Buffalo 7, Columbus 1
By Andrew O’Brien
Days after Buffalo Bisons manager Wally Backman had a heart-to-heart with Jordany Valdepsin, the 24-year-old responded.
Valdespin launched a three-run homer Monday afternoon, leading the Bisons to a 7-1 win over the Columbus Clippers on Memorial Day.
Dylan Owen (3-2) made the spot start for the Bisons and allowed just two hits and one run over six innings while striking out four and walking one. His Triple-A ERA stands at 2.95.
Elvin Ramirez pitched a scoreless seventh inning in which he struck out the side. Since Ramirez’s promotion to Triple-A, he’s thrown 12.2 scoreless innings — something that might get a look from the New York Mets as their bullpen continues to struggle.
The Bisons (29-22) scored a run in the first inning after Corey Wimberly walked to lead off the inning and later scored on a Valentino Pascucci groundout. After two scoreless innings, the Bisons went back to work in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Fred Lewis led the inning off with a single then stole second base with one out. Matt Tuiasosopo belted a double that scored Lewis. Tuiasosopo later scored on a Valdespin groundout.
Valdespin, who was playing second base, finished the day 1-for-3 with three RBIs. Lewis went 2-for-4. Omar Quintanilla, who will be brought up to the Mets on Tuesday, played shortstop and went 1-for-3 with a strikeout. He’s hitting .282 in Triple-A.
Herd Rumblings: This was the first meeting of the year between the Bisons and Clippers. Columbus is the two-time defending Triple-A World Series champion. Elvin Ramirez has now seen 12.2 innings of work in his Bisons career, in which he has still not allowed a run. Zach McAllister suffered the loss for Columbus in his first start since being sent back down from Cleveland. Buffalo continues its four-game series with Columbus 7:05 p.m. Tuesday.
Binghamton 6, New Hampshire 2
By Tim Burns
The holiday weekend almost ended with a bang for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in Binghamton on Monday afternoon, as their starting pitcher Deck McGuire had a perfect game through five innings. It all fell apart for McGuire in the bottom of the sixth though, and instead of a baseball rarity, he was issued his sixth loss of the season, and remains winless against the Binghamton Mets.
The first batter McGuire faced in the home half of the sixth was Reese Havens, who he hit with a pitch. Next batter, B-Mets catcher Kai Gronauer, walked. Pedro Zapata moved Havens and Gronauer up a base each with his sacrifice bunt as the next B-Met up in the inning. With the perfect game gone, McGuire still had his no hitter intact, that is until the following B-Mets batter Sean Kazmar singled to left field ruining the no hitter and shutout for the Fisher Cats starter. Josh Rodriguez’s single then scored Gronauer and it was a new ballgame for the home team. Rodriguez would prove to be the last Binghamton batter that McGuire faced on the afternoon, as he was replaced by reliever Aaron Loup at this point in the sixth.
McGuire’s final line on the day read 5 1/3 innings pitched, four earned runs on two hits with two strikeouts. The B-Mets have victimized McGuire in his two previous starts against them, where he’s allowed 12 runs on 14 hits and only lasted 3 1/3 in those two games.
Aaron Loup’s entire day went about as poorly as McGuire’s sixth. The B-Mets continued the rally when Loup his Raul Reyes, the first batter he faced, moving Rodriguez to second, loading the bases with Kazmar still standing on third. Next up was Jefry Marte, who’s single to center scored Kazmar and kept the bases loaded. After a Travis Ozga strikeout, Juan Lagares was walked scoring Josh Rodriguez from third. Reese Havens made his second plate appearance of the inning, and was issued a walk as well, scoring Raul Reyes from third. This would be the end of the day for Loup, who in just 1/3 of an inning issued two walks, and allowed one earned run on one hit. The Kazmar and Rodriguez runs were charged to New Hampshire starter Deck McGuire.
Fisher Cats reliever Ronald Uviedo was finally able to put out the fire that was the Binghamton Mets in the bottom of the sixth, getting Kai Gronauer to strikeout to end the inning. The damage was already done though, and the five runs the B-Mets scored in the inning were more than enough to take the “W”.
On the other side of the diamond, Binghamton Mets starter Collin McHugh pitched another strong game, taking his performance all the way to the ninth inning. The top of the fourth was the only inning the Fisher Cats were able to plate any runs, scoring two in the frame, which would prove to be the only runs allowed in the game. All told, McHugh got the Fisher Cats to go three up, three down in six of the eight innings he pitched on the afternoon. McHugh’s final line in earning his team leading fifth win of the season read eight innings pitched, two runs on five hits, eight strikeouts and one walk.
Adrian Rosario was called on in the ninth to finish out the game for McHugh in a non-save situation. In the inning he allowed no runs on no hits while walking two. Rosario’s ERA remains at 0.00 in four relief appearances this season for the B-Mets.
Josh Rodriguez was the big hitter for the B-Mets in the game, going 2/4 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored. Four other B-Mets, which included Zapata, Gronauer, Marte, and Kazmar, had single hits in the game.
B-Mets Buzz: Matt den Dekker was given the day off on Memorial Day. The holiday weekend combined with some great weather in the Binghamton produced the best series draw of the season so far. The B-Mets averaged over 4,300 fans for the four game set, including their largest crowd of the season on Friday night of 5,416. The B-Mets now travel to Reading, Pennsylvania for their first meeting of the season against the Double A Phillies. The three game set gets underway on Tuesday night, and should feature Zack Wheeler, Gonzalez Germen, and Darin Gorski if the rotation continues on its usual path. The Phillies will send Julio Rodriguez (3-0, 2.64 ERA, rated 15th top prospect in the Philadelphia system), Jonathan Pettibone (4-4, 3.26, ranked 9th top prospect in the Philadelphia system), and Drew Naylor (3-2, 6.04 ERA) to the mound.
Greenville 6, Savannah 2
By Sean Kenny
The Sand Gnats pitching staff took a general beating today on Memorial Day, and the offense couldn’t scratch across many runs in the 6-2 loss to the Greenville Drive.
Alex Panteliodis went out today and was obliterated in two and one-third innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, walking two and striking out two. Alex couldn’t miss any bats, and combine that with a few walks and the game was out of hand before the end of the third inning. Panteliodis has not gone more than four innings in his last four starts, and the bullpen has been forced to pick up the slack. Today, however the bullpen could just not hold the flood gates shut. Randy Fontanez went three and two-thirds innings, allowing one run on three hits with one walk and one strikeout. Jared West went two innings, allowing two runs on three hits, including a home run. It doesn’t take much to see, getting to the opposing team’s bullpen by the third inning means doom.
The Gnats offense didn’t put across a run until the sixth inning, and both of the runs on the day would come off the bat of Travis Taijeron om a two-run homer. Savannah had three different hitters take 0-for’s including Gilbert Gomez (.385), Cole Frenzel (.154) and the still struggling Albert Cordero (.170). The Gnats consistently made contact, as evidenced by only three strikeouts on the day, but it was all weak contact.
Gnats Gnotes: Gilbert Gomez went 0 for 5, dropping his average to .385. T.J. Rivera is in the midst of another hitting streak, this time four games. Travis Taijeron is showing much-improved plate discipline, but the strikeouts are still a bit high. He reminds me of Kirk Nieuwenhuis in regards to the ability to put the ball in play, draw some walks but strikeout a lot. There were no errors on the day for the Gnats, which is always a plus – especially with the volume of hits the staff allowed. The Gnats will enter game two of the series against the Drive, sending prospect Domingo Tapia (4-2, 2.49) against (Greenville has a shaky rotation, could not find a pattern). Game time is 7:05 P.M.
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