I feel you Sami!
The draft and short season ball can’t come soon enough! We’re hitting the horse latitudes here with the full season affiliates apparently. Over the last two nights the gangs have lost 7 or their collective 8 games, scoring 1 or 0 runs in 5 of those. Please. I’m begging you. Somebody do something remotely resembling anything!
No score yet. Do enjoy some Raley Field views pic.twitter.com/C8vGDOKlLT— Sacramento River Cats (@RiverCats) May 25, 2019
Yes, fine. It was still quite a pretty night at the ballyard.
HIGHLIGHTS: Tyler Beede allowed 1 run, struck out 8 over 7 IP.
Sacramento lost to the Salt Lake Bees (Angels), 1-0
losing their series, 1-3
Wow, the fans went to a PCL event and a baseball game broke out! The RiverCats ruined another fantastic Tyler Beede outing when their offense stalled for a second consecutive night.
Beede allowed just three hits in going a season high 7 innings and 104 pitches. He had a no-hit bid going until old friend (and former Defense Against the Dark Arts....I mean Giants starting LF) Jarrett Parker lined a clean single up the middle.
The game’s lone run came when CF Mike Yastrzemski tried to make a sensational catch against the fence but then couldn’t recover himself quickly enough to get the ball back into the infield, allowing Angels #8 prospect Matt Thaiss to circle the bases.
A more conservative, play it off the fence approach, and the game might be going still, but players gonna play. That sent Beede to defeat, and a 2-2 record despite a fantastic 2.34 ERA that would be third in the league had he enough innings to qualify. Beede also ranks 11th in the league in strikeouts, despite having far fewer innings than nearly everybody in front of him (league leader Zac Gallen has 80 Ks in 67 IP this year). Beede now has 49 strikeouts in just 34.2 IP against just 14 walks. Keeping that ratio in his major league innings is the next big hurdle for the 2014 1st round pick.
After pounding out 18 runs in the first two games of this series, Sacramento scored just once more over the final 18 innings as the offense came to a screeching halt. The RiverCats managed just three hits of their own last night — all singles — while drawing four walks. They had just three at bats with runners in scoring position on the night, coming up blank in all three of them. Angels #12 prospect Patrick Sandoval thoroughly throttled them with 8 Ks of his own over 6 IP.
It’s an interesting topic of conversation whether Sacramento or Richmond’s offense has had the greater struggle the last two nights. Richmond scored twice as many runs as Sacramento — 2! But they took 22 innings doing it.
The Squirrels struck out an amazing 10 times last night — IN THE EXTRA INNINGS ALONE! In fact, Richmond managed to put just one ball in play over four extra innings, and that ball was converted into an inning ending double play. Each inning from the 10th through the 13th, with a free runner sitting out their in scoring position, Richmond’s leadoff batter struck out. And then each inning, Akron intentionally walked a batter to set up a double play. That’s right, 4 extra inning IBB, none of which came back to haunt them. Twelve opportunities to cash in a go ahead run: 10 Ks. Unbelievable.
Jalen Miller and Jacob Heyward each struck out twice in extra innings, and over the entire game the pair combined for 7 Ks. Only two members of the lineup managed to avoid striking out in extra innings — Catcher Jin-De Jhang who was intentionally walked in his 10th inning plate appearance, and then grounded into the double play in the 12th, and Jonah Arenado, who was IBB in his only extra inning appearance.
For the second consecutive night, Arenado drove in the Squirrels’ lone run, and for the second consecutive night it was Chris Shaw who scored it, having reached on a leadoff double in the 4th.
Shaw posted a 2 for 5 night with a walk and a K, continuing what’s been a tremendous month of May for the slugger. Shaw is now batting .303/.384/.539 this month with 4 HRs and 9 BBs against 16 Ks. Apparently, his 1st career SB on Thursday night left him eager for more, but he was cut down trying to pick up a 2nd last night.
Another player really flowering in May (icwutudid) is Arenado, who is now 12 for 36 over the last two weeks and has driven in 7 runs over his last 5 games, a streak that includes at least one RBI every game.
Like Sacramento, Richmond managed to waste an awful lot of good pitching, from starter Caleb Baragar through a parade of four relievers. Melvin Adon did get some support from his defense, as a Johneshwy Fargas to Brandon Van Horn to Hamlet Marte relay cut down the potential winning run in the bottom of the 8th.
San Jose lost for just the second time in their past nine games. Zander Clarke’s one-out fielding error in the 8th inning opened the door for Visalia to score the go ahead run.
Anfernee Grier, Arizona’s toolsy Supplemental 1st round pick in 2016, tormented the Giants all night, doubling, homering, stealing a base, and driving in three runs. His performance was the difference in the game.
Peter Maris continued to swing a hot bat, going deep for his 2nd HR of the season and second in two nights. Kyle McPherson had two hits, including one of the team’s four doubles, and stole his 6th bag of the year.
Former USC Trojan Solomon Bates made a successful Cal League debut, pitching two scoreless innings with two Ks. Bates became the 9th member of the Giants’ 2018 draft to appear in San Jose this year.
The 10th will come tonight, in a long anticipated Cal League debut for last year’s 2nd round pick:
Sean Hjelle scheduled to make his California League debut tomorrow night here in Visalia.— Joe Ritzo (@JoeRitzo) May 24, 2019
Hjelle will be the 50th player for the #SJGiants already this season (SJ had 63 non-rehab players all of last year).
Augusta lost to Rome Braves, 9-4
losing their series, 1-3
Following their thrilling series victory at 1st place Charleston over the weekend, Augusta fell flat in their return to home, dropping three of four to the Rome Braves. Charleston’s continuing struggle means the series didn’t drop them further behind, but now they are part of a four-team scrum at the top of the division. Augusta sits tied with Lexington 1.5 games out of 1st, while Rome has moved in front of that pair, just 1 game behind Charleston. With three weeks to go to finish the first half we’re heading towards a wild ending.
20 year old RHP Jesus Ozoria matched a career high with 5 IP and set a season high with 6 Ks — including striking out three straight batters in the 1st inning after allowing a leadoff double. Ozoria has been uneven as a starter — twice getting knocked out of games in the 1st inning. But last night was an encouraging step forward. He threw a season high 87 pitches, stayed mostly in the strikezone and attacked hitters with some swing and miss stuff.
The turning point in the game came when Ozoria returned to the mound to start the 6th. No doubt tiring, Ozoria walked the leadoff batter and then hit the following batter for his final pitch of the night. Augusta then turned to 20 year old lefty Luis Amaya who entered the game with a 0.00 ERA on the year and left it with a very much not 0.00 ERA on the year.
After striking out the first two batters he saw, Amaya struggled to find an allusive third out in the inning. The next five batters would reach base by a variety of tactics — hits, walks, HB — and when it was all over the game was blown up, 8-2.
Jacob Gonzalez and Mikey Edie had two hits apiece to lead the team. Gonzalez has raised his batting average 20 points over his past seven games. For Edie, that’s now 6 hits in the last three games for a 40 point rise in average in three days.
Mikey Edie picks up sixth hit of last three games and shows off some speed. pic.twitter.com/TvsSqh1Np5— Roger Munter (@rog61) May 25, 2019
Today’s Scheduled Starters:
Sacramento (Enderson Franco) @ Albuquerque (Pat Dean)
RIchmond (Conner Menez) @ Akron (Jake Paulson)
San Jose (Sean Hjelle) @ Visalia (TBD)
Augusta (Keaton Winn) vs. Greenville (TBD) Gm 1
Augusta (TBD) vs. Greenville (TBD) Gm 2
It’s Hella-Hjelle time in the Cal League, so make your way over to Recreation Park if you’re in the Visalia area (my old stomping grounds!). We can only pray to the baseball gods that his arrival will be followed in the shortest order by Hella-Heliot time, too.
Enjoy the holiday weekend everyone! Summer time is here!
And as I walk out the door to do some holiday weekending of my own, here’s a late breaking bit of news — that is very very good news for a good baseball guy, but might well imply very very sad news for a long time Minor Lines favorite. We’ll see more as the day dawns...