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SF Giants Minor Lines 6/13/19: Jose Marte strikes out 8

But a blown lead in Augusta could prove costly

minor lines

It’s Minor Lines, where we want you to remember that the “N” in TOOTBLAN stands for “Nincompoop”

HIGHLIGHTS; Jose Marte allowed one run in 5 innings with 8 Ks; Heliot Ramos had two hits, two runs, double.

Sacramento beat Omaha Storm Chasers (Royals), 5-4 11 inn

A big game from Ryan Howard helped Sacramento erase an early 3-0 deficit and comeback to win in extra innings. After starter Yoanys Quiala allowed 3 runs in the top of the 1st, the RiverCats used the long ball to chip away at the lead, starting with Howard’s first home run in June:

Back to back shots from Mike Gerber and Henry Ramos would tie things up in the 6th.

But Sam Coonrod would give the lead right back, allowing three hits and a run in the top of the 7th. It was the first run Coonrod had allowed in AAA since May 7 (he allowed 1 run in the majors during that time), though his PCL ERA is now a frightening 6.04 — it doesn’t seem like a guy with Coonrod’s stuff should have an ERA of 6.04.

But Howard tied things up with a ground out in the 8th sending the game to extras. Tyler Rogers did some heroic extra inning work, getting out of a no-out, man on 3b, situation in the 10th and ultimately allowing no runs in two extra innings (despite the free base runner rule).

That set up Howard for walk off:

That completed Sacramento’s second consecutive come from behind win and fourth win overall. The 1st place RiverCats are on quite a roll! Amazingly, the team has been doing most of its damage on the road, as it has a losing record at Raley Field this year (16-19). Time to turn that trend around!

Richmond lost to Harrisburg Senators (Nationals), 4-3 in 10 inn
losing their series, 1-2

Another tale of a blown 3-0 lead and extra innings, but this time from the wrong side the lens! Brandon Lawson had himself quite a day, throwing 7 shutout innings, and contributing his own support when he picked up his very first professional hit! Highlights will come and highlights will go — but #pitcherswhorake will be with us always!

As seems to be a daily occurence of late, Lawson also got support from his fellow minor league free agent Zach Houchins, who is slugging a ridiculous .681 in the month of June.

But it all went for naught. Lawson had barely had time to towel himself off after departing before Rule 5 pick up Sam Moll who allowed 3 runs in a truly disastrous top of the 8th. Moll was all over the place. He walked a batter, he hit a batter, he gave up a couple of hits, and then he uncorked this gem:

Not often you can manage two wild throws home on one pitch!

Richmond was unable to take advantage of Jalen Miller leadoff double in the 9th, and fell in the 10th when Nationals #3 prospect Luis Garcia brought in the winner in the 10th with a soft line drive single.

It’s all adding up to another rough season in Richmond, where the Squirrels are nearing the 20 games under .500 mark. Let’s get that franchise some talent, how about!?!

San Jose beat Visalia Rawhide (Diamondbacks), 4-3

WIth a lineup featuring Heliot Ramos and Joey Bart, it can be hard for other players to grab the spot light. But that wasn’t the case last night, as starter Jose Marte grabbed the attention of everyone in attendance with his display of power pitching.

It was the Jose Marte we hoped we’d see on a regular basis this season — and hopefully still will now that his early season IL stint is behind him. Marte pounded the strike zone with his live fastball and broke down hitters with a wicked slider. He struck out five of the last six batters he saw — and needed just 18 pitches to dispatch them all.

Nasty! On a staff with Sean Hjelle and Jake Wong, is Marte the baddest of them all?

Have a wonderful and relaxing 23rd birthday today, Jose!

But that’s not to say that Ramos was shy of gaining a little attention himself last night. The 19 year old CF keeps on hitting! Ramos started the night with an RBI groundout, and would later collect two hits and score two runs. That included his 10th double of the year, helping push his SLG up to .602.

Ramos has played in 34 games this year and he’s reached base safely in 31 of them. The strikeouts are still on the high side (26%) and likely to remain there, but doubling his career walk rate to 13% and putting up a stunning .289 Iso ameliorates the concerns for that swing and miss a bit. It’s really been a huge step forward for Heliot this spring as he’s getting himself in hitter’s counts and doing damage once he puts himself there.

Joey Bart failed to collect a hit, though he did work his 6th walk of the year (against 12 Ks). Bart has one hit in his last three games and is now hitting .254/.333/.567 on the season in 67 ABs.

Things are really coming together for the Giants. Though they’re still just 29-37, with three days to go in the first half, all the pieces are here to make a strong second half push and return San Jose to playoffs (it’s rightful place in the order of things).

One piece that won’t be here is All Star closer Frank Rubio (1 run allowed) who has been promoted to AA (Camilo Doval replaces him on the All Star roster). You can hear some of Joe Ritzo and Justin Allegri’s thoughts on all this and more, as well as Andy Baggarly’s contributions on the latest Inside the San Jose Giants podcast

Augusta lost to Rome Braves, 7-4

Coming home on a 5-game winning streak, it looked like Augusta was going to continue to roll when they put up 4 runs in the bottom of the 1st inning. RBI doubles from Diego Rincones and Andres Angulo chased Rome starter Trey Riley with two outs in the 1st.

But getting to the bullpen early turned out to be the worst thing that could happen to Augusta, which would fall from that early high to crushing defeat. Reliever Dilmer Mejia instantly put out the fire in the 1st and would go on to throw 6 no-hit innings against the Greenjackets — completely stifling their offense for the night. After the Angulo RBI double in the 1st, Augusta would collect just one hit the rest of the night.

Meanwhile, being given a big cushion early didn’t seem to help Seth Corry settle in at all. Though Corry walked just one batter, he continued a recent trend of struggling to throw strikes consistently with either his fastball or curve. The LHP threw just half his pitches for strikes, constantly put himself behind in counts and hit two batters in addition to his walk. Corry’s now up to 37 walks and 8 HB in 49.1 IP — that’s nearly 1 free baserunner per inning!

The constant traffic and hitter’s counts meant Corry wasn’t going to go deep in the game and, indeed, he was out after 4 innings and 82 pitches. The flow of the game had changed and Rome kept chipping away until they tied the game on a solo HR off Preston White in the 7th. The 8th inning was then a total disaster. Poor communication caused a pop up to fall between RF Diego Rincones and 2b Anyester Sivira to open the inning. And the second batter of the inning reached on a strikeout when Angulo let the ball get away from him and then threw the ball away. Instead of none-out, two-outs, it was the beginning of a big inning that salted away a truly disspiriting loss.

With Charleston running away to a huge 11-0 win, Augusta fell a game back heading into the final 3 days of the 1st half. Augusta has pulled victories from the jaws of defeat plenty of times this year, so you can’t let a game like this keep you down. But they can’t have any more of these games this weekend.

DSL Giants beat DSL Colorado, 4-0

Check out the totally normal looking baseball score coming out of the DSL! The Giants normally prolific offense downshifted a bit and let the pitchers take center stage for a day.

The Giants signed Rafael Martinez way back on J2 of 2016 and the word was that they were so impressed with the Venezuelan RHP that they had moved him U.S. side for camp and were preparing to skip him over the DSL and straight to the AZL. Sadly, that never came to pass. Instead those letters so associated with stalled pitching progress — TJ — intervened and now, more than 2 years later he’s back in the DSL trying to get the feel for his arm back.

Yesterday was a pretty good landmark along that path. He had 9 career innings pitched before yesterday’s 5 inning outing — that includes three one-inning stints at the tail end of 2018 when he first returned to action. So yesterday’s game represents more than a third of his career innings.

And given that he had allowed 9 runs so far this year in his 6 IP, it’s safe to say they were the BEST of his career innings as well. Martinez faced the minimum 15 batters, allowing just two hits and eliminating both baserunners in short order with a Pickoff and a DP grounder. He walked none and — somewhat amazingly for a DSL pitcher — didn’t hit one either! (there were five hit batters yesterday; the DSL is a seriously dangerous place for hitters!). Martinez really should be the ace of this Giants pitching staff, so hopefully as the summer goes on we’ll begin to see more and more of these type of games. And for those who wonder if the long delay to starting his career portends bad things, I’ll point out that injuries caused Raffi Vizcaino to stick around in the DSL for three seasons until shortly before his 20th birthday. There’s still time for Rafael to develop (though he will hit Rule 5 eligibility when he’s still just a sparkle in some prospector’s eye).

For those of you Spanish speakers out there, here’s an interview with Martinez on his signing day — feel free to come back and translate for those of us with woefully limited language skills.

The offense managed just four hits yesterday — one from hit machine Diego Verbel — but thanks to four walks and five HBP they managed to translate that into four runs. Luis Matos’ multi-hit streak was broken though he was constantly on base being walked once and plunked twice. That gave him a chance to show off his wheels and he picked up his 3rd SB of the season.

Today’s Scheduled Starters:
Sacramento (Ty Blach) vs. Omaha (TBD)
Richmond (Caleb Baragar) vs. New Hampshire (Zach Logue)
San Jose (Jake Wong) vs. Visalia (TBD)
Augusta (Keith Weisenberg) vs Rome (Odalvi Javier)
Salem-Keiser (TBD) vs. Boise (Frederis Parra)
DSL Giants (Luis Castillo) vs. DSL Colorado (TBD)

The Volcanoes make their season debut as our list grows ever longer! I’m anticipating that Kervin Castro may be the Opening Night starter for SK, but they have nothing announced as of yet. The Volcanoes shook up their normal start of season routine, as apparently they had no media day or exhibition game to get the crowds ready for the year. In fact, the team that once ruled the NWL has fallen into their worst situation since coming to Keizer more than two decades ago. It doesn’t take an advanced skill in math to figure that four years of declining attendance coincides with four years of lowering performance on the field for the team that won 5 league titles and 7 division titles in the Bakers’ decade between 1998 and 2009.

Have a great weekend everybody!