Detroit Tigers Minor League Baseball Commentary and Analysis
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Lauren Gagnier had an exceptional start and he improved to 1-2 in the White Caps 6-1 win over Wisconsin. He gave up three hits and two walks with eleven strikeouts in six shutout inning.
Kyle Peter went three for five with a double and three runs. Joseph Tucker went four for five with a run and an RBI.
It wasn’t Homer Bailey’s best start of the season but it was good enough as the Hens lost to Louisville 4-3. Erick Almonte actually gave the Hens the lead with a two run homer, but Jonathan Connolly gave up two runs in the bottom of the seventh that proved to be the difference in the game.
Connolly fell to 0-3 on the season. He gave up four runs (two earned) on eight hits and a strikeout in 6 2/3 innings.
One of the great parts of playing minor league baseball is all the different places you get to see and people you get to meet. Unfortunately one of the more difficult parts of this profession is having to be away from home all the time. For me this isn’t as hard as some of the other guys because of the close proximity to home when I am there. Nevertheless, going to different cities and never really getting a chance to settle into one place takes a little getting used to. At least when you are home you have a place of your own and can have family, friends, or girlfriends/ wives come visit. These visits and time with familiar faces can do a lot for boosting confidence as well as morale. Sometimes, with all the travel and things to do outside of baseball, you can get caught up where you are and forget where you’ve been. When Todd Jones made an appearance with the minor league teams during spring training, he did everything the way we do, from the stretch to the way we wear our uniforms. When asked why he did that, he replied, “When you forget where you came from, it makes it that much harder to go back.” So when we get a chance to spend some quality time with the people who know us best and care about us the most, it helps keep you humble. And on another note, it’s always good when we get a visit from mother nature and her warm weather. Baseball is a summer sport and when 40 degrees is the high, sometimes life on the road gets cold really fast.
The Wisconsin Rattlers scored four of their seven runs in the seventh and eighth innings as the White Caps lost 7-5. The bulk of the late inning damage came against Paul Nardozzi, who gave up the final three runs (just one earned) that the Rattlers scored. You hope Nardozzi’s tough outing wasn’t because he couldn’t sleep with the scent of car freshener in the air of his room.
Jordan Netwon drove in three and he was a homerun short of the cycle. Justin Henry went two for five with a double, a homerun and two runs.
Wilkin Ramirez had a huge day at the plate in the SeaWolves 7-4 win over Akron. He went three for four with a double, two homers, three RBIs and three runs. Ryan Roberson also had a nice game with two doubles and a single.
Marcelo Perez improved to 1-0 despite giving up the lone earned run of the game. Freddy Dolsi pitched a shutout ninth and he picked up his second save of the season.
The Mud Hens edged the Bats 4-3 and it was Eddie Bonine who got it done on the mound. He improved to 5-0 and he gave up just three runs on eight hits with eight strikeouts.
Michael Hollimon was the hitting star in the win. He went two for four with a double, a triple, a walk, an RBI and two runs.
Alfredo Figaro didn’t get the win, but he threw six quality innings as the White Caps edged Wisconsin 4-3. Figaro gave up one unearned run on three hits and three walks with nine strikeouts. He’s now struck out 29 batters in 30 innings over 5 starts and his ERA is a microscopic 0.60.
Kody Kaiser singled home Justin Henry in the top of the eighth inning for the game winner. Kaiser finished the game three for four while Henry had a single, a double and two runs.
Lakeland blew a three run lead when Brendan Wise and Juan Cedeno combined to give up four runs in the eighth inning. Wise took the loss and he fell to 0-3 and it was too bad because a very nice start by Luis Marte went to waste. Marte gave up four hits with four strikeouts in seven shutout innings.
Jeramy Laster went three for four with double but he was picked off and caught stealing in the game. Brennan Boesch drove two runs on a pair of sac. flies.
Matthew Joyce had an impressive day at the plate in the Mud Hens 6-5 win over Indianapolis. He went three for four with a double and four RBIs. Brent Clevlen went two for four with two RBIs and a run.
Chris Lambert improved to 3-1 and he gave up four runs in five innings but it was Francisco Cruceta who once again stole the show. He struck out five in two shutout innings and he now has 15 strikeouts in seven innings.
One of the main qualities of a good team is there ability to come together and bond as a team. So far we have not had much time outside of the confines of the respective stadiums to really spend some quality time together. So one of the ways in which we improve our friendships and team camaraderie is through good old-fashioned practical jokes. A college teammate of mine said you only make fun of the people you like. Well if that is the case, I guess you could say Paul Nardozzi is the captain of the team. A still, anonymous individual pulled of the first well-executed prank of the season. As Paul put his bags on the bus for Cedar Rapids, Iowa, little did he know there would be a surprise awaiting him when he unpacked. Eight pine scented car fresheners were placed ever so carefully in his travel bag, and not to mention it was about a 7-hour bus ride. Just one of those things is enough to do some damage, but this was enough to make an entire house smell like Christmas. Now I, being Paul’s roommate was also affected because not even a pack of lit matches could cover the smell in the room. Now Paul is doing fine, he was a little agitated to say the least but is already planning his revenge. So I am assuming that this session of team bonding will not be ending anytime soon.
Ramon Garcia improved to 3-2 on the season with a nice start in the White Caps 9-2 win over Cedar Rapids. He gave up one run on four hits and a walk with five strikeouts in seven innings.
Mark McBratney went two for five with a triple, an RBI and two runs. Kody Kaiser singled, drew two walks, two runs and an RBI.
Jeramy Laster had a nice day at the plate as the Flying Tigers took care of Fort Myers 8-3. He went two for three with a walk, a double, a stolen base, two RBIs and a run. Brennan Boesch went two for three with a walk, an RBI and two runs.
Matt O’Brien picked up the win and he improved to 2-0. He gave up three runs on six hits and one walk with two strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.
Erie edged Altoona 5-4 and Wilkin Ramirez had the game winning hit. His solo homer in the bottom of the seventh broke a 4-4 tie and that won it for the SeaWolves. Freddy Guzman went one for three with two walks, three stolen bases and a run. The three steals brings his season total up to 13 on the season.
Casey Fien allowed the tying run to score in the seventh inning but because Erie turned around and took the lead back in a hurry, he got the win. Freddy Dolsi pitched a shutout ninth and he saved his first of the season.
Jeremy Johnson improved to 4-0 on the season with a nice start in the Hens 7-1 win over Indianapolis. He gave up one run on four hits with four strikeouts in seven innings of work.
Mike Hessman hit his eighth homer of the season and Jeff Larish belted his seventh. That’s quite a one/two punch with both of the guys in the lineup. Michael Hollimon also had a nice game and he homered and drove in a pair.
Well we finally proved that we could win without Curtis Granderson, and following with the trend of the week ended the game the only way we know how. It really is amazing what winning will do for a team, from improving attitudes, breaking slumps and building momentum. Going into a week long road trip we have built up some much needed confidence. I have heard from almost every coach my whole life that good teams are able to win close games. I guess if this prophecy holds true, we are in pretty good shape. Obviously we would like to win some games like a normal team, so that there isn’t constant pressure on the bullpen. This isn’t to say that the relievers are not up to the task, but with a long season you don’t want to get burnt out and so, any rest is good rest. It was good to have Kyle Peter our center fielder, back in the lineup after Granderson’s departure. He didn’t disappoint either by coming though with the game winning hit. On a more personal note, I got to try my hand at extra inning pressure pitching. Once I snapped out of the little zone I was in and realized where I was (any pitcher knows what that’s like) it wasn’t all that bad. Now we are looking to keep the recently gained momentum rolling into this new road trip and whenever you go away from home winning doesn’t come easy so look for some more late action games out of the ‘Cardiac Caps.’
The White Caps took care of Beloit but they needed thirteen innings to do it. Kyle Peter singled home Audy Ciriaco for the game winner and it capped off a four for six game for Peters. He finished the game with two RBIs and a run.
Rudy Darrow picked up the win with a shutout inning and he improved to 3-0. Andrew Hess kept the White Caps in it with three shutout frames in extra innings. He gave up two hits and a walk with two strikeouts.
Luis Marte improved to 2-1 with a very solid start in the Flying Tigers 3-1 win over Dunedin. He gave up one unearned run on three hits and a walk with eleven strikeouts in seven innings.
Ryan Strieby went two for four with a double and two RBIs. Scott Sizemore went two for four with two runs.
Jeff Larish belted a three run homer in the bottom of the first inning and despite the Hens scoring just one run the rest of the way, it was enough for the win. The other run in the 4-1 win came on a solo shot by Michael Hollimon.
Chris Lambert picked up the win and he improved to 2-1. He gave up three hits and four walks with two strikeouts in five shutout innings.
Lucas French improved to 1-2 on the season with a nearly flawless start in Erie’s 7-0 win over Harrisburg. He gave up just three hits with three strikeouts in eight shutout innings.
Daniel Worth had a huge day at the plate in the win. He went five for five with a double, a triple, two RBIs and a run. Freddy Guzman singled, drew a walk, stole his ninth base and scored twice.
It’s tough when you blow a 9-3 lead but that’s what happened tonight as Lakeland lost to Fort Myers 10-9. Freddy Dolsi gave up a two run homer in the bottom of the ninth and that hit decided the game. Jordan Tata made his season debut after starting the season the disabled list. He gave up four runs and he walked four in just 2/3 of an inning.
Justin Justice was the hitting star in the loss. He went three for four with a three run homer and two runs.
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