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SF Giants Minor Lines, 9/9/15

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Coming and going...

A whole mess of stuff happened after starter Logan Webb had left Salem-Keizer's playoff game last night. Some of it was good, a lot of it definitely wasn't. But in all the excitement of the late innings I don't want to lose Webb's performance. He was terrific. He was composed. He spotted a lively fastball. He mixed three pitches consistently. He threw a few cement mixer curveballs but he'd go right back to it again.  And when his defense did something to let him down (which was not infrequent), he didn't get flustered. One of my favorite moments in last night's game came in the 4th. Byron Murray had just let a lazy pop fly land in front of him and then bounce over his head (Hillsboro has artificial turf) to the wall for what was ruled a triple. Up to the plate stepped Trevor Matsui, one of the NWL HR and RBI leaders. Webb did this:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/jOhdpg2bjF0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Then in the 5th after a leadoff opposite field double laced over Chris Shaw's head put him right back in the stretch, Webb did this:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/iRfHtCNB9kc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

The 18 year old has definitely had his struggles this year, but this was a real building block game. It's worth remembering again how young he is. Webb was born the same week as Victor Concepcion. He's more than half a year younger than Deiyerbert Bolivar. He's a year younger than Mac Marshall and Raffi Vizcaino. I suspect he'll progress slowly, but there's something to keep an eye on there.

HIGHLIGHTS: Jason Forjet allowed 1 Run in 5 IP with 7Ks. Angel Villalona went 3 for 4 with a HR. Logan Webb struck out 6 in 5 IP. Miguel Gomez had 3 hits with a HR.

* * *

San Jose beat Stockton Ports (A's), 7-2
Taking 1-0 lead in their best of 3 series

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

RF

Chuckie Jones

5

1

2

0

0

0

0

0

2

.400

SS

Christian Arroyo

5

1

1

1

0

0

0

0

1

.200

1b

Angel Villalona

4

1

3

4

0

0

1

0

0

.750

C

Aramis Garcia

3

0

2

0

0

0

0

1

1

.667

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Jason Forjet, W 1-0

5.0

6

1

1

1

7

0

0

0

1.80

Tyler Rogers

2.0

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0.00

Carlos Diaz

1.0

2

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

9.00

Jake Smith

1.0

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0.00

San Jose took the field with what looked to be a little case of playoff jitters. In the first inning, normally in control Jason Forjet struggled to find the strike zone. Christian Arroyo threw away an easy double play. The look was tentative. But Forjet gathered himself and struck out the final two batters of the inning and once back in the dugout the team started to look more like itself.  Newcomer and old friend Chuckie Jones was installed at the top of the lineup and set the tone with a good night at the plate and in the field.

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Io15IWJbTTU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

The big man had the big night, as Angel Villalona drove in four of the team's seven runs, and put an exclamation mark on the victory with a giant 2-run HR in the 7th inning.

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Every member of the Giants starting lineup reached base at least once last night, and all but Ty Horan and Jonah Arenado had at least one hit, as they kept the pressure on up and down the lineup. In all they had 11 hits plus 2 BBs and a HBP.

The end result was more offensive support than the pitching staff knew what to do with. Jason Forjet gave them five outstanding innings and then Lipso Nava turned the game over to his deep bullpen, including newcomer Carlos Diaz. The result was an impressive game 1 victory.

Do the hometown fans want to see them play another game at the Muni? Yes! Yes! Yes!

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Game 1 ready to go at Municipal Stadium. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SJGiants?src=hash">#SJGiants</a> and Stockton on a warm night in San Jose. <a href="http://t.co/maAbjuvPSW">pic.twitter.com/maAbjuvPSW</a></p>&mdash; Mike Hohler (@MikeHohler77) <a href="https://twitter.com/MikeHohler77/status/641796793659879424">September 10, 2015</a></blockquote>

<script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

* * *

Salem-Keizer lost to Hillsboro Hops, 6-5 in 13 inn

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

CF

Ronnie Jebavy

5

1

1

2

0

0

1

1

1

.154

DH

Miguel Gomez

6

1

3

1

0

0

1

0

2

.385

1b

Christopher Shaw

5

1

2

2

0

0

1

0

2

.308

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Logan Webb

5.0

5

2

2

0

6

0

0

0

3.60

Cory Taylor

0.2

2

2

2

2

1

0

0

2

27.00

Heath Slatton

1.1

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0.00

Caleb Smith

1.0

0

0

0

2

1

0

0

0

0.00

Ryan Halstead, BS, 1

2.0

2

1

1

2

2

0

0

0

3.00

Nathanel Santiago, L 0-1

2.0

1

1

0

1

2

0

0

0

0.00

So, first things first: the Volcanoes deserved to lose this game.  They did little things wrong all night long, and in the end they did big things wrong. Immediately after the second Logan Webb K highlight above, Jose Vizcaino took a routine grounder to SS and inexplicably (with a 3-0) lead attempted to get the runner at 3b, setting up a very stressful inning for Webb. When Webb fielded a comebacker a batter later and caught the runner off 3b, Catcher Matt Winn messed up the rundown (fortunately the 3b ump messed up the call even worse). What should have been a fairly labor-free 1 run inning turned into a long, taxing 2 run inning, and that in turn led Kyle Haines to go to the bullpen to start the 6th.

This was unfortunate because nobody coming out of the pen threw with anything like Webb's composure on the night. From the 6th through the 13th the relievers combined to walk 9 batters. Cory Taylor threw 2 WP both of which caused runs to score (the first allowed a batter to reach on a K who would later score the tying run, the second let in the go ahead run). There were also more little things that went wrong on defense. OF allowed runners into scoring position by throwing to the wrong base.  Jose Vizcaino took a throw from the OF in a very odd way which led to a blown call that set up two runs. Matt Winn had all sorts of problems blocking balls. Just sloppy stuff.

But with all of that, Hillsboro kept losing opportunities to pad their lead in late innings and came into the 9th holding onto just a 4-3 lead. That's when the drama cranked up.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CSGxY6OjkwM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Jebavy tied it up on the first pitch of the 9th. And three batters later, facing a lefty who was stretched to two innings specifically to face the LHH at the top of the Volcanoes lineup:

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Exciting!

It didn't last long though, as Ryan Halstead walked Dansby Swanson to lead off the 9th, and this walk finally did hurt them. The very next batter doinked a bloop just over 3b and taking a high hop off the turf it set up 2nd and 3rd with 0 outs. Thanks to a double play they managed to survive the inning with only the blown lead. But that was damage enough. Other than the two blasts in the 9th, Hillsboro's fantastic bullpen shut the Volcanoes down for 10 innings (a strategic moment came early on in the game when Shelley Duncan removed his struggling starter quickly in the 3rd), and they absolutely smothered the Volcanoes hitters in extra innings. No SK batter reached base after Shaw's HR and from the 11th to the 13th they had 7 strikeouts in 9 batters.

Finally in the bottom of the 13th, the first two Hillsboro batters reached base on errors from 3b Dillon Dobson and 2b Richard Amion and a Dansby Swanson single up the middle ended the Volcanoes' season. They battled though. They just didn't quite have enough in them.  The loss of Hinojosa at SS really hurt them on both sides of the ball, and the pitching staff didn't have the quality to match up with the Hops.

* * *

Ok, since my year is just about over, I think i'll indulge in a little retrospectiving.  This was a fun exercise because otherwise I never would have remembered that RafRod was San Jose's starting LF to start the year (and had a mess o' hits) or that Nick Vander Tuig was in their rotation.

So, forewith, the first of a two part series: my Minor Lines of the Year. First up, the best games of the season from hitters.

4/11 Augusta at Greenville: Hunter Cole goes 4 for 5  with 3 doubles
There were a lot of great Hunter Cole lines this year. His 4 for 5 in High Desert with a triple and HR was a close second (and cemented his promotion to AA), but I like this early one better as it shows how far he traveled on the season. He was just a 2b slumming it in A ball when the year began but he didn't stay there very long.

4/13 Augusta at Charleston: Johneshwy Fargas goes 3 for 5 with 4 SB, double
Normally my cutoff for this list was at least 4 times on base, but Johneshwy's SB explosion (these were his first 4 SB of the year, all in one game) set the tone for one of the nicest surprise seasons in the system. He proved to be a dynamic presence at the top of Augusta's lineup and in their OF.

4/15, SJ at Visalia, Ryan Lollis goes 4 for 4 with a HR, 2 RBIs, and SB
Following a disastrous 2014 season in AA, Lollis was the epitome of "org filler" when the year began, demoted back down to A+ and plugging roster holes wherever it was needed. Three months later he'd made his major league debut. This game was an early indication of that transformation.

4/16, SJ vs Bakersfield, Ryder Jones goes 4 for 4 with a HR, BB
Like last year, Ryder's season started with early promise and then declined as the summer went on. But his April was dynamic, and this was its highlight, reaching base five times and mashing his second HR of the year.

4/19, Sacramento at Salt Lake City, Adam Duvall goes 5 for 6, two doubles, triple, HR
It's true that playing at SLC lessens the impact, but this is possibly the most beautiful line of the season. The year's only cycle, and because Adam Duvall thinks cycles are boring he tossed in an extra double for free. Maybe the game of the year.

4/26, Sacramento vs Tacoma, Jarrett Parker goes 4 for 4 with 2 HRs, 4 RBIs, 3 Runs
Parker ended up leading the organization in HRs (other than the departed Duvall) and this was the finest night of the year, capping a terrific April in which he hit .300 with 6 HRs.

Man, April was fun!

6/4, DSL Giants at DSL Rojos, Mecky Coronado goes 5 for 5, 3 RBIs
Mecky Coronado gave notice that he would be this year's model of last year's Miguel Gomez early with this 5 for 5 effort in the first week of the DSL season.  He'd end the year 8th in the DSL in BA and provide steady production in the middle of the DSL team's lineup all year.

6/9, DSL Giants at DSL Mariners, Yendrys Gonzalez, 4 for 6, HR, SB
Because baseball is super weird, here's the WTF line of the year.  The 18 year old Gonzalez would get just 18 more at bats the rest of the year and he'd manage just two more hits, but he certainly put his stamp on this game, one of only three games he started all year. (this was also, btw, Francisco Medina's two homer game).

6/12 and 6/13, SJ at High Desert, Hunter Cole goes 4 for 4 with triple HR, Austin Slater 4 for 5 with double, walk
High Desert has a way of providing such lines, but this series was really the high water mark of the first half SJ team with Cole and Slater at the top of the order whacking line drives all over the field.  Both of them would be promoted to AA within two weeks of this series.

6/17 Augusta vs. Lexington, Jonah Arenado goes 5 for 5 with double, three RBIs
The 20 year old from the 2013 draft got a big challenge promotion this year with the bump up to full season ball, and he stood up to it, ultimately leading the league in games played and at bats. This game was really the summit of his season, as his BA and OPS would never again be as high as it was on this day.  His fifth hit of the game came with two outs in the bottom of the 9th and drove in two to tie a game that Augusta would win in extra innings.

6/30 San Jose at Stockton, Christian Arroyo goes 5 for 5 with two doubles
The more acclaimed HS hitter of the 2013 draft class answered back with his own 5 hit night. Arroyo hit and hit and hit this year, but this was the hitterest night of them all. This game kicked off what would be a tremendous month for Arroyo as he hit .324/.390/.505 in the month of July.

7/2 Sacramento vs. SLC, Mac Williamson goes 4 for 4, double, HR, BB, 3 Runs, 3 RBIs
Mac had been in the PCL a week when he put up this perfect line.  Just a couple of days later he would leave for the Pan Am games which took away most of his July.  He would have an identical line on Aug. 21 vs. New Orleans, but sentimentally this one is my favorite because it included his 1st AAA home run.

7/4 Sacramento at Reno, Kelby Tomlinson goes 5 for 6 with a triple, SB, and 3 Runs
Tomlinson's game logs this year were a constant and steady barrage of two and three hit games. But he really unleashed the Specs power in this one where he ran roughshod over the Reno Aces. Having just been promoted to AAA, he'd be in the majors within a month.

7/8 and 7/14, Augsta at Rome and Greenville, Aramis Garcia goes 3 for 3, BB, two doubles, 4 RBIs and 4 for 5, two HRs, four RBIs
Two games can hardly contain the white hot fury of Garcia's July, but these two are an excellent representation of the destruction he visited upon Sally pitchers for about three weeks prior to his promotion to the Cal League.

7/11 Sacramento vs. Fresno, Adam Duvall goes 3 for 4 with 3 HRs
I generally set a 4 hit limit for these best of lines because there were so so many three hit with a HR games and even 4 hit games.  But Adam gets an exemption for his brilliant 3 HR game. They were all solo HRs and they were the only runs Sacramento scored in the game (they had just 5 hits in the game in all). It was in some ways, Duvall's swan song performance as a member of the Giants' org.

7/12, Salem-Keizer at Vancouver, Julio Pena goes 4 for 5, HR
The second most WTF night of the year. Pena's always had pop, but making a plethora of contact has never been his game. He was hitting .300 at the end of this night, but he'd drop to .234 by the end of the year.

8/3 Augusta at Lexington, Aramis Garcia and Jonah Arenado both go 4 for 6 with a HR
Atmospheric circumstances certainly helped here as this 16-14 game featured 7 HRs and an incredible 44 hits. Still, those are lines to remember! This was Garcia's final series with the Greenjackets.

8/5 Augusta at Lexington, Dylan Davis goes 3 for 3 with two walks and HR
Same series, same conditions. Heck Davis had hit two HRs in the above game on the 3rd and couldn't even get a mention. But reaching base five times with his 11th HR of the year gets him to the highlight page.

8/5 DSL Giants at DSL Dodgers, Beicker Mendoza goes 4 for 5 with a double
The 17 year old hit .323 the final two months of the year. This was one of two four hit games and five multi-hit games for Beicker within the week as he got geared up for his huge post-season. This was also the game in which Sandro Cabrera K'd 11 in 5.2 innings, btw.

8/10-13, Salem-Keizer vs Hillsboro and Spokane. C.J. Hinojosa hit balls hard
Probably none of these games is quite good enough to make this list. Not the 3 for 5 with two doubles, not the 3 for 4 with a triple and a HR, not the 2 for 5 with a double and a HR or the 3 for 4 with a double.  But collectively, the six day rampage in which Hinojosa went 15 for 25 with six doubles, a triple, and three HRs definitely has to make the list.

8/12 DSL Giants at DSL Mariners, Sandro Fabian goes 4 for 5 with triple, has 10th OF assist of year
Please refer to note above re: Beicker Mendoza.

8/19 Salem-Keizer vs. Hillsboro, Ronnie Jebavy goes 3 for 4 with triple and two HRs
Another exception to the "no 3 hit games" rule as Jebavy came very close to matching Duvall's three HR game on this day. Much was made of Miguel Gomez 24:5 K:BB ratio on the year, but relatively little attention was paid to Jebavy's 55:9 K:BB. He swung at pretty much everything he saw but when he hit 'em they could really stay hit.

8/29-30, Richmond at Akron, Ricky Oropesa, 5 for 8, 4 HRs, 2 Grand Slams, and a double
Ricky Oropesa almost single handedly put Richmond back into the playoff picture with this ginormous series at Akron. They came into the series in 3rd place behind Akron, and they left it in 2nd place in front of them, and Oropesa's 5 HRs and 4 doubles was the primary reason. His Aug. 30th performance in which he hit 2 HRs in an inning capped off the great series.

So there they are, my Minor Lines of the Year! What's your favorites? Tomorrow I'll do pitchers.

* * *

San Jose moves to Stockton for games two and three in the mini-series. They're in essentially the same position that Salem-Keizer was in two days ago. But they've got something the Volanoes didn't have: Andrew Suarez lined up to start game 2.