- Hot diggity: Baseball Reference now has full league stats posted for the DSL! I can now link you to stats for the DSL teams on the stats page.
- Apparently, Chris Kirkland's appearance in High Desert was simply a cup of coffee: he was sent to Everett and made his first Aquasox appearance last night, finishing off a 4 hit 2-0 shutout of the Tri City Dust Devils.
The shutout was led by 5 incredible shutout innings from Bobby LaFromboise, who has had a rookie season as interesting as his surname. During one stretch, the lefthander struck out 6 of the 7 batters he faced, whiffing 5 straight batters at one point. He got an amazing number of groundballs over his 5 innings, given he's been one of the more extreme flyball pitchers: he's running a 31% GB rate on the season AFTER this game.
Line Drives: 1
Robbie Dominguez, who has had a rough season himself thanks to a bad walk rate and some poor luck on BIP, relieved LaFromboise and got 6 groundouts and 2 strikeouts in 3 innings. This Tri City lineup, while on the lesser side of average in the NWL in runs scored, isn't all that comparitively bad, so the Aquasox did a good job of groundballing this lineup to death (and the game was in Everett, so you can't even blame the Dust Devils' park for this one).
- I apologize for not noting this on August 2 when it happened, but congratulations, Luis Nuñez, for drawing your 2nd walk of the season. With 2 walks in 147 ABs, you are well on your way to proving that you don't get out of Snohomish County with a walk.
- A better look at Joe Kantakevich, who hasn't been right since starting this year in High Desert and got touched up again in Wisconsin yesterday... reveals that his walks are way up and his K's are way down. His walk rate more than doubled in High Desert (14.9% of his PAs) from his 2007 in Wisconsin (5.8), and it remained high even after his return to Wisconsin (9.2). After running a strong K rate in 2007 (22.0%), his K's in High Desert plummeted to 8.1% while his BABIP was an astonishing .520, and his K's remained down upon demotion (10.8) as Midwest League hitters beat him to the tune of a .380 BABIP.
So while the rate slumps in High A at least can be explained by tougher competition... the continued slumps upon a return to a level he's seen success in are troubling. A spike in walks? A drop in K's? A sustained spike in BABIP? At a level that he showed clear command of last season? This only solidifies my suspicion that something isn't right with the guy, whether physically or mentally. Regardless of what role JK serves in the pen, manager Terry Pollreisz might want to shut the guy down for the year. They've got 7 other guys in the bullpen (aside from the rotation) and the team's certainly not competing for anything. If Brett Lorin's reduction of workload is an issue that you believe necessitates an 8 man pen with JK in a heavy role... here's an idea: you can just move Lorin to the pen, go with Paredes, Pineda, Ramirez, Renaud and Jimenez in the rotation, then give Lorin his 50-60 pitches every 5 days in piggyback relief, probably for Jimenez (who it appears isn't being profiled as a starter by the org).
I only discuss the point because it looks like Joe Kantakevich needs an extended rest. As always, I could be wrong, but generally, you walk rates and BABIP don't spike as your K rates drop over an extended period because you're feeling great.
- Edward Paredes, who struck out 8 over 6 innings in this game, is essentially the same pitcher he was in Everett last year, except with slightly fewer walks (still a relatively high 9.8%) and a lower GB rate (51%, down from 63). He can work a lot of innings and miss some bats, but there isn't to say about the lefthander otherwise.
- Take Three in the Tracy Thorpe As Starter experiment in West Tenn lasted into the 5th inning, with Tracy allowing only 4 hits, a couple runs and 2 walks, while striking out 5... but he got a bit lucky.
1. The leadoff batter, Michael Brantley, lined right to Matt Mangini at 3B. The next batter, Alcides Escobar, hit a flyball right into Mike Wilson's neighborhood in RF for the easy out.
2. A leadoff triple in the 2nd by Angel Salome only produced one run, with Salome scoring on a sac fly.
3. In the 3rd, with a man on 1st and one out, Alcides Escobar's liner found Mangini, who quickly threw to 1st to double off the runner.
4. Thorpe put runners on 1st and 2nd with one out in the 4th, but got back to back swinging strikeouts from Chris Errecart (3rd on the team with 84 K despite only 299 ABs) and Mike Bell (.298 OBP).
5. Thorpe finally ran out of luck in the 5th, but he was tiring anyway, so there's his excuse. He walked the leadoff batter, Lorenzo Cain (267/342/486), let Cain steal 2nd, and after Michael Brantley doubled Cain in, manager Scott Steinmann went and got Thorpe.
Line Drives: 3
Pop Ups: 1
Let's look at some other stats....
Henry Perez: 5 IP, 9 H, 4 ER, 3 walks, 4 K (10 GS +3, 2.25 ERA, 60 IP, 24/67 BB/K)
Jose Perdomo: 3 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, walk, 2 K, hit batter (16 app, 6 GS, 4.03 ERA, 44.2 IP, 1 HR, 9/28 BB/K)
Ambioris Hidalgo: 1 IP, 2 H, walk, K (7 GS +7, 4.58 ERA, 35.1 IP, 4 HR, 15/31 BB/K)
Ameilis Carvajal: 1-4, 2 run HR, 3 R, 2 walks (266/399/410)
Ramon Morla: 1-4, R, RBI, walk, K (265/415/368)
Rudy van Heydoorn: 3-5, R, RBI, K (240/411/372)
Axel Wel: 2-4, R, 2 RBI, walk (280/368/340)
Hassiel Jimenez: 2-5, R, 2 RBI, K (271/391/338)
Oliver Garcia: 1-5, R, RBI (196/324/304)
Janelfry Zorrilla: 4-4, 3 R (167/246/216)
Efrain Nuñez: 1-3, 2 run HR, sac fly RBI, 2 R, 2 K (281/395/482)
Rk-AZL: Brewers 6, Mariners 0, 6 innings (rain)
AZLMs: 6-4... AZL Brewers: 3-6
(League: 265/348/378... 4.42 ERA)
Brian Oates: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, walk, 7 K, 2 wild pitches (6 GS +4, 4.14 ERA, 45.2 IP, 3 HR, 25/48 BB/K)
Randy Castillo: 1 IP, 4 H, (5 R) 2 ER, K, wild pitch (8 app, 4.26 ERA, 12.2 IP, 6/8 BB/K)
Cesar Fuentes: 1-2, triple, K (277/338/392)
rest of AZLMs lineup: 2-17, 2 walks, 4 K
Brooks Mohr: 7 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 4 K, hit batter (10 GS, 2.66 ERA, 50.2 IP, 3 HR, 19/43 BB/K)
Andres Esquibel: 2 IP, 2 K (12 app, 1.88 ERA, 24 IP, 2 HR, 3/12 BB/K)
Dwight Britton: 1-4, double, 3 RBI, 3 K (258/296/424)
Tommy Johnson: 2-4, double, 2 R, 2 RBI, K (383/405/519)
Gabriel Noriega: 1-3, RBI, K, SB (198/232/242)
Bobby LaFromboise: 5 IP, 2 H, 6 K (8 GS +1, 3.69 ERA, 31.2 IP, 3 HR, 7/28 BB/K)
Robbie Dominguez: 3 IP, 1 H, 2 K (12 app, 7.58 ERA, 19 IP, 1 HR, 13/16 BB/K)
Chris Kirkland: 1 IP, 1 H, walk, 2 K
Travis Howell: 1-4, double, RBI, 2 K (310/424/407)
Luis Nuñez: 1-3, triple, R (313/325/395)
Nate Tenbrink: 0-2, sac fly RBI (205/310/327)
Tyson Gillies: 1-3, triple, K (273/372/382)
Edward Paredes: 6 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 3 walks, 8 K (22 GS +1, 4.71 ERA, 109 IP, 10 HR, 48/82 BB/K)
Joe Kantakevich: 1.1 IP, 4 H, 2 ER (HR), K (17 app, 7.01 ERA, 25.2 IP, 3 HR, 11/14 BB/K)
Keith Meyer: two outs (35 app, 5.06 ERA, 53.1 IP, 4 HR, 26/53 BB/K)
Daniel Carroll: 2-5 (257/333/324)
Denny Almonte: 1-4, double, R (263/315/451)
Ronald Garth: 2-4, RBI, K (268/320/404)
Alex Liddi: 3-4, 2 doubles, 2 R (229/293/340)
Alex Meneses: 1-2, RBI, K (221/327/241)
Jake Wild: 4 IP, 9 H, 4 ER (HR), 3 walks, 3 K, wild pitch, hit batter
Julio Santiago: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 walks, K, wild pitch (35 app, 6.15 ERA, 52.2 IP, 3 HR, 39/40 BB/K)
Bryan Harris: two outs, hit batter (33 app, 6.37 ERA, 41 IP, 9 HR, 9/28 BB/K)
Ricky Orta: 2 IP, 2 K (12 GS +5, 5.79 ERA, 56 IP, 13 HR, 20/52 BB/K)
Jamie McOwen: 1-4, triple, R (265/323/398)
rest of Mavs lineup: 4-27, walk, 4 K
Tracy Thorpe: 4.1 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 walks, 5 K
Justin Thomas: 2.2 IP, 1 H, walk, K, balk (17 GS +6, 4.14 ERA, 117.1 IP, 11 HR, 54/105 BB/K)
Shawn Kelley: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER (22 app, 1.11 ERA, 32.1 IP, 14/28 BB/K)
Brent Johnson: 1-4, 2 run HR, K (297/382/439)
Johan Limonta: 1-4, double (298/374/523)
Adam Moore: 1-3, double, R, RBI, walk (312/387/491)
Erick Monzon: 1-3, triple, R, RBI, walk (188/250/260)
Matt Mangini: 0-3, sac fly RBI, K (219/261/243)
AAA: The Rainiers had Thursday off, and are en route to Tucson for a series with the Sidewinders.