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Link Report for Fri. 5/10 -- Loaded with Audio / Video For You

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Brewer Fanatic Staff

Friday's Daily Menu: TGIF!


All times are Central


Nashville: RHP Johnny Hellweg at home vs. Fresno (Giants), 6:45 PM pre-game, 7:05 gametime


Free Live Audio Link


Jeff Hem is the play-by-play voice of the Sounds; follow him on Twitter @jeffhempbp; we'll link to his blog updates at On the Air…and Off


MiLB.TV -- for subscribers; all Nashville games, home and away, will be available to watch via MiLB.TV's $39.99 season-long package ($9.99 to pay for a single month). The audio feed is from the home team. All MiLB.TV details available at the link.




Huntsville: RHP Andy Moye at home vs. Jackson (Mariners), 6:28 PM pre-game, 6:43 gametime


Free Live Audio Link -- Select the Huntsville feed from the MiLB main audio page


Alex Cohen is the play-by-play voice of the Stars; follow him on Twitter @alexmcohen. All games, home and away, are scheduled to be broadcast. It appears four Southern League teams air their home games on MiLB.TV, and we'll let you know when those dates pop up on the schedule




Brevard County: LHP Brent Suter at home vs. Tampa (Yankees), 5:05 PM pre-game, 5:35 gametime


Free Live Audio Link -- Select the link based on listed schedule


Manatees audio, hooray! Dave Walkovic is the first play-by-play voice of the 'Tees since 2007, he's joined by Andy Towne; follow the Brevard broadcast booth staff on Twitter @BCManateesRadio. All home games and many road games are scheduled to be broadcast. When road games are only available via the opponents' audio feed, we'll let you know that.




Wisconsin: RHP's Damien Magnifico and Leonard Lorenzo in a doubleheader at home vs. Clinton (Dodgers), 4:45 PM pre-game, 5:05 gametime; each contest slated for seven innings


Free Live Audio Link - 1280 AM WNAM


Chris Mehring is back to do his customary fantastic work as the Voice of the Rattlers. Follow him on Twitter @CMehring; we'll link to Chris' infamous blog often -- Rattler Radio.


MiLB.TV -- for subscribers; Wisconsin is one of four Midwest League clubs that have all their home games available via MiLB.TV.


So for the $39.95 season-long package, fans in Brewer Nation can watch all Sounds games, Stars' road games from four Southern League locales, and all Timber Rattlers home games and some road games.


NOTE: 32 of the Rattlers' 70 home games will be broadcast on TV this season. Time Warner Cable SportsChannel has seventeen games scheduled and WACY-TV My NEW32 plans to show fifteen games. We'll let you know when, but won't be providing day-before DVR reminders, so regularly check for proper channel and time planning (scroll to the bottom of this link).

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Brewer Fanatic Staff

Programming note: Tonight's Wisconsin (second) game is televised locally on on WACY-TV My NEW32 out of Green Bay / Appleton.


Ordinarily, the game broadcast would be preceded at 6:00 PM by "Showdown: Timber Rattlers Pre-Game".


Don't know if they'll pick up action in progress from Game One instead (apparently not). As for airing Game One, unlikely they'd want to give up their "Big Bang Theory" block between 5:00 and 6:00. :ohwell




Imagine most eyes will be in Cincinnati regardless, but hopefully useful DVR info for you diehards there...

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We've debated the proper speed to promote our prospects in the past, this subscriber piece gives some insight into San Fran's decision to skip Jonathan Williamson past A ball and send him right to A+ this spring. I'm always curious about the decision making process regarding prospect placement so I thought I'd share the link.


Mac Williamson Gets Giants’ Attention


Side note as it is mentioned at tail end of the article:

Of the Giants top 10 prospects, 6 are pitchers, 2 HS draftees, 3 college draftees, and 1 international signing out of the the Dominican.


The 4 position players are as follows: a contact hitting SS in Joe Panik (AA), an unorthodox hitting CF prospect in Gary Brown (AAA), a very toolsy CF prospect who hadn't put it all together yet Francisco Peguero (MLB) but was having a fantastic start to the season before being called up last week, and finally a decent enough corner OF prospect Roger Kieschnick (AAA) who TLB noted recently in the LR, who's Brook's nephew. Peguero is far and away the best prospect in that bunch, he's like a poor man's Gomez, all of the physical tools you'd want but hadn't put the hit tool together yet prior to this season.

"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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I also enjoy reading about the various minor league ballparks and what kind of promotions, food, and atmosphere they have going on. It looks like we might see an article on Nashville soon.


Hot Rods an anchor in revitalized area

This edition of Farm's Almanac, written from a hotel room in Bowling Green, Ky., before moving on to Nashville, attempts to illuminate just a few of the reasons why.

"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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Jorge Soler of the Cubs, the enigmatic Tyrell Jenkins of the Cards, last year's break out prospect Gregory Polanco of the Pirates, and Reds RHP prospect Robert Stephenson are discussed today. Odorizzi also gets some run. Starling Peralta of the Cubs and Yorman Rodriguez of the Reds haven't been so great...


Prospect Hot Sheet (May 10): Christian Yelich Keeps Lining Lasers

4. Jorge Soler, rf, Cubs

Team: high Class A Daytona (Florida State)

Age: 21

Why He’s Here: .381/.462/1.048 (8-for-21), 6 R, 3 2B, 1 3B, 3 HR, 4 BB, 4 SO

The Scoop: Soler is a scary guy with a bat in his hands, whether he’s charging the opposing team’s dugout or digging into the batter’s box. The scouting reports from international scouts who saw him playing for the Cuban junior national team and during his workouts in the Dominican Republic have held up well, as Soler has shown outstanding power, strong strike-zone discipline and the ability to mash in games. He’s hitting .290/.374/.559 through 25 games, which is reflective of the type of profile he should be have in the big leagues during his prime and why he’s quickly become one of the game’s premium prospects.

7. Tyrell Jenkins, rhp, Cardinals

Team: low Class A Peoria (Midwest)

Age: 20

Why He’s Here: 1-0, 0.00, 9 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 SO

The Scoop: Jenkins has ranked among the Cardinals’ Top 10 Prospects each of the last three seasons, but he remains more projection than dominating presence. After posting a 5.14 ERA in 19 starts in the Midwest League last year, Jenkins is repeating the league and had an 7.71 ERA through his first four starts. Then seemingly out of nowhere, Jenkins went out on Sunday and threw a nine-inning, 97-pitch shutout. Maybe it was just a one-game anomaly, but the Cardinals are hoping it was a turning point after a slow start.

10. Gregory Polanco cf, Pirates

Team: high Class A Bradenton (Florida State)

Age: 21

Why He’s Here: .333/.455/.667 (9-for-27), 2 HR, 3 2B, 7 RBIs, 5 R, 5 BB, 7 SO, 4-for-5 SB

The Scoop: Polanco is well on his way to proving his 2012 breakout season was no fluke, batting .303 thus far. True, his .475 slugging percentage is down from last year’s .522, but keep in mind the FSL’s average slugging percentage is .381. This week, Polanco pulled out of an 0-for-14 mini slump with four multi-hit games, which included his third and fourth homers of the season.


Team Photo

Robert Stephenson, rhp, Reds: Cincinnati’s 2012 first-round pick has missed plenty of bats—he’s whiffed 30 percent of the batters he’s faced—but it’s been a rocky start for low Class A Dayton, where he has a 4.76 ERA in 34 innings. He had his best start of the year on Wednesday, however, striking out nine with no walks over six shutout innings.


Not Hot

Starling Peralta, rhp, Cubs: Like McGuinness, Peralta started his spring training with a shot at the big leagues because he was selected by the Diamondbacks in the Rule 5 draft. But while McGuiness had a good shot at making the jump from Double-A to the big leagues, seeing Peralta jump from low Class A to the majors was a highly unlikely proposition. As expected, Peralta was sent back to the Cubs and unlike McGuinness, Peralta has had trouble getting readjusted to the minor league life. Pitching at high Class A Daytona, Peralta gave up 10 runs in two innings in two appearances this week. Now he’s been sent back to extended spring training to try to get back on track.
Yorman Rodriguez, cf, Reds: When the Reds signed Rodriguez out of Venezuela five years ago for $2.5 million, many scouts didn’t understand what the attraction was, as Rodriguez showed good athleticism but little feel for hitting in games. Like so many raw prospects before him, the bat still hasn’t come around for Rodriguez, who is hitting .215/.288/.383 with 34 strikeouts in 28 games for high Class A Bakersfield, another underwhelming season at the plate. He’s still 20, but the arrows aren’t pointing in the right direction.

"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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I don't know about having a guy on the hot sheet with one good game all season. I realize it's just a measure of where guys are recently but given his earlier struggles (including last year) you'd think BA would hold off on calling a guy "hot" until he had repeated the performance a few times.
"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
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I'm headed to the T-Rats game tonight, thankfully in the club level seating. It's going to be classic, crisp October baseball tonight!

If you feel like slummin I'm section 112, row C, wearing a badger pullover and t-rat hat. I'll buy you a beer!

"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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I'm headed to the T-Rats game tonight, thankfully in the club level seating. It's going to be classic, crisp October baseball tonight!

If you feel like slummin I'm section 112, row C, wearing a badger pullover and t-rat hat. I'll buy you a beer!




I'll be sure to come down & talk

Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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Final: Jackson 8 Huntsville 5


The Jackson Generals exploded for 7 runs in the 3rd and hung on to defeat the Huntsville Stars 8-5 Friday night at The Joe. Stars starter Andy Moye (1-4) was a victim of the long ball as all 8 Generals runs scored on homers. Moye allowed a solo home run in the 1st and both a 3 run and a grand slam in the 3rd. For the night, Moye went 5 innings, allowing 8 runs on 9 hits. Moye didn't allow a walk and struck out 5. His fastball was in the 87-92 range tonight.


Behind Moye, the Stars bullpen provided 4 innings of scoreless relief. 40 man roster pitcher Santo Manzanillo was very sharp tonight. Manzanillo worked 2 scoreless, hitless innings while striking out 1. Santo was up to 98 on the gun tonight. Thomas Keeling went 1 inning and didn't allow a hit while striking out 2. This is the 8th straight scoreless outing for Keeling. Eric Marzec worked the 9 and allowed 2 hits but did not allow a run thanks to a fine defensive play by Hector Gomez.


Huntsville Box Score


Offensively, the Stars were led by Hector Gomez, Brock Kjeldgaard, and Rene Tosoni. Gomez went 3-5 with a run scored. Kjeldgaard was 1-2 with a walk and a hit by pitch. Kjeldgaard's hit was an 8th inning home run, his 5th on the season. Tosoni was 1 for 4 with 2 RBI's. Tosoni now has a nice 7 game hitting streak going. Every Stars hitter reached base at least once tonight.


This was the 3rd straight game the Stars played where they did not commit an error. There were also 2 very nice plays turned by Hector Gomez.


Huntsville Play By Play


The Stars had a chance to answer the Generals big inning but missed an opportunity. Bases loaded, no outs, they only plate 1.


Huntsville Bottom of the 3rd


Nick Shaw singles on a line drive to right fielder Julio Morban.

Hector Gomez singles on a ground ball to right fielder Julio Morban. Nick Shaw to 2nd.

Kentrail Davis singles on a ground ball to right fielder Julio Morban. Nick Shaw to 3rd. Hector Gomez to 2nd.

Jason Rogers grounds into a double play, third baseman Leury Bonilla to first baseman Steven Proscia. Nick Shaw scores. Hector Gomez out at 3rd. Kentrail Davis to 2nd.

Mike Walker grounds out, second baseman Jack Marder to first baseman Steven Proscia.


Huntsville gave it a shot in the 9th, loading the bases again, but couldn't push a run across.


Huntsville Bottom of the 9th


Robinzon Diaz walks.

Shea Vucinich strikes out swinging.

Nick Shaw grounds into a force out, second baseman Jack Marder to shortstop Brad Miller. Robinzon Diaz out at 2nd. Nick Shaw to 1st.

Hector Gomez singles on a fly ball to left fielder Leon Landry. Nick Shaw to 2nd.

Kentrail Davis walks. Nick Shaw to 3rd. Hector Gomez to 2nd.

Jason Rogers strikes out swinging.


Huntsville (13-21, 5-14 at The Joe) will try and win the series, their 1st since the opening series of the season, tomorrow night. Right hander Arcenio Leon will be on the mound to start for the Stars. Game time is scheduled for 6:43 with Alex Cohen's pregame show beginning at 6:30.

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The Tyrone Taylor & Victor Roache HRs tonight were fun to watch. Roache's HR was hit just about as hard as a human can hit a baseball. Just screamed out of the park. And that sound... oh, that sound!
Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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Late homers lead Rattlers past LumberKings

Taylor, Roache go deep in sixth inning for 4-3 victory

By Chris Mehring / Wisconsin Timber Rattlers


GRAND CHUTE, WI - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers were being no-hit through five innings in game one of a doubleheader on Friday night at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. The Rattlers collected four hits, including home runs by Tyrone Taylor and Victor Roache, to rally from a 3-0 deficit to defeat the Clinton LumberKings 4-3.


Clinton (14-17) got on the board in the top of the third inning. David Villasuso singled to start the inning, but was still there with two outs. Dario Pizzano doubled into the left field corner and Villasuso headed for home. The relay throw from shortstop Orlando Arcia beat VIllasuso to the plate by ten feet. But, plate umpire Jeremie Rehak ruled that Villasuso eluded the tag and ruled the Clinton base runner safe.


Timber Rattlers catcher Parker Berberet argued the call briefly before being ejected as manager Matt Erickson raced out to prevent his backstop getting the thumb. After a few more moments, Erickson was ejected from the game, too.


The LumberKings scored their second run in a less controversial fashion. Jordy Lara hit a 3-1 pitch from Damien Magnifico over the wall in left field for a solo homer and a 2-0 lead.


Wisconsin (15-15) got their first runner of the game when Adam Giacalone drew a one out walk in the bottom of the fifth inning. Clinton starting pitcher Matt Anderson set down the first thirteen batters of the game before the walk to Giacalone. Then, Alfredo Rodriguez coaxed a two out walk and Clint Coulter was hit by an 0-2 pitch to load the bases. But, Anderson got out of the inning when Orlando Arcia lined out to first.


Clinton added a run in the top of the sixth. Gaby Guerrero doubled off the third base bag with two outs to drive in Pizzano for a 3-0 advantage. But, it wasn't enough.


Taylor broke up Anderson's no-hit bid with a home run to lead off the bottom of the sixth. Michael Reed and Mitch Haniger followed with consecutive singles to bring Roache to the plate as the go ahead run. Roache lined a long home run to left on a 1-0 pitch and the Rattlers were suddenly up 4-3.


Taylor Mangum took over for Magnifico in the top of the seventh. Mangum struck out two to nail down his second save of the season and the Rattlers win in the opening game of the doubleheader.


Magnifico picked up the win to move to 4-0 on the season. He allowed three runs on six hits and struck out five over a professional career high of six innings pitched.




Jordy Lara (3rd, 0 on in 4th inning off Damien Magnifico, 1 out)



Tyrone Taylor (3rd, 0 on in 6th inning off Matt Anderson, 0 out)

Victor Roache (3rd, 2 on in 6th inning off Matt Anderson, 0 out)


WP: Damien Magnifico (4-0)

LP: Matt Anderson (1-3)

SAVE: Taylor Mangum (2)


TIME: 1:51


Wisconsin Game 1 Boxscore

I was down the firstbase line and I couldn't tell why Matt Anderson was causing the T-Rats so much trouble, he wasn't throwing all that hard, just 90-91, which is average, but both pitchers were getting the low strike in game 1 and he was taking full advantage. No Rattler squared up a ball until the Orlando Arcia line out to 1st to end the 5th.


As far as Parker Berberet and Matt Erickson getting ejected... Only having the the opportunity to watch it live and from that side angle it looked like Parker short armed the tag initially (first time I have seen that) but then get got him on attempt #2. He earned his ejection getting right in the umpire's face, Erickson on the other hand didn't really earn his, I heard him use "hell" once but the parts of the conversation I could make out were pretty benign by professional baseball standards.


The part that made me laugh was Clint Coulter comes into catch after the ejection and it looks like he tells Magnifico to put a couple in the dirt. Well the first ball catches his glove hand wrist pretty square, the the next one catches Clint in the right thigh, and the 3rd goes to the screen... that was the end of that. Later that inning Clint took 1 in the left thigh, 1 in the left bicep, and then got hit by a pitch in the middle of the back later in the game. In game 2 he took one square in the nards... the poor kid just got beat up tonight, but he's sloppy mannerisms caused most of his pain, he reaches for most everything instead of trying to block it.


Have I mentioned that I really like Tyrone Taylor?


Damien Magnifico worked 94-96 in the first 2 innings and by the end of the game he was working 92-93, I couldn't tell if he was tiring or pulling back some. His FB must not move much because every FB he left up in the zone was tattooed. He did do a good job mixing in his off speed stuff, he had a bunch of hitters taking awkward hacks expecting first pitch FBs.


As TLB mentioned Victor Roache's HR was absolutely crushed, a no doubter off the bat, it got out of the park like those Rickie Weeks screamers to Friday's in MP.


Wisconsin Game 1 Recap


The futility...


Wisconsin Bottom of the 5th

  • Victor Roache grounds out, third baseman Patrick Kivlehan to first baseman Jordy Lara.
    Adam Giacalone walks.
    Mike Garza called out on strikes.
    Alfredo Rodriguez walks. Adam Giacalone to 2nd.
    Clint Coulter hit by pitch. Adam Giacalone to 3rd. Alfredo Rodriguez to 2nd.
    Orlando Arcia lines out to first baseman Jordy Lara.


The euphoria... 4 hits, 4 runs, ballgame!


Wisconsin Bottom of the 6th

  • Tyrone Taylor homers (3) on a fly ball to left field.
    Michael Reed singles on a ground ball to right fielder Gabriel Guerrero.
    Mitch Haniger singles on a ground ball to left fielder Dario Pizzano. Michael Reed to 2nd.
    Victor Roache homers (3) on a fly ball to left field. Michael Reed scores. Mitch Haniger scores.
    Pitching Change: Jochi Ogando replaces Matt Anderson.
    Adam Giacalone lines out to center fielder Guillermo Pimentel.
    Mike Garza strikes out swinging.
    Alfredo Rodriguez strikes out swinging.


What a momentum swing!


Wisconsin Game 1 Gameday

"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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Unsworth stops Rattlers in game two

Clinton starter K's five in five scoreless innings to get split

By Chris Mehring / Wisconsin Timber Rattlers


GRAND CHUTE, WI - Dylan Unsworth didn't allow the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers to stage a comeback in game two of doubleheader Saturday night at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. Unsworth was handed an early 1-0 lead and never let it go as Clinton earned the split with a 7-0 shutout in the nightcap.


Clinton (15-17) grabbed the lead two batters into the game. Tim Lopes singled and stole second. Dario Pizzano doubled to left to drive in Lopes for a 1-0 advantage.


The LumberKings padded their lead with three runs in the top of the fourth. Gaby Guerrero singled to lead off the inning. An errant pickoff throw by Leonard Lorenzo allowed Guerrero to race around to third base. Wisconsin brought the infield in to try and get the run at the plate. Lorenzo got Jordy Lara to send a slow grounder to short, but the throw home was a little off and Lorenzo scored for a 2-0 lead. One out later, Ketel Marte tripled into the corner in right to drive in Lara. A wild pitch let Marte score for a 4-0 lead.


Clinton tacked on two runs in the fifth with two-out solo home run by Tyler Marlette and an RBI single by Lara. An RBI double by Pizzano in the sixth wrapped up the scoring for the LumberKings.


Wisconsin (15-16) trailed game one 3-0 and were being no-hit heading to the bottom of the sixth inning in game one of the twinbill, but rallied for a 4-3 win. They managed two hits against Unsworth and could not put together a rally in game two. Michael Reed singled with one out in the first inning. Tyrone Taylor's popup behind short dropped in for a double with two outs in the third. Those hits and a Taylor walk with one out in the sixth inning against reliever Blake Holovach would be it for the Wisconsin offense in game two.


Unsworth struck out five and didn't walk a batter over five innings. He extended his scoreless streak to 14-1/3 innings and picked up the win to move his record to 3-0.


The Timber Rattlers continue their homestand on Saturday night when they welcome the Burlington Bees to Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. Wisconsin has Austin Blaski (1-0, 1.47) as their scheduled starting pitcher. Burlington has named Pat Lowery as their starting pitcher. Lowery will be making his Midwest League debut on Saturday. First pitch is 6:35pm.


Tomorrow is a Fly Away Saturday. One lucky fan will win charter airfare for two from Funjet Vacations and Fox World Travel. Local band Autopilot will perform before after the game.


If you can't make it out to the stadium, tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:15pm. Saturday's game is also available to subscribers of MiLB.tv.


WP: Dylan Unsworth (3-0)

LP: Leonard Lorenzo (1-2)


TIME: 1:54

ATTN: 4,365


Chris' double header thoughts.

Another split – Postgame post May 10, 2013


Wisconsin Game 2 Boxscore

This was an awful performance, that's about it.


The Tyrone Taylor "double" was another play I hadn't witnessed in professional baseball before, literally 4 different Clinton players could have caught the ball and all of them stood there watching waiting for someone else to catch it. When the ball landed no one was within 10 feet, just strange... I've seen plenty of players collide, but I've never been at a game where literally no one made an attempt to catch the ball.


Unfortunately neither Rodolfo Fernandez or Leonard Lorenzo looked like anything special, both worked 89-91 with the FB and everything was up in the zone, and I do mean every FB. The only pitches around the knees from either guy were breaking balls. It got pretty cold once the sun went down, I had to put the hoodie up and steal a rain jacket from my pops for an extra layer, but that's not really an excuse. Clinton's pitchers continued to take advantage of the low strike zone in game 2 but neither Fernandez or Lorenzo could do the same.


In an earlier Link Report I had mentioned Chris McFarland's mysterious spike in strike outs over his last 10 games, it's not a mystery anymore, he likes the high ones.


Wisconsin Game 2 Recap


Please move along there's nothing to see here.


Wisconsin Game 2 Gameday

"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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A bunch of divisional mentions today.


Prospect Hot Sheet Chat With J.J. Cooper

Ben (Leland Grove): Between Gausman, Wheeler and http://=http://www.baseballamerica.com/statistics/players/cards/30706Cole, who do you think gets the call first?


J.J. Cooper: Wheeler. The Mets have a very clear need for a fifth starter while the Pirates will give Jeanmar Gomez a chance to prove he can keep doing what he did in his first start after replacing Jonathan Sanchez. The Orioles are in a similar situation where they have no clear reason to make a rotation move right now.

Sepo (Peoria, IL): What is wrong with Billy Hamilton? Still getting steals but starting to look like there is no way he gets a call this year.


J.J. Cooper: Oh I think there is very little chance he doesn't get the call at some point this year. If he hit .100 for the rest of the year, how would he not help a potential playoff team as a pinch-runner and CF defensive replacement come September when rosters expand. As great a season as Choo is having offensively, he's a well-below average center fielder. Hamilton would be a perfect late-inning defensive replacement (when the Reds are ahead) or pinch-runner (when the Reds are behind). As far as his offensive struggles, his lefthanded swing has not looked good early this season. The skeptical approach is that he's hit a level where pitchers can simply overpower a slap hitter. I think more realistically, he's in a slump much like we saw him suffer through during the first half of the 2011 season, when he was hitting .195 through late May, figured things out and hit over .300 for the rest of the season. I don't think he'll go that crazy offensively, but I do expect you'll see him make significant improvements over the rest of the season.

John (Chicago): Aside from Gerrit Cole's, how many better fastballs in the minors than Ventura's?


J.J. Cooper: Pure velocity wise I can't think of many or maybe any. But as far as effectiveness, I could probably think of quite a few. Ventura's fastball is a very good pitch, but if you are talking about a 6-foot-5 guy with a high 90s fastball compared to a sub-6-foot guy with the same fastball, the short pitcher's fastball is more likely to be in the hitters swing plane for longer (it has less angle). Because of that, Ventura can get punished a little more for mistakes than a bigger pitcher with the same fastball. It hasn't been a problem for Ventura in the minors, but then it wasn't a problem for Kelvin Herrera until recently either.

Eric K (St Louis): Thanks for the chat! How would you rank Yelich, Myers, and Taveras and who has the highest floor/ceiling?


J.J. Cooper: Taveras, Myers, Yelich for both.

Cards fan (St. Louis): Will we see Taveras up next month?


J.J. Cooper: To play where? Every Cardinals outfielder is posting an above-average OPS compared to the league average. Matt Adams was hitting .500/.552/.962 and still couldn't get regular at-bats because the lineup is loaded. Taveras looks like he's in Triple-A for a while unless there is an injury.

Bryan (Chicago): Hey boss....Sunday May 18th...should I go see Kane County and Vogelbach at Cedar Rapids and Buxton/Polanco/Goodrum or Beloit and no prospects at Quad Cities and Carlos Correa


J.J. Cooper: Go to Cedar Rapids. That's a very fun team to watch.

Tony (MD): Pierce Johnson can't stay in MWL that long, can he?


J.J. Cooper: You wouldn't think. He looks ready for the sun of Daytona doesn't he?

@Jaypers413 (IL): What are the odds Oscar Taveras gets called up before August 1?


J.J. Cooper: That's asking me to predict injuries, which is very hard. I'd say 50-50.

Steve (Philly): Did the Reds damage Billy Hamilton by pushing him to AAA this year? Looks like he needs to go down to AA for another year.


J.J. Cooper: He hit in Double-A last year, so what's to be gained by repeating. Guys struggle sometimes, which is OK. Teams would much rather see a guy work these things out in the minors than the majors.

Tim (MD): How much of Brett Jackson's struggles this year (when he played) due to injury/adapting to a new swing? Or is this a case of a guy whose instincts simply won't mesh enough to the lower the K rate significantly. Granted, he's got enough skills that if the K rate just dropped a bit, he probably has a shot.


J.J. Cooper: Personally, I'm not a believer. I did a study on everyone who struck out close to as much as Jackson did in his big league debut (http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/2013/01/brett-jacksons-strikeout-rate-reaches-historic-level/), and there are very few success stories in that group. If it was so easy to retool a swing and eliminate strikeouts after a poor big league debut, more guys would have pulled it off. I think he's always going to have a problem with strikeouts.

Jack (Toronto): JJ, are you a believer in Vogelbach's bat?


J.J. Cooper: I believe he'll hit. Hit enough to be an NL player without a DH? I'm more skeptical on that.

Michael Wacha (Memphis): Do I need an injury in St. Louis' rotation to see the show this year, or will I get a cup of coffee in the bullpen this year?


J.J. Cooper: Right now that bullpen already has a lot of starters converted into relievers. To me it makes the most sense for Wacha to keep starting in Triple-A. If there is an injury, the Cardinals will need someone who is stretched out and ready to go as a starter.

"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) 7, Brevard County 3


Manatees sunk at home by Yankees

By Andy Towne / Brevard County Manatees


VIERA, Fla. - Following a 15-minute rain delay, both the Brevard County Manatees and the Tampa Yankees scored runs in the first inning. After that though, it was almost all Tampa as they left Space Coast Stadium on Friday night with a 7-3 victory over the Manatees.


Brevard County (18-17) starting pitcher Brent Suter (2-1, 4.58) had seemed to settled in after allowing consecutive two-out doubles in the first inning as he did not allow another base runner until a one-out solo home run to Gary Sanchez in the fourth.


It was the fifth inning that spelled the most trouble for the southpaw, as he surrendered four runs on three hits and a walk in that frame alone, running his totals to six runs on six hits and a walk in five innings of work. He took his first loss in Brevard County after winning each of his first two starts for the 'Tees.


For Tampa (15-19), starting pitcher Scottie Allen did settle in nicely as he allowed just one run through six innings. He scattered four hits, walked only one and struck out two.


Brevard County was able to jump on Manny Barreda in the bottom of the ninth, after the reliever had thrown 35 pitches in the eighth with 18 balls. Cody Hawn led off the final half inning with his sixth homer of the season and then Yadiel Rivera reached on an error and would score on a T.J. Mittelstaedt single. The Manatees though would leave runners on the corners to end the game.


Hawn went 3-for-4 on the night, while Mittelstaedt had a pair of hits.


The two teams will meet on Saturday at 6:35 p.m. for the rubber match of the three-game series. Lefty Jed Bradley (3-1, 3.04) will start for Brevard County, while Bryan Mitchell (2-3, 4.21) will toe the rubber for Tampa.


Brevard County Box Score


Cody Hawn went 3 for 4 and hit his sixth home run, tying him for the team lead with Cameron Garfield. His home run was the only extra base hit for Brevard County. T.J. Mittelstaedt was 2 for 5. Yadiel Rivera and Greg Hopkins were each on base twice with a single and a walk. Brent Suter got roughed up for the first time this year, allowing six runs in five innings. Tommy Toledo pitched 1.1 innings of scoreless relief. Chad Pierce tossed a 1-2-3 ninth.


Brevard County Play-By-Play


The fifth inning did in the Manatees tonight


Tampa Top of the 5th


Dan Fiorito singles on a fly ball to center fielder Chadwin Stang.

Eduardo Sosa pops out to shortstop Yadiel Rivera.

Jose Toussen doubles (4) on a fly ball to left fielder Lance Roenicke. Dan Fiorito to 3rd.

Mason Williams walks.

Ben Gamel doubles (10) on a fly ball to right fielder T. J. Mittelstaedt. Dan Fiorito scores. Jose Toussen scores. Mason Williams scores.

With Robert Refsnyder batting, Ben Gamel steals (8) 3rd base.

Robert Refsnyder out on a sacrifice fly to right fielder T. J. Mittelstaedt. Ben Gamel scores.

Gary Sanchez strikes out swinging.

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Sounds Drop Series Finale In Extras, 5-4

Nashville's Gennett, Parker and Wooten Extend Streaks

Nashville Sounds



Anderson De La Rosa (Mike Strasinger / Nashville Sounds)


AUDIO: Caleb Gindl's RBI-Single

AUDIO: Khris Davis' Game-Tying Single


NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Five hours and fifty-eight minutes after scheduled first pitch at Greer Stadium, the Nashville Sounds dropped the series finale against the Fresno Grizzlies by the score of 5-4, splitting the series 2-2.


Tied 4-4 in the 12th, Fresno broke through with a one-out run on Hector Sanchez's double to the right-field corner. The extra-base knock scored Brett Pill, who reached base by drawing a walk from Sounds reliever Travis Webb (0-1).


The Sounds loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the frame, but two strikeouts and a grounder ended concluded the series. The extra innings allowed Sounds third baseman Stephen Parker to extend his hitting streak to 13 games, picking up a single to right field in the 10th. The streak is the longest by a Sound this season and the longest of Parker's career.


Fresno picked up two runs off Sounds reliever Mike Olmsted in the seventh inning to tie the game 4-4 and eventually send the game to extras. Johnny Monell, pinch hitting for pitcher Steve Edlefsen, lifted a home run over the left-field wall. The shot marks the second night in a row the Sounds have allowed a pinch-hit dinger, after having not allowing one since July 29, 2011. The Grizzlies tied it up with Roger Kieschnick's RBI-single.


The Grizzlies got on the board first, touching Sounds starting pitcher Johnny Hellweg early for two runs on three hits and one walk in the first inning. Pill had the run-scoring blow, a single into left field to score the two runners in scoring position.


The Sounds answered Fresno with two runs of their own in the bottom of the first, ignited by Scooter Gennett's lead-off triple. The three-bagger extended Gennett's on-base streak to 28 games, the longest streak in the PCL this season. Caleb Gindl, four-for-five, followed up with an RBI-single and was driven in by Khris Davis' single after two wild pitches moved him to third.


Tied 2-2 in the fourth inning, the Sounds plated the go-ahead run on a passed ball charged to Fresno catcher Hector Sanchez. His counterpart Anderson De La Rosa, who had three hits on the night, scored on the play from third after already benefitting from a passed ball earlier in the inning.


Hellweg shut down the Grizzlies after the first, finishing with two runs on three hits over five innings of work and left in line for the win. The 24-year-old twirled three strikeouts, walked three and further helped his cause by going 2-for-2 at the plate. Tim Dillard and Kyle Heckathorn each pitched a scoreless inning before Rob Wooten collected three scoreless innings to improve his streak to 17 2/3 innings without letting in a run. The loss was charged to Webb.


The Sounds begin a new four-game series on Saturday night at Greer Stadium, hosting the Sacramento River Cats (AAA-A's affiliate) at 6:35. The Sounds will send RHP Tyler Thornburg (0-3, 6.00) to the hill against Smyrna native and former Vanderbilt pitcher Sonny Gray (3-1, 2.61).



Nashville Box

It looks like Hunter Morris may have gotten dinged up as the first out in a 6-4-3 double play in the 5th. He went back out & played defense in the top of the 6th, but his spot in the lineup didn't come around in the bottom half of that frame, and Halton replaced him at first base to begin the top of the 7th. Keep in mind this is purely speculation on my part, but I don't know why Morris would've been subbed out at the point he was if it wasn't due to injury.


Gennett: 2-6, 3B

Josh Prince: 0-5, BB, CS

Gindl: 4-5, 2B, RBI, BB, SB, OF assist

Hunter Morris: 1-3

Sean Halton: 1-3

Davis: 1-4, RBI, 2 BB

Parker: 1-6

De La Rosa: 3-6, 2B, 2 SB, E (missed catch), 0/2 CS

Hellweg: 2-2


[pre]Hellweg: 5 IP 3 H 2 R 2 ER 3 BB 3 K WP HBP 104 TP (59 strikes) 5:4 GO:FO

Dillard: 1 IP 1 H 0 R 0 ER 0 BB 0 K Balk

Olmsted: 1 IP 2 H 2 R 2 ER 1 BB 1 K

Heckathorn: 1 IP 0 H 0 R 0 ER 0 BB 1 K

Wooten: 3 IP 3 H 0 R 0 ER 1 BB 3 K

Webb: 1 IP 1 H 1 R 1 ER 1 BB 0 K[/pre]


Nashville PbP

Nashville nearly broke the 4-4 deadlock in the 8th, due to the blazing speed of backstop Anderson De La Rosa!


Nashville Bottom of the 8th

-Defensive switch from left field to right field for Roger Kieschnick.

-Defensive switch from right field to third base for Juan Perez.

-Pitching Change: Jean Machi replaces Ramon Ramirez, batting 7th, replacing third baseman Chris Dominguez.

-Defensive Substitution: Cole Gillespie replaces pitcher Ramon Ramirez, batting 9th, playing left field.

-Stephen Parker strikes out swinging.

-Anderson De La Rosa singles on a line drive to right fielder Roger Kieschnick.

-With Blake Davis batting, Anderson De La Rosa steals (2) 2nd base.

-Blake Davis strikes out swinging.

-Offensive Substitution: Pinch-hitter Cole Garner replaces Kyle Heckathorn.

-Cole Garner walks. Anderson De La Rosa to 3rd. Anderson De La Rosa steals (3) 3rd base.

-Scooter Gennett flies out to left fielder Cole Gillespie.


I'm still trying to wrap my head around how the Sounds didn't at least extend the game in the bottom of the 12th. What a letdown:


Nashville Bottom of the 12th

-Pitching Change: Heath Hembree replaces Sandy Rosario, batting 5th, replacing catcher Hector Sanchez.

-Jackson Williams remains in the game as the catcher.

-Caleb Gindl singles on a ground ball to right fielder Roger Kieschnick.

-Sean Halton singles on a fly ball to right fielder Roger Kieschnick. Caleb Gindl to 3rd.

-Khris Davis walks. Sean Halton to 2nd.

-Stephen Parker called out on strikes.

-Anderson De La Rosa called out on strikes.

-Blake Davis grounds out, second baseman Kensuke Tanaka to first baseman Brett Pill.



Nashville Gameday

Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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Brewer Fanatic Staff

Huntsville Pre-Game Interview with Taylor Jungmann


Huntsville Game Audio Highlight: Rene Tosoni singles in two runs




Big Inning Dooms Stars

By Alex Cohen / Huntsville Stars


On Friday night, a seven-run third inning for the Jackson Generals sent the Stars to an 8-5 loss at Joe Davis Stadium.


Jackson scored their only other run early, as Generals catcher John Hicks sent the third pitch of the game over the left-field wall for his second homer of the season to make the score 1-0.


After a two-run single from Stars outfielder Rene Tosoni gave Huntsville a 2-1 lead in the second inning, the Generals mounted their big inning in the third by sending 10 batters to the plate.


First, following back-to-back singles by third baseman Leury Bonilla and second baseman Jack Marder and Moye hitting Hicks with a pitch, Generals shortstop Brad Miller hit a towering homer over the right-field wall for a grand slam to make the score 5-2.


Then, after back-to-back singles from outfielders James Jones and Julio Morban, a three-run blast from Jackson designated hitter Abraham Almonte put the Generals up by six.


On a bright note, the Stars pitching staff blanked the Generals offense over the last five innings of the game. Despite throwing two scoreless frames after that third inning, Andy Moye fell to 1-4 on the year with the loss. The 25-year-old righty gave up eight runs and nine hits in five innings while striking out five batters.


Besides Moye, the Stars got two scoreless innings from righty Santo Manzanillo, and an inning of scoreless relief each from relievers Thomas Keeling and Eric Marzec.


The strong outing from the Huntsville bullpen allowed the Stars to get back into the game. After a run-scoring groundout from first baseman Jason Rogers in the third, another RBI groundout from outfielder Kentrail Davis in the fifth inning made the score 8-4. Then, in the eighth inning, a solo homer from outfielder Brock Kjeldgaard cut the Stars deficit to three.


For Kjeldgaard, the homer was his second in as many games and his fifth of the season.


In the ninth inning, the Stars were able to load the bases and send the potential game-winning run to the plate. However, Generals reliever Jonathan Arias was able to strike out Rogers to end the game and ruin any potential comeback for Huntsville.


The win for Jackson evened up this series at two apiece, setting the stage for a rubber match of the five-game set on Saturday.


Game five of the five-game series between the Stars and Generals will begin at 6:43 PM at Joe Davis Stadium. Huntsville will send RHP Arcenio Leon (0-2, 5.28 ERA) to the bump to square off against Jackson LHP Anthony Fernandez (0-0, 8.64 ERA).


Following the series finale against the Generals, the Stars will hit the road and head west to start a five-game set against the Mississippi Braves on Sunday.

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