't stop the Boise Hawks from kicking their asses, and more!

Also, as a thank-you for waiting for today's recap, here's one guy who badly needs an orthodontist: Kevin Pucetas of Augusta

On to the wrap-up!

VENEZUELA~!  VSL Mariners 3, VSL Mets 0
VSLM's:  37-18... VSLMets:  16-37

Jose Rios:  6 IP, 3 H, 3 walks, 5 K
Yorjans Chourio:  one out, walk, balk, hit batter
Edlando Seco:  2.2 IP, walk, K
Cesar Fuentes:  3-3, double, R (.312/.386/.418)
Jorge Agudelo:  1-4, R, RBI (.226/.389/.298)
Larry Gonzalez:  1-4, RBI (.218/.295/.255)

Jose Rios, a bumbling Yorjans Chourio and a solid Edlando Seco combined to three hit los Metropolitanos, meaning any amount of offense was more than enough, which was good because the VSLM's didn't have very much to offer.

Dominican:  The DSL Mariners had the day off.  They play the DSL Phillies (21-16) today.

Arizona:  Mariners 6, Brewers 0
AZLM's: 16-6... AZL Brew Crew:  5-16

Fabian Williamson:  6 IP, 6 H, walk, 8 K
Michael Renfree:  1 IP, 2 H, walk
Johnny DuRocher:  1 IP, 1 H, 2 K, wild pitch
Travis Mortimore:  1 IP, 3 K
Daniel Carroll:  1-3, R, RBI, 2 walks (.365/.472/.432)
Luis Nuñez:  1-5, double, 3 RBI, K (.284/.311/.403)
Juan Fuentes:  1-5, RBI
Anthony Philips:  2-4, 2 R, RBI

Again, the AZL Brewers are a poor AZL team, so to see the AZLM's beat up on them is almost expected.  Fabian Williamson cruised, the org's favorite backup QB threw a scoreless inning and Travis Mortimore struck out the side in the 9th.

a:  Boise 9, Everett 5
EVE:  12-17... BOI:  14-15

Doug Salinas:  4 IP, 4 H, (6 R) 3 ER (HR), 3 walks, 6 K, 2 wild pitches
Bryan Harris:  2 IP, 1 H
Brandon McKerney:  1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER (HR), 2 K
Marquis Pettis:  2 IP, 2 K
Greg Halman:  2-4, double, R, walk, 2 K, SB #10 (.344/.396/.615)
Kris Sanchez:  1-3, R, RBI, 2 walks, 2 K (.208/.311/.264)
Wellington Dotel:  1-4, RBI, walk, 2 K
Jeff Dunbar:  0-2, R, sac fly RBI, walk, SB (.203/.319/.305)
Deybis Benitez:  1-3, 2 RBI, 2 walks, K (.111/.273/.148)

There is something to these Boise Hawks... the Aquasox had a 3-0 lead but Doug Salinas, who was dominant out of the gate (striking out 4 of the first 5 batters he faced), got bombed for 5 runs in the 4th.  Marquez Smith (don't we mention him a lot) hit a 3 run bomb, Salinas threw a grounder YIKES AND AWAY, a wild pitch, walked Josh Donaldson, threw ANOTHER wild pitch, and gave up a single.  Somehow he mixed a couple outs in there and got out after that.  Salinas allowed a leadoff double in the 5th and walked the next batter before finally getting the hook.

Flyballs:  4 (all in 4th and 5th innings)
Groundballs:  7
Line Drives:  0
Walks:  3
Strikeouts:  6

Bryan Harris allowed another run to score before getting out of the inning down 6-3.  The Aquasox eeked out a run in the 5th and the 6th to make it 6-5, but the Hawks pounded Brandon McKerney for 3 more runs to put it back out of reach.

A:  Wisconsin got rained out yesterday.  They have another game with Beloit scheduled today, where, weather permitting, Kyle Parker will take time out from ramming his car into other vehicles to start for the T-Rats.  No word yet on a makeup date for yesterday's rainout.

A+:  Modesto 12, High Desert 4
Mavs:  8-19... Deez Nuts:  16-11

Aaron Jensen:  6 IP, 10 H, (7 R) 6 ER (2 HR), 5 K, hit batter
Juan Zapata:  2 IP, 5 H, 4 ER (3 HR), 2 K
Ivan Blanco:  1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, walk, K
Michael Saunders:  2-5, solo HR, 2 R, K (.301/.395/.494)
Carlos Triunfel:  1-4, double, R, RBI
Jesus Guzman:  3-4, RBI, K (.285/.346/.503)
Adam Moore:  1-4, RBI, K (.285/.362/.553)
Jeff Frazier:  1-4, double (.318/.388/.455)

Tied at 4 after 6, Modesto teabagged the Mavs in the later innings.  Aaron Jensen got chased in a 3 run 7th, Juan Zapata finished that inning but got destroyed in a 4 run 8th, and Ivan Blanco was corralled in for another run of punishment in the 9th.  I demand an investigation into the hazing practices of deez.

Deez what?

(Fun fact:  The man in that picture, Travis Becktel, homered in the 4th)

Aaron Jensen:

Flyballs:  7
Groundballs:  7 (plus 1 bunt)
Line Drives:  4
Pop Ups:  4
Walks:  0
Strikeouts:  5
Last inning of work:  horrible

AA:  West Tenn 5, Mobile 4
WTN:  10-17... MOB:  11-16

Doug FISTER:  6.2 IP, 9 H, 3 ER (2 HR), 2 walks, wild pitch... or do you mean WILD FIST?!?!... ok, you mean wild pitch
Chad Fillinger:  one out, 2 walks, wild pitch
The Aircraft Carrier:  2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 K
Casey Craig:  2-5, triple, 2 RBI, K (.225/.329/.296)
Brent Johnson:  1-4, double, R, walk (.276/.359/.385)
Charlton Jimerson:  2-3, 2 run HR, walk, K (.280/.343/.569)
Matt Tuiasosopo:  1-3, walk, K (.277/.393/.426)
Rene Rivera:  3-4, double, 2 R, RBI, WHAT. (.193/.261/.283)

THE FIST did not record a strikeout but statistically looked the best he has looked since returning from his injury layoff, pitching into the 7th and begrudgingly allowing 3 runs, leaving the DIAMOND JAXX with a 4-3 lead.  He had trouble with a pesky lineup that put a lot of balls in the air, plus the first two batters of the game both bunted to try and take advantage of his lumbering size, and the last batter lining a shot right back at him that he fortunately caught.  It would've been a 4-1 lead had FISTER not started the 7th by giving up back to back HRs, the 2nd being Rusty Ryal's first of the season in AA.

Flyballs:  8
Groundballs:  9 (plus 3 bunts)
Line Drives:  5
Pop Ups:  2
Walks:  2
Strikeouts:  0

Chad Fillinger relieved him and got in trouble with two walks and a wild pitch but got out of it.

The DIAMOND JAXX did add a run in the top 9th on a Casey Craig line drive, good for him as he has predictably struggled since getting called up from High Desert, and good for the DIAMOND JAXX that they got the insurance run because they actually needed it.  Emilio Bonifacio, who earlier stole his 33rd base of the year, led off the bottom 9th with a triple, then scored with one out when Will Thompson's favorite player in the whole world, Rene Rivera, passed a ball.  But the next two batters flew out to end the ballgame.

AAA:  Salt Lake 10, Tacoma 9, 12 absolutely miserable innings in 100 degree weather with a swirling 25 mph wind
TAC:  43-55... SLK:  52-46

Robert Rohrbaugh:  6.2 IP, 11 H, (6 R) 4 ER, walk, 4 K, wild pitch
Kam Mickolio:  1.1 IP, 1 H, (2 R) 0 ER (HR), K
Wife Vulture:  2 IP, 2 H, (1 R) 0 ER, K
Juan Sandoval:  1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 walks, K
Nick Green:  1-5, R, RBI, K(.311/.343/.602)
Jeremy Reed:  2-6, double, 3 run HR (.289/.349/.443)
Adam Jones:  1-6, 2 K (.312/.375/.591)
WLAD:  2-6, 2 R, K (.319/.391/.574)
Rob Johnson:  3-6, 2 doubles, 2 R, RBI, K, SB (.265/.325/.378)
Ronnie Prettyman:  3-5, R, RBI (.283/.314/.390)
Gookie Dawkins:  1-4, R, 2 RBI, K (.253/.289/.346)

Salt Lake jumped all over Robert Rohrbaugh out of the gate for 3 runs off 3 doubles and a single, and another in the 3rd on four singles, all on groundballs, what luck, which equals a mother f#%king run.  But the Rainiers struck back in the 5th.  WLAD singled to lead off.  Rob Johnson doubled.  Ronnie Prettyman smoked a grounder to short that SS Casey Smith could not play to cash in a run.  Gookie Dawkins sac flied to bring in another run.  Sebastien Boucher drew a walk and Nick Green singled to bring in another run.  Then Jeremy Reed blasted off on a Henry Bonilla suck pitch for a 3 run bomb.  WHen the smoke cleared, it was 6-4 Rainiers.

And then the Rainiers did it again in the 6th.  WLAD led THAT inning off with a single.  Then Rob Johnson followed THAT with a double.  When was he last time two players led off consecutive innings with the exact same hits?  I actually had to scroll up to the log for the top 5th to make sure I wasn't reading the same line.

Alex Serrano relieved Henry Bonilla, and after getting Ronnie Prettyman to ground out, Gookie Dawkins singled, and Nick Green eventually reached on a grounder when 3B Matthew Brown threw YIKES AND AWAY to cash in a run.  Once that inning had ended, it was 9-4 Rainiers.  Game's in the bag?

RIGHT?

Robert Rohrbaugh, despite the early trouble, pitched into the 7th, leaving two runners for big Kam Mickolio.  Given that ugly first inning, where the first six Salt Lake batters put the ball in the air, and that ugly 3rd inning where four straight grounders turned into singles, this could've been way worse, but Rohrbaugh showed us a lot by holding the fort after that.

Flyballs:  7
Groundballs:  9
Line Drives:  4
Pop Ups:  5
Walks:  1
Strikeouts:  4

Terry Evans grounded to short, and Gookie Dawkins channeled Oswaldo Navarro and muffed it, loading the bases... for Mike Eylward.  Eylward is definitely a threat to get on bases, with doubles power (22 of them on the year), but with 6 HRs coming into today, he wasn't much more of a threat than that, right?

Except that at the moment he hit his flyball, that swirling 25 mph wind had turned towards the outfield fences, so imagine Kam Mickolio's dreadful surprise when that ball carried right over the LF wall in Franklin Covey Field for a GRAND SLAM that cut a big 9-4 lead to 9-8.

The Rainiers didn't have a lot of gas left in the dry Salt Lake heat, so they were hoping in the bottom 9th that the Bees had none left in as Wife Vulture came in to finish it off.  Matthew Brown gave them hope as he grounded out for one out.  Nick Gorneault grounded to short, and Gookie Dawkins had a hard time with it and had no play.  Terry Evans grounded to 2nd, and 2B Nick Green was thinking double play Arby's, because he obviously wasn't thinking 'field the ball', as he muffed it to put Evans on.

And then Mike Eylward, he who hit the shocking grand slam, lined a single to right to cash in Gorneault and tie the ballgame at 9 to complete the shocking comeback, much to the jubilation of the Salt Lake fans.  Greg Porter grounded out, and we were going to extra innings.

With two outs in the top 10th, Rob Johnson and Ronnie Prettyman singled to put themselves at the corners, but Gookie Dawkins grounded out to end that.

In the top 11th, Sebastien Boucher led off with a single, Nick Green bunted him over for one out, and Jeremy Reed grounded to 2nd for two outs to move Boucher to 3rd for Adam Jones.  And Adam Jones struck out to end the frame.

All this time, Salt Lake kept going down without a whimper.  But in the bottom 12th, against Juan Sandoval, a dubious option but extra innings and a depleted bullpen left Daren Brown with little choice, Mike Eylward led off with a walk, Greg Porter lined a single to put runners at the corners, Adam Pavkovich walked and it was only a matter of time.  Curtis Pride came in to pinch hit, and the Rainiers told him 'please choke, please choke!' but Curits couldn't hear them and hit a sac fly that won the ballgame.

Losing sucks, but I must admit that was one hell of a win for Salt Lake, and for Mike Eylward, who has earned a places in the Mariners Org's Minor League Thorns in the Side club alongside the likes of Diory Hernandez, Marquez Smith and Eddie Degerman.