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Link Report for Wed. 5/7 -- Treat Youself to Brunch with the Stars (And a Human Pinata)


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Wednesday's Daily Menu: Please, oh mighty Huntsville lineup, distract us from our big league woes...

All times Central; pitchers subject to change --

Nashville: LHP Chris Narveson at Tucson (Diamondbacks), 8:15 PM pre-game; 8:30 gametime

Audio link:
www.nashvillesounds.com/listenlive/

Huntsville: LHP David Welch at home vs. Mobile (Diamondbacks), 10:20 AM pre-game; 10:35 gametime

Audio link via WUMP (game will also archive at this link):
http://www.minorleaguebaseball.com/multimedia/audio.jsp?sid=t559

Brevard County: TBD (probably RHP Donovan Hand) at home vs. Tampa (Yankees), 6:00 PM gametime

Sorry, no audio for this series...

West Virginia: Idle

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Follow Wednesday's action as it happens:
Here's what you do, right click on each of the links below and choose "Open in New Window". Open the Nashville Gameday. For the others, choose "Log" or "Recap". While you're listening to your minor league game of choice (or watching/listening to the big league Crew when they are playing), simply refresh your game log browsers every so often.

Nashville:

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?sid=milb&t=g_box&gid=2008_05_07_nasaaa_tucaaa_1

Huntsville:

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?sid=milb&t=g_box&gid=2008_05_07_mobaax_hunaax_1

Brevard County:

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?sid=milb&t=g_box&gid=2008_05_07_tbyafa_breafa_1

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 Pacific Coast League (AAA) - PCL American North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Omaha 15 15 .500 - 9-6 6-9 L3 Memphis 14 19 .424 2.5 6-10 8-9 L2 Iowa 13 18 .419 2.5 6-9 7-9 L3 Nashville 11 20 .355 4.5 7-8 4-12 W1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

 Southern League (AA) - SOU North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Huntsville 22 10 .688 - 15-2 7-8 W3 West Tenn 22 10 .688 - 10-2 12-8 W6 Carolina 18 14 .563 4.0 9-6 9-8 L1 Chattanooga 18 14 .563 4.0 11-6 7-8 W1 Tennessee 12 20 .375 10.0 6-9 6-11 L1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

 Florida State League (A+) - FSL East Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Palm Beach 20 12 .625 - 13-5 7-7 L1 Brevard County 17 15 .531 3.0 9-5 8-10 L2 Daytona 16 16 .500 4.0 6-8 10-8 L1 Jupiter 16 16 .500 4.0 11-3 5-13 L4 Vero Beach 15 17 .469 5.0 11-7 4-10 L2 St. Lucie 8 24 .250 12.0 5-13 3-11 W1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 

 South Atlantic League (A) - SAL Northern Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lake County 19 12 .613 - 9-7 10-5 W2 Delmarva 18 14 .563 1.5 12-8 6-6 W1 Greensboro 17 14 .548 2.0 5-9 12-5 W3 Lakewood 16 16 .500 3.5 10-10 6-6 W3 Hagerstown 15 17 .469 4.5 6-10 9-7 L3 Hickory 15 18 .455 5.0 6-9 9-9 L5 West Virginia 12 20 .375 7.5 5-9 7-11 L1 Lexington 10 22 .313 9.5 3-11 7-11 L3 

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Final: Huntsville 7, Mobile (Diamondbacks) 3

Huntsville Site Game Summary:

Welch Stars at the Plate and On the Mound

By Brett Pollock / Huntsville Stars

David Welch tossed six and two-thirds solid innings and chipped in with a huge three-run double in Huntsville's 7-3 win over Mobile Wednesday morning and afternoon in the middle of a five-game set in front of 5,480, the biggest crowd of the season, at Joe Davis Stadium. The Stars improved to 23-10 with their ninth straight win at home to temporarily move a half-game in front of West Tenn for the lead in the North Division, while the BayBears dropped to 15-18 and fell two and a half games behind Birmingham in the South Division. The Stars improved to 16-2 at home and clinched a sixth series win in seven tries.

Welch stranded runners at first and third with one out in the first and left John Hester at third after a one-out triple in the second inning. Mobile starter Hector Ambriz, who was also a position player at UCLA, clubbed a two-run home run in the fifth to give the visitors a 2-0 lead.

Ambriz got Matt LaPorta to ground into a double play with runners at the corners to end the first inning and then retired the side in order in each of the next three frames before Cole Gillespie and Freddy Parejo singled to open the fifth. Guilder Rodriguez walked one out later and Welch followed with a gapper to right-center to clear the bases and give the Stars their first lead. Welch has driven in five runs so far this season and the Stars' pitching staff has knocked in 10.

The lead didn't last long, as Bryan Byrne led off the sixth with an opposite field home run to left to tie the game. Carlos Corporan's two-out single in the bottom of the inning brought Gillespie in with the go-ahead run. Ambriz was removed after six innings and suffered the loss after yielding four runs on eight hits and two walks, while fanning four. Mike Bell greeted A.J. Shappi with a leadoff home run in the seventh and the Stars tacked on two more in the eighth on Corporan's second RBI hit of the day and a Ryan Crew double play ball.

Welch was lifted after yielding three runs on eight hits and striking out a season-high six to earn his fourth win of the year and his third at home. Patrick Ryan tossed an inning and a third of shutout relief and Juan Sandoval retired the side in order to end the game.

The series continues Thursday night with left-hander Brae Wright taking the mound against BayBears' right-hander Matt Torra. Coverage of the game begins at 6:50 pm central time and can be heard locally on SportsRadio 730 WUMP and through the internet at www.huntsvillestars.com and www.730ump.com .

Huntsville Box Score
Four Stars with multi-hit games...

Huntsville Game Log

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Almost all of the Stars have their photos up on their milb.com player profiles and for some reason the photographer had them all facing to their right when the pictures were taken. The results are awkward.

 

For instance, Robert Hinton pondering what went wrong at the Mexican buffet the previous evening.

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/images/players/mugshot/ph_447764.jpg

 

 

Or Matt LaPorta, in the middle of his ten count on Joe Davis Stadium Hide-and-go-seek Day.

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/images/players/mugshot/ph_453181.jpg

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I know he got the day off today, but this has been bugging me for a while... Why wouldn't Salome bat 5th instead of 8th in that line up? No offense to the other guys, but Salome is arguably the 3rd best all around hitter, why not have him follow Laporta. I know I'm nick picking as that lineup will score runs with Laporta or Gamel batting lead off, the lineup really doesn't matter... but I feel like I should take up for Salome.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."

- Plato

"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."

- Plato

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Final: Tampa (Yankees) 2, Brevard County 1

Brevard County Box Score

Unfortunately, Stephen Chapman's home run in the 9th was a solo shot, following a Lorenzo Cain strikeout; Manatees wasted another fine effort by Donovan Hand; the run Rafael Lluberes allowed turned out to be huge; Manatees didn't draw a single walk; Taylor Green the only multi-hit game with two singles...

 

Brevard County Game Log

There weren't any great scoring threats, just a real quiet night for Brevard, scuffling much like the parent club...

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Why wouldn't Salome bat 5th instead of 8th in that line up? No offense to the other guys, but Salome is arguably the 3rd best all around hitter, why not have him follow Laporta.

 

Errecart and Gillespie are much better hitters than you give them credit for. Gillespie had a similar OPS at Brevard with a lower SLG but a higher OBP. Salome's was on a much smaller sample due to the suspension. Salome may be a better hitter than Errecart, but I would not go so far as to say he is a better hitter than Gillespie.

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I think the issue is really Escobar batting second. Escobar was born as a seventh or eighth hitter. Gillespie, with his excellent plate discpline, should be hitting second, Salome fifth, and Errecart sixth. I'm betting on Errecart's newfound plate discpline being somewhat of a mirage.
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I'll give you that Gillespie had a similar OPS, which as you noted was supported by his OBP, which was very good becaus of 70+ walks on the season. However, he is 2 years older than Salome. On pure numbers I give Salome the nod because of his age, but I also wonder if Gillespie will maintain that BB rate, he's on pace for 60 this season, and I see that number declining as he advances. However based on last years stats for the sake of arguement I'll call this a push.

 

Errecart profiles like more of a classic slugger, without the eye popping power numbers or the walks thus far. Salome is again 2 years younger, has better plate discipline, and better numbers all the way around. Salome has outperformed Errecart at every level being younger, he's the better hitter of the 2.

 

I don't think any intelligent arguement could be made for Bell or Rodriguez at 2B being superior hitters.

 

Brantley is obvious choice for the 1 hole with that OBP, Escobar makes sense in the 2, Gamel and Laporta are definately the 3 and 4, even if Gillespie is the 5, Salome should be the 6.

 

In terms of all around hitting talent, Salome gives you Average, OBP, and SLG... which in my mind makes him the 3rd best hitter behind Gamel and Laporta. I'm a Brantley guy, but he's only hit for average and OBP thus far. and I've already compared him to Gillespie and Errecart.

 

Again it's not that any of this matters, they'd score runs no matter how the batting order was configured, but it just doesn't sit well with me that Salome is batting 8th, but I also admit that I've always been very high on him and I'm completely biased.

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation."

- Plato

"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something."

- Plato

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Errecart was selected for the Hawaii Fall League, along with Salome and Gamel, so the Brewers brass definitely thinks something of him. He was mashing in Hawaii (albeit a small sample) until he broke his wrist on a HBP.

 

Salome's OBP at Brevard and West Virginia was nothing to write home about. Perhaps that's the reason he is batting 8th - teams will pitch around him to get to the pitcher so he will need to learn to lay off pitches off the plate at the #8 spot.

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Link while active, text follows:

 

Stars stay hot at home

Welch pitches, hits Huntsville past BayBears

By ALAN CLEMONS

Huntsville Times Sports Staff, alan.clemons@htimes.com

 

Huntsville got help from its starting pitcher at the plate in Wednesday's 7-3 win over Mobile at Joe Davis Stadium.

 

David Welch belted a three-run double in the bottom of the fifth. He also struck out a career-high six batters and did not walk a batter in seven innings, something Stars manager Don Money hopes is a trend.

 

"No walks ... that's a big thing," said Money, whose team moved to 23-10 and leads the Southern League North. "We've been working on that. It's just baseball, throwing strikes and putting the ball in play. Hit it to someone and make them catch it. Go up to the next level and it's the same thing."

 

Welch improved to 4-1 with Patrick Ryan and Juan Sandoval closing it out.

 

The squads battled in a rare morning start, with a season-high attendance of 5,480 - mostly school kids blowing horns and having fun. The teams had to be at the stadium at 9 for warmups.

 

"These guys aren't even out of bed then," Money said, laughing.

 

Huntsville's top hitters - leadoff man Michael Brantley, shortstop Alcides Escobar, third baseman Mat Gamel and left fielder Matt LaPorta - were a combined 2-for-14, with Brantley getting the only knocks.

 

Cole Gillespie had a double and two singles, while Freddy Parejo and Carlos Corporan each had two hits. Gillespie scored three times and Parejo twice, with Guilder Rodriguez adding a hit and run behind them.

 

Still, the Stars trailed 2-0 in the top of the fifth when Mobile's pitcher Hector Ambriz jacked a rocket over the right-center wall.

 

Gillespie and Parejo led off with singles against Ambriz, Corporan then fanned on a called third strike and Rodriquez walked to load the bags. Welch took a few pitches and then lined a perfectly-placed shot to the base of the right-center wall, clearing the bases and easily reaching second.

 

"Huge, huge hit from Welch," Money said, "especially after giving up the homer to Ambriz. We got some good hitting from the bottom half of the order. Corporan has been hitting it hard but not getting hits. But that's how the club is swinging right now. Everyone is picking each other up."

 

Welch gave up a leadoff homer in the sixth to Bryan Byrne, temporaily tying the score at 3, but Gillespie doubled in the bottom of the inning and scored on a long single by Corporan.

 

Ambriz (2-4) was tagged with the loss, allowing four runs on four hits and two walks in six innings.

 

Mike Bell tagged BayBears reliever A.J. Shappi for a pinch-hit solo homer in the seventh, and Huntsville added two more in the eighth.

 

The Stars improved to 16-2 at home and 12-1 in day games.

 

"Hitting is contagious and not hitting is contagious," Money said. "If you're not hitting, you have guys trying to do little things they shouldn't be doing. If you're hitting well, everyone is kind of loose and you know if you're not hitting, another guy will. But when the worm turns, it turns. So you enjoy it and ride it while you can."

 

The teams play tonight at 7:05 with lefty Brae Wright starting for Huntsville against Matt Torra of the BayBears.

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Yankees Squeak by Manatees
By Tyler Stover / Brevard County Manatees

The Tampa Yankees clipped the Brevard County Manatees Wednesday night, 2-1. Ryan Pope (3-2) pitched six shutout innings to pick up the win, while Donovan Hand (3-2) took a tough loss, allowing just one run over seven innings.

Tampa struck first, with a Mitch Hilligoss double, followed by Andres Perez's single to score the first run of the game in the fourth inning. They tacked on an insurance run in the eighth, as Luis Nunez scorched a triple down the right field line off Manatees reliever Rafael Lluberes. Nunez then scored on Tim Battle's double. The Manatees threatened in the ninth, as Stephen Chapman hit his team-high sixth home run of the year. Chuckie Caufield was able to reach on an error with two outs to bring the winning run to the plate, but Matt Cline's groundout ended the threat. Jose Valdez earned his first save of the season for Tampa, despite allowing the Chapman homer.

With their seventh consecutive victory, Tampa has now moved into sole possession of first place in the FSL West, and is tied for the best record in the entire Florida State League at 20-13. Brevard County maintained its second place position in the FSL East at 17-16. Mike Jones (0-0, 4.85) looks to turn things around for the Manatees, as he takes on Alfredo Aceves (3-1, 2.60) on Howard Dean "I Have a Scream" Night at Space Coast Stadium. The festivities begin at 7:00 PM (6:00 Central) Thursday night.

Martin Maldonado guns down a stolen base attempt in the 5th inning of Wednesday's game. (MiLB.com Photo by Dennis Greenblatt)

http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/images/2008/05/07/8Hn4gUYN.jpg
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Final: Nashville 10, Tucson (Diamondbacks) 6

 

Nashville Site Game Summary:

Link for Brendan Katin photo, text follows --

 

Red-Hot Sounds Defeat Sidewinders, 10-6

 

TUCSON, Ariz. - The Nashville Sounds continued their torrid play on Wednesday evening at Tucson Electric Park, recording their seventh win in the last nine contests with a 10-6 victory over the Sidewinders.

 

Every Nashville starter registered a hit among the club's 13-hit attack except team batting leader Russell Branyan (0-for-5). The 10-run output was the Sounds' fifth double-digit scoring total of the year.

 

Sounds catcher Vinny Rottino spotted the visitors a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning when his two-run double to left plated Hernan Iribarren and Abraham Nunez, who had opened the contest with singles against Tucson starter Evan MacLane.

 

Nashville increased the lead to 3-0 in the second when Steve Sollmann (3-for-4) led off with a single and later scored on a Nunez groundout.

 

Tucson third baseman Jamie D'Antona (3-for-4) put the home team on the board in the bottom of the second when he led off the frame by belting a 1-0 Chris Narveson offering over the wall in right for his second home run of the season.

 

Later in the frame, MacLane helped his own cause by evening the contest with a two-out, two-run double to right off Narveson, making it a 3-3 game.

 

Sounds shortstop Adam Heether continued his recent hot hitting in the third when he drilled a two-out solo homer to left off MacLane to put Nashville back in front by a 4-3 count. The blast was his second roundtripper of the year. Heether has hit safely in 11 of his last 13 games.

 

Narveson got into the act with the lumber in the fourth when he delivered an RBI single that brought in Sollmann, who had opened the inning with his first triple of the season. Nashville added a pair of unearned runs later in the frame following a D'Antona throwing error to up the lead to 7-3. Rottino delivered his second RBI knock of the evening, a single, before Brad Nelson plated Nunez with a groundout.

 

The Sidewinders responded with a run of their own in the home half of the fourth, cutting the Nashville lead to 7-4 when Jesus Merchan led off with a single and came plateward two batters later on a Phil Avlas RBI double to left.

 

Brendan Katin increased the Sounds' lead to 10-4 in the seventh when he slugged a two-out, three-run homer to left off Connor Robertson, his second tater of the series and fifth of the season. Nelson, who scored on the big fly, singled earlier in the frame to extend the club's longest active hitting streak to seven games.

 

Tucson scored the evening's final two runs in the eighth against Zach Jackson.

 

Narveson (2-4) notched his second straight winning start after opening the year with five winless outings. The southpaw allowed four runs on eight hits over his five innings of action, adding a pair of strikeouts.

 

MacLane (1-3) took the loss after he lasted only four innings for the Sidewinders and surrendered seven runs (five earned) on nine hits.

 

The teams continue the series with another 8:30 p.m. CT meeting on Thursday evening. Right-hander Richie Gardner (1-1, 5.40) will man the bump for the Sounds to face Sidewinders righty Esmerling Vasquez (0-0, 6.00).

 

Nashville Box Score

To rain on an otherwise positive parade, Zach Jackson isn't exactly sparkling since his move to the pen...

 

Nashville Game Log

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