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7/14 Minor League Wrap-Up

- You'll notice that, for some players, I won't list a line with their stats. This is because, for sample size purposes, I set a baseline of requisite innings/games/ABs/etc that I want a given player to compile at his current respective level before I'll list a line, because it's kind of dumb to do so for a guy that had 2 IP or 5 ABs given the variance such a small sample has. But I realize I've never specified my methodology for when I do list a line, so before we begin, here I go.

For me to list a hitter's line, he must have played 15 games at his current level or accumulated 45 ABs, whichever comes first. If a hitter has, say, 15 games and 20 ABs... he's clearly a pinch hitter, and 15-20 separate pinch ABs is a reasonable enough sample for such a player to start listing a line.

For me to list a pitcher's line, he must have 5 appearances (whether starting or in relief) and 10 IP. This gives starters a sample of 3-5 starts (and relief appearances if applicable), while giving relievers a sample of several appearances.

Yes, this is arbitrary, but from my otherwise uninformed observations, these are the points where a sample starts to carry some weight, without waiting too long to give readers some cumulative referential data. A smaller sample, and there's still too much noise. A larger sample, and we're waiting quite a long time before I give you a cumulative line, and the natives begin getting restless about the right players. Thus the middle ground I've set.

- VSLer Jetsy Extrano, homerless coming into yesterday, achieved liftoff, taking Gabriel de Jesus Garcia deep with a man on and two out in the 1st, and taking him deep again with 2 on and one out in the 6th. Garcia's 36/5 K/BB is easily the best ratio among starters on the VSL Astros, and he had only allowed one other HR coming into this game. However, he had also allowed 25 runs, 14 earned, in 40 IP. That so many runs are unearned leads me to wonder if perhaps all the hits and runs are a byproduct of a poor defense. Defense in general in the VSL is kinda crappy (bleh field conditions don't help) so it's kind of hard to get a read on how well pitchers are doing. Are all the unearned runs hiding bad pitching behind a low ERA, or is the pitcher genuinely as good as his peripherals despite the defense?

- Turns out there WAS a DSLMs game on Sunday and they actually took Monday off. MiLB.com was late in reporting it. A couple of interesting items from this 12-7 win.

If you can't get off the island with a walk, then consider the DSLMs the DSL equivalent of Gilligan's Island, as the team collectively drew 15, FIFTEEN, walks against the AthleticsDos yesterday. Hassiel Jimenez and Ameilis Carvajal each drew 3 walks. You can't even blame the swirling wind, as the DSLMs pitching didn't walk a single batter. And the A2's are among the lower half of the dozens of DSL teams in walks allowed by the pitching staff (151 as a team after this disaster). The DSLMs, however, are now 3rd in walks drawn as a team with 205. Even sans this game, they'd still rank in the top 3rd in the entire DSL in walks drawn, plus their .370 OBP is tied for 2nd in the DSL. And they don't wait for ball four because of a Willits-like inability to hit for power: Their .354 SLG is 6th in all of the DSL. This is a team that shows incredible patience compared to their peers (average DSLer age is 18.5), and does their best to pay it off when they get their pitch.

I'm still not sure if he's related to Adrian, but Marbin Beltre certainly didn't inherit his brother's footspeed and hacking tendencies: after swiping 3 bags in Sunday's win, his 9 stolen bases lead the DSLMs and he has 19 walks in 107 PAs (18% of his PAs).

- Kenta Suda is still having a hard time getting a feel for pitching to pro hitters, though his teammates didn't help him out much. Suda walked 4 batters and uncorked a wild pitch in 5 innings, allowing 3 runs that ultimately proved to be the difference... but only 1 of those runs were earned thanks to FOUR AZLM errors. A YIKES AND AWAY throw by catcher Emmanuel Familia on a steal of 3rd went down the LF line and allowed a run to score in the 2nd. Back to back errors in the 3rd by 2B Cesar Fuentes and 1B Randy Molina allowed another run to score. And the hitters stranded 10 baserunners in only scoring Suda 2 runs. Five of those runners were left in scoring position. So Suda didn't have a great game, but he actually didn't do too bad given the circumstances. He could be improving dramatically for all we know.

- Aggressive Promotion and 17 year old Gabriel Noriega: After 38 good looking ABs in Peoria, going 16 for 38 (all singles) with a walk and 6 K, the M's decided to move the teenage Venezuelan up to Pulaski, where it looks like he's struggled in 34 ABs, with only 5 singles, one walk and 11 K. But it's just the variant regression that comes with hitting singles all the time: he's looked good at SS, with far more range than Anthony Phillips showed (6.57 per 9 to Phillips' 3.93). While it looks like he's struggling at the plate, he's the same exact player he was in Peoria, and like Triunfel, it's just a matter of growing into himself before the power arrives... and he's already far ahead of Phenom defensively.

- The Rehabbing Feier Train (have you seen the nose on that locomotive?) rolled into Everett, where Ryan Feierabend did not finish the 5th but did strike out 9 of the 19 batters he faced, allowing only 2 runs on 4 hits.

Meanwhile, the Dennis Freaking Raben train has indeed slowed down in Eugene: he struck out twice, walked and went 0 for 4. Eugene is a friendlier NWL park for hitters.

- High Desert's game featured some interesting pitcher usage. Anthony Varvaro, whose start on July 12th was cut short by the weather suspension, started last night after a day off and worked 4 bleh innings. Travis Mortimore, his stint as a starter in High Desert in shambles, came in on 3 days rest and threw 3 decent innings himself, getting High Desert through the 7th. From there, Aaron Cotter, infrequently used due to the Mavs struggles, and struggling mightily when he has, came on and pitched well in the 8th and 9th, ultimately getting credit for the win. It appears that, with a day off coming today, manager Jim Horner went ahead and gave these three guys some extended work, especially with what was a tight 4-4 ballgame at the time. The Mavs did snap the tie on a 2 run home run by the happiest man on Earth, Joe Simokaitis, to get Cotter the win.

- Sick and tired of getting whipped in their home park, the Las Vegas 51's moved all-in and pounded the alien stuffing out of Joe Woerman in a 13-3 Rainiers defeat. Woerman somehow finished the 4th in allowing 8 runs on 12 hits and ONLY 3 walks. Jon Huber ended his disastrous 1st half by getting pummeled for 2 more runs and a long ball himself in the 6th, and Tracy Thorpe continued a running theme, getting beat down himself in the 7th and 8th. The AAA All Star Break would be a good time to hand Tracy his walking papers, as a rested Rainiers staff and a returning Ryan Feierabend should render him obsolete.

- Woerman and Co may have had some help in getting shelled: Craig Wilson got the start in LF. Charlton Jimerson is gone, and actually departed when Fleming Baez and Deybis Benitez were brought in. Rob Johnson was placed on the temporary inactive list for who knows what reason. Wilson did make 3 putouts, but left field got peppered (Woerman is a big-time flyball pitcher), and Wilson couldn't cover nearly enough ground.

VENEZUELA~! VSL Mariners 6, VSL Astros 1
VSLMs: 34-18... VSL Astros: 24-27
(League: 254/337/345... 3.51 ERA)

Reynaldo Sabala: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 walks, 5 K (7 GS +4, 3.16 ERA, 42.2 IP, 1 HR, 19/27 BB/K)
Johalbi Chourio: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 walks, K, hit batter (9 app, 4.58 ERA, 19.2 IP, 11/6 BB/K)
Rafael Torrealba: 1-4, double, 2 K (250/326/338)
Jetsy Extrano: 2-5, 2 run HR, 3 run HR (261/343/408)
rest of VSLMs lineup: 3-25, 3 K

Hey, look, the DSLMs didn't take Sunday off after all! There was just a delay in reporting the scores. They were off yesterday, though. Here's Sunday's result:

Dominican: DSL Mariners 12, DSL AthleticsDos 7
DSLMs: 25-10... DSLA2s: 13-14
(League: 235/339/320... 3.73 ERA)

Felix Bautista: 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 7 K, wild pitch (11 app, 3 GS, 1.80 ERA, 45 IP, 2 HR, 9/50 BB/K)
Joan Vizcaino: 1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER
Bruno Mercedes: 1 IP, 3 H, (3 R) 0 ER, K (13 app, 2.23 ERA, 32.1 IP, 11/28 BB/K)
Ameilis Carvajal: 1-3, double, 4 R, 3 walks, SB (259/417/370)
Hassiel Jimenez: 2-3, 2 R, 2 RBI, 3 walks (325/442/419)
Angel Zapata: 1-2, double, 3 RBI, K (229/303/248)
Ramon Morla: 1-3, RBI, walk (205/396/329)
Rudy van Heydoorn: pinch bases loaded RBI walk (200/423/307)
Janelfry Zorrilla: 1-4, double, 2 RBI, walk, K (136/194/212)
Marbin Beltre: 2-3, R, RBI, walk, 3 SB! (250/396/273)

Rk-AZL: Rangers 3, Mariners 2
AZLMs: 8-12... Rangers: 10-8
(League: 265/345/386... 4.48 ERA)

Kenta Suda: 5 IP, 5 H, (3 R) 1 ER, 4 walks, 2 K, wild pitch
Eddy Hernandez: 2 IP, 1 H, walk
Randy Castillo: 1 IP, walk, 2 K
Robert Rodriguez: 3-4, R, K (286/305/377)
Joel Mendez: 2-4 (301/320/370)
Emmanuel Familia: 2-4, RBI, K

Rk+: Pulaski 7, Bluefield 5
PMs: 19-8... BLU: 9-18
(League: 264/336/397... 4.37 ERA)

Fabian Williamson: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 ER (HR), 3 walks, 5 K, 2 wild pitches (6 GS, 6.15 ERA, 26.1 IP, 5 HR, 12/30 BB/K)
Stephen Penney: two outs, 5 H, 4 ER, wild pitch
Kyle Brown: 1.2 IP, walk, K
Blake Nation: 1.2 IP, walk, 3 K, hit batter (7 app, 4.09 ERA, 11 IP, 1 HR, 4/12 BB/K)
Jacob Shaffer: 2-5, 2 R (224/297/310)
Juan Fuentes: 2-3, double, R, RBI, 2 walks (464/519/623)
Jose Rivero: 1-4, R, RBI, walk, 2 K (333/421/489)
Jonathan Arias: 2-3, triple, R, 3 RBI, walk
Tommy Johnson: 1-4, RBI
Gabriel Noriega: 1-4, RBI

A-: Eugene 8, Everett 5
EVE: 11-16... EUG: 10-17
(League: 253/342/360... 4.07 ERA)

Ryan Feierabend: 4.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 9 K, wild pitch, balk
Mark Pettis: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, walk, K (7 app, 5.23 ERA, 10.1 IP, 10/8 BB/K)
Robbie Dominguez: one out, 2 H, (5 R) 3 ER (HR), 2 walks (6 app, 7.36 ERA, 11 IP, 1 HR, 6/10 BB/K)
Eddy Fernandez: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 2 walks, 5 K (10 app, 6.23 ERA, 13 IP, 2 HR, 4/16 BB/K)
Dennis Freaking Raben: 0-4, R, walk, 2 K
Travis Howell: 2-4, 2 RBI, K (343/472/443)
Brandon Fromm: 1-5, RBI, 3 K (262/313/295)
Manny Pimentel: 1-3, double, walk (210/340/309)
Bennett Billingsley: 2-3, 2 run HR (226/302/358)

A: Fort Worth Wayne 9, Wisconsin 4
WIS: 4-20... FTW: 10-15
(League: 250/322/371... 3.64 ERA)

Jake Wild: 2.2 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, walk, 4 K, 2 wild pitches (22 app, 7 GS, 4.45 ERA, 60.2 IP, 4 HR, 19/60 BB/K)
Keith Meyer: 3.1 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 3 K (28 app, 4.17 ERA, 41 IP, 4 HR, 21/42 BB/K)
Joe Kantakevich: 1 IP, 2 H, 2 ER (HR), 2 walks (10 app, 12.34 ERA, 11.2 IP, 2 HR, 6/7 BB/K)
Jose Escalona: no outs recorded, 2 H, (2 R) 1 ER, walk (22 app, 6.12 ERA, 25 IP, 5 HR, 16/27 BB/K)
Ryan Moorer: 1 IP, walk, 2 K (29 app, 3.72 ERA, 36.1 IP, 2 HR, 13/27 BB/K)
Denny Almonte: 1-3, triple, R, RBI, walk (270/318/461)
Alex Liddi: 1-3, solo HR, walk (237/306/345)
rest of T-Rats lineup: 1-25, 3 walks, 6 K

A+: High Desert 6, Modesto 4
Mavs: 11-14... Deez Nuts: 15-10
(League: 272/341/408... 4.54 ERA)

Anthony Varvaro: 4 IP, 4 H, 3 ER (HR), 4 walks, 3 K, hit batter (18 GS +2, 6.17 ERA, 86 IP, 13 HR, 65/83 BB/K)
Travis Mortimore: 3 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, walk, 2 K (3 GS +2, 6.23 ERA, 17.1 IP, 3 HR, 11/13 BB/K)
Aaron Cotter: 2 IP, 2 H, walk, 4 K (37 app, 3.30 ERA, 46.1 IP, 4 HR, 13/42 BB/K)
Gavin Dickey: 1-3, R, sac fly RBI (294/316/353)
Carlos Triunfel: 1-3, R, RBI, walk (249/304/341)
Carlos Peguero: 1-4, triple, R, RBI, K (299/317/480)
Joe Simokaitis: 2-4, 2 run HR, 3 RBI

AA: The Southern League remains on their All Star break.

AAA: Las Vegas 13, Tacoma 3
TAC: 48-50... LVG: 51-48
(League: 275/346/439... 4.77 ERA)

Joe Woerman: 4 IP, 12 H, 8 ER, 3 walks, 2 K
Andrew Baldwin: 1 IP
Jon Huber: 1 IP, 2 H, 2 ER (HR)
Tracy Thorpe: 2 IP, 5 H, 3 ER (2 HR), K, hit batter
Matt Tuiasosopo: 3-4, double, R
WLAD: 1-4, 2 run HR
Craig Wilson: 2-3, solo HR, K
Luis Oliveros: 1-3, double