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SF Giants Minor Lines 4/22

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Mac Williamson was either happy or angry to see AAA pitching again. Whichever it was, he made a loud sound!

Mac Williamson was either making a statement about his demotion, or he was just glad to be able to get back on a field and swing a bat in anger again. Either way, he made his return to the minors a memorable one last night.

Woo-boy! That ball looked like it had some place to git to, didn't it?

HIGHLIGHTS: Mac Williamson hit 2 HRs and SB; Clayton Blackburn threw 8.1 one-run innings; Sam Coonrod struck out 6 in 5 shutout innings.

Sacramento beat Las Vegas 51s (Mets), 3-1
winning their four game series, 3-1

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

Other

RF

Mac Williamson

4

2

2

2

0

0

2

0

0

.303

SB (1)

3b

Mitch Delfino

3

1

1

1

0

0

1

1

0

.238

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Pitches

Strikes

Clayton Blackburn W 1-1

8.1

5

1

1

2

2

0

0

0

2.89

95

65

Breaking out their Orange Friday "Sactown" unis, the RiverCats finally won their first series of the year, thanks mostly to Clayton Blackburn and Mac Williamson. Blackburn stymied the 51s throughout, very nearly garnering the first CG of his career. As it was, it was the second longest outing of his career (he once threw 8.2 IP in Augusta), and he was in control from the get go.  Blackburn retired the side in order in 5 of the 8 innings he completed. He pounded the strike zone, throwing two-thirds of his pitches for strikes, and picked up 12 ground ball outs.

The Sacramento bats weren't exactly on fire themselves against the 51s Sean Gilmartin (who pitched 50 innings in MLB with the Mets last year), with just six hits and two walks on the night. All their scoring came on three solo HRs. Two of them came from Williamson, who tied the game at 1-1 with his 6th inning blast, ambushing a 3-0 count and hitting in on, through, and over everything. That was quickly followed by Mitch Delfino's first AAA HR to put the RiverCats ahead. Mac's 2nd HR (jumping on a 2-0 pitch) capped the night's scoring. Two HRs calls for two highlights!

Just because he was feeling chippy, Williamson stole a base as well, to pick up the combo meal.

So after 16 straight games vs Las Vegas (against whom they were 5-3) and Salt Lake City (against whom they were 0-8) the RiverCats finally get to try on a new opponent, heading up to Tacoma tonight to take on the Mariners AAA team, the Rainiers.

Final note: Andrew Susac still hasn't played a game since April 11. Oddly, he's never been placed on the DL. You can see him taking part in celebrations in many of these clips, and he's been covering a lot of 1b coaching duty with Manager Jose Alguacil out of town attending to the death of his father.  Seems clear that he's still got something mysterious going on with that lingering wrist issue, which at this point is definitely reaching the worrisome stage.

* * *

Richmond lost at Altoona Curve (Pirates) 10-2

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

Other

SS

Christian Arroyo

3

0

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

.295

HBP

C

Matt Winn

3

2

2

1

1

0

1

1

0

.256

CF

Austin Slater

3

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

.190

HBP

RF

Hunter Cole

4

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

.184

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Pitches

Strikes

Joan Gregorio L 0-1

6.0

7

3

3

1

8

0

0

1

1.69

93

65

Tyler Rogers

0.2

2

3

0

1

1

0

0

0

0.00

26

17

On a rainy, windy, cold night, the Squirrels played an appropriately sloppy game, failing in nearly every aspect of the game. But first things first, one player who was not at all sloppy was Joan Gregorio, who continued his fantastic start to the season.

Gregorio's stat line looks a little so-so, but that's mostly due to a combination of Carlos Moncrief butchering fly balls, and the official scorekeeper butchering official scoring. Gregorio's one troublesome inning, the three-run third, began with Moncrief failing to see a fly ball that then clanked off his mitt for an inexplicable "double." On the very next play, Moncrief broke back on a broken bat Texas Leaguer, and by the time he'd reversed direction and come in on the ball his last second dive wasn't quite enough to corral it. That was, of course, a "single." To complete the fiasco, the very next batter hit a high high towering fly to the warning track which Hunter Cole drifted on too much and allowed to get behind him, bouncing up against the fence for a triple. The momentarily rattled Gregorio then brought the third run in himself with a WP.  All in all, at least two of those runs should never have been on base, and likely all three of them should have been outs.

But Gregorio didn't let the rough patch knock him off his game. Instead he got stronger, and K'd 6 of the next 11 batters he faced over the next three scoreless innings before leaving for a PH in the 6th. From his first few starts it really does seem that Gregorio has begun to get a feel for attacking hitters with his excellent stuff, and has taken his swing and miss potential to a next level. He now has 21 Ks vs 5 BB over 16 IP. That's a K rate of 37%.  SSS of course, but his K rate in AA last year was just 22%, so it's definitely a heartening sign.

Apologies for Altoona's very poorly iris and contrast balanced cameras (this is always a problem there).

The sloppy fielding that marred Gregorio's line continued later in the game, when three errors in the bottom of the 8th led to 6 unearned runs and a full blow out. It had been drizzling and raining on and off for a couple of hours at that point, so perhaps it wasn't that unexpected. Richmond also had a sloppy game offensively. They were unable to take advantage of Altoona SP David Whitehead, who was all over the place all night. The normally walk-averse Squirrels were given 6 free passes, plus 2 HB by Whitehead, but they were unable to turn any of that largesse into runs, despite also having four XBH on the night (sequencing is life!).  Instead their runs mostly came courtesy of Richmond's own Matt Winn, who hit his first AA HR in the 6th and later came back with a double, scoring on Moncrief's single. Winn, whose leap to AA was probably the most surprising assignment in the system this year, has held his own in the early going, now hitting .256/.289/.395. The HR was his 3rd as a pro.

One final note. Christian Arroyo left the game half an inning after having been hit in the foot by a pitch. He didn't leave immediately, finishing his half inning on the bases, but he was clearly hobbling and in a good bit of pain.  It was a slow curve that got him, but it might well have been perfectly placed as it got him up in the toe area and there's some potential for a broken bone that would be very very unfortunate. If he managed to avoid a broken toe, it didn't look like anything that will cause more than a few days of soreness. We'll see.

* * *

San Jose lost to the Modesto Nuts (Rockies), 4-1

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

Other

LF

Johneshwy Fargas

4

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

2

.213

E

CF

Ronnie Jebavy

4

0

2

1

1

0

0

0

1

.188

1b

Chris Shaw

4

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

3

.277

DH

Jose Vizcaino, Jr

4

0

2

0

1

0

0

0

1

.178

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Pitches

Strikes

Sam Coonrod

5.0

2

0

0

2

6

0

0

0

0.00

86

58

Reyes Moronta

1.0

1

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

3.00

16

10

Rodolfo Martinez BS 1 L 0-1

0.1

2

4

1

2

0

0

0

0

1.69

21

11

On yet another rainy night when the tarp crew got a little work in, the L'il Giants came  oh so close to their first winning streak of the year, but Rodolfo Martinez let it slip away in the 9th, and SJ continued it's "win one/lose one" pattern.

With hot-hitting Steven Duggar getting the night off, the SJ offense struggled. Chris Shaw's 9 game hitting streak was whiffed away, as he struck out in 3 of his 4 AB. In fact, SJ bats K'd 13 times in this game while picking up just 1 walk and 7 hits. The offense came from a couple of guys who had been struggling, as Ronnie Jebavy and Jose Vizcaino both had two hits with a double.  Jebavy's was the big hit, as his double brought home Johneshwy Fargas (and it was good to see him back in the game the night after taking a pitch off the helmet) for the first run of the game. Vizcaino's double was his first official XBH of the year, though of course he also has a HR in the suspended game that is sitting in a statistical waiting room somewhere, just waiting to show up in his stat line.

But after Jebavy's double in the 5th, the offense shut down completely as the team didn't have another base runner until the bottom of the 9th when a two out rally came up short.

That 1 run seemed like it might hold up though, thanks to terrific pitching performances. Sam Coonrod had his best start of the year so far, going 5 innings of two-hit shutout ball, while striking out 6.  Coonrod hasn't given up an earned run in either of his official games, though like Vizcaino, he has some runs sitting in that same statistical waiting room.  In his previous start, he had failed to record a strikeout for the first time in his career in a game that didn't involve an early inning weather issue.  He came back with his swing and miss stuff in this start, and counting the suspended game he now has 13 Ks vs 3 BBs in 13 IP.

He opened the night a little shaky, allowing both of his walks, and one of his two hits in the top of the 1st. However, he pitched out of a bases loaded jam and put it in cruise control for the rest of the night, allowing just one base runner over the final 4 innings. Coonrod's final two Ks of the night came on his final two batters, with the last coming against one of the best pure hitting prospects in the minors, the Nuts Forrest Wall. Let's watch him end it in style:

One of the most dramatic moments of the game came in the top of the 8th, as Reyes Moronta was trying to protect that 1-0 lead to get the game to Rodolfo. Two outs, the tying run on 3b. Could Moronta bow his neck (as my brother was wont to say)?

He could! Feeble hack indeed!

Sadly, it was all for naught, as Martinez blew up the 9th inning. Within the first few pitches Martinez had allowed a double and single to tie the game up. He then threw away a Sac Bunt attempt (I remain steadfastly of the view that runs should count as Earned when the fielding culprit is the pitcher himself), and finally walked the final two batters he faced on five pitches each. A 1-0 nail biter turned into a bitter 4-1 defeat.

The blown save also ended an extraordinary streak for San Jose pitching:

Get 'em next time, Rodolfo. I'm sure he still looked good!

* * *

Augusta's game at Charleston was Suspended after 3
with the score tied 0-0

This game will be resumed prior to today's regularly scheduled game.  In their heart of hearts, the Augusta batters might not be over-sad to see the evening end, as 6'7" fire breathing dragon Domingo Acevedo was once again giving them all they could handle, striking out 4 over 3 innings of work and allowing just one ground ball single to the penultimate batter he faced (Manuel Geraldo). Jalen Miller turned one of his high 90s fastballs around for an extremely hard hit out, but the rest of the evening was just dominance and submission, and a bit of rain.

* * *

Hopefully a dryer Saturday is in store for the teams tonight, though I have to say that looking out my window I currently see no signs of it. But let's hope for the best.

Pitching Matchups:
Sacramento: TBD vs. Joe Wieland
Richmond: Matt Gage vs. Jason Creasy
San Jose: DJ Snelten vs. TBD
Augusta: Cory Taylor vs. Daris Vargas

Not quite sure what's going on with Sacramento's rotation at this point, as it isn't clear whether or not Chris Heston is joining it. Cory Taylor is the highlight starter for the night. Again, it's unclear how Augusta will choose to cover the 6 innings left of the suspended game.