HIGHLIGHTS: Ask again, later.
The RiverCats couldn’t muster up much offense and the pitching put them in a hole early. The result was the team’s 10th shutout loss of the year.
Sacramento managed just four hits, none of them for extra bases, and two walks in the game, and took just one AB in the entire game with a runner in scoring position. Oof! Ryder Jones led the team with two hits.
But when there’s no offense to speak of, you can always enjoy a little D. Kelby Tominson’s really been flashing the leather in Sacramento this year:
I would imagine the team is carefully monitoring Ray Black at this point, as he’s very close to setting a personal high in innings pitched, and coming off a 2017 in which he threw just 2 innings. So yesterday’s game was, no doubt, a bit concerning, as Black labored through a 31 pitch inning, In his prior 12 AAA appearances he’d allowed no runs and just 4 hits.
Hey, speaking of Ryder Jones — here’s a worthy summer project:
Richmond lost at Altoona Curve (Pirates), 9-2 in Gm 1 (7 inn)
Like their AAA compatriots, Richmond struggled at the plate — collecting just eight hits across two games and taking just 3 ABs with runners in scoring position across 14 innings of play. Matt Lipka was the only player on the team to collect two hits across the day, and he was also the only player with an RBI hit, doubling in Matt Winn for one of the team’s two runs in Gm 1. Starting Pitcher Jake McCasland had one of the team’s six hits in the first game, although he was a bit less effective on the mound, surrendering 9 runs on 9 hits.
It’s hard to overstate how diametrically opposed Garrett Williams’ 2018 has been from his 2017. We all knew that AA was going to be a huge challenge for the lefty, and he’s just never seemed to get comfortable this year — struggling to throw strikes and getting punished on mistakes over the plate. Whether he was starting or relieving, Williams has consistently been allowing base runners this year — to the tune of a startling 1.92 WHIP, almost two baserunners per inning!
Pitching in A ball and High A last year, Williams allowed just 25 earned runs in 97 IP, striking out 96 and limiting the walks to 35 (1.25 WHIP, much better!). AA has been a completely different story — 55 earned runs in 81.1 IP with 73 Ks and a whopping 61 BBs. He’s also hit 13 batters. Fight again next year, Garrett! It’s a big step up the ladder.
And now, for the lighter side...
Heath Quinn just keeps on bashing. The 2016 3rd rounder has had the best offensive season in the system in his return to the Cal League, putting a dismal and disappointing 2017 in his rear view mirror. Next year comes the big step up for the husky corner OF, and hopefully he’ll be taking the good vibes of this year with him. Yesterday, he had two of the team’s six hits, including the only one that produced a run.
With 14 HRs and 23 doubles, Quinn is now SLG .512 and has an OPS of .902. Excellent season for the big guy. Oh, and speaking of walk up music:
Wander Franco hit his 37th double of the year, tying him for the league lead.
Mac Marshall stretched out for his longest outing of the year, lasting 6 innings. He struck out six but also walked four which has been the constant bugaboo of his pro career. Marshall has 38 walks in 52 IP this year and for his pro career has walked an extraordinary 121 batters in 141.1 IP. That’s not gonna work, Mac!
Augusta lost to Kannapolis Intimidators (White Sox), 10-8 in 10 inn
Out here lookin’ like we’re about to drop a mixtape. What would you name it? pic.twitter.com/Z4vBUY35a7— Augusta GreenJackets (@GreenJackets) August 25, 2018
The Greenjackets made a bid for their most thrilling win of the year — coming back from a 5-run deficit in the bottom of the 9th to tie the game — but in the end it wasn’t quite enough.
The big rally was entirely the largesse of the Kannapolis pitching staff, as Augusta took six walks in the 9th, including three straight bases loaded walks that ultimately tied the game up:
GREENJACKETS COME BACK FROM A 5 RUN DEFICIT IN BOTTOM 9 TO TIE THIS BALLGAME! WOW! pic.twitter.com/fHYJXazwqx— Augusta GreenJackets (@GreenJackets) August 26, 2018
Manny Geraldo had a chance to end it with a walk off hit, but he took a called third strike to end the inning and head on to extras. There, the Intimidators came up with two run scoring doubles to push out to a two-run lead, and the Greenjackets struck out three times in the bottom of the inning to complete a tough loss.
With arms running thin at this point in the year, Jose Marte had to absorb some innings from the team. He stayed out there through 7.1 despite allowing 16 hitters to reach base safely against him on 11 hits and 5 walks. He also struck out 7. All told, that caused Marte to get up to a pitch count area that is simply unheard of in 21st century minor league ball — the big right-hander threw 118 pitches in last night’s game, something I feel fairly certain was a high in all of minor league ball this year. The Greenjackets are finishing the season with a stretch of 14 games in 12 days, and no doubt have very few arms to cover all of those innings. But wow!
The Volcanoes backwards campaign continues with yet more pitching woes. Just a win here or there would ensure a post-season appearance for them, but they are really struggling to find those lately, going just 3-7 over their past 10.
Jake Wong did his part — the 3rd rounder has allowed 1 or 0 runs in 9 of his 10 starts this year, including his past eight. Wong’s been the best performer of the 2018 pitching draftees, posting a 2.59 ERA with Salem-Keizer and striking out 24 (in 24.1 IP) to just 6 walks.
After Wong departed, however, things got a little loose on the mound. 10th rounder Alex DuBord has had a rough rough pro debut — allowing 26 earned runs in 19.2 IP. He’s given up 4 runs or more in five of his nine appearances, and in his last two appearances, he’s allowed 12 runs in just 4 IP. He’s walked as many as he’s struck out and is allowing base runners at a 2.44 WHIP pace.
At the plate, the Volcanoes got multi-hit nights from Diego Rincones, Joey Bart, and Wander Franco who, like his brother is near the top of the leader board in doubles. Franco hit his 20th double of the year last night, just one behind teammate Kyle McPherson.
Bart hit his 14th double. His .618 SLG is second in the NWL. He also picked up his 7th and 8th walks of the season last night.
Speaking of Bart, here’s some Sunday reading to look forward to (for those of you Athletic subscribers):
Beicker Mendoza is putting the finishing touches on what he, no doubt, hopes will be his final rookie league season. Mendoza picked up three more hits yesterday to push his batting average back over .300. In his third AZL campaign, Beicker is hitting .302/.332/.467.
Franklin Labour’s two-run double gave Team Black the lead for good in their game. Labour hasn’t hit quite as expected this year, and he quite likely will be back for a second AZL season next year.
Melvin Adon and Alex Bostic both got in rehab appearances with varying level of success. Adon surrendered six hits and all three runs in yesterday’s game — he’s allowed 5 runs in his two rehab efforts, though he has struck out 8. Unclear whether he’ll get a start in at San Jose again though I suspect we’ll be seeing him in the AFL.
Bostic allowed no runs though he once again had trouble with the strike zone, walking three in 2 IP.
The AZL teams play each other tonight and then finish up their 2018 season with two games tomorrow.
Ghordy Santos and Luis Toribio finished up their 2018 seasons in style yesterday, providing most of the offense for the Giants’ double header.
Santos had five hits including a big four-hit game in the opener. One of those was a walk-off two run single that won the first game. He also stole his 18th base of the year. The five hit day completed a big final month for the SS in which he hit .301/.433/.494. Here’s hoping he found some adjustment that can sustain him through DSL Fall Instrux and onto the domestic side next year.
Toribio busted out his extra base stick yesterday, collecting three doubles among his four hits. He didn’t manage to get that 11th HR to tie the known DSL Giants team record, but the 17 year old still managed to knock out 24 extra base hits in his 64 games, SLG .479 for the year. He finished with a .902 OPS and his .270 batting average was second best on the team for all batters with 100 ABs, behind only Samuel Jorge’s .274.
The DSL season is now concluded for 2018.
Today’s Scheduled Starters:
Sacramento: Josh Osich vs. Matt Gage
Richmond: Chase Johnson vs. Eduardo Vera
San Jose: DJ Myers vs. Reggie McClain
Augusta: Aaron Phillips vs. Zach Lewis
Salem-Keizer: Greg Jacknewitz vs. Tai Tiedermann
AZL: Conner Nurse (Black) vs. Marco Gonzalez (Orange)
Josh Osich gets a spot start for the RiverCats who go up against an old friend. With today’s game Matt Gage will have completed the rather odd accomplishment of having pitched for AND faced both Richmond and Sacramento in the 2018 season. That’s something!