Buffalo 9, Charlotte 3
By Tim Burns
The Buffalo Bisons ended their week long road trip on a positive note in Charlotte on Monday night, defeating the Knights by a score of 9-3. The Herd tied the four game series with the Knights, each winning two games apiece. Coupled with their three wins, out of four games, against the Gwinnett Braves earlier in the week, the Bisons are returning home with a record of 22-16, in second place 2.5 games behind the Pawtucket Red Sox.
The game went from bad to worse for Charlotte starter Matt Zaleski from the get go. Center fielder Corey Wimberly, who was activated earlier in the day from the DL, led off the game for the Bisons and was hit by a pitch in his first at bat of 2012. Wimberly was caught stealing with the next batter Fred Lewis at the plate. Later in the at bat, Lewis tripled to right field and then scored on the same play on a throwing error by Knights second baseman Osvaldo Martinez.
The Bisons second run of the first inning came off of the bat of DH Valentino Pascucci when he hit his team leading eighth home run. Run number three of the first inning was a result of an Oswaldo Navarro single to left-field, scoring Matt Tuiasosopo from second base.
The second inning was just as bad for the Knights starting pitcher Zaleski, who would eventually take the loss. In that frame, he gave up three more runs to the Herd on three hits. Buffalo added runs in the fourth, seventh, and eighth, and in the end the nine runs they scored would prove to be the largest single game run production on the week long road trip.
Fred Lewis was a home run shy of hitting for the cycle in the game, going 3/6 for the Bisons, scoring three of their nine runs. Valentino Pascucci was 2/5, with three RBI’s. Corey Wimberly went 2/4 with a run scored in his first game of the season.
Bisons starter Jeurys Familia earned his fourth win of the season, and second of the road trip, by allowing only one Knights run on five hits. Familia struck out seven and walked three in five innings worth of work. Dylan Owen relieved Familia in the seventh, and gave up two runs on a Dan Johnson home run in that inning. Over two innings, Owen would strike out one and allow four hits total. Jeff Stevens pitched the final two innings, giving up no runs on no hits, striking out two Knights batters.
Herd Rumblings: The hard luck story continues for third-baseman Zach Lutz who finds himself on the disabled list yet again. Zach has never gotten through an entire season without spending extended time on the D.L. and this season will be no different. He was placed on the 7-day D.L. yesterday for a broken hamate bone in his left wrist, and that is not an injury that you come back quickly from. To take Lutz’ place on the roster the Bisons activated outfielder Corey Wimberly from the D.L. The Bisons return home on Tuesday night to face the Gwinnett Braves. That game will be the first in a 16 game stretch for the Herd at Coca-Cola Field, aided in part by a four game set as the visitors against the displaced Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees. Left-hander Johan Flande (1-2, 3.74) takes the mound for Gwinnett. He pitched against the Herd on May 9th, giving up three runs, two earned, in 6.1 IP and taking the loss in a 4-1 Buffalo victory. Right-hander Jeremy Hefner (3-1, 1.77) will make his seventh start of the year for Buffalo. He made his last start against Gwinnett on May 10th going 7.2 IP and giving up two runs on four hits, one walk, six strikeouts, and getting a no decision in a 5-3 loss.
B-Mets Buzz: The Trenton Thunder storms into Binghamton for a three-game set beginning on Tuesday night at NYSEG Stadium. It will be lefty vs. lefty as Shaeffer Hall (2-4, 4.17) toes the bump for Trenton while Mark Cohoon (2-3, 2.06) counters for Binghamton.
St. Lucie 4, Bradenton 1
By Pete Shapiro
Jenrry Mejia making his second rehab start for St. Lucie looked very sharp in six innings of work in which he only allowed one run. Johan Almonte piggy-backed with Mejia by throwing three hitless, scoreless innings to ice the win over the Bradenton Marauders by a score of 4-1.
Mejia (1-0, 2.45) was the story of the night. The young right-hander coming back from TJS last spring, went six innings allowing one run on three hits, with seven strikeouts. Almonte was very impressive over the final three innings, giving up a hit, and a walk, while striking out six. The only run given up by the Mets was a solo home run to former Met minor leaguer Stef Welch in the second inning, his sixth of the year. Mejia and Almonte combined to pitch a four-hitter, with 13 strikeouts, and one walk.
St. Lucie took the early lead in the bottom of the first when Danny Muno led off with a double, and was sacrificed to third by Robbie Shields. A Cory Vaughn ground-out brought home Muno to make the score 1-0. The Mets broke a 1-1 tie with three runs in the fourth inning.
With one man out, CF Cesar Puello and C Francisco Pena went back-to-back yard to make it 3-1. But the inning wasn’t over yet. With two-outs and LF Rafael Fernandez standing on third, Muno singled into right-field to score Fernandez and make it 4-1.
Lucie Logistics: First-baseman Richard Lucas went 3-4 with a double in the game. For his last eight games, Lucas is 12 for 30 for a .400 BA, with two doubles, seven runs scored, and three RBI’s. In his last five games, Danny Muno is hitting .421 on eight hits for 19 AB’s with four runs, one double, two home runs, and six RBI’s. Game two of the three-game series is slated for Tuesday night at 6:30 pm. The Marauders send Pirates 2010 1st-round draft pick (second overall) Jameson Taillon to the mound, while St. Lucie counters with Major League right-hander Chris Young making his second rehab start. In his first start on May 10th, Young went five innings against Brevard County, giving up five hits, two walks, and four strikeouts.
Savannah 6, Charleston 2
By Sean Kenny
Rafael Montero had a solid outing, but the offense didn’t provide much backing and the bullpen was unable to hold the lead. It took some heroics in extra-innings to ensure the Sand Gnats a win in the series-opening game against the Charleston RiverDogs, by a score of 6-2.
Montero continued his impressive performance for the Sand Gnats, pitching five and two-third innings, allowing one unearned run while walking one and striking out five. The most amazing thing about Montero’s lines aren’t his strikeouts, but the fact he has walked FOUR batters over 42.1 innings. After Montero departed, Estarlin Morel came out and pitched two and one-third innings, allowing one run on a game tying home-run, while striking out three and earning the blown save. Jeffrey Walters also pitched two innings earning the win, striking out three and walking one.
The offense today struggled to push across runs consistently, netting two runs on a Dustin Lawley RBI double in the third. It wasn’t as if the Gnats couldn’t get hits, but moreso that they could not turn those hits into runs. Aderlin Rodriguez, who has struggled since May 4th, went 4 for 5 with a stolen base. T.J. Rivera continued his hot hitting, going 2 for 5, making his hit streak five games, with a run scored, but made an error that would eventually be the only blemish on Montero’s pitching line. The Gnats offense came to life in the top of the tenth, knocking across four runs on an error of a hit by Tillman Pugh, a two-RBI single by Brandon Brown and an RBI single by Cam Maron.
Gnats Gnotes: Cam Maron, 3 for 6 with a run scored, an RBI and a strikeout. Catcher + Mets system = easy advancement. Charlie Thurber is hitting .185 and has struck out in roughly 30% of his at-bats. Travis Taijeron took a rare 0-for, but still has to be on the short-list of promotions once the Mets can figure out their minor-league setup. Both teams square off again tonite at 7:05 when righty Jacob DeGrom (0-0, 0.00) takes the hill for the Gnats. He will be opposed by Charleston right-hander Brett Gerritse (0-0, 4.15).