4.29.12 Red Sox @ Clippers - Cumberland Sucks

Clippers win, damn it! They took it 3-2 in a neat little package of a game. Neither of the starters figured in the decision with Clayton Mortensen getting socked with the loss and Columbus reliever Cody Allen getting the big win... A BIG GOLD WIN.

Justin Germano started the game for Pawtucket Town, pitching and grinning through 5 1/3 innings. Germano was in pretty good shape for a while, working with a lead until the sixth inning. But dirty old pencil stub Cord Phelps led the sixth off with a solo home run and things just began to fray. Germano got an out, but three Columbus batters singled and pushed another run over to tie the game. Aw, crap.

Clayton Mortensen... Can I just call him Dr. Forrester? My fingers cannot type Mortensen! It's like all the times I typed 'Angle' Chavez or Sanchez! Try it at home, I promise you, it defies your QWERTY keyboard. Okay, Clay and the Clay-Tones wrapped up the sixth inning, but DH and overall disappointment Matt LaPorta grounded into a force out to score a third run for the Clippers.

By the way, Che-Hsuan Lin and Alex Hassan each came to the plate TWICE with runners in scoring position and made the last out. You guys are jerks, go have mochaccinos together at Cafe Useless.

Nate Spears is back and super-stoked to be in the minors again. He led off the first inning with a double and wound up going 3-5. Mauro Gomez, who I felt would just stack K's in this game, got a couple of doubles and an RBI. I love you, sweet crazy baseball.

I didn't forget you, Josh! Kroeger also doubled, in the seventh inning. And hit a single, which is less interesting.

This is one tough team.

And I do exactly what I want when I'm with him. And when I'm not:
1. Will Inman pitched the last of the game and struck out Ryan Spilborghs. I am not sure what Inman looks like so I am going to find a picture. Be right back.
2. Okay. A personality might be that extra push over the cliff.
3. "Things got interesting when Mauro Gomez stepped to the plate. He popped up a ball to the first base side of the pitcher's mound. Columbus starter Corey Kluber got into postion to catch it but was called off by first baseman Russ Canzler, who dropped the ball. Canzler retrieved the ball and flipped toward first base where no one wearing a Clipper uniform was in sight. Spears scored on the error. While the ball rolled toward the Columbus bullpen Kroeger went to third and Gomez reached first. Canzler was charged with two errors." - Jim Massie, Columbus paper
4. This game was three hours and ten minutes long, which seems like a lot for a 3-2 game. Perhaps it was the 17 combined hits.
5. The Clippers logo looks like the letter 'C' and an anchor grinding on each other, or humping, or like... Doing it. The letter C is a freak!
6. SoxProspects.com forum comment of the day: "Germano: stuck in Pawtuckie like an indentured servant. No options, not a 40-man man. Needed his agent to negotiate the Aaron Cook clause." (DesignatedForAssignment) Pawtuckie?
7. This was posted today and... It blew my mind. I thought I'd fallen through a wormhole. Grand slam? Home game? When did this happen?
8. Will Inman is running out of time, according to a Red Sox Fan in Nebraska. I heard they have a gang problem in Omaha. Also, states like Nebraska usually have a meth problem. It's so great to live in drug- and gang-free Rhode Island!

TO... NIGHT? DAY? TONIGHT! Brandon Duckworth, David Huff. And the clock ticks on Aaron Cook, the Most Important Man On the PawSox.

Tell me I'm good.


4.28.12 It's a Clippers party. Who could ask for more?

Columbus Clippers win again, of course, 6-4. The loss and the blown save goes to reliever Tony Pena Jr, Jose De La Torre gets the win in relief.

Pawtucket Red Sox starter Aaron Cook, who has one foot out the door, pitched 6 1/3 innings and gave up three runs on five hits. And Pawtucket was leading 4-1 until the sixth. Columbus left fielder Ryan Spilborghs hit a two-run single in the sixth, changing the score to 4-3, but yeah, Red Sox were still ahead.

Cook got the first out in the seventh inning, then split for Andrew Miller. Miller got the last couple of outs with K's, so that was nice for him.

The eighth inning is where all the bad stuff happened. Third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall singled off Miller, so Miller got mad and left. Tony Pena came out of the bullpen, gave up a single to Matt LaPorta. First baseman Russ Canzler flew out to right, Chisenhall tagged and scored on the sacrifice. And then, yuck, DH Beau Mills homered. Pena must have appeared anguished enough to get removed, because Arnie Beyeler called in Alex Wilson to replace him. And get some outs. And try and win a ballgame.

Che-Hsuan Lin hit a two-run double in the fourth inning, in case you were wondering. Pawtucket got ten hits off Slowey, but where did it get them? Shame on you, Tony Pena. The only superhero named Tony is Tony Thomas, evidently.

they say kevin slowey is an asshole:
1. Two RBI for Alex Hassan. Thanks, Elvis!
2. Jim Massie breaks it down for you: "Mills won it with a home run that bounced atop the roof on the balcony in right field. Jeremy Accardo worked the ninth for the save and ended the game with a double-play grounder, the fifth twin-killing of the evening for the Clipper defense." Is it me or does he sound smug?
3. Kevin Slowey talks about his faith, which is on a short list of things baseball players publicly talk about aside from baseball.
4. "Cook has a 1.33 ERA in Pawtucket, but he also has more walks than strikeouts. It's normal for him to have a low punch out rate, as he's an extreme groundball pitcher, but seeing someone who has pitched in the majors for 10 years give up just a few runs in a small sample against inferior competition isn't as thrilling as the context-less ERA makes it look." - Marc Normandin DOES NOT MESS AROUND.
5. I didn't forget you, Josh! Kroeger grounded into two double plays.
6. I thought Justin Germano was supposed to start this game?
7. SoxProspects.com forum comment of the day: "WMB collected 2 LD singles to CF." I didn't say it was earth-shattering. I also really dislike the whole 'WMB' thing.
8. Middlebrooks update: William's hands were shaking as he took his glass of wine.
9. I'll bet Aaron Cook is loving the attention, lording it all over place. His mind is made up, but what can he say? He should just tell people that the answers will all be revealed when his book comes out.

Tonight! Justin Germano, I promise. And Corey Kluber. Come on, Red Sox. Don't get swept.


4.27.12 Pawtucket Red Sox @ Columbus Clippers (CLE) - Hit it.

Columbus WINS! 4-1, because they are a steamroller. They whacked the shit out of Ross Ohlendorf, too. It could have been worse.

Your handsome starter for Pawtucket was the aforementioned Ohlendorf. Dorf (he told me I could call him that) pitched six innings, giving up two runs on ten hits. Wait, that's interesting, let's talk about that.

Bottom of the first, no score. Right? With one out, second baseman Cord Phelps doubled to center field. Third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall squandered an opportunity by striking out. Phelps advanced to third on a wild pitch, then - Look out! PED XING! - scored a run on a single by LF Matt LaPorta. Russ Canzler and Beau Mills followed suit with singles of their own, but Matt LaPorta was out at home, thanks to Josh Kroeger's remarkable (I'm assuming) throw from left field to Lavarnway. I didn't forget you, Josh! 1-0 Clippers.

The Red Sox tied the game in the fifth inning, when Kroeger hit a solo home run to right, his first of the season. It was off Zach McAllister, who I forgot to tell you was the starter for Columbus. McAllister was undeterred by the shot and went on to pitch seven innings of one-run ball. He's big! He's strong! He's ZACH!

Ohlendorf gave up a second run to Columbus in the sixth inning, when Luke Carlin hit a line drive single to right, scoring... Beau Mills? Yeah, Mills. And then when Andrew Miller came in, Matt LaPorta hit a two-run homer. Miller pitched one inning, with the home run and three strikeouts. He did throw 25 pitches... I don't know, I don't know what Miller's problem is. Maybe put him in Greenville for now. (YES I REALIZE THAT IS NOT AN OPTION.)

Post-McAllister, we got Frank Herrmann for an inning and Chris Ray to close it out. Mark Melancon pitched after Miller and did far better, if you wanna look it up.

trevor crowe is still on the clippers:
1. Aside from Kroeger's home run, only Lavarnway and Iglesias got hits. HT to McAllister, I guess.
2. Nice lead-in, Jim Massie! "The game sped by like quick-step night on Dancing with the Stars, which allowed Clippers starter Zach McAllister to find a rhythm quickly within his preferred pitching style."
3. “I felt good the whole night,” McAllister said. “I thought I had pretty good fastball command, for the most part. For a whole game, this is probably the best it’s been (this season).” (ibid.)
4. "Russ Canzler and Beau Mills followed with singles, but the right fielder Kroeger knocked off LaPorta at the plate with a strong throw to end the inning." - So you see I was right about Kroeger's throw to home. I just want you to recognize my rightness. Italics were there already, honest, I swear on yo mama's face!!!
5. Okay, I added the italics.
6. I know you secretly want to bang Frank Herrmann, so here's some audio where he talks about pitching and baseball and stuff. It's XXXhotttXXX!
7. Cleveland fans widely consider Matt LaPorta to be pretty much a bust. I'd say nothing, because I am nice, but I would agree inside my own head.
8. Frank Herrmann has a puggle. I feel for him. Puggles are berserk.
9. I don't wanna turn this into the Frank Herrmann show, but here's a rather good interview.
10. Scouting report on McAllister from The DiaTribe:
Scouting Report: McAllister is a big, durable righthander who was acquired from the Yankees at the trade deadline in 2010 for Zach McAllister. He doesn’t have the type of stuff that you expect when you see his 6’6” frame, as he is more of a command and control guy rather than having overpowering stuff. He has a four-pitch mix, throwing a fastball, curveball, slider and changeup. His fastball is his best pitch, as it is a sinking offering that comes on a downward plane accentuated by his height. It sits in the low-90’s, so he needs to command it well and keep it down in the zone because he’s not going to throw it by many hitters. His secondary offerings are average, but he doesn’t really have a plus secondary pitch to rely on. He has a clean, repeatable delivery and has been extremely durable throughout his career, throwing 149 innings or more in 3 of the last 4 seasons.

Thank you, Al Ciammaichella!
11. SoxProspects.com forum comment of the day (regarding Melancon): "I couldn't think of a better time to bring him back up. He's averaging 2 Ks and inning through 4+, and hasn't given up a run or walked anyone. Very curious as to what the counter-move will end up being. Atchinson has looked good outside of the other night, when he was pitching after pitching two innings the night before. Tazawa has looked even better, but he has an option. My guess is he'd be the guy, at least until Atchinson or Albers implodes. " (diehard24)

TONIGHT! Justin Germano v Kevin Slowey. Still in Ohio. Should be a real battle. I can't wait to see that ballpark.


4.25.2012 Pawtucket v Scranton Wilkes-Barre - Casi Cada

Scranton Wilkes-Barre wins, 8-6. Yankees reliever Chase Whitley gets the win, Garrett Mock takes the loss/blown save for Pawtucket.

Righty Doug Mathis got the start for Pawtucket and had the whole world in the palm of his hand until the middlish innings. He did, however, have the lead when he left the game, so whatever else you can say, at least he kept Pawtucket in the game. WAS THAT ENOUGH COMMAS FOR YOU?

Starter for SWB was Adam Warren. Pawtucket had a very nice time with Warren, indeed. It was Daniel Nava in the first inning with two outs that got things going when he singled to left. It was a nice set up for Mauro Gomez, who hit a home run for all the little people. 2-0 Red Sox.

Pawtucket also had a very robust third inning, hitting a couple of home runs and other very nice things to score three runs. Please note that Pedro Ciriaco hit his first home run of the year, right at the top of the inning. I'll bet you can't guess who hit the third inning's other home run!

Doug Mathis cruised through the first three innings, but after a walk and a single in the fourth... Oh, gross... DH Jack Cust hit a three-run homer to bring the score to 5-3. Scranton added another run in the fifth inning, when Francisco Cervelli hit an RBI single. 5-4, and I go oh no.

Post-Mathis, the PawSox used five relievers, starting with Andrew Miller. Miller was all over the place, with a wild pitch and a hit batter and a walk, but he didn't allow any of this scoring nonsense. Rich Hill pitched the seventh inning and he didn't fuck around, getting three down in order with two strikeouts. Total pro.

I saw Will Inman for the first time this season, pitching the eighth. And did you know it was Garrett Mock's birthday? Perhaps he was drunken when he pitched the ninth inning. I don't know, but I was unhappy with his appearance even before he barfed runs all over the place. I would not have chosen him to save the game, solely because I felt he was overdue for a crap inning.

Shortstop Ramiro Pena led off with a single. Mock was feeling generous on his special day so he walked RF Kevin Russo and RF Colin Curtis. Yes, the Yankees played two people in right field yesterday. It was pretty unorthodox. (I messed up on my scorecard.) Bases loaded, no outs for beloved Yankee Francisco Cervelli, who hit a two-run single and delighted the many, many Yankees fans at the park yesterday. Tie game! But not for long, because a sac fly by Steve Pearce put another run on the board for SWB. And then when Mock walked Jack Cust, something had to be done. And that Something was Chorye Spoone. Spoone gave up a single and a run that was credited to our friend Garrett. That was it, but that was enough.

The score was 8-5 going into the bottom of the ninth and Pawtucket loaded the bases with no outs. Daniel Nava, bless his heart, went deep to right and sacrificed to get the runner over. But Kevin Whalen got Gomez and Middlebrooks out, which is pretty badass when you think of it. But don't think of it. Don't.

is 'anxiety' baseball code for 'substance abuse'?
1. Daniel Nava had a good day, going 3-4 with a double.
2. I figured out who new catcher Mike Rivera reminds me of. He looks like Carlos Maldonado with some of the juice sucked out. Really!
3. I was hoping I could use the expression 'Alex Hassan, Yankee Assassin', but Hassan didn't do much at the plate. He did make a sweet play in right in the first inning, though. Thanks, Alex.
4. Brendan McGair doesn't find it necessary to mention the Yankees starting pitcher Adam Warren, but read his thing anyway.
5. SoxProspects.com forum comment of the day: "So nice to see WMB putting it all together. He and Bowden were two prospects I thought were massively underrated all those years ago when Lars was considered a blue chipper. Hope all the best for Bowden in ChiTown as well." Misty memories from poster DonCaballero.
6. The Yankees were rather dissatisfied with the home plate umpiring of AJ Johnson, who was pretty generous with strikes in the early going and then pulled back a little late in the game. That's just my opinion, though. That's the view from my seat.

Off day today, then Ross Ohlendorf in Columbus.


4.24.12 Pawtucket Red Sox v SWB Yankees - Mortensen Hates the Yankees

Red Sox win, 4-3. And that's a win we can all get behind!

Red Sox starter was not Alex Wilson and his badonkadonk. It was Brandon Duckworth, being all cool and getting the ball. Duckworth pitched four innings, giving up two runs on four hits. Yankees first baseman Brandon Laird hit a two-run homer in the second to give Duckworth the bends.

DJ Mitchell was on the turntables for Scranton, going six innings and giving up all the runs and taking the loss home like a sack of concrete. Was it the home runs? Mostly. Daniel Nava hit a solo home run and Mauro Gomez hit a two-run shot to left, all in the fourth inning. Gomez also struck out three times, so there you have it. Righty power hitter 1B/DH who strikes out too much. Total beisbol archetype.

Hey, isn't there one Pawtucket run unaccounted for? Yes. After Gomez did his thing that he does so well, Middlebrooks singled and Josh Kroeger hit an RBI double. I didn't forget you, Josh.

And the pitchers? After Duckworth, Clayton Mortensen pitched a couple of innings. Then Alex Wilson, giving up the third Scranton Wilkes-Barre run. And Rich Hill pitched a scoreless eighth. Melancon pitched the ninth and got the save. Thank you, boys!

Now let's go jump on Donnie Collins' bed!

the last good times of daniel nava:
1. Here's Donnie Collins, not doing a game blog but instead talking about Red Barons v Yankees as far as the fan experience at the park. It's a great story. This is my recommended reading of the day.
2. Jack Cust? Dewayne Wise? Jayson Nix? Wow!
3. Clayton Mortnesen hit a couple of Yankees (good boy) and struck out three. Have you seen his neck? Tyra would encourage him to work his neck in photos and maybe call him a Giraffe of Fierceness. And Aaron Goldsmith pronounces his name like he's a Speak n' Spell. "Say it... Clayton Mortensen."
4. "Mark Melancon got the save in this one. Good to see him in a non-meltdown situation" - Bronx Baseball Daily
5. PawSox Blog, if you can handle it. I notice he typed 'Moretnsen'. Ordinarily, I would rip on that misspelling, but god damn it, I can't type his name to save my life. I should have left in all my Mortensen typos.
6. SoxProspects.com feature comment from the forum: "Watched his last at bat and he definitely look like he was forcing the pitcher come to him. He took 2 well placed strikes and 3 of the balls were very close. 2 of the balls and 1 of the strikes were decent curveballs on the outside corner, though he did check swing at the 2 balls. Mauro Gomez in the at bat right before Middlebrooks looked silly hacking at 3 straight curveballs. " (AlfMendolson)

Yeah, I gotta go. I'm due at the park so... See you there? It's Doug Mathis v Adam Warren. Should be pretty wild.


4.23.12 Pawtucket Red Sox v Durham Bulls - no one said that this life was easy

Pawtucket wins again, 7-1. This game was icky in many ways. It was gray and miserable and cold and it just sucked seeing Durham lose over and over. It was too much, my heart couldn't take it.

Starter for the Red Sox was Aaron Cook, and I know you heard all about it but Cook did A Very Good Job, pitching the whole seven innings and giving up only one run.

Starter for Durham was Ryan Reid, who only worked three innings, keeping shit scoreless (KSS). His relievers were such jerks: Lance Pendleton, three runs, and Romulo Sanchez, four runs.

Here's Pendleton's Misery: Top of the fourth, back-to-back doubles by Ryan Lavarnway and Mauro Gomez. Josh Kroeger was intentionally walked, but Che-Hsuan Lin hit a two-run double to make the score 3-0.

And Romulo Sanchez? You kind of can't take your eyes off this guy, because he looks like no one. As I said before, he's like a cross between Jose Lima and Bartolo Colon, but you might want to sprinkle a little Gustavo Chacin in there. I'm trying to imagine him in Japan... Someone should have made that movie. I would watch the hell out of it.

Speaking of making movies, McCoy Stadium plays this little featurette before the fifth inning soft toss which shows Paws and Sox tucked away in bed. But, wait! They oversleep and have to race to the ballpark! Well, let me tell you something: This movie is FLAWED! It shows Sox hastily getting out of bed... But you can clearly see that her bed is PERFECTLY MADE UP BEHIND HER! I mean, what are we to believe, that this is some sort of a ... heh heh... magic bed or something?

Anyway, back to Romulo Sanchez, who you can't help but imagine what it would be like to have sex with. Top of the fifth, Sanchez walks Danny Nevada. Iglesias follows with a decent single. Sanchez gets Lavarnway and Gomez to strike out (no mean feat, truly, but then Middlebrooks. Yeah. Home run. Of course. He's totally Lavarnian right now.

And now here's a thing that pisses me off: Whenever someone talks about calling Middlebrooks up, you always get someone else who rather snottily points out that "WMB" is just streaking right now and he never draws walks and who knows if he can hit big league pitching anyway? It's only been a couple of weeks, stop being stupid about minor leaguers, Stupid. To which I say, shut the fuck up and get on board. There's being cautious and then there's just being contrary to the point of absurdity. He should totally get called up.

Josh Kroeger also hit an RBI double in that inning. I didn't forget about you, Josh.

Will Rhymes hit an RBI in the seventh for the Bulls' only run.

in my mind i'm blowing brandon guyer:
1. I'm blowing Brandon Guyer in my mind. (Sorry.)
2. SoxProspects.com forum feature comment: "Sorry for those who are interested/excited about Aaron Cook, who is basically a 1.5 WAR pitcher and a WHIP that's never been much below 1.40. That in the NL West. Actually the thought of him starting for a team with this pen is kind of terrifying to me." - posted by 'Guidas'.
3. Sure, why not? Here's PawSox Blog
4. I sat a couple of rows behind someone who was evidently the world's biggest Mauro Gomez fan. In the middle-to-late innings, the ballpark was largely vacant and way quiet. Gomez Fan's hoots echoed throughout McCoy. It was funny. Even Gomez gave the guy a wink and a nod.
5. Someone out there wishes Reid Brignac were DEAD!
6. How is it even fair that Rich Hill did not pitch in either game? I love Rich Hill! I mean, I love him, but I'm not in love with him.
Okay, I'm in love with Rich Hill. Look at this picture and tell me he's not irresistible.
Okay, I'm done. I just blew any credulity I ever built up. Thanks for that, Self.
7. I cracked myself up in the seventh inning when Will Rhymes was batting. The score was 7-0 and there was a guy on base. I would have paid cash money if Aaron Cook had IBB'd Rhymes. Baseball has no sense of humor. But I do.
8. And WTF: There was a woman in the Ladies' Room during the entire game, just talking on her phone. I wonder if she was just cold?

Tonight! The Yankees! Or the Scrankees.. Or that new name they're using to sell more merch... Either way, fuck those guys. Alex Wilson will hopefully take down DJ Mitchell. Come on, Alex Wilson! Rhode Island needs this!

4.23.12 Red Sox v Bulls - Game One

Pawtucket takes another one, 2-0. Winning pitcher was Justin Germano. Less winning pitcher was Chris Archer.

Pawtucket scored the first run in the first inning. Catcher Mike McKenry... Mike Rivera, whatever... Rivera singled, Nava crossed the plate. What could be more simple?

Second inning, center fielder Che-Hsuan Lin led off with a double, made it home when Tony Thomas singled right after him.

Andrew Miller pitched the seventh inning to preserve the lead, get the save.

Nothing else really happened. Josh Lueke pitched a little bit. He's got a tattoo on his left forearm that looks like it says "Horny" in lovely script, but that's unlikely. Right? I suppose I could ask him myself.

oh, misery, what's gonna become of me?
1. Eric Benevides Woonsocket/Pawtucket paper game story is here.
2. SoxProspects.com forum comment: "Andrew Miller says; "Who eez Daniel Bard?" I was the ace at UNC not him. Make me the closer. Clean inning with 2 k's to get the save for Pawsox. Just kidding. I think " - posted by 'gregblossersbelly'
3. I did not know that Josh Lueke was a rapist. This Purist Bleeds Pinstripes does a great job with this story... I recommend checking it out.
4. "I have no problem with Archer getting hit right now since he just needs to pound the zone and get used to relying on a defense. Romero also got hit around a little, but for guys that have control issues I have no problem with them getting hit." - commenter 'Sandy Kazmir' on DRaysBay
5. "Because these 11 losses have come on the road, none went into extra innings, and two games were these shortened minor league style double headers, the Bulls pitching staff has thrown 15 fewer innings over this stretch. (Home team doesn’t come to bat in the bottom of the last inning if they are winning.)" - Watching Durham Bulls Baseball, looking on the bright side.

Game two on deck. It just gets worse from here.


Ramp Champ #53: Bobby Ojeda

Bobby Ojeda is a lefty pitcher who played for the Pawtucket Red Sox in 1980 and 1981. He was 22-23 years old.

In 1980, Ojeda started 18 games (four of them complete), going 6-7 with a 3.22 ERA. He walked 56 and struck out 78.

In 1981, Ojeda started 23 games (eight complete), going 12-9 with a .213 ERA. His ERA was the ninth best in the International League. Ojeda also pitched (and got the win) in TLGIBH. Read the book!

Two things:
1. Alex Nelson ranks Ojeda as #50 on the list of the greatest Mets of all time. It is revealed that Ojeda hated the Red Sox. Either way, it's a great piece.
2. "Almost all of us had our father's help, but certain coaches like Mike Roark, who was fantastic when I was at Pawtucket with the Red Sox," said Ojeda. Wait, is that even a sentence?

Feel free to dig on Bob Ojeda in the lobby of the first base tower at McCoy Stadium. Now can someone please buy me a camera? : (

Mike Lowell is still never going to call me.

Former PawSox greats Jeff Bailey, Gil Velazquez, and Abe Alvarez were at the 100th anniversary party.



4.21.2012 Pawtucket Red Sox v Durham Bulls - (for Diamond and Turpentine)

Pawtucket WINS! 9-5. Gomez is starting to happen, I promise you. Even though I saw him referred to as 'Pedro' in the Pawtucket paper yesterday.

Starter for Pawtucket was Ross Ohlendorf. Ohlendorf pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up four runs on six hits. So that was a professional win for him. He also had a personal win when he shot his apple core at a trash can across the room and got it in.

Tampa Bay Durhams had slightly less success with their starter, Alex Torres. Or Alexander, I guess he wants me to call him. Torres gave up a two-run homer to Mauro Gomez in the first inning, which couldn't be helped, really, since Gomez is clobbering everything lately. And then a solo home run to Wm. Middlebrooks the next inning over. I mean, Christ. He's this season's Ryan Lavarnway and Ryan Lavarnway's at a Reddick level.

So home runs, so what? But Torres led off the third inning by issuing three consecutive walks. One of them was Jose Iglesias, so you know things weren't pretty on the mound. A sac fly brought in another run, bumping the score up to 4-0.

Outfielder Daniel Nava, who is seriously going down that Jeff Natale road at this point, hit an RBI single in the fourth inning which led to the excision of A. Torres. Jhonny Nunez in to face Mauro Gomez with the bases loaded. Good thing Nunez is so composed and professional. Either way, Gomez flew out to center and I'll bet the crowd went nuts, thinking the ball was gone. Good work, Nunez.

DH Lars Anderson hit a solo home run in the fifth inning. 6-0.

The Bulls started getting to Ohlendorf a little bit in the sixth because they don't want your god damn pity. Second baseman Will Rhymes led off with a triple... It was a fly to right and Rhymes must have been chugging. Ha. I would have liked to have seen his little legs pumping. Center fielder Jesus Feliciano, who you loved as a Buffalo Bison, singled Rhymes home. Ohlendorf got the hot-hitting Brandon Guyer out, but hit Leslie Anderson with a pitch. And third baseman Matt Mangini... Who you can just tell by looking at, like, hey, this asshole must play third... Mangini hit a line drive single to right, scoring Feliciano.

Next guy was Juan Miranda and Ross Ohlendorf is now a hero to me, because he hit Miranda with a pitch. Yes, I know it was unintentional... WASN'T IT? It was, and it loaded the bases. Catcher Nevin Ashley popped out, but Ohlendorf walked Jeff Salazar and brought another run home.

Ohlendorf punched out and went home and Mark Melancon stepped in, swinging his lunch pail. Melancon took on shortstop Shawn O'Malley, who certainly has a strange name for a shortstop. O'Malley singled to left! Mangini scores! 6-4 Red Sox!

Sixth inning, bottom half. Three singles, two walks, and a sac fly and Dane De La Rosa all combined to pile on three more Pawtucket runs. 9-4.

Durham scraped up one final run in the eighth, when Nevin Ashley hit a solo home run off Rich Hill, who I love. But that was all. Garrett Mock closed the game out. Leslie Anderson was the last clear chance with two runners on, but he grounded into a double play instead. Not even Garrett Mock expected that.

ten puppies:
1. Paul Kenyon's game story will do.
2. In case you missed it, Will Rhymes shaved his mustache in the middle of the game. Now just get Jeff Salazar to do it.
3. Watching Durham Bulls Baseball is not thrilled with Durham's pitching.
4. Just a link to a blog called maddonomics, solely because I like the name!
5. James Crowell with some SoxProspects stuff. Why does that name sound so familiar? Why do I want to call him 'Jim'? Was that a player from the IL?
6. YES IT WAS!!! I knew it had to be because I could hear his name in Jim Martin's voice. This is why Jim Martin should never, ever leave.

TONIGHT! No, today, sorry. It's Sunday, they don't play minor league night games on Sundays. Normally. It's Justin Germano and allegedly Jhonny Nunez, although he pitched in relief in this game so that seems strange. But then, Triple-A is a strange, strange place. Like that weird bar with all the dead animals in it on Lonsdale Ave.



4.20.12 The Durham Bulls have nice hats.

15-10 Pawtucket Red Sox in a game that was the perfect example of entropy. Brandon Duckworth, who worked as a reliever, gets the win. I don't know if anyone really deserved to win this game, but Duckworth's okay. Asshole Bulls reliever Josh Leuke takes the loss.

You Pawtucket starting pitcher was Doug Mathis, who wasted no time in crushing the hopes and dreams of PawSox fans. Mathis pitched 2 2/3 innings, which was rather generous of Arnie Beyeler. Mathis' MO last night seemed to be: Load bases before getting outs. I'll bet he was doing his laundry one day, loading machine before adding detergent, and decided to apply that to his pitching method.

Starter for Durham was righty Matt Torra. I knew I'd seen that face before. Torra hung in for four innings, even though Pawtucket was beating the crap out of him. Although, on each inning's flipside, the Bulls were racking on Mathis pretty good.

It all started last night around 6:20 PM. By the way, I wonder how many people at McCoy last night were stoned? Probably a lot, because the concession stand lines were furiously long and tangled, keeping people out of their seats for innings at a time while they waited for their fish n' chips. But at the top of the first, Mathis gave up a two-run homer to Brandon Guyer. So far, so good!

But Pawtucket bit back in the dumpy lower 1/2, with a two-run homer by DH Mauro Gomez. Gomez was an absolute freak with his bat last night, you guys. He went 4-4 with two home runs. Is anyone talking about Gomez yet? Probably not, since he's not a prospect and therefore doesn't really exist.

Top of the second, Doug Mathis loaded the bases with singles and a walk. The crazy thing was he followed that up with a couple of strikeouts and an infield pop over at first. Nice catch, Lars Anderson.

Bottom of the second, Will Fiddlesticks and Josh Kroeger led off with singles. Second baseman Tony Thomas homered, and I love this kid and his little pants up to his waist and I'm glad he's outta Maine and into Rhode Island. 5-2 Red Sox.

I think the third inning was where you could see the game was jumping the track. Ay, que fiebre. Durham first baseman Leslie Anderson led off with a single. And then... God damn it, Juan Miranda the PawSox killer of legend and lore hit a single for himself. WHEN WILL HE GTFO OF THE IL? Doug Mathis walked third baseman Matt Mangini to load 'em up. But would he escape all this mess? No, because shortstop Shawn O'Malley grounded into a force, runner out at second, Pawtucket trying to turn a double play, Jose Iglesias' throw wasn't good enough, O'Malley safe at first with two runs coming in.

Catcher and local-ish kid Craig Albernaz stepped up and singled, and that was it for Doug Mathis. Tony Pena inherited the slop on base, faced left fielder Kyle Hudson. And Hudson flew out to left... Alex Hassan had the ball. He had it. And he dropped it. I swear it happened just like that. Albernaz scores! Tie game! 5-5!

Fourth inning. Oh, god, the fourth inning. Center fielder Brandon Guyer led off with a single, then stole second. But, wait! Tony Pena got Leslie Anderson out! Guyer to third. But he walked Juan Miranda. And then he hit Matt Mangini with a pitch. Oh, Mangini, you were always someone's fool. Pena then walked Jeff Salazar, bringing home Guyer. I hate that shit. And another run scored with O'Malley's fly ball to center. 7-5 Durham.

A dumbfounded Pawtucket team had no response to that in the fourth. Brandon Duckworth came in to pitch the fifth, giving up a run on an RBI triple by Brandon Guyer. Cool triple, bro. 9-5.

Bottom of the fifth, Mauro Gomez hit his other home run. It would have been two runs, but Jose Iglesias was caught stealing. Iglesias got two hits last night, but there was this and the error so they cancelled each other out. 9-7!

The Bulls half of the sixth really stands out on a scorecard. Duckworth struck 'em out in order. Out of this filthy mess, the sixth inning is alone.

Bottom of the sixth. Romulo Sanchez is pitching, and he's still this enormous weirdo. He's like, if you gene-spliced Jose Lima and Bartolo Colon somehow, plus threw in a few pounds of butter. With two outs, Alex Hassan and Tony Thomas hit back-to-back singles. Che-Hsuan Lin walked to load the bases. And Iglesias singled! 9-8!

Top of the seventh, Duckworth sets down three batters again. Bottom of the seventh, Sanchez out, Josh Leueke in. He's so conceited. All you really need to know is that Alex Hassan hit a grand slam. 12-9 Pawtucket. THAT DOES NOT AUTOMATICALLY EXCUSE YOUR ERROR IN LEFT, ALEX HASSAN!

Eighth inning, Duckworth still pitching. Brandon Guyer leads off with a single. Miranda walked, Mangini singled, scoring Guyer. And you know what? The people next to me promised they wouldn't get up very much, then proceeded to get up like every other inning. So I had to get up and let them pass. At least three people attempted to ruin my experience at the park last night, when all I wanted to do was come and rejoice. But I'll bring those people up another day, as a casual aside in a future game summary. 12-10.

Bottom of the eighth, and you knew Will Middlebrooks was gonna come up at some point. You didn't really think it'd just be that little single in the second, did you? Although, I did see him make a killer throw to first from shallow left that would have gotten the runner out under slightly altered circumstances. Middlebrooks' fielding goes largely unexamined. By me. Everyone else talks about it endlessly over their teacups.

Sorry, bottom of the 8th. Lavarnway and Gomez are on base, of course. Home run Middlebrooks, 15-10. Dancin' Mark Melancon closed the game out, which must have been a real thrill for him. He did put a couple of runners on, but so didn't everybody.

Jim Martin did the PA last night. Didn't he retire? Not that I'm complaining. I feel like he's messing with us. Why can't he just come all the way back?

everything's good until it goes bad:
1. DNP: Daniel Nava, Jonathan Hee, Mike Rivera. Wait, who?
2. Kevin Pereira brings it on home with the game recap.
3. Southern man/Bulls guy Adam Sobsey throws out some restrained despair over the Bulls season. Oh, wait, what's this? Some nice stuff about me? I can't believe it! Suddenly I have credibility and I don't know what to do with it. Kind of like the key I stole from the toilet paper dispenser at McCoy last night.

But, really, you should go read it because there are not enough people writing about baseball who aren't churning out box-score hardtack. And also because it says something nice about me.

4. Know what else I did? I contributed to Watching Durham Bulls Baseball. This is exciting to me because there are very few fan blogs about IL teams, which I have groused about endlessly in the past. We need to form a guild and have tele-conferences. And also form a bar trivia team, because I FUCKING KICK ASS AT BAR TRIVIA. Three perfect rounds last week, WHAT NOW 'BUNNY BULLETS'?

But, I'm seriously, you should go read Watching Durham Bulls Baseball because it's terrific and bright.

5. Shut up, A-Rod.
6. Hey, McGair, how'd you like that game last night? Here he writes about disgraced reliever Mark Melancon.
7. Only Che-Hsuan Lin did not get a hit last night, but I did see him smile for the first time.
8. Home plate umpire Chris Ward did a pretty good job last night. Jeff Gosney... Not necessarily.
9. "Pawtucket Red Sox Win Fifth Strait As They Blast Their Way Past Durham Bulls 15-10" (sic) Hey, McCarthy, how do you get to McCoy Stadium?

Two last things, one good, one bad. The good thing is that they don't play Sweet Caroline at McCoy any more. The bad thing is that they now have a between-innings MC, which is gross and bush league and pisses me off.

Day game today! It's Ross Ohlendorf v Alex Torres. I'm too stuck up to go to weekend games, but you should go check it out. It is the Bulls, after all.

See you tomorrow!


4.19.2012 Ah Syracuse! Ah humanity!

Pawtucket wins again, 11-7. Well. At least the Chiefs got some hits. Alex Wilson must have felt sorry for Syracuse, since he gave up six runs on eight hits. Wilson only lasted 3 2/3 innings last night.

Starting pitcher for Syracuse was lefty Zach Duke. Duke pitched four innings, and did almost exactly just as poorly as Wilson. It was a no-decision for Duke, though, with the L going to reliever Austin Bibens-Dirkx.

The Red Sox got crack-a-lackin' on runs early, with Will Middlebrooks hitting an RBI single in the first. The Chiefs answered back in the bottom of the inning, scoring a pair of runs to give them a 2-1 lead.

And it looks like Will Middlebrooks did it again in the third inning, hitting a three-run homer off Duke. He certainly is chugging along at this level. 4-2 Pawtucket. Bottom of the third, another run for Syracuse. 4-3.

Bottom of the fourth, Wilson still pitching. Syracuse got more hits than Abe Vigoda, with right fielder Corey Brown hitting a two-run homer. Immediately after the homer, Wilson walked the next two batters. Yes, okay, we get it, you're unable to do this right now. ALEX. Enter Chorye Spoone, enter left fielder Tyler Moore. A single from Moore made it 6-4 Syracuse.

Will Middlebrooks led off the fifth inning and did not get a hit, but he reached on an error. After Josh Kroeger hit a line-drive double to right, Zach Duke got cut from the mound, then pasted in the dugout. Reliever Bibens-Dirkx took over and gave up three doubles in a row, like he was John Burkett or something. He didn't get any outs, and was promptly removed in favor of Rafael Martin. Martin got three outs, one-two-three, like it was so easy.

What, more stuff? This box score is like a pile of jackstraws. Oh, whoa, how did this happen? It's the bottom of the ninth and Will Inman is pitching! With two outs, Seth Bynum hit a solo home run. Seth Bynum will never leave Syracuse. He probably never leaves the park. The team is going to have to change stadiums because he won't leave the premises. But here he homers, and it's all for naught because Pawtucket wins again. Congratulations, Chorye Spoone.

little cakes:
1. Will Middlebrooks loves batting with runners in scoring position. I mean, help me Rhonda, I have not seen the likes of these RBI in years. He is batting .467 with runners in scoring position. Rah, rah.
2. Mauro Gomez hit the first triple of the year for the PawSox! Looks like someone might be getting a card with a crisp ten-dollar bill inside!
3. Alex Hassan went 3-5 with two doubles.

And with that, the Pawtuckets are back in town! Even better, it's the annual Durham Bulls home stand! Doug Mathis will be opposed by Matt Torra, a righty. Game starts at six, I'll probably go even though I haven't slept since Alex Hassan got his first hit of the season.

I have something to show you later, too, but for now I gotta split.


4.18.12 PawSox still in New York

Pawtucket wins 6-1, but not the way you think. Aaron Cook impresses everyone with his win... No, Cook didn't get the win. The game was tied at one until the eleventh, so Clayton Mortenson gets the win. That's glory for you. Syracuse reliever Hassan Pena (?) bore the weight of the loss on his back like a rotten papoose.

The Chiefs scored first, like in the third inning. DH Jason Michaels led off with a ground rule double. Catcher Carlos Maldonado followed that with a single, Michaels to third. Shortstop Josh Johnson grounded into a force out and Michaels scored. Things could have gone a different way if Josh Johnson hadn't been caught stealing. Things could also have gone a different way if I'd become a nuclear scientist, but here we are, and Josh Johnson never made it to second base.

Pawtucket didn't answer back until the sixth inning, when Will Middlebrooks hit a solo home run off starter John Lannan, who fucking hates it in Syracuse. Tie game.

No one budged until the eleventh inning, and I'm sure it was getting nice and cold for the fans (paid attendance: 2844). Pitching change: Ryan Perry out, Hassan Pena in. Oh, by the way, Ryan Perry was pitching. Anyhoo, Hassan Pena. Will Middlebrooks and Josh Kroeger hit back-to-back singles to get things cracking. Pena walked Alex Hassan to load the bases.

With this delicious plum dangling in front of him, Tony Thomas could not be blamed for swinging. He grounded into a force, with Middlebrooks out at home, 3-2. Shortstop Jonathan Hee was up next... And Pena walked him! Awww... That sucks. Run scores, Red Sox lead 2-1.

New pitcher, Josh Wilkie, kicks it off by striking out Daniel Nava. Okay, two outs, the Chiefs maybe had a chance. But, no, because Che-Hsuan Lin had his eatin' dress on. Lin doubled, line drive to left, and cleared those bases. 5-1.

But Pawtucket was not finished. Ryan Lavarnway, catcher and scholarly article, hit a liner to right, scoring whoever was on third base. Oh, Lin, that's right, duh. Lin scored. 6-1.

Chorye Spoone pitched the eleventh inning and the Chiefs hit him a little bit, but nothing happened. And although Pawtucket starter Aaron Cook pitched eight two-hit innings, allowing only one run, and coming off the hill having thrown a pretty reasonable 92 pitches, Mortenson gets the W. WE ALL KNOW WHO REALLY WON, MORTY!

will middlebrooks plays drunk better when he's pool:
1. "Syracuse, now 3-10, did manage what looked to be a huge hit in the bottom of the 10th inning. With the score tied, 1-1, Jarrett Hoffpauir walked and stole second. With two outs, Josh Johnson singled up the middle with an apparent walk-off single, but Pawtucket center fielder Che-Hsuan Lin, playing shallow because Johnson is not a power hitter, threw a strike to home plate to nail Hoffpauir with the third out of the inning." - News you can use from Syracuse dude Tom Leo.
2. By the way, Jarrett Hoffpauir is absolutely no relation to Micah. Okay? So shut up about it. God, is there some kind of rule that two baseball players with the same last name and weird first names have to be related? Sure. And I own a mattress company.
3. Lin, Lavarnway, and Middlebrooks got three hits apiece. Pawtucket had 13 hits overall, Syracuse 5. Oh, geez.
4. "What do you think is going to happen to John Lannan? Unless he has direct deposit, given his luck lately he'll probably get mugged trying to cash his paycheck at the bank in whatever podunk town the bus has pulled into on the first and 15th of the month." - commenter 'Feel Wood' on Nats Insider (Ha.)
5. Wow! I love this game summary on From Section 207. MORE IL FAN BLOGS PLZ.
6. Hassan Pena defected from Cuba. He has a weird name, but at least it's not 'Tyler Moore'.

What? Day game today? Rats, I can't go. Alex Wilson will face Duke. Zach Duke? Patty? The King of All Sir?

It's Zach Duke. Possibly with the relief corps of Basie, Miller and Satchmo. Have fun!


4.16.12 Pawtuck Red Sox @ Syracuse Chiefs - Familiar faces, familiar bracelets.

Red Sox win, 4-3, in a game straight out of 2011. Starter Ross Ohlendorf gets the win. Fresh, young callup Tanner Roark gets slapped with the L.

Ohlendorf pitched six innings and gave up three runs on five hits. Not so glamorous, but the team won which is all that matters! (It doesn't matter.) The meat of the sandwich, Garrett Mock and Andrew Miller, kept the Chiefs scoreless. Miller's inning was a three-strikeout affair, so he could be improving. Or it could be a fluke. And Garrett Mock is not the rickety scaffolding I thought he'd be.

Starter for Syracuse, Tanner Roark, probably wanted to pitch six innings and thought he could do it, but he couldn't. Instead, he pitched 5 1/3. In the third inning, Tony Thomas hit the first pitch he saw for a home run. This is a song about a superhero named Tony!!! I am thrilled to welcome Thomas back, and this all reminds me of last year when Thomas cranked out a couple of April grannies. 1-0 Pawtucket!

In the fifth inning, Alex Hassan singled with two outs. Thomas was the next batter. And they like, kept trying to pick off Hassan. Thomas hung in, and on a 3-1 count he homered to center! And that's when I ran out onto the field and carried him around the bases on my shoulders! 3-0 Red Sox.

Catcher Ryan Lavarnway led off the sixth inning with a home run. It wasn't quite then end for Roark, although I'm sure someone was warming. No, they waited until a couple more runners were on until they brought out reliever and volcano god Atahualpa Severino. Severino stranded the runners, so gold star for him.

Syracuse started getting to Ohlendorf in the seventh inning, when center fielder Bryce Harper led the inning off with a double. I'm sure the Chiefs fans went apeshit. Designated hitter Mark Teahen followed with a single to left, scoring Harper. Teahen advanced to second when Ohlendorf hit catcher Jhonatan Solano with a pitch. Are you nervous? You should be. There's no one out.

Have you ever heard of Carlos Rivero? No? He plays third base for the Chiefs and is cool enough to sac bunt in this situation. But Ohlendorf made a throwing error and Rivero made it to first to load up the bases, still no one out.

Wait, it gets worse. I can't even blame stuff on Theo anymore. Shortstop Josh Johnson hit an infield grounder or whatever, and Lars Anderson made a throwing error and another run scored. Still no one out! Arnie Beyeler came out to execute a pitching change. Garrett Mock came out, and he was a total Chiefs guy in 2011. I wondered if anyone noticed?

Syracuse right fielder Corey Brown was the first to face Mock, and he swung at the first couple of pitches, but connected on the third for a single, scoring Solano. Uh-oh, 4-3! But then Mock adjusted his cup and struck out the next three batters swinging.

Andrew Miller handled the eighth inning, and fiery redhead Junichi Tazawa picked up the save for Pawtucket, the first save he's ever gotten in his whole life probably. Chiefs relievers Rafael Martin and Ryan Perry deserve a mention, too, for their combined ass-kicking run prevention and just for generally smelling delicious.

on my bicycle like a pony:
1. Josh Kroeger went 2-4 with a double. I have no idea what he looks like.
2. Alex Hassan struck out three times. For Syracuse, Seth Bynum struck out three times. In a related story, exactly how long is Bynum going to be on the Chiefs? Dude, get your own apartment.
3. From Tom Leo's story: "It was a little different,’’ said Mock, who signed with the Boston Red Sox organization as a minor-league free agent this winter. “I played a lot with all the guys I faced tonight. It was definitely a first for me.’’
4. "All three Syracuse runs came in the bottom of the seventh, the last coming when ex-Nat Garrett Mock let in one inherited run (SSDU) then struck out the side (WTF)." - HA! SSDU! That is genius and I have to steal it. (from NationalsProspects.com)
5. Lars Anderson and Chiefs' left fielder Tyler Moore should definitely hang out. Moore played left field for the first time in this game. He's usually a first baseman.
6. I do not know who Chris McCarthy is, but he's covering the Pawtucket Red Sox on internet radio. So check him out and see what the heck is going on and then report back to me.

TONIGHT!! Justin Germano and Yunesky Maya in Syracuse. Must be beautiful in New York right now.



Que horas son en Washington?

I went to Washington DC to see a Nationals game.

It was a good game, Brad Lidge blew the save and the Reds tied it. The Nationals won it in the tenth inning when Roger Bernadina (?) scored from third on a passed ball by former Louisville Bat Devin Mesoraco.

And then as I was having a late breakfast the next morning with Cherry Blossom and the Tour Guide, I noticed Mesoraco's little face peeking in the restaurant window. And then he came in and sat at the counter alone. I wanted to talk to him so, so bad but I took his little petal-delicate feelings into consideration and left without a word.

And that was the greatest thing that happened in Washington, DC. The end.

4.15.12 Red Sox @ Buffalo - Nava will carry that weight a long time.

Buffalo WINS! 10-9 in ten innings. Bisons reliever/sex bomb Fernando Cabrera gets the win, which I suppose he deserves. But then, wouldn't I give him anything he wanted? But, yeah, with all the bad pitching and runs all day, this is gonna hurt like a motherfucker.

The first thing I noticed when I looked at the box score (aside from Daniel Nava DH'ing/batting leadoff again) was all the defensive changes and other switcheroos the Bisons made. That is not just a product of being the triple-A team for a National League franchise. That is wanting to win. I love it. And I'm not saying Pawtucket didn't want to win. I'm sure they did. It just wasn't a real priority for them. And I complain about the Buffalo Bisons a lot because Pawtucket seems to play them over and over, but I do love that about them. The way they work to win. It's refreshing at this level.

And now the hard part: Everything else.

Can I stall a little bit? The word 'Bisons' is not grammatically correct. The plural form of 'bison' is 'bison'. FACT. There are no buffalo in North America, only bison. FACT.

And now, the first inning. Nothing happened. Well, Daniel Nava walked and was caught stealing, but other than that. Oh, and Val Pascucci doubled. No runs scored, 0-0.

Second inning. Nothing happened. Well, Josh Kroeger tried to make it to second on a hit and it didn't work. And Buffalo loaded the bases. But no runs scored. 0-0.

Third inning. Nothing happened. At all. Six people came to bat and none got on base. Good time to get nachos.

Fourth inning. This is where Buffalo starter Matt Harvey looks at the clouds and wonders why. First off, he walks Jose Iglesias. Ah, the perfect spot to play the theme from Jaws!

Then Harvey walked Lavarnway.

Then outfielder Lars Anderson hit a line drive to center field! Iglesias scores! Lavarnway scores! 2-0 Pawtucket! Yeeaaah!

Next in line, please: Mauro Gomez singles. We need to start a conversation about Gomez.

And now here is your Will Middlebrooks moment: Will Middlebrooks bad-kitty-copied Anderson's double for two more Red Sox runs. 4-0.

And then, Matt Harvey got two outs. And Tony Thomas was next so maybe the sun was peeking out a little. Thomas hit an RBI single, though, so the pain continued. 5-0. Do you think that Matt Harvey gets shaken easily? I think so. And this is only based on what I saw of him at McCoy Stadium. But I think he gets a little jelly-legged. At any rate, after Thomas' hit, Harvey threw a wild pitch. Thomas to third. Katy, bar the door.

Anticlimax: Thomas scored on a fielding error in center. 6-0. Harvey removed, reliever Bradley Holt takes a stand, gets final out after hitting Iglesias with a pitch. Ha ha ha. It's funny because it hurts.

Bottom of the fourth. Baby center fielder Raul Reyes leads off with a single off Pawtucket starter Doug Mathis. It's remarkable that I'm just now getting around to mentioning the starting pitcher. Mathis got the next batter out, but then he had to face right fielder Adam Loewen. In your mind he's this big blonde guy, right? A farm-bred Dutch hammer? FALSE! Loewen's a little Italian guy with eyes like mochaccino.

Not really. He's a big Viking. And here he hits a two-run homer. 6-2. The catcher in the nine-slot, Rob Johnson, followed with a single. Mathis got Jordany Valdespin out, but Bobby Scales singled off him. And even though there were two outs, Arnie Beyeler had seen enough. Mathis' pitch count was up to 91 anyway.

Will Inman. Entered with high hopes but walked the bases loaded, then walked in another run. 6-3. Vinny Rottino flies out to end the inning.

Pawtucket added a run in the fifth (RBI Josh Kroeger), then two more in the sixth (Gomez two-run double), but the real action happened in the bottom of the sixth. You remember Andrew Miller, right? And his pile of hair? Yeah, he ain't ready yet. Miller kicked things off in the sixth by walking Bobby Scales. Scales made it to second on a passed ball. Miller then walked Pascucci and Zach Lutz to load the bases for Vinny Rottino. A single from Rottino scored another Bisons run.

And now this is the cool part: Josh Satin came in to pinch hit for Reyes. Badass. Satin struck out, yes, but this was a big league move by manager Wally Backman. And by the way, how is it that Andrew Miller walked a bunch of dudes but managed to strike out Josh Satin? Satin must have been overzealous. Good job, Andrew Miller. Thanks for your hard work, but we're afraid we're going to have to let you go.

Next PawPitcher was Tony Pena. Um, Junior. Pena got Matt Tuiasosopo to strike out, which was a start, but Adam Loewen hit a grand slam. LOL Pawtucket.

You forget, though, that Pawtucket was still leading 9-8. And I've gone way past the point of anyone caring and deep into self-indulgence, but let me just finish this coffee and crackers before I do laundry.

Bottom of the eighth, Pena still pitching. Classic minor league stuff. Rottino and Satin hit back-to-back singles with one out. And Satin gets replaced by a pinch-runner. YES. A force out scores Rottino to tie the game.

Clayton Mortenson pitched the tenth inning and Jordany Valdespin hit a walk-off RBI single.

I would suck at a marathon. I sprint early and run out of gas at the end. Also, I'm a fatass.

1. Mauro Gomez went 3-4 with two doubles. Daniel Nava went 0-5. Lavarnway did not get a hit, but at least he got on base.
2. Vinny Rottino, Adam Loewen, and Rob Johnson each got three hits. Loewen's six-RBI game made him a Name Player in the game summary here.
3. Cool story, Dave Ricci. "I'm so far removed from pitching that hitting feels natural to me now," Loewen said.
4. "So when do we start worrying about Matt Harvey? In 3.2 innings Harvey got shelled for six runs (five earned) on six hits and three walks against two strikeouts. He is sporting a 7.52 ERA/. Hopefully he is just putting pressure on himself in his first taste of AAA, and it is only his second pro season." - The Real Dirty
5. Petey Pete Shapiro of Mets Merized does a great game summary. And the accompanying picture cracked me up for some reason.

Tonight! Syracuse and Ohlendorf, Tanner Roark and apple pie. Thanks for this.


4.14.2012 Pawtucket Red Sox @ Buffalo Bisons - What a mess.

Pawtucket wins 9-6, in a contest to see who could pitch worse.

Bisons starter Garrett "Mrs" Olson made it to the fifth inning, but split the band when he loaded the bases with no outs. I'll get back to that.

Alex Wilson was hand-picked to start this game. He gave up a lot of hits through his five innings, most notably three doubles. And I'm probably going to have to get back to that later as well.

Why not try the first inning? DH Daniel Nava led off with a walk and Jose Iglesias sac'd him over. Olsen then walked Ryan Lavarnway. It was uncomfortable for everyone involved, but got worse when Mauro Gomez came to town. Gomez of course hit the ball, a single to left, scoring Nava. After Lars Anderson flied out, Will Middlebrooks whipped out a single, but Jason Repko struck out swinging to end the inning. 1-0.

In the bottom of the second, first baseman Zach Lutz led off with a double. Lutz made it to third on an error, then scored on a sac fly. Some other guys were on base, too. I'm getting overwhelmed. Jordany Valdespin doubled and the inning ended with Buffalo up 2-1.

Okay, now back to Garrett Olson in the fifth inning... Bases loaded after he IBB'd Lavarnway. Nobody is out. Exit Garrett Olson, enter Jeff Stevens. And it's Mauro Gomez at bat! Big trouble in New York... or so you'd think, but Stevens whiffed the kid and Bisons fans released all the tension in their collective buttocks.

Anderson was up next, and I can't say for sure what happened but Zach Lutz made a nasty gaffe at first and two guys scored. Anderson stood at second when the dust settled. And then, Pawtucket fans, came the money shot. Big, bright shining star Will Middlebrooks... Your sexiest prospect crush... The second coming, the all-day sucker, the diamonds and the rust... HOME RUN, JONRON, whatever you call it, he hit it. AND YOU MISSED IT BECAUSE YOU WERE SCARED TO GO TO BUFFALO IN APRIL!!! HAAA HAAA!!!

In other news, Garrett Mock pitched the last two innings for the Red Sox and no one scored. Mock struck out four batters, so perhaps he's not butterfly-fragile at this point.

The were other innings, other runs, but I don't have much time because I have to go to church. Like I do every Sunday, I go to church and sing hymns and pray and donate and stuff. Evolution, schmevolution!

nate spears has never been mellow. he has never tried:
1. Mike Harrington explains it all: "The Bisons had a 2-1 lead and the bases were loaded with two outs in the fifth after reliever Jeff Stevens struck out Mauro Gomez. It looked like Stevens would escape the inning when Lars Anderson pulled a two-hopper down the first-base line, but the ball eluded Lutz as two runs scored." - news


I'm almost too disgusted to continue.

2. Jason Repko went 3-5, which is why he's now in a better place. Jason Repko died, is what I'm trying to say.
3. Here, read this thing about Bobby Scales. Bobby Scales is un-fucking-touchable and if you don't love him, you're even dumber than I thought.

Not much about the game out there this afternoon, probably because it's Sunday. Guess what? Much like cops, I never sleep.

Day game! Doug Mathis, Matt Harvey. When I need Doug, I just close my eyes and I'm with Doug. And so should you. Go to the game, what else are you doing, my sweet Buffalonians?


4.13.12 Pawtucket Red Sox @ Rochester Red Wings - New York

Red Sox win, 4-3.

Your lovely and delicious Pawtucket starter was Aaron Cook, who's two letters short of being a 'Cookie'. Cute, right? Cook pitched five innings and gave up two runs on six hits, one of them a solo home run by third baseman Mike Holliman.

Junichi Tazawa once again satisfied those who are into his game, pitching two innings and striking out four batters. Okay, Tazawa DID walk catcher Drew Butera, the dude batting ninth, but otherwise everything was cool and I'm sorry you had to miss it.

Righty Clayton Mortenson came in for the final two innings and got the save. They say that he got crazy once and tried to touch the sun.

Okay, now Rochester pitching. Their starter was Cole DeVries. I know you know who he is. DeVries also pitched five innings, but he only gave up one run. That was the third innings, when outfielder Alex Hassan led off with a double and scooted home on an error.

Round come the sixth inning, DeVries was replaced by righty reliever Carlos Gutierrez. And the first thing he does is walk Jose Iglesias, which should have told everyone right away how things were going to go. Iglesias made it to second on a passed ball with Nava at bat. The wicked funny part is that Gutierrez then hit Nava with a pitch. Funny for me, maybe not for Danny Nevada. And here comes Mauro Gomez, A Hitter. Gutierrez was probably shaking and possibly crapped his pants when Gomez hit a hard liner to left, but JR Towles snagged it and nothing happened.

Gutierrez struck out the next batter, Lars Anderson, but then he had to face Will Middlebrooks. This unnerved him so much that he threw a wild pitch... The runners moved up, but overall it didn't matter much because Middlebrooks hit his second home run of the year. LOL.

Red Wings manager Gene Glynn finally had mercy on Gutierrez and replaced him with Casey Fien, who was on the Red Sox for like one minute. Fien got the final out and pitched a couple more innings for good measure. Brendan Wise and Tyler Robertson assembled to finish up the game, keeping the Red Sox scoreless. Nice work, everyone except Carlos Gutierrez.

governess, fanciless:
1. Alex Hassan went 3-4 with a double. Aaron Cook is now 2-0.
2. "Everyone related to the team is talking about the Red Wings carrying three catchers on their roster. All have big league experience and are solid defensively as Drew Butera and J. R. Towles have thrown out three of the four runners attempting to steal. With two outfielders dealing with minor injuries, Manager Gene Glynn was forced to play a catcher in left field the last few games." - Twinkie Town
3. "Gutierrez was removed from the game with an apparent shoulder injury. There is no word on his condition." - The WGOM

This afternoon, Pawtucket visits Buffalo. Alex Wilson will be opposed by Garrett Olsen. They should be starting soon. I'll just sit here and wait.


4.10.12 Red Sox v IronPigs in the year 2012.

Red Sox win, 8-0. Well done, pitchers!

Starter for Lehigh Valley was Dave Bush, who you may recall from the Brewers. Bush only gave up one run through five innings, so the IronPigs must have been feeling pretty good about the 32-piece set.

But then came lefty reliever Raul Valdes, who probably should have stayed in bed. Sixth inning, center fielder Josh Kroeger singled to left. That's fine, Valdes got Ryan Lavarnway to fly out to center. But Lavarnway's not the only slugger on the team, not that you care. Mauro Gomez, first baseman and lover of life, hit a home run! 3-0 Pawtucket!

And now, left fielder Lars Anderson. This position change bothers me on a fundamental level. You remember how distraught I was when they made Brandon Moss play first. Well, this is the same thing. Although, who knows, maybe Anderson is thrilled to be in the outfield. I'll bet you a million dollars he is not.

Anderson got on base with a single to right, which is the point I am trying to make. And then Will Middlebrooks followed that with a single of his own, setting things up nicely for Daniel Nava. And Nava hit a home run, which is nice for him. It's weird that he's still hanging around, right?

Valdes managed to get the last two batters out, but it was 6-0 Pawtucket and the hits just kept on coming. Inning eight, Middlebrooks led off with a home run. Some other crap happened, and then Luis Exposito hit an RBI double. This was Jeremy Horst pitching. After Exposito, Horst got yanked like a rotten tooth in favor of David Purcey. Oh, cool, I love Purcey. Purcey got the last couple of outs, but a comeback was not in the cards for Lehigh Valley. See you guys in June.

The point of all that is Ross Ohlendorf pitching six scoreless innings. He's a big leaguer, after all. And also Chorye Spoone getting a couple of scoreless innings for himself. And Garrett Mock on his little trembling, spindly legs, pitching the ninth and putting a couple of runners on before finishing the game all over the IronPigs face. I like to give the home team pitchers short shrift.

snowshoe, pennsylvania:
1. Luis Exposito hit two doubles. Neither Lavarnway nor Nate Spears got a hit.
2. McGair's gonna tell you all about it, and then this other thing where Luis Exposito acts like he gives a crap about Cuba.
3. Scandura, where the hell have you been?
4. Noise Nation's Dipro again with a cool blue game summary.
5. The next time Pawtucket plays Lehigh Valley, it will be in their park. With me there. Because I am going. I am inordinately excited about this.

Tonight! Pawtucket's in Rochester, doing whatever it is they do. Lifting weights, watching Pootie Tang, playing video games. Justin Germano will face Scott Diamond.

One more thing: When I first started this thing, no one else was talking about Pawtucket. And now we have plenty of people so, you know, you guys are in pretty good hands and I can leave. Take care.



4.9.12 Pawtucket v Lehigh Valley - Burn.

IronPigs take it, 1-0. Nice work by the rather tall Lehigh Valley pitching staff, especially starter Scott Elarton.

Elarton threw 85 pitches through five innings, striking out four and walking three. He gave up two hits, both crappy little singles by Will Middlebrooks and Nate Spears.

Relievers Brian Sanches, Michael Schwimer, and Jake Diekman took care of the rest. They gave up four more hits, but again, none for extra bases or anything wild like that. Superlative work. Elarton gets the win, lefty Diekman gets the save.

Pawtucket starter was Doug Mathis, who also pitched five innings but committed the cardinal sin of giving up one stinking run. It was the fourth inning. Hector Luna led off with a single, Domonic Brown batted him over. As simple as suffocation with a dry-cleaning bag, really. Clayton Mortenson and Junichi Tazawa wrapped up the whole tamale by pitching two scoreless innings apiece. I know, 'tamale' is not really a word, but if I said 'tamal', it would come off as pretentious. N'est ce pas?

In a related story, Jose Iglesias is a jerk. The bases were loaded in the bottom of the fifth and Iglesias was all, foul, swing and a miss, swing and a miss. I realize that he's not a slugger by any means, but have a little self-awareness and try to work the count or something. I love Iglesias dearly, but come on. Why was he swinging at the first pitch anyway?

a pack of saviors:
1. In case you're like, 'Scott Elarton? Didn't he die?', the answer is yes, he did. However, I strongly recommend reading this little story about Elarton. Thank you, Bob Brookover.
2. Brookover's buddy Matt Gelb sez 'Dubee in Love With Diekman' in this exploratory surgery of an article.
3. Phuture Phillies makes the Case for Jake Diekman to Make the Opening Day Roster. I am certainly convinced.
4. Average height for IronPigs pitchers last night: 6'5". Did the math myself. I know my gazintas!
5. Jason Dipro over at the Noise Nation blog provides a killer game summary. It is criminal that not all visiting teams have fan blogs like that. I'm looking at you, Indianapolis!
6. Doug Mathis hit both Rich Thompson and Kevin Frandsen with pitches. Kevin Frandsen was on the PawSox, remember? No, me neither.

This afternoon, it's Pigs again, featuring Dave Bush v Ross Ohlendorf. Bush is just coming off a suspension for being... For... Okay, it's a little complicated. Read this and maybe you can make some sense of it.



4.7.12 IronPigs visit PawSox, game 2 of a doubleheader

Lehigh Valley takes game two, 3-2 in seven innings.

Starting pitcher for Pawtucket was Alex Wilson, who is not fat at all. Wilson did reasonably well, going five innings and giving up one run on three hits. If strikeouts turn you on, Wilson racked up seven. He's a freak like that. Oh, yes.

Wilson's good, good work was undone by Chorye Spoone, who might be fat. Spoone got one out in the sixth, then walked the next two batters. A passed ball advanced the runners with slugger Hector Luna at bat. However, Luna struck out.

But, wait! Here comes Domonic Brown, Phillies fans! You know you love him. Brown was THE guy, singling to center and getting those two runs over. Spoone blew the save and took the loss. Happens to the best of us. Get over it. People puke and they poop their pants.

What about Tom Cochran, The Steady and Earnest? If Tom was a highway, I'd want to ride him all night long. Five innings, two runs. First baseman Mauro Gomez hit a solo home run in the second inning, then Daniel Nava hit an RBI single in the third. And then Jeremy Horst pitched and then Philippe Aumont pitched and the game was over. Aumont's seventh inning close-job was sloppy - He hit Ciriaco with a pitch and then walked Nate Spears and Daniel Nava. But Gomez grounded into a double play to end everything.

jason repko went 2-3:
1. Jason Repko went 2-3.
2. Hector Luna struck out three times, which is not the Luna I remember.
3. This one time Joe Thurston was an a-all-star on the PawSox.
4. By the way, Bosox Banter wants you to meet the PawSox. How do you know I'm not close, personal friends with Ross Ohlendorf?

Tonight! Pawtucket's Doug Mathis v IronPigs Scott Elarton. I was going to go, but I am doing a favor for my boss. I owe him, he's letting me take time out to go see the Nationals this week.

Hope you had a heavenly Easter.


4.7.12 Pawtucket Red Sox v Lehigh Valley IronPigs - shouldn't

Pawtucket WINS! 4-1 in game one of a double header.

Starting pitcher for Pawtucket was Aaron Cook, who pitched the whole seven innings and it was, what, 89 pitches? 59 strikes, too. Five hits, one run, 2 walks and four K's. Lehigh Valley scored its only run off Cook in the third inning, when shortstop Andres Blanco hit an RBI single.

The IronPigs made Pat Misch go out and pitch. The PawSox got to him first in the fourth inning, when Ryan Lavarnway singled to left with one out. First baseman Mauro Gomez doubled to move Lavarnway over to third. Lars Anderson hit a sac fly... Well, he got onto first base, but only because Lou Montanez in right made an error. So Lavarnway scored. And then Will Middlebrooks grounded into a force, scoring Gomez.

In the fifth inning, Red Sox outfielder Jason Repko led off with a solo home run. Nate Spears and Daniel Nava hit back to back singles, then Jose Iglesias flew out to left so Spears could tag and score. 4-1 Pawtucket, final score, yes.

sex dreams about pawsox players:
1. David Purcey also pitched for the IronPigs. Where the hell has he been? He was on the Chiefs when they were the Blue Jays AAA team. And wasn't Pat Misch a Buffalo guy last season?
2. Nice game summary on the Horn and Bell Noise Nation IronPigs blog.
3. Aaron Cook knew some guy who went to school in Rhode Island this one time. (McGair)

Oh, god, why am I still up? Now the Easter bunny won't come!

I probably won't do game 2 because I am traveling tomorrow, although I suppose I could do it Monday morning. I still have so much I want to talk about, too, but maybe soon.

I love you.


4.6.12 Red Sox v Bisons - Satin and Saphire

Buffalo gets one back, 2-1. Bisons reliever Dylan Owen gets the win at this sparsely attended game.

Unassuming starting pitcher for Pawtucket was Brandon Duckworth, who worked really hard and did a great job. Duckworth pitched 6 2/3 innings, throwing 97 pitches. In his first start of the season. He looks like such a regular guy. When's the last time totally young and ripped Michael Bowden did that? Answer: Never. I don't want to digress too much (OH YES I DO), but if Duckworth and Bowden stood in front of you, which one would you think would have that pitching line?

Buffalo's guy was Jeurys Familia, A Very Large Righty. And handsome! And a triple-A debutante! Familia threw hard and inside, tight stuff on righties. I could have hit it. He went 4 2/3 innings, giving up an RBI single to Ryan Lavarnway in the first inning. It would be Pawtucket's only run.

Dylan Owen provided long, effective relief for Familia, getting in 3 1/3 innings. Owen gave up a couple of singles, but otherwise stapled things down and went to bed with a smile. And guess who closed? Fernando Cabrera, who was seriously all over the place with the strike zone and put a couple of runners on in the ninth. Alex Hassan went deep to center with one out, one on, but Raul Reyes made a bad-ass catch to rob Hassan. Lars Anderson was the last guy but he flew out to center. Bummer.

Buffalo tied with Pawtucket in the fifth, when third baseman Zach Lutz hit an RBI single off Duckworth. They pulled ahead in the ninth with Tony Pena pitching. Shortstop Omar Quintanilla singled... Reyes dashed home... Valdespin could have piled on but struck out to end the inning.

And then! And then! Radio guy Steve Hyder usually comes down to the field after the game to talk to a player, someone pivotal to the game or something. His selection was Buffalo closer Fernando Cabrera, who rambled on a bit about returning to McCoy Stadium and his difficulty throwing strikes. And it was right there, right in front of me at the visitor's dugout! If I were a flying squirrel I could have leapt and landed on top of him. Cabrera, not Hyder. Although.... No, no, I definitely mean Cabrera. He is still so, so good-looking. Hyder, I mean.

don't imagine you're too familia:
1. Raul Reyes was just just called up to replace Kirk Neiuwenhuis, who was just just just called up. Reyes wore some jersey they found balled up under a seat on the bus. I think it was made of crepe paper and they didn't even have time to iron his name onto it. #48! Also, new radio guy Aaron Goldsmith called him 'Paul'.
2. Pawtucket's got some celestial defense, most notably in the Iglesias area. But you knew that. As a fan, I thrill in my seat.
3. Bobby Scales! Bobby Scales back in the house, coaching first and pinch running. Except he ran right into the catcher at an awkward time for an out. It must have killed him. It certainly killed me.
4. Kevin Pereira has a game summary that you should read, because it makes more sense than all of this here.
5. And here's Toby Hyde for Buffalo: "On a cold April night, Jeurys Familia made his first AAA start in an outing that could best be described as messy; he dealt with eight baserunners in 4.2 innings." It was indeed quite cold. I stayed through the whole thing, though.
6. Middlebrooks and Anderson both went 2-4.

I listened to the radiocast to get a feel for the new guy. Not bad, slightly stiff, maybe a little fundamental. Decent chemistry with Hyder. Made a few mistakes which I thought about listing here but I will cut him some slack. Couple of errors on his blog which I will also refrain from pointing out. I'm sure he'll find his groove as things heat up.

Double-header with Lehigh Valley today. God, I have so much to talk about but so little time! Aaron Cook, Pat Misch game one. Alex Wilson, Tom Cochran game two. I can't go, not that you care. There's plenty of other PawSox coverage nowadays, although none as fascinating as I am. I speak for the fan, you guys. I am on your side. You hate and I hate, you love and I love. LET'S DO IT!!!!