PBL Scores, 8/28/15

Think the dog days of August will slow down the Patriot League?  Not a chance!  Check out today’s action below…

Milwaukee Bear ClawsSalt Lake SamuraiMILWAUKEE BEAR CLAWS 10, SALT LAKE SAMURAI 6

The Milwaukee Bear Claws are having more trouble than they anticipated turning aside the Patriot League’s worst team.  Yesterday, the Salt Lake Samurai dealt the Bear Claws a stunning 11-8 loss.  Today, Milwaukee found itself in a hole once again after a second straight poor start, and needed a 9th-inning explosion to notch a 10-6 victory.

“These guys are making us work,” said Bear Claws C Frances McGuigan of the pesky Samurai.  “Well, nobody said winning was easy.”

Milwaukee starter Zack Perriman continued to struggle in his return from injury.  The left-hander was knocked out without recording an out in the 4th, having surrendered five runs, including homers to DH Jamar Whitworth and 3B Chris Davidson.

Bear Claws pitching coach Zane Stafford believes that Perriman’s struggles are a result of trying too hard.  “He’s trying to get back to full strength all at once,” said Stafford.  “He’s overthrowing, and that’s flattening out his breaking pitches and making his fastball miss.  I told him he needs to have a couple beers before his next start and relax a bit.  It’ll come back once he stops trying to force it.”

The Bear Claws rallied in the 6th to grab the lead.  2B Richard Iddings chased Samurai starter Davey Skargard with an RBI double, and 1B Felipe Mateo greeted reliever Rene Cruzado with a towering three-run homer to put Milwaukee up 6-5.

But Milwaukee missed an opportunity to add to their lead in the 7th, when CF DeRondre Maxwell’s double gave them two runners in scoring position with no one out.  McGuigan tried to come home on an Iddings grounder, and was nailed by a strong throw from Samurai SS Mori Motonari.  Bear Claws lefty Olen Abernathy then gave up the lead in the bottom of the 8th, allowing an RBI double to Salt Lake C DeAndre Turnbull.

The Milwaukee bullpen has been showing some signs of fatigue lately.  The relievers’ workload increased significantly when Perriman went down, with long reliever Chris Karnik starting in his place.  Milwaukee manager Poss Horton stood by his pen, saying “they’re a big part of what got us here.” But he suggested that he might look into shuffling roles in order to give some key members more rest.

Fortunately for Abernathy, the Bear Claws offense was able to bail him out in the 9th.  After Maxwell led off the inning with a single against Salt Lake righty Jimmy Okamura (1-2), Samurai manager Johnny Dugan called on his closer, Dean Gamble.  It’s been a while since Gamble appeared in a non-save situation, and he promptly reminded everyone why he shouldn’t be used in these spots.

In the space of four batters, Gamble allowed doubles to SS Red Petitt, Mateo, and 3B Ikaru Suzuki, and Milwaukee suddenly had a three-run lead.  The closer retired LF Arthur Mealey to get a second out, but after putting DH Rodolfo Raine on intentionally, Gamble allowed an RBI single to RF Wally Trumbauer, forcing Dugan to bring in Lucas Henderson to get out of the inning.

“Damn, just when I was starting to get everybody to trust me,” said Gamble.

Aberathy (4-5) and closer Oscar Buenaventura finished off finished off with a scoreless 9th for Milwaukee.

The Bear Claws (82-47) will look to right-hander “Stormin’” Patrick McNorman to take a series victory.  The Samurai (39-90) counter with lefty Jonathan Fernandez.

 

8/28/2015, MIL15-SLC15, Desert Edge Stadium
 
                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
2015 Bear Claws        0  1  0  1  0  4  0  0  4    10 17  0    16  1
2015 Samurai           2  2  0  1  0  0  0  1  0     6 10  0     8  1
 
Bear Claws           AB  R  H BI   AVG    Samurai              AB  R  H BI   AVG
Petitt            ss  3  3  1  0  .321    Motonari          ss  4  1  3  1  .260
Iddings           2b  5  2  2  1  .261    Whitworth         dh  4  1  1  2  .273
Mateo             1b  4  2  3  6  .340    Cosgrove          cf  5  0  0  0  .279
Suzuki            3b  5  1  1  1  .290    Martinez          rf  3  0  1  0  .249
Mealey            lf  6  1  2  0  .306    Thomas            1b  5  0  0  0  .222
Raine             dh  4  0  3  1  .260    Sparks            lf  2  1  1  0  .245
Trumbauer         rf  6  0  1  1  .244    Turnbull          c   4  1  2  1  .167
McGuigan          c   6  0  1  0  .290    Gaytan            2b  3  1  1  0  .265
Maxwell           cf  4  1  3  0  .304    Davidson          3b  4  1  1  2  .198
                     43 10 17 10                               34  6 10  6
 
Bear Claws                       INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Perriman                         3.0  7  5  5  2  1  46  26  3.49
Almon                            1.1  0  0  0  1  0  15   7  4.31
Juens                            1.2  0  0  0  1  1  22  10  5.11
Abernathy        BS 3, W 4-5     2.1  3  1  1  1  1  48  29  4.15
Buenaventura                     0.2  0  0  0  1  2  15   8  1.34
                                 9.0 10  6  6  6  5 146  80 
 
Samurai                          INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Skargard                         5.1  7  5  5  6  1 102  56  4.93
Cruzado          BS 2            0.0  2  1  1  1  0  14   7  7.41
Okamura          L 1-2           2.2  4  1  1  2  1  59  36  5.47
Gamble                           0.2  4  3  3  1  0  19  11  5.13
Henderson                        0.1  0  0  0  0  1   4   4  4.23
                                 9.0 17 10 10 10  3 198 114 
 
2B-Petitt(40), Iddings(27), Mateo(36), Suzuki(19), Raine(23), Maxwell(26), 
Motonari(24), Turnbull(8). 3B-Mealey(10). HR-Mateo(47), Whitworth(13), 
Davidson(6). RBI-Iddings(78), Mateo 6(145), Suzuki(93), Raine(66), 
Trumbauer(59), Motonari(41), Whitworth 2(49), Turnbull(23), Davidson 2(32). 
SB-Martinez(7). CS-Martinez. K-Trumbauer, McGuigan 2, Cosgrove 2, Martinez, 
Thomas 2. BB-Petitt 3, Iddings, Mateo 2, Suzuki, Raine 2, Maxwell, Whitworth, 
Martinez 2, Sparks 2, Gaytan. SF-Motonari. PB-McGuigan. 
GWRBI: Mateo
Temperature: 81, Sky: clear, Wind: in from right at 12 MPH.

 

Jacksonville DragonsKnoxville SmokiesJACKSONVILLE DRAGONS 8, KNOXVILLE SMOKIES 5

The Knoxville Smokies’ four-game winning streak has bitten the dust.  The Jacksonville survived a rough start from Kyle Palmer, rallying to send the Eastern leaders to an 8-5 defeat.

“These are the kind of games that we can build on,” said Dragons 1B Jake Kapoor, who went 2-for-5 with a double and a homer.  “We could have rolled over and mailed in after Kyle got knocked out, but we turned right around and gave as good as we got.  We wouldn’t have done that earlier this year.  We’re getting stronger.”

Palmer turned in a clunker of a start, an increasingly rare occurrence for the young righty.  Smokies DH Eddie Battin took him deep in the 2nd, and CF Joe Blair pitched in with a two-run double that would have been a three-run double if LF Track Johnson hadn’t been thrown out at the plate to end the inning.

The Smokies went back to work in the 3rd.  RF Jackson Campo raked a triple that brought in a run.  SS Armand Moriarty singled Campo home, and it was the end of the line for Palmer.  Reliever Carroll Avallone didn’t fare any better initially, allowing a walk and a single to load the bases.  But then came the moment that both teams agreed was the turning point in the game.

Smokies C Prince Carlo lofted a medium-deep fly ball to left for the second out.  Moriarty decided to bolt for home, but a strong and on-target throw from Dragons LF Rob Hartley cut him down to end the threat.

“That was the boost we needed,” said Kapoor.  “Rob picked us up off the mat and got us back into the fight.”

Jacksonville then went to work on their 5-2 deficit, batting against Knoxville starter Jack Jacques.  SS Alan Herdt led off with a double, and 2B Will Mount followed with a single that moved Herdt to third.  C Judson Teachout’s sac fly made it 5-3.  Kapoor then hit a grounder to short that could have been disastrous, but Moriarty let the ball scoot beneath his glove for an error.  That brought RF Roderick Hopps to the plate.

Jacques quickly fell behind 3-0.  Not wanting to load the bases, he fired a strike down the pipe, hoping that Hopps was taking.  But Hopps wasn’t.  He crushed the ball, and by the time it came down, it had reached the upper deck in left for a three-run homer.  Jacques (11-8) slammed his glove against his thigh, a surprising reaction from the famously cold-blooded pitcher.

“This loss was entirely my own,” said Jacques.  “I took a foolish risk to throw a batting practice strike there.  I should have been more careful.”

The Jacksonville bullpen took it from there.  Avallone (2-0) turned in 2 1/3 solid innings, and Razor Corridon turned in perhaps his best outing of the year.  The former closer, who doesn’t exactly have a lockdown reputation, fired 3 1/3 scoreless frames to make the Dragons’ lead stand up.

Jacksonville manager Harlan Davidson singled Corridon out for praise in his postgame remarks.  “All season, I’ve been saying that they call him Razor ‘cause I want to slit my wrists every time he pitches,” said the skipper.  “But damned if the bastard didn’t show up big when we needed him.  He earned his stripes today, no doubt.”

Kapoor smacked a two-run homer off of Knoxville reliever Rick Wilkins in the 8th to give his team some breathing room.  Closer Blueberry Jackson twirled a 1-2-3 9th to collect his 12th save.

The Dragons (63-65) will hope that young fireballer Juan Sarmiento can capture the series.  The Smokies (78-49) will rely on their ace, Elicio Santana.

 

8/28/2015, JAX15-KNX15, Rocky Top Park
 
                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
2015 Dragons           1  0  1  4  0  0  0  2  0     8 17  0    10  3
2015 Smokies           0  3  2  0  0  0  0  0  0     5 12  2     7  1
 
Dragons              AB  R  H BI   AVG    Smokies              AB  R  H BI   AVG
Teachout          c   4  1  2  1  .319    Blair             cf  4  0  3  2  .299
Kapoor            1b  5  2  2  2  .310    Campo             2b  5  0  0  0  .302
Hopps             rf  5  1  2  3  .271    Bryant            dh  5  1  1  0  .281
Hartley           lf  5  1  2  1  .259    Campo             rf  4  1  2  1  .293
 Parker           lf  0  0  0  0  .201    Moriarty          ss  4  0  1  1  .280
Taliaferro        3b  5  0  1  1  .247    Battin            1b  3  1  2  1  .307
Leon              cf  5  0  1  0  .243    Aceuedo           3b  3  1  2  0  .277
Canez             dh  5  0  1  0  .233    Carlo             c   4  1  1  0  .217
Herdt             ss  5  1  2  0  .232    Johnson           lf  3  0  0  0  .320
Mount             2b  5  2  4  0  .241                         35  5 12  5
                     44  8 17  8
 
Dragons                          INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Palmer                           2.1  7  5  5  2  0  53  29  4.31
Avallone         W 2-0           2.1  3  0  0  1  0  39  22  4.69
Corridon         H 1             3.1  2  0  0  1  1  40  28  4.24
Jackson          S 12            1.0  0  0  0  0  1  12   7  2.55
                                 9.0 12  5  5  4  2 144  86 
 
Smokies                          INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Jacques          L 11-8          3.1 10  6  5  0  4  66  45  4.41
Tile                             1.2  1  0  0  0  1  16  12  1.70
Wilkins                          2.1  3  2  2  0  2  33  21  3.58
Dennis                           1.2  3  0  0  0  0  24  16  3.46
                                 9.0 17  8  7  0  7 139  94 
 
JAX: Parker inserted at lf in the 8th
 
E-Moriarty 2. 2B-Kapoor(42), Taliaferro(17), Herdt(20), Blair(25), Campo(21). 
3B-Campo(6). HR-Kapoor(25), Hopps(33), Hartley(32), Battin(26). 
RBI-Teachout(58), Kapoor 2(85), Hopps 3(94), Hartley(100), Taliaferro(32), 
Blair 2(79), Campo(105), Moriarty(87), Battin(95). K-Kapoor 2, Hartley, 
Taliaferro, Leon 2, Canez, Campo 2. BB-Blair, Battin, Aceuedo, Johnson. 
SF-Teachout. PB-Carlo. 
GWRBI: Hopps
Temperature: 66, Sky: partly cloudy, Wind: out to center at 16 MPH.

 

Jackson HammerheadsOrlando CalrissiansJACKSON HAMMERHEADS 9, ORLANDO CALRISSIANS 1

Sometimes a game turns on a single decision.  The right call at a key moment can propel a team to victory, while the wrong decision can doom them to defeat.  The Jackson Hammerheads’ interim manager, Eddie Harris, had a tough decision to make in today’s game.  He made a gutsy call that ultimately paid off in a 9-1 win over the Orlando Calrissians.

With a score that lopsided, it’s hard to imagine that the Hammerheads had to do anything other than show up.  But there was a moment in the 6th inning when the game hung in the balance, and Harris didn’t hesitate to make a bold move.

It was the top of the inning, with Jackson leading 4-0.  Starter Luke Danton had made it through the first 5 innings without much trouble, but had suddenly encountered turbulence.  A throwing error by Hammerheads 2B Homer Righter had opened the door for the Calrissians.  A single and a walk quickly loaded the bases.  Orlando sent up SS Jose Buendia, one of their best batters, to pinch hit.

What to do?  Danton was only one out from escaping the jam, and he had pitched himself out of a similar spot earlier in the game.  On the other hand, he’d been shelled in his last start, and his pitch count was climbing.  One or two big hits, and Jackson’s lead might evaporate in a hurry.

On the other hand, the Hammerheads’ bullpen has been laboring under a heavy workload lately, and they’ve proven themselves to be unreliable several times in recent games.  Pull Danton now, and you’re asking a tired group of relievers to get you through 3 1/3 innings.

Not an easy call, to say the least.  But Harris acted decisively, coming to the mound to remove Danton.

“He told me he was throwing every piece of junk at ‘em that he could find, but he had enough for one more hitter,” said Harris.  “But for me, it was important to get him out on a high note and live to fight another day.”

Asked if he’d had any reservations about relying on the bullpen for a long stint, Harris replied, “Well, shoot, if your bullpen can’t hang on to a four-run lead, you ain’t gonna win anything anyhow.”

Harris called on lefty Eric Seeman, who allowed a single to Buendia to make it 4-1.  Harris wasted no time in going to righty Butch Turnbull, who retired Orlando LF Lauren Hartl to end the inning and preserve the win for Danton (4-5).

The Hammerheads blew the game open in the bottom of the inning, knocking out Calrissians starter Charles McNally (6-12) and plating five runs to turn it into a laugher.

Asked if he’d have left Danton in if he’d known the offensive eruption was coming, Harris said, “Hindsight’s 20/20.  I just thank the Lord for the win and move on to the next one.”

The Hammerheads (72-57) will try for the sweep behind right-hander Jordan Bergman tomorrow.  The Calrissians (44-84) will send righty Nate McGowan to the hill.

 

8/28/2015, ORL15-JCK15, Cash Carter Downs
 
                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
2015 Calrissians       0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0     1  8  0    12  0
2015 Hammerheads       0  1  1  0  2  5  0  0  x     9 15  2    10  0
 
Calrissians          AB  R  H BI   AVG    Hammerheads          AB  R  H BI   AVG
Gilmartin         ss  3  0  0  0  .237    Deason            cf  4  2  2  1  .300
 Buendia          ph  2  0  1  1  .288    Westerberg        ss  4  1  2  2  .347
Hartl             lf  3  0  2  0  .289    Sisco             lf  5  2  2  0  .309
Law               dh  5  0  1  0  .289    Fleitas           3b  3  1  1  1  .281
Larson            rf  2  0  0  0  .296    Jaramillo         dh  4  0  2  2  .268
 Maben            ph  2  0  0  0  .186    Doyle             c   5  0  1  2  .322
Crofoot           2b  4  0  0  0  .203    Lassen            1b  5  2  2  0  .213
Defoor            1b  4  1  0  0  .240    Arispe            rf  4  1  2  1  .281
Figeroa           3b  4  0  1  0  .256    Righter           2b  4  0  1  0  .343
Lesher            c   4  0  2  0  .235                         38  9 15  9
Elias             cf  3  0  1  0  .188
                     36  1  8  1
 
Calrissians                      INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
McNally          L 6-12          5.0 10  6  6  1  1  94  60  6.65
Filippi                          0.1  2  2  2  0  1  13   7  3.38
Grazier                          0.1  1  1  1  0  0  14   7  8.13
Turbeville                       0.2  2  0  0  0  1  13   9  7.17
Quesara                          0.0  0  0  0  1  0   4   0  5.06
Smith                            1.2  0  0  0  1  2  27  16  3.80
                                 8.0 15  9  9  3  5 165  99 
 
Hammerheads                      INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Danton           W 4-5           5.2  6  1  0  3  6 118  73  5.08
Seeman                           0.0  1  0  0  0  0   3   2  7.27
Turnbull         H 12            1.1  0  0  0  0  1  15  12  3.49
Sheen                            2.0  1  0  0  0  2  34  22  4.12
                                 9.0  8  1  0  3  9 170 109 
 
ORL: Buendia batted for Gilmartin in the 6th
     Buendia moved to ss in the 6th
     Maben batted for Larson in the 7th
     Maben moved to rf in the 7th
 
E-Fleitas, Righter. 2B-Hartl(20), Figeroa(11), Elias(11), Deason(50), 
Jaramillo(22), Arispe(26). 3B-Fleitas(5). RBI-Buendia(65), Deason(86), 
Westerberg 2(78), Fleitas(110), Jaramillo 2(75), Doyle 2(53), Arispe(78). 
SB-Sisco(20). K-Law 3, Larson, Crofoot, Figeroa, Lesher, Elias, Buendia, 
Fleitas, Doyle, Lassen, Arispe, Righter. BB-Hartl, Larson, Elias, Deason, 
Fleitas 2. SH-Westerberg. HBP-Hartl, Jaramillo. HB-Grazier, Sheen. 
GWRBI: Arispe
Temperature: 97, Sky: clear, Wind: right to left at 7 MPH.

 

California SharksSilver City OutlawsCALIFORNIA SHARKS 9, SILVER CITY OUTLAWS 0

If the California Sharks are going to win the West, they’re going to need starter Kevin Conner to play a key role.  The 20-year-old righty was slotted into the #2 spot in the rotation based on his enormous potential, but he has struggled to convert that potential into results.  Like a lot of rookies, Conner suffered through some early growing pains, learning to deal with adversity and pitch deeper into games.

As the season has gone on, Conner has grown into the role that Sharks manager Eduardo Aponte envisioned for him.  He has spent time talking and training with ace Pierre LaRue, a student of the game with an eye for the slightest details.  He has learned how to rely less on overpowering hitters and more on outthinking them.

Today, Conner’s hard work paid off in one of his best starts of the season, a complete-game shutout in a 9-0 blowout of the Silver City Outlaws.

“I am very encouraged by what Kevin has shown me today,” said Aponte.  “I have always known that he had the tools to be a great pitcher.  But it takes time and effort to learn to be great.  Kevin has shown he is willing to put in that effort.”

Conner’s newfound maturity and confidence was on display in the 1st inning of today’s game.  After recording the first two outs in quick fashion, the California righty allowed three straight singles to load the bases.

Earlier in the year, this probably would have led to Silver City scoring multiple runs and Conner facing a short outing.  This time, though, he stepped off the mound, gathered himself, and then calmly retired DH Toby Watson to end the inning.

The Outlaws never seriously threatened the rest of the game, as Conner (12-8) scattered four hits and didn’t allow any walks.  He recorded a total of six strikeouts: a respectable total, but one that suggested he wasn’t trying to blow away hitters.

“Before, whenever Kevin got in a tight spot, he always wanted to throw the number 1 [fastball] and try to power his way through,” said Sharks C Corky Carpenter.  “Now, he’s much more willing to change speeds, mix things up, keep the hitters guessing.”

Meanwhile, Outlaws starter Juan Carlos Lopez (10-10) wasn’t fooling anybody.  The Sharks tagged him for nine hits over 3 1/3 innings, although they only turned that into three runs.

“Some days, I have no game,” admitted Lopez.  “Today, everything was straight, and that’s no good.  Bam-bam-bam, and adios J.C.”

Sharks LF Kenneth Mader turned the game into a rout in the later innings, slamming a pair of homers off of Outlaws reliever Jamaal Sapp.

The Sharks (76-51) have a shot at sweeping tomorrow behind lefty Stu Palmeiro.  The Outlaws (59-70) will hand the ball to right-hander Cloyce “Hoss” Benson.

 

8/28/2015, SCO15-CAL15, Blue Note Stadium
 
                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
2015 Outlaws           0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0     0  7  0     6  3
2015 Sharks            2  1  0  0  0  3  0  3  x     9 16  2     9  2
 
Outlaws              AB  R  H BI   AVG    Sharks               AB  R  H BI   AVG
Brewmaker         3b  4  0  1  0  .256    Corona            rf  5  1  3  0  .322
Hintz             2b  4  0  1  0  .205    Smyth             ss  5  3  4  2  .361
Jeffreys          c   4  0  1  0  .182    Mader             lf  5  2  3  6  .328
Wason             rf  4  0  1  0  .277    Nix               dh  4  0  1  0  .336
Elliott           1b  4  0  1  0  .276    Oller             1b  3  0  0  0  .277
Watson            dh  4  0  1  0  .193    Strachan          2b  4  1  1  0  .263
Whittier          lf  3  0  0  0  .230    Mote              3b  4  0  2  0  .214
Cardona           cf  3  0  0  0  .233    Novick            cf  3  0  0  0  .188
Burt              ss  3  0  1  0  .207    Carpenter         c   4  2  2  1  .256
                     33  0  7  0                               37  9 16  9
 
Outlaws                          INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Lopez            L 10-10         3.1  9  3  3  2  1  65  39  4.00
Sapp                             4.2  7  6  6  3  0  54  31  7.31
                                 8.0 16  9  9  5  1 119  70 
 
Sharks                           INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   ERA
Conner           W 12-8          9.0  7  0  0  0  6 120  77  4.26
                                 9.0  7  0  0  0  6 120  77 
 
E-Smyth, Strachan. 2B-Corona(23), Smyth(29), Strachan(7), Carpenter(2). 
3B-Corona(21), Mote(3). HR-Mader 2(24). RBI-Smyth 2(91), Mader 6(105), 
Carpenter(20). CS-Burt. K-Hintz, Jeffreys, Wason 2, Elliott, Whittier, Mader. 
BB-Nix, Oller 2, Strachan, Novick. 
GWRBI: Smyth
Temperature: 73, Sky: clear, Wind: left to right at 5 MPH.

 

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