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4/6 MiLB Gameday: Salem begins

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#1 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 12:22 PM

Today's Games:

IL: Pawtucket (Brandon Duckworth) vs. Buffalo (Jeurys Familia) [6:15pm]
EL: Portland (Brock Huntzinger) @ Reading (Trevor May) [7:05pm]
CL: Salem (Ryan Pressly) @ Frederick (Kyle Simon) [7:05pm]
SAL: Greenville (Luis Diaz) vs. Lakewood (Ervis Manzanillo) [7:05pm]



MiLB Radio

Local Media:

Pawsox: Providence Journal, Pawtucket Times

Seadogs: Portland Press Herald

Salem: Roanoke Times

Greenville: Greenville Online

#2 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 12:23 PM


Opening Day!

Six minor league cities. Four major league teams. A college career at Clemson.
Yes, new Salem Red Sox manager Billy McMillon encountered a variety of coaching styles during his playing days. He's tried to learn from the good ones - and, just as important, the bad ones.
"There's managers I had that I didn't like the way they interacted with players," said McMillon, who retired in 2005 after serving as an outfielder for the Marlins, Phillies, Tigers and A's. "Maybe they spent more time with the guys that were doing well than the guys that weren't playing or weren't doing well.
"I try to keep my same demeanor, my same personality, whether I'm dealing with guys with a lot of expectations or the last guy to make the roster."
The Red Sox roster is set - and on paper, it's loaded - as the team opens its 2012 Carolina League season tonight at Frederick. The Sox will play six road games before their home opener a week from today.
The 40-year-old McMillon, who spent the past two seasons managing a lot of these same players at Low-A Greenville, will try to steer the Sox to their first Carolina League title since 2001.
He'll do it with an aggressive approach - expect to see even some of the slower guys try to steal - and a focus on the fundamentals while trying to maintain a relaxed atmosphere in the clubhouse.
"I'm fair but I'm firm, and I understand that guys are going to make mistakes," McMillon said. "I just want to make sure that by the end of the summer, we're not making the same mistakes."

#3 Carl Everetts Therapist

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 12:38 PM

I can't wait to see this Salem team in action... Obviously Bogaerts and Jacobs are the shiney toys, but I am really high on Bradley Jr. I think he could be a top 5 prospect by next season. Also want to keep a close eye on Drake Britton who should be poised for a bounce back year. He has too good of stuff not to dominate the minor leagues.

Edited by Carl Everetts Therapist, 06 April 2012 - 12:39 PM.

#4 jonasi

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 03:37 PM

#5 SoxScout

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 07:02 PM

JBJ and Bogaets with RBI hits. Hopefully that happens many times this year.

FWIW, JBJ just miss a HR in his first AB.

#6 tonyarmasjr

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 07:55 PM

Does Lakewood's catcher not have two arms? 6 SBs in the first 4 innings for Greenville.

#7 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 08:32 PM

Pawsox lose 2-1.


Brandon Duckworth went 6 2/3 innings, allowing a run on 5 hits and 4 walks (one intentional); striking out 4. Tony Pena Jr went the final 2 1/3 innings, allowing a run on 3 hits; striking out 3.

Lars Anderson went 2/4 with a double and a walk. Will Middlebrooks went 2/4. Josh Kroeger went 1/2 with 2 walks. Daniel Nava went 1/3 with a HBP. Ryan Lavarnway went 1/3 with a walk. Pedro Ciriaco went 0/4 with a sacrifice. Jose Iglesias went 0/4 with a walk. Che-Hsuan Lin and Alex Hassan each went 0/4.

#8 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:06 PM

Drive lose 6-4.


Luis Diaz went 4 innings, allowing a run on 4 hits, 2 walks, and 2 WPs; striking out 7. Hunter Cervenka went 2 innings, allowing an unearned run on a walk and striking out 4. Nefi Ogando went 1 2/3 innings, allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and a walk; striking out one. Matty Ott went 1 1/3 innings, allowing 2 runs on 2 HRs; striking out one.

Henry Ramos went 4/5 with a SB. Blake Swihart went 1/2 with 3 walks and a SB. Keury de la Cruz went 1/3 with 2 walks and a SB. Jordan Weems went 1/4 with a walk. Boss Moanaroa went 1/4 before being lifted for a pinch runner; his replacement (David Renfroe) went 0/1. Lucas LeBlanc went 0/2 with 2 walks and a HBP. Jose Garcia went 0/3 with a walk, SF and 2 SBs. Jose Vinicio went 0/3 with a walk, sacrifice and 2 SBs. Garin Cecchini went 0/5.

Drive stole 7 bases (without being caught)... but the BlueClaws stole 6 (without being caught) off of Weems.

#9 SoxScout

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:07 PM

Michael Almanzar was being bashed in the prospects ESPN chat today, boom, 3-R jack.

#10 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:07 PM

Salem win 9-7.


Ryan Pressley went 3 innings, allowing 5 runs on 6 hits, 2 walks and a WP; striking out 3. Keith Couch went 5 innings, allowing 2 runs on 3 hits (1 HR), a walk and a HBP; striking out 4. Michael Olmstead pitched a scoreless 9th, giving up a hit and a walk; striking out 2.

Travis Shaw went 2/3 with 2 walks and a SB. Adalberto Ibarra went 2/4 with a walk. Xander Bogaerts, Michael Almanzar and Shannon Wilkerson each went 2/5; Almanzar with a HR, Wilkerson with 2 doubles. Jackie Bradley went 1/3 with 2 walks, a HBP and a SB. Brandon Jacobs and Christian Vazquez each went 1/5; Jacobs with a double and a SB. Sean Coyle went 1/6.

#11 Cuzittt

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Posted 06 April 2012 - 09:12 PM

Seadogs lose 9-4.


Brock Huntzinger went 3 innings, allowing 5 runs (4 earned) on 7 hits and a walk; striking out one. Jeremy Kehrt went 4 innings, allowing 4 runs (2 earned) on 6 hits (1 HR) and a WP; striking out 3. Will Latimer went an inning, giving up a hit.

Reynaldo Rodriguez went 2/3 with 2 walks and a SB. Juan Carlos Linares went 2/5 with a double. Kolbrin Vitek went 1/4 with a walk. Oscar Tejeda went 1/4. Jonathan Hee went 0/2 with a walk and a SF. Ryan Dent went 0/2 with 2 walks. Dan Butler went 0/3 with 2 walks. Peter Hissey went 0/4. Bryce Brentz went 0/5.

#12 Cuzittt

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:39 AM


Game Story - Will Middlebrooks

An Omar Quintanilla single to center field scored Raul Reyes with the game-winning run in the top of the ninth as the Buffalo Bisons split their two-game series at McCoy Stadium with a 2-1 win over the PawSox on Friday night.
Brandon Duckworth threw 97 pitches in 6 2/3 strong innings, yielding just one run and pitching out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth inning. Tony Pena Jr. stranded two inherited runners in the seventh inning and set down the side in order in the eighth, but three Buffalo singles in the ninth inning were his undoing.
Lars Anderson doubled and scored on a Ryan Lavarnway single in the first inning for the lone PawSox run.

Will Middlebrooks hit just .161 in more than 50 at-bats after a mid-August promotion to Triple-A Pawtucket a year ago. Until the final weekend of the regular season, he didn’t muster even a double, let alone a home run.
But the Red Sox didn’t promote Middlebrooks to Triple-A last August so he could succeed last August. They promoted him last August so he could succeed this April.
“Being able to come here and already be comfortable and not have to get used to everything is huge,” Middlebrooks said.
The 23-year-old third baseman hit line-drive doubles with his first two swings of the regular season on Thursday — one to right-center, one into the right-field corner. That he hit doubles at all was a good sign. That he hit doubles to the opposite field was an even better sign.
“That’s my swing, man — middle of the field and to the right side is really good for me,” he said. “When I’m hitting the ball there, I’m seeing it really well.”
“That’s what makes him such a dangerous guy,” PawSox manager Arnie Beyeler said. “He does have power to all fields — and it’s easy power. He’s dangerous to a pitcher. They’ve got to use the whole plate to beat him, and he can use the whole field in defense.”

Aaron Cook

Like his former battery mate, Cook is looking to turn over a new leaf after spending all 10 of his MLB seasons with the Rockies. After being held back early in spring training due to shoulder concerns, the right-hander appeared in four Grapefruit League games with Boston giving him the starting nod in three of them. Working a total of 14 1/3 innings, Cook permitted seven hits to go along with six strikeouts and four walks.
“For me I thought (the Red Sox) represented the best opportunity,” Cook said. “They had some starting rotation spots that weren’t answered.”
Another factor that led to Cook signing a minor-league free agent deal with the BoSox stemmed from his familiarity with Red Sox pitching coach Bob McClure. The two worked side by side for parts of three seasons in Colorado Springs – the Triple-A affiliate of the Rockies – with McClure holding the down the fort as the team’s pitching coach while Cook was seeking to clear that final hurdle in order to join Colorado’s rotation.
“I couldn’t be happier with my decision,” said Cook, who can opt out of his deal on May 1. “You hear players talk about it all the time, but I can only worry about tomorrow. If I start to worry about everything else, I won’t be able to focus on going out and just pitching.”
“We want to keep him in a position where he’s ready to rock and roll if he’s the guy (Boston) wants,” Beyeler said.
A year ago the PawSox, particularly the team’s young pitchers and catchers, benefited from the guiding hand that veteran pitcher Kevin Millwood brought to clubhouse. Beyeler expects Cook, he of 72 career wins and 238 starts, to pick up where Millwood left off.
“Millwood would talk to [catchers Ryan Lavarnway and Luis Exposito] about calling the game and showing pitches early in the game when he may need them later to get guys out,” Beyeler said. “Guys like Kevin and Aaron, they can show little shortcuts that can help put the young guys at ease.”


Game Story

"Our guys competed well tonight," Boles said after watching his team commit four errors and letting a 4-0 lead slip away.
"Our guys fought. We'll keep working; we'll stay positive and keep working. That's what we're going to do."
The Sea Dogs, who were swept in a doubleheader to open the season Thursday, got a three-run double from J.C. Linares to take a 4-0 lead in the second inning.
They managed three more singles.
The Sea Dogs (0-3), who are 38-57 lifetime at Reading, jumped on Trevor May, the No. 1 prospect in the Philadelphia Phillies' organization, for three hits and four runs in the second, and Manager Dusty Wathan had a pitcher warming up.
Reading tied it with a four-run second off starter Brock Huntzinger.
"It looked like he was a little up in the zone in the second inning," said Boles.
Huntzinger lasted just three innings, allowing seven hits and five runs, four earned.
Huntzinger, a former third-round pick of the Boston Red Sox, made 25 starts for the Sea Dogs last season, including three rough outings against the Phillies.
He was 0-2 with a 9.39 ERA in three starts against Reading last season.
Huntzinger gave up run-scoring singles to Jiwan James and Troy Hanzawa, and a triple to Tyson Gillies in allowing the Phillies back in the game in the second.


Game Story

The Salem Red Sox got off to the right kind of start Friday night, topping the Frederick Keys 9-7 in the Carolina League opener for both teams.
Michael Almanzar's three-run homer in the seventh inning was the highlight of the night for the Red Sox, which took the lead for good.
Every member of the Salem starting lineup registered a hit, eight Sox scored runs and six players had at least one RBI.
Keith Couch tossed five innings in relief to earn the victory in his Carolina League debut, while Mike Olmsted dealt a scoreless ninth, stranding the tying runs in scoring position, to earn the save.
Salem pounded in 14 hits in the victory over last season's champion Keys, which jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead.
Salem rallied for three in the third, but the Keys responded with three more runs to lead 5-3. Salem sliced the two-run gap in half in the top of the fourth, but Frederick scored twice more in the last of the frame, surging in front 7-4 on Ronny Welty's solo home run off Couch.


Game Story

While Lakewood tallied 10 hits in the ballgame, only two came with runners in scoring position in a total of 16 opportunities. But a pair of eighth inning solo homers by Brian Pointer and Aaron Altherr off of Matty Ott (0-1) proved to be the difference makers.
The Drive struck for a run in the bottom of the first, when Jose Garcia began the frame by reaching on an error. After swiping second and third, the speedy second baseman came home on Henry Ramos' two-out, single.
The BlueClaws tied the game in the top of the third on Pointer's sacrifice fly, but Greenville quickly regained the lead in the home half of the inning. Once again it was Ramos coming through, recording a one-out, RBI-single.
On a night when the Drive used speed to their advantage early, swiping seven bases, Jose Vinicio led off the bottom of the fourth by drawing a walk, before stealing second and third. Garcia then lifted a ball to centerfield that allowed Vinicio to easily trot home, giving Greenville a two-run lead.
Lakewood chipped away in the top of the sixth, pulling within a run as Kyrell Hudson reached on an error and eventually scored on Logan Moore's groundout. Hudson tied the game in the eighth with an RBI-single before Christopher Duffy gave the BlueClaws their first lead of 2012 with a two-out, RBI-single.
Blake Swihart made sure that the Drive wouldn't go without a fight, knocking in a run in the bottom of the eighth to tie the game at 4-4. Greenville was poised to regain the lead when Ramos stepped up to the plate, perfect in his previous four at bats.

#13 Buzzkill Pauley

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 09:11 AM

Salem's offense is going to be an absolute beast this season.

Portland, OTOH....should keep hoping for some quick promotions from the aforementioned beast.

#14 someoneanywhere

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 09:27 AM

Salem's offense is going to be an absolute beast this season.

Portland, OTOH....should keep hoping for some quick promotions from the aforementioned beast.

Nah. Let those guys destroy the Carolina League.

For what it's worth, noting some of the comments about the GVL-LWD game last night, let me just say that I'm older than Stiffy and I can probably pick a bag in Low A. The catchers, particularly spanking brand-new ones like Weems, are trying to process more than they ever have -- all the while trying to catch and frame pitches from talent that may never be major-league, but is heads beyond what they've ever played with. And the pitchers haven't really learned how to hold anyone. So, on the one hand, we need to be skeptical of big stolen base numbers in Low A (unless a guy is already known as a plus or plus-plus burner). On the other, a guy like Vazquez piques interest precisely because he's relatively adept at pegging guys. He's not only battling his own mechanics, but clumsy pitchers and big-leading, early-jumping baserunners.

#15 SoxScout

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:47 AM

Video of Cecchini stealing 3rd: