Charlotte 11, Buffalo 0
By Connor O’Brien
The Charlotte Knights beat the Buffalo Bisons last night by a score of 11-0. Matt Harvey took the mound looking to impress the big league club with a solid performance. Instead, Harvey had a very rough night. Harvey was decent early on, allowing only a first-inning RBI single through his first three innings. However, things really blew up in the third and fourth.
Harvey lost command in the third, walking two straight batters. Then, the Knights made him pay, with Dallas McPherson hitting a three-run home run to make it 4-0. It wouldn’t stop there. Again in the fourth, Harvey allowed a hit and then another home run, blowing the game open and making it 6-0 Knights. Harvey would exit after allowing six runs on seven hits over just five innings.
While Harvey struggled on the mound, the Bisons were shut down for the second straight night. Just like Friday night, Buffalo scratched out just two hits on the night and were shut out once again. They were able to draw a few walks, but not much more than that. And once again, the Charlotte bullpen took care of the Bisons easily, allowing a total of one hit over three innings.
Meanwhile, Manny Acosta struggled out of the Buffalo bullpen. Acosta, who had been solid all year for the Bisons, had a rough ninth inning. He allowed five runs on four hits in the inning. All of the runs were unearned, but Acosta was definitely not at his best. At that point, Charlotte was just piling on and finished the night with a total of eleven runs scored off Buffalo pitching. A bad night all around for the Bisons.
Herd Rumblings: With the injury to Santana, this may have been Matt Harvey’s chance to step up and earn a spot on the next west coast road trip. He had one of his worst outings of the year. After three straight starts in which he pitched into the sixth inning, he failed to do so last night. His seven hits allowed was the most he’s allowed since June 24. As mentioned, the offense was just as awful. Matt den Dekker was 0-for-3 with a strikeout. Zach Lutz was punched out three times in four at-bats. The guy who had the best night was Josh Satin, who had a double and a walk. After rolling off seven straight victories, the Bisons are just 2-6. The Bisons play the third game of a four-game series with Charlotte tomorrow afternoon when Garrett Olson (4-5, 4.74) takes the mound at 1:05 PM against Charlotte right-hander Charles Shirek (8-4, 3.60).
Bowie 7, Binghamton 5
By Tim Burns
For the second night in a row, the Bowie BaySox got to the Binghamton Mets starter early sending the B-Mets to their second loss in a row by a 7-5 tally. Gonzalez Germen was on the mound for the B-Mets at the outset, and lasted all of one inning in his shortest outing of the season. In one inning, Germen gave up four earned runs on five hits, striking out one and walking one. Germen would be issued the loss in the game, and his record now stands at six and seven.
Armando Rodriguez came on in relief of Germen in the bottom of the second, and went three innings for the B-Mets. Rodriguez’s outing would prove to be the longest of any B-Mets pitchers in the game. Rodriguez threw three innings, and in that span allowed three earned runs on four hits, walked three and struck out three.
C.J. Nitkowski made his B-Mets debut relieving Rodriguez in the bottom of the fifth. Nitkowski, signed last week by the Mets organization, was the first B-Mets pitcher in the game to keep the BaySox out of the run column. In his one inning of work, he allowed no runs on no hits, walked two and struck out one. Ryan Fraser pitched the sixth and seventh for the B-Mets, and Brad Holt finished out the pitching duties by throwing in the eighth. Both pitchers lines were identical, with no runs on one hit, no strikeouts and one walk.
At the plate, Wilfredo Tovar was 2-for-4 in the game, including his fifth double of the season. Juan Lagares went 2-for-5 and added two RBI to his season total which now stands at 39. Reese Havens four game hitting streak came to an end with his 0-for-4 performance in the game, including two strikeouts and a walk. Mike Baxter, playing in his second rehab game as the designated hitter for Pedro Lopez, went 2-for-3. Baxter had an RBI and run scored, while walking once and striking out once as well.
B-Mets Buzz: Sunday’s rubber match will feature Darin Gorski (5-4, 3.93) against Bowie’s Mike Wright (0-3, 7.27). After the game against the BaySox on Sunday, the B-Mets are off to Connecticut to take on the New Britain Rock Cats. Nitkowski’s appearance in the game on Saturday was his first in affiliated baseball since the 2006 season when he played in 58 games for the Indianapolis Indians of the International League.
St. Lucie – Dunedin
By Pete Shapiro
The third game of the four-game set between St. Lucie and Dunedin was suspended on Saturday night after the completion of the fourth inning with the PSL-Mets leading the Blue Jays by a score of 6-2. The game will resume where it left off tomorrow before playing the regularly scheduled game four, with the fifth inning scheduled to start at 5 PM.
Right-hander Johan Almonte made a surprise start on only three days rest having last pitched on Tuesday, July 17th when he went 5.0 innings and gave up two runs, on two hits, with four strikeouts and picked up a no-decision. Saturday night he went the entire four innings that were completed, giving up two runs, one earned, on four hits, a walk and three strikeouts.
In the top of the first inning the PSL-Mets took the lead four batters into the game. A pair of one-out walks put runners on first and second for Cory Vaughn who singled to score Alonzo Harris and make it 1-0 Lucie. Rafael Fernandez then reached safely on a fielding error by Dunedin first-baseman Jon Talley to load the bases. Next up was Aderlin Rodriguez who struck out swinging for the second out of the inning, but then Blake Forsythe stepped to the plate.
Forsythe who went 2-for-2 on the night to raise his average to .267, lined a bases-clearing double to right-field, driving in three, making the score 4-0 Lucie. In the bottom half of the first Dunedin struck for an unearned run on a double, a wild-pitch, and a throwing error on the catcher Blake Forsythe, making it 4-1. In the bottom of the second, a double sandwiched by two singles got the Jays another run making it 4-2.
St. Lucie got those two runs back in the top of the fourth on a lead-off single to Forsythe, followed by an RBI double by Richard Lucas to chase home Forsythe with the fifth run. Then after Robbie Shields sacrifice bunted Lucas over to third, Alonzo Harris would drive him in with a sac-fly to make the score 6-2 Lucie. After Almonte retired the Jays in order in the bottom of the fourth, the game was halted.
Lucie Logistics: It was Tyler Pill’s scheduled turn in the rotation last night, and since Almonte was pitching on only three days rest, it indicates a need in the St. Lucie rotation at this time. Either Pill is hurt which is not very likely, or he is being shut-down due to high innings count (92.1) which I doubt. More likely is he is being sent up to Double-A Binghamton. And if any of those three scenarios plays out, St. Lucie will need to tab another starter from Savannah with the most likely choices being either righty Jacob DeGrom, or lefty Jim Fuller. If a move of that sort were to create a hole in the Savannah rotation, it could be easily filled by calling up Luis Mateo from Brooklyn. And if that thinned the ranks in Brooklyn, Steve Matz seems ready to leave Kingsport behind and head for Coney Island and some home-cooking. Basically what I am trying to say here is I have no idea who will be starting for St. Lucie this evening. Not a clue. Not in the second half of the suspended game, and not in the regularly scheduled game. But trust me as soon as I find out who will be pitching for St. Lucie today, you’ll be the first to know.
Savannah 7, Rome 0
Savannah breaks out in a big way Saturday afternoon at Historic Grayson Stadium, defeating the Rome Braves 7-0 behind six, one-hit innings by Gnats left-hander Jimmy Fuller. After dropping the first two games of this four game set with Rome, the Sand Gnats jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the bottom half of the first inning.
Center-fielder Gilbert Gomez who went 2-for-4 with three runs, a double, and a triple, drew a one out walk and took second on a wild pitch. After catcher Camden Maron struck out swinging, first-baseman Brian Harrison reached on an infield single, setting up a first and third with two out situation for third-baseman Dustin Lawley. Lawley tripled home both Gomez and Harrison to give the Gnats the early lead. Lawley, like Friday night was the hitting star of the game going 3-for-5 with a run scored, a double, a triple, and two RBI.
The score remained 2-0 until the fourth inning when Savannah added a run after Dustin Lawley led off with his team leading 26th double and came around to score on a Matt Reynolds single to make it 3-0 Savannah. The Gnats would add two more in the fifth when Gilbert Gomez and Cam Maron opened the frame with back to back doubles scoring Gomez with the first run of the inning and Maron would subsequently score after a walk to Harrison, a single by Lawley and a fielders choice by Gregory Pron.
Savannah added single runs in the sixth and eighth innings on RBI singles by Brian Harrison who was 2-for-3 with a run, an RBI, and two walks, and Cam Maron who went 2-for-5, a run, a double, and two RBI. The two late scores gave Savannah a 7-0 lead and capped off the scoring for the game.
Jimmy Fuller (3-2, 4.29) took the hill Saturday afternoon for Savannah and delivered his best performance of the season. Fuller pitched a season best six innings, surrendering just one measly hit in the third inning to Cory Brownstein, walked two and struck out four. The Gnats received flawless relief work out of the pen. Carlos Vazquez came on in the seventh after Fuller’s brilliance and pitched two outstanding innings of his own yielding one hit, no walks and two punch-outs. Chasen Bradford finished up by pitching a perfect ninth with a strikeout.
Gnats Gnotes: Savannah looks to even up the four game series with Rome Sunday afternoon at 2:05 PM. The Gnats will send 6’4″ fire-balling right-hander Domingo Tapia (4-2, 3.82) to the mound. Who’s hot? Dustin Lawley is on fire over his last 10 games, hitting .349, by going 15-for-43, with seven doubles, one triple, one home run, 11 RBI, a .378 OBP, and a .628 SLG%. Micheal Fulmer, the 19-year-old right-hander, continues his impressive first season in pro ball. Over his last 10 starts, Micheal is 3-3 with a 2.36 ERA. In 53.1 innings he has only allowed 34 hits, 14 earned runs, 23 walks and 45 strikeouts. On the season Fulmer is 5-5 with a 2.67 ERA, 81 IP, 58 hits, 27 runs, 24 earned runs, four home runs, 30 walks, 72 strikeouts and a .196 BAA.
Staten Island 3, Brooklyn 1
By Dave Landon
The Cyclones couldn’t muster much offense as they were only able to tally four hits on Saturday evening leading to a 3-1 loss to the Staten Island Yankees.
Luis Cessa started for Brooklyn and was solid, allowing one run in his five innings of work and left with a no decision. His run came in the fifth inning before his day ended, as he allowed back-to-back hits, including an RBI double. Cessa allowed three hits and struck out four.
Matthew Bowman came in for two innings, allowing two runs on five hits. He later received the loss as those two runs made the difference. Logan Taylor pitched the ninth inning allowing just one hit, and striking out one.
Brooklyn’s only run came in the third inning on a lead-off solo home run from Jeff Glenn, his first big fly of the season. The team went down in order in five of the nine innings.
Brooklyn Brew: The Cyclones were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position. As a team the Cyclones rank second to last in the league with a .232 team batting average. Their pitching however, has been extraordinary and the Cyclones lead the league with a .211 Batting Average Against. After Saturday’s loss, Brooklyn is now in a tie for first place in the McNamara Division. The Cyclones return to MCU Park on Sunday at 5:00 pm for the finale of the four-game series with Staten Island. It will be Bat Day Sunday Funday with fans receiving a white baseball bat. Right-hander Hansel Robles (2-1, 2.36) will get the start for Brooklyn while righty Corey Black (0-0, 3.38) gets the nod for Staten Island.
Greeneville 13, Kingsport 4
By Pete Shapiro
The two-game Kingsport winning streak came screeching to a halt on Saturday night when they were shellacked by the Greeneville Astros by a score of 13-4. With the win Greeneville averted the three-game sweep, but the K-Mets still come away with their first series-win of the season, thanks to Friday night’s double-header sweep.
On Saturday, Greeneville put together an 18-hit attack that overwhelmed Kingsport, and kept them from ever really getting into this game. By the time the K-Mets scored their first run of the night they were already behind by a score of 10-0. The Astros scored five runs in the bottom of the second inning which was like a whole season unto itself.
In that half inning the Astros put together a rally consisting of: a single, an RBI single, an RBI double, a two-run homer, an inside-the-park home run, a walk, a balk, and a wild-pitch. When the smoke cleared it was 5-0, but it wasn’t over. Greeneville scored two more runs in the third inning on a two-run home run by Ariel Ovando, his first of the year to make the score 7-0 and knock starter John Gant (1-2, 7.94) from the game.
The line on Gant wasn’t pretty: 2.2 innings, seven runs, all earned, on nine hits, three home runs, with two walks, a balk, a wild-pitch, and a strikeout, while earning the loss. Gant was removed in the third inning with two outs and replaced by right-hander Matt Budgell who got out of the inning without allowing any more runs to score. But in the fourth, Andrew Massie came on to pitch and didn’t fare too much better than Gant.
Massie allowed three earned runs on a Terrell Joyce home run, his fourth, leading off the inning. Then a single to Ernesto Genoves, followed by the second two-run homer in two consecutive innings by Ariel Ovando, this one his second of the year to put the Astros up by a score of 10-0 after four.
The K-Mets broke their cherry in the fifth inning on a bases loaded force-out, wow. That made it 10-1, but they weren’t finished, they got another run in the sixth on a Jeyckol De Leon run-scoring single to make it 10-2. Unfortunately Greeneville got the two runs back in the bottom of the sixth off of Massie when Terrell Joyce led off with a single, Ariel Ovando walked and then with one out, Jean Batista doubled to score Joyce making it 11-2. Then with the bases loaded and one out, Ramon Estevez was summoned to replace Massie. He got out of the inning but not before another run scored on a force-out, to make the score 12-2.
Kingsport put up a quick two-spot in the seventh inning to pull to within eight, when Maikis De La Cruz started the inning off with a walk and was followed by a Julio Cincepcion two-run homer, his second of the season. That made the score 12-4 in favor of Greeneville.
The line for Massie goes 2.1 innings, five runs, all earned, on six hits and a walk, with a strikeout and two home runs given up. Estevez pitched two-thirds of an inning with one strikeout to navigate the sixth, and lefty Juan Urbina threw a scoreless seventh with a hit and a strikeout. The scoring was closed out for the night with one more run by the Astros in the eighth inning when Jean Batista hit a one-out double against Peter Birdwell, and was then driven in on a single by Michael Martinez to make it the final of 13-4.
Kingsport Knews: Today the K-Mets head home to take on the Elizabethton Twins in the start of a three-game set with first pitch Sunday at 5:00 PM. The Twins swept the K-Mets three games to none in the previous meeting between the two clubs this year. Today Kingsport will send right-hander Robert Gsellman (1-1, 5.50) to the hill looking to turn the tables on the Twins. He will be opposed by port-sider Hein Robb (1-1, 2.70) for Elizabethton.