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Link Report for Wed. 4/25 -- Four First-Place Teams

Mass Haas

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Wednesday's Daily Menu:


All times Central; pitchers subject to change --


Nashville: Idle


Huntsville: RHP Mike Jones at Montgomery (Devil Rays), 6:50 PM pre-game; 7:05 gametime


Audio link:



Brevard County: LHP Steve Garrison at home vs. Vero Beach (Devil Rays), 5:50 PM pre-game, 6:00 gametime


Audio link (game will also archive at this link):



West Virginia: LHP Zach Braddock at Lexington (Astros), 5:55 PM pre-game, 6:05 gametime


Audio link (game will also archive at this link):


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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". Choose "Log". 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.






Brevard County:




West Virginia:



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Today's standings include St. Lucie's victory over Jupiter in the Florida State League early Wednesday...

 Pacific Coast League (AAA) - PCL American North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Nashville 13 6 .684 - 7-4 6-2 W7 Memphis 10 10 .500 3.5 9-3 1-7 W4 Iowa 9 10 .474 4.0 6-2 3-8 L4 Omaha 7 13 .350 6.5 5-3 2-10 L4 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Southern League (AA) - SOU North Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Tennessee 9 8 .529 - 3-4 6-4 L2 Huntsville 8 9 .471 1.0 4-6 4-3 L1 Chattanooga 8 11 .421 2.0 4-6 4-5 W1 West Tenn 7 12 .368 3.0 3-6 4-6 L2 Carolina 6 13 .316 4.0 4-5 2-8 L1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Florida State League (A+) - FSL East Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Palm Beach 10 7 .588 - 5-5 5-2 W1 St. Lucie 10 8 .556 0.5 4-5 6-3 W1 Brevard County 9 8 .529 1.0 4-4 5-4 W2 Daytona 9 9 .500 1.5 6-4 3-5 L1 Jupiter 8 11 .421 3.0 3-5 5-6 L1 Vero Beach 7 10 .412 3.0 5-3 2-7 L2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- South Atlantic League (A) - SAL Northern Division Standings ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Team W L PCT GB HOME ROAD STREAK ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- West Virginia 13 3 .813 - 11-3 2-0 W11 Greensboro 11 7 .611 3.0 9-3 2-4 L1 Lexington 9 10 .474 5.5 6-5 3-5 W1 Delmarva 8 9 .471 5.5 3-3 5-6 W1 Lakewood 7 8 .467 5.5 4-5 3-3 L1 Lake County 8 10 .444 6.0 3-2 5-8 W2 Hickory 7 9 .438 6.0 2-3 5-6 L5 Hagerstown 6 13 .316 8.5 2-5 4-8 L3

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Power's first inning was disappointing, but you get the sense big things are coming. Braddock looked good, two GO and a K...only hit was opposite field, didn't hurt him...Holmberg had a great hustle in opening at bat...this line up is lethal! Chapman just doubles in Holmberg! All three hits are extra base hits! Give Braddock a few runs and he should shut Lexington down.
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Through five more scoreless innings for LHP Zach Braddock (Power leads, 6-0, going for their 12th straight win):


2007 Braddock: 18 IP, 8 H, 0 R, 8 BB, 28 K


Braddock won't even be 20 years old until August 23rd.


I probably just jinxed him, but worth noting for sure; Braddock's last 12 innings over two starts -- 0 BB, 20 K, he's still on this evening.

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Braddock just gave up his first run of the year, but he has kept the ball down which is an improvement on last year. I like the GO's...the offense has been great, so has the defense. Zach bucks up and gets out number 2 another GO...love that he's K'd Clemons twice-looking
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Sad the Power doesn't let Braddock start the 7th...perhaps his pitch count got away from me...great job...another great job at the plate from the Boys and Periard has been solid if not better in relief, so they have been a lethal combination.
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Fantastic Job Zach! 10 ground outs, 8 strike outs and 0 walks seems like one helluva evening to me! 20 strikeouts and 0 walks in the last two outings....seems like a good followup in WV to Yo and Inman! Brewers should have one fantastic bunch of young arms someday!
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Another fun day to follow the minors...


I always like looking at the opposing players to get an idea of the type of hitters the pitchers were getting out. Montgomery has two of the better hitters in minor league baseball in Reid Brignac and Evan Longoria, and despite Brignac's 3 hits (2 doubles), the Stars led by Mike Jones shut out the Biscuits.


All three teams received extremely nice efforts from the bullpen. Garrison once again followed Inman with a performance just as impressive yet with less than half the fanfare.


I know a lot of people including myself weren't sure what to expect from the Power, so having several players step up on that team has been especially encouraging. As noted, Braddock's groundout to flyball ratio (10 to nutin') may be the most impressive part about his performance today. And Lexington has some nice bats in their lineup (the previously mentioned Clemens and Sapp as well as Jimmy Van Ostrand).


Brent Brewer 3 for 5 with a triple, bumping that average up to .290. While he seems to be just as dynamic as his teammate Darren Ford, both of those guys really need to find a way to cut down on the Ks.


I'm waiting for EDR to come by with a Chuck update. Didn't somebody say something during the first week of the season about Fermaint's struggles? It certainly isn't hard for a bad average to look pretty good (and vice versa) this early in the season.

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Zach Braddock = Cinderella Man.


This Power team is really exciting - and now they may even have another ace to cheer for. It's a good time to be a fan of the Brewers - from top to bottom.

"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 will agree that there have been some wonderful surprises this year so far, but isn't that why we follow our minor league teams?


Braddock may very well live up to be the Cinderella man this season, but maybe that is because he was a 17 yr old, DFE. The kid should have been a 3-5th round pick. Would we have been that understanding of him if that were the case???


The Power has tremendous speed, good power and very good pitching, with Braddock leading the charge. I am all for getting behind a great story...but I think Braddock and this entire franchise are "The Story", this season. I just get that sense from the players that...they believe in each other...togther, this early. That to me...is the STORY! Kudos to Tony B & Jack Z for finding another diamond in the rough!


This is "Money Ball" ++


There are many exciting times to come!

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Final: West Virginia 7, Lexington (Astros) 1


West Virginia Site Game Summary:




Zach Braddock allowed just one run on four hits and struck out eight Lexington batters through six innings of Wednesday night's game as the West Virginia Power extended their winning streak to 12 games, defeating the Lexington Legends 7-1.


The Power used three doubles in the second inning to take a 2-0 lead. Kenny Holmberg began the second inning with his fifth double of the season and he scored moments later on Steve Chapman's two-bagger. Chapman scored two batters later on Taylor Green's run-scoring double. West Virginia plated four runs in the fifth inning to pull away. Michael Brantley reached on a bases loaded walk to score the first run, Chuckie Caufield scored on a wild pitch and Chapman doubled in the final two runs of the inning.


Lexington scored their only run of the game on Cesar Quinteros RBI single in the sixth inning. The Power crossed the plate one final time in the seventh inning as Andy Bouchie scored on Brantley's sacrifice fly.


Braddock (2-0) earned the victory. He fanned eight batters, giving him 20 strikeouts in his last two games, and he has only allowed one run in 19 innings of work this season. Alex Periard pitched three scoreless innings of two-hit ball in relief to secure his second save of the season and Bryan Hallberg (1-1) took the loss.


The Power improved to 14-3 with the win and the Legends fell to 9-11 with the loss. Brent Brewer paced the Power with three hits while Chapman had two. Chapman drove in three of West Virignia's runs and Brantley knocked in two.


The Power will continue the four game series against Lexington at Applebees Park on Thursday night. The Power will start left hander Mike Ramlow (1-1, 6.39) and the Legends will counter with left hander Polin Trinidad (1-2, 10.32). The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM (6:05 Central).


Link while active, text follows:




Power trip up Legends


By Mark Maloney



Zach Braddock practically hypnotized Lexington batters, who were powerless in a 7-1 loss last night at Applebee's Park.


"The chemistry of this team right now, it's pretty good," Manager Mike Guerrero said after West Virginia (14-3) won its 12th in a row. "We're running on high gear. Everything that we seem to try is going our way."


Braddock, a 19-year-old left-hander who was an 18th-round draft pick of the Brewers in 2005, blanked the Legends through five innings.


He went six innings in all, giving up a run on four hits and striking out eight.


"A great performance by him," Guerrero said. "His command of his fastball was the best for him tonight, and he got it going. When he's going and you execute what you're supposed to do -- the plan on the pitching staff and on the field -- everything comes out pretty much your way."


Alex Periard finished a combined six-hit, nine-strikeout, no-walk domination, picking up his second save.


The Power lived up to their name, tagging three pitchers for 10 hits -- including a triple and five doubles.


Brent Brewer had three hits and scored a run. Steve Chapman added two hits, three RBI and a run.


The Legends (9-11) have lost four of their last five.


"We're obviously giving up too many runs, and we didn't swing the bats overly well tonight," Manager Gregg Langbehn said. "Their guy did a good job. (Braddock) moved the ball in and out, up and down. He knows how to pitch. There's nothing overpowering."


Lexington's only run came after No. 9 hitter Nick Moresi led off the sixth with a triple off the center-field wall. Cesar Quintero followed with a single to left.


Until then, Braddock had yielded only a pair of Greg Buchanan singles.


"I was just trying to see the ball and trying to take it the other way," Buchanan said. "Not try to do too much with it, take what he's giving me and trying to hit something hard."


Legends starter Bryan Hallberg (1-1) wriggled out of a bases-loaded jam in the first, getting Brantley to ground into an inning-ending double play.


Second-inning doubles by Kenny Holmberg, Chapman and Taylor Green gave Braddock an early 2-0 lead.


The Power added four runs in the fifth.


A bases-loaded walk to Michael Brantley finished Hallberg. All three runners inherited by Cesar Mayora scored via a wild pitch and Chapman's two-run double.


Brantley added a sacrifice fly in the seventh.


"It was tough," Buchanan said. "We didn't make too many adjustments at the plate and kind of got behind early, and couldn't catch up."


West Virginia Box Score:

Almost lost in Braddock's performances has been the continued excellence of fellow youngster Alex Periard; infielder Jimmy Mojica with only his first error at third base -- he's been so solid overall...




West Virginia Game Log:




Steve Chapman is 9-for-22 with seven RBIs and seven runs scored during a six-game hitting streak. (Archive Photo Courtesy of Helena Brewers)



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Final: Brevard County 3, Vero Beach (Devil Rays) 2


Brevard County Site Game Summary:

Link for Steve Garrison photo, text follows --




Brevard comes from behind again to beat Vero Beach

Scott Pinner


Viera FL - The Manatees took the sting out of the visiting Vero Beach Devil Rays for a third and final game at Space Coast Stadium on Wednesday night. Starting pitcher Steve Garrison (1-1) got his first win of the season and lowered his era to 2.66 in the Manatees 3-2 victory.


The Manatees had to again come from behind for the win. The Devil Rays struck first plating two runs in the top of the first inning. The D-Ray's picked up the first run on an error by Ryan Crew who was making his first start at third base this season. The second run scored on a base hit. This would be all the offense the Devil Rays could muster as the rest of the way the Manatees pitching staff shut them out.


The Manatees got two runs in the sixth to tie the game on smart base running and timely hitting and then Mat Gamel's sacrifice fly in the seventh brought home the winning run.


Starting pitcher Steve Garrison, in a post game radio interview said, "The team really backed me up on defense tonight. We saw some great plays on the dirt and out in the grass. It was a great team win for the ballclub."


The win improved the Manatees to 10-8 on the season and moved them into a three-way tie for first place in the FSL Eastern Division.


The Manatees hit the road Thursday and Friday for a two game road trip with the Port St. Lucie Mets at Tradition Field. Both games can be heard world wide right here at www.manateesbaseball.com. The Miller Lite pre-game show is scheduled for 6:45 PM (5:45 Central).



Brevard County Game Summary from MiLB.com:


Manatees edge Rays


Steve Garrison pitched seven strong innings as Brevard County rallied for a 3-2 win over visiting Vero Beach on Wednesday.


Garrison (1-1) yielded two runs -- one earned -- on four hits and a walk while striking out five.


Ben Stanczyk struck out two in a perfect eighth before Dave Johnson gave up a hit and fanned two in a scoreless ninth to nab his first save for the Manatees (10-8).


Devil Rays starter Michael Wlodarczyk allowed just two baserunners over the first five frames before Ryan Crew and Alcides Escobar started the sixth with consecutive singles.


After Michael Bell sacrificed, catcher Christian Lopez dropped a third strike to Chris Errecart. Crew scored when Lopez threw out Errecart at first to cut the deficit to 2-1. Wlodarczyk walked Cole Gillespie and Carlos Corporan followed with a single to center field, plating Escobar with the tying run.


Jeff Kamrath (1-3) replaced Wlodarczyk and struck out Charlie Fermaint to end the sixth. But Lorenzo Cain led off the seventh with a single, stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error by Lopez. One out later, pinch-hitter Mat Gamel lofted a sacrifice fly to center to give Brevard County a 3-2 lead.


Kamrath (1-2) was charged with a run on two hits in 1 1/3 innings to raise his ERA to 6.10.


Wlodarczyk allowed two runs -- one earned -- on four hits and a pair of walks while striking out four over 5 2/3 innings.


Vero Beach (7-11) scored both its runs in the first. Erold Andrus delivered an RBI double and scored when third baseman Crew misplayed Patrick Cottrell's grounder. -- Peter Zellen/MLB.com


Brevard County Box Score:




Brevard County Game Log:



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Final: Huntsville 3, Montgomery (Devil Rays) 0


Huntsville Site game Summary:

Link, text follows --




Stars Bounce Back to Blank Biscuits


Mike Jones, Joe Thatcher and Marino Salas teamed up on a six-hit shutout, as Huntsville blanked Montgomery 3-0 Wednesday night at Riverwalk Stadium. The Stars took three out of five from the Biscuits to improve to 9-9 on the season and move back into a tie for first place with Tennessee in the North Division. The Stars won their first five-game set in three tries after losing decisive games at home to Mississippi and Jacksonville earlier in the year.


Steve Sollmann started the game with a single, moved to second base on a Hernan Iribarren sacrifice bunt and scored when Moss launched his second home run of the season. The Stars? centerfielder extended his hitting streak to 11 games and knocked in eight runs in the series, driving in at least one run in four of the five games.


Mike Prochaska held the Stars to two singles over the next six innings and left after seven frames, giving up two runs on four hits, while striking out seven. Richard De Los Santos worked a perfect eighth inning, his fourth perfect frame of the series, and the visitors were able to strike for a run in the ninth against Dale Thayer on a Mel Stocker leadoff triple and a one-out single by Iribarren against a drawn-in infield.


Jones was aided by a ground ball double play and a sliding catch in left field by Mike Carlin after a leadoff walk in the third and got Chris Nowak to ground out with two runners aboard to end the sixth inning. The right-hander went six scoreless frames, in his longest outing since 2003, allowing three hits, all to Reid Brignac, walking two and fanning five to win for the first time this season and for the first time since June 20, 2004 at Birmingham.


Thatcher got pinch-hitter Fernando Perez to pop out to second base with runners at first and second and one out in the seventh and Iribarren was able to double off John Jaso at first base after the Biscuits? catcher broke on a broken bat looper into shallow right field. Salas yielded a one-out double to Nowak, just the second hit he has permitted in nine innings, with one out in the ninth and walked Shaun Cumberland before retiring Gabriel Martinez and Jaso to end the game and preserve the Stars? first shutout of the season. Salas is three-for-three in save chances and has not been scored on in seven appearances.


The Stars travel to Birmingham to start a five-game series Thursday evening with southpaw Sam Narron taking the hill against Barons? right-hander Adam Russell. Coverage of the game begins at 6:50 p.m. central time and can be heard locally on SportsRadio 730 WUMP and through the internet at www.huntsvillestars.com.


Link while active, text follows:




Early homer stands up for Stars

By A. Stacy Long

Montgomery Advertiser


Biscuits pitcher Mike Prochaska made one early mistake in his start Wednesday against the Huntsville Stars.


Steve Moss' no-doubt home run in the first inning was enough to leave Prochaska as the losing pitcher in Huntsville's 3-0 win at Riverwalk Stadium.


Only Prochaska's performance was more notable than that. He responded to the home run by facing the minimum 20 hitters over the next 6 2/3 innings.


"He knew he made a mistake, but he did what good pitchers do," Biscuits manager Billy Gardner said. "He put it behind him."


Prochaska (0-2) allowed three more baserunners after Moss' majestic blast over the left-field wall, but picked two off and threw out another trying to advance.


"I forced myself to not let that home run affect me," said Prochaska, who threw five shutout innings in his last start but left with a groin injury. "I knew the second inning was a big inning. I had to put a zero on the board. After that, I got some momentum going."


But Moss' homer was too much for Montgomery to overcome. Huntsville starter Mike Jones (1-2) gave up three hits over six innings and two relievers finished a six-hitter. Jones had allowed 23 hits in 12 2/3 innings in his first three starts.


"Coming in, the numbers didn't reflect that he could pitch that well," Gardner said.


Moss, the third hitter of the game, jumped on a 2-0 Prochaska fastball to give Huntsville the lead. The Stars added a run in the ninth.


"It was the wrong pitch on the wrong count," Prochaska said. "It was a mistake and he did what he should have done."


Huntsville Box Score:

Montgomery had not been shut out in 55 games; the Biscuits are 1-187 all-time when trailing after eight innings; in Mike Jones' first three starts, his batting average against was .390 -- what a turnaround in this one; Steve Moss struck out all three times up after his home run -- stay focused Steve, you're finally having the kind of start many have envisioned for some time; closer Marino Salas may be 26, but the recent waiver claim from the Orioles should still be considered as a "prospect"...




Huntsville Game Log:




Mike Jones Photo from the Stars' Site:



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David Weiser's





It was just like old times. The question is --- is Mike Jones back? In spite of a sterling three-hit blanking over six innings, his ERA is still an-unattractive 6.27.


The Brewers' heralded #1 draft pick in 2001 was 7-2 with a 2.40 ERA in 17 starts in 2003. He was just 19....... On a sunny Sunday April 12th, in his 2nd start, he out-dueled a very promising Dodger prospect by the name of Edwin Jackson, 7-0, giving up just two hits in six innings...... On May 10th, again at home against the Smokies, he gave up just two hits in eight innings, but did not figure in the 2-0 loss because of two 9th inning errors, one by reliever Ryan Miller.......


On May 2nd, he dominated Chattanooga over seven innings, winning 1-0 on a game-saving catch by Dave Krynzel, described by former GM Bryan Dingo as "the greatest catch I've ever seen at Joe Davis Stadium"........ But he was shut down the entire 2nd half of the season with an ailing elbow. The next year, he was 1-4 with a 4.18 ERA in six starts. Eleven days after his last victory for the Stars, a combined two-hitter with Jeff Housman over Birmingham, he was placed on the disabled list with "shoulder discomfort.".......Surgery followed and he was out of action all of 2005.


At his peak, he had a lively mid-90s fastball and a sharp curve.......Tonight, he was throwing 88-91 mph, with a little more velocity than announcer Brett Pollock had seen in his last three starts and he had thrown 75 pitches in five innings....... But all this came after struggling in three previous starts....... It's promising to see, but for Jones, who showed us a flash of his brilliance in 2003, it's still a long road ahead.


Jonesy, fortunately, has an exceptional bullpen behind him this year...... After 18 games, the pen has an enviable 2.54 ERA with 77 strikeouts in 71 innings and a 4.53-1 strikeout-walk ratio....... Joe Thatcher got out of jams in his two innings, getting Fernando Perez to line into a double play with runners on 1st and 2nd and one out in the 7th...... Then in the 8th, after Jason Pridie led off with an infield single, Thatcher picked him off with dangerous Reid Brignac (4-for-9 in the first two games of this series) at the plate and one out....... Brignac already had three hits tonight, two of them doubles, when Pridie tried to steal 2nd. Steve Sollmann took Thatcher's pickoff throw and flung it to Yohannis Perez who tagged Pridie for the 2nd out, then Thatcher struck out Brignac.........Combining last year, Thatcher has a 1.15 ERA in 15 2/3 innings of relief with 17 strikeouts and four walks.


Marino Salas, now with nine scoreless innings of relief over seven appearances, picked up his third save after giving up a one-out double to Chris Nowak and a walk to Steve Cumberland....... Salas came to the Stars with 48 saves over his last three seasons, all in the Baltimore chain...... He was 2-6 with a 2.92 ERA and 19 saves last year for Class AA-Bowie.


The Stars, for once, were the team scoring the runs in the 1st inning...... Opponents, to date, have scored 27 runs off the Stars in the 1st, compared to 14 for all of April last year...... The Stars, counting tonight, have scored seven times....... Sollmann started the game with a single to center. Hernan Iribarren, 2-for his last-22 trips to the plate sacrificed him to 2nd with a bunt to the left side...... Watching Iribarren, I can say we truly have someone who can drop down a ball. In the past, that wasn't always the case...... Steve Moss then launched his 2nd home run of the season to give the Stars a 2-0 lead, driving the ball deep to left, extending his hitting streak to 11 games....... Moss has driven in eight runs during the streak and is 18-for-48 (.375)....... He is now 7th among Southern League batting leaders with a .333 average..... Sollmann, by the way, is 5th with a .365 mark. He's 10-for-23 in his last six games (.435) and has struck out just nine times in 52 at-bats....... The Stars scored their final run in the 9th after Mel Stocker's leadoff triple, his 3rd of the year, which was followed by a one-out single to center by Iribarren against a drawn-in infield....... The last Huntsville player to hit three triples in one month was Tony Gwynn, Jr. in July of 2005.


Outside of the abbreviated Stars' series in Tennessee, it's the first series victory for the Stars this year........ In winning 3-of-5 to the team that beat us for the Southern League Championship last year, the Stars hit .250. They have hit .246 since April 16, which was the start of the Jacksonville series at the Joe........ With the Smokies' 16-7 loss to Mobile, the Stars are once again tied for 1st, even though they are 9-9. I'll take it.


The Stars travel now up I-65 to Birmingham, losers of seven of their last eight, including being swept by the Mississippi Braves, after starting out 10-2 and on top of the Southern Division....... Sam Narron (0-1, 7.80) will face Adam Russell....... Russell was 4-3 for the Barons last year, but two of those losses came at the hands of the Stars, the last being a 1-0 victory on the last day of August. The other came on July 24th, when Jorge de la Rosa, in his 6th and final rehab start, got a five-run inning, capped by a three-run HR by Carlos Lee (the Astros' Carlos Lee's brother) to win, 8-2.


Former Huntsville Star reliever Joe Winkelsas has not given up a run for Mississippi in 16 2/3 innings. He's 2nd among SL ERA leaders...... Despite the Stars' first shutout, they are 9th in the league in ERA (4.14)..... Jeff Housman and Bo Hall pitched two simulated innings this week. Pitching coach Rich Sauveur says he was "very pleased" with Housman's progress........ Manager Don Money returns to manage the club in Birmingham tomorrow for the first time since opening day. His father, Robert, passed away recently........ The Arizona Diamondbacks have placed former Huntsville Stars outfielder Dave Krynzel on the temporarily inactive list........ Former Stars pitcher Brian Adams, 29, has landed with Somerset of the independent Atlantic League. He led the Stars' pitching staff in appearances in 2004 with 52 and had a 3-2, 4.25 record. In 2003, he was 3-1 with a 2.95 ERA in 32 appearances.


Hee Seop Choi, the former Diamond Jaxx 1st baseman who was once a #1 prospect of the Chicago Cubs, has been released by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. He leaves with a .275 average and 96 HRs in 507 minor league games. He's contemplating heading back to Korea.

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By the way, pride from yours truly as a "northeasterner" -- current Assistant Director of Amateur Scouting Tony Blengino signed both LHP's Zach Braddock and Steve Garrison during his brief tenure as Northeast Area Scout. In a difficult part of the country to mine, Blengino also signed Angel Salome, Darren Ford, Derek Miller (another LH starter), and of course, has a huge vested interest in Mark Rogers.
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All in first place and a combined 20 games over .500. It seemed like in most recent years, they'd be a combined 20 games under .500 by now with a team or two tanking early. The minor league teams haven't finished above .500 since 2001.
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