Some fans like pitcher’s duels. Others like the blowouts. Thursday in the Rays organization was all about the offense.
Triple-A International League: Durham Bulls 14, Rochester Red Wings (MIN) 8
The two teams in this game combined for 22 runs on 32 hits. Luckily for the Bulls, they came away with 14 of the runs and 20 of the hits. They had 22 chances with runners in scoring position (and got 8 hits)! Everyone in the lineup got a hit, and only Reid Brignac didn’t have an RBI. (Brignac went 1 for 3 with 2 walks.) The Bulls scored 14 runs without a single home run. Stephen Vogt had a big night, going 4 for 6 with 2 RBI and 4 runs scored. In his final rehab game, Jeff Keppinger went 3 for 4 with a double and 2 runs scored. Chris Gimenez went 2 for 4 with 3 RBI. And Jeff Salazar (1 for 5) and Cole Figueroa (2 for 4) had 2 RBI apiece. In terms of the pitching (or lack thereof), Matt Torra lasted just 4 innings, striking out 5 while walking 1, but allowing 5 runs on 7 hits. Ryan Reid got the win with a perfect inning. But who cares about the pitchers in this one?
Double-A Southern League: Montgomery Biscuits 7, Mobile Baybears (ARI) 6
The Biscuits pitchers did their best to give away a 6-0 lead in this one. The Biscuits barely overcame a 5-run 8th to hang on to win 7-6. Alex Colome allowed 1 run on 4 hits in 6 innings, striking out 4 while walking 3. He also posted a groundout to flyout ratio that makes you want to hit your head on a wall: 2-11. Yes, 2 groundouts and 11 flyouts. Oh, great. On offense, Hak-Ju Lee responded to my criticism of him (yeah, right) with a 3 for 5 day with a double and his 23rd stolen base of the season, Ryan Garko homered as part of a 2 for 4 day, Greg Sexton drove in 3 on a bases-clearing double, and Kyeong Kang, Tyler Bortnick, and Michael Sheridan all had 2 hits days.
High-A Florida State League: Bradenton Marauders (PIT) 10, Charlotte Stone Crabs 3
Some blowouts don’t exactly do your way. Your highlights: Kyle Farnsworth tossed a shutout relief inning in a rehab appearance, and Mikie Mahtook went 3 for 4 with a home run short of the cycle. That’s about it. Farnsworth’s bullpen (ironic, right?) completely imploded behind him in this one.
Short Season-A New York-Penn League: Hudson Valley Renegades 6, Aberdeen Ironbirds (BAL) 3
Now this one had some pitching. Matthew Spann went 4 innings in his season debut, allowing 3 hits, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts, and an unearned run while posting a 7-1 groundout to flyout ratio. Ryan Garton (34th round pick in 2012) followed him with a perfect relief inning with 2 strikeouts in his pro debut for the win in the game. The offense came from a couple other 2012 draft pick, Luke Maile, who went 2 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI, and Michael Williams, who had 2 more RBI. In his pro debut, 17th rounder Ryan Dunn lived up to the billing as a middle infielder who can really hit, going 2 for 3 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored (gotta love that .800 career OBP). Joel Caminero, Leonardo Reginatto, and Felix Gonzalez also had multi-hit games for the Renegades.
Advanced Rookie Appalachian League: Princeton Rays 15, Kingsport Mets 2
Would you believe me if I told you this game came down to the final out? No. The Mets actually scored first and last in this game, sandwiched around 15 P-Rays runs. Before we get to the hitting, the pitching in this game featured 4 season debuts and 3 career debuts. Starter Kevin James (not the actor), a 9th round pick back in 2009, allowed 1 run on 2 hits in 3 innings, striking out 2 while walking none. He was followed by 2011 33rd round pick Daniel Bream, who was absolute money, going 4 shutout relief innings allowing just 2 hits, striking out 5 while walking 1 for the win. Nondrafted signee Randy Davis allowed 1 run on 3 hits in an inning of work, striking out 2, and 2012 15th round pick Willie Gabay tossed a shutout inning forcing 2 groundouts while walking 1. Now, to the bats. Reid Redman had a huge game, going 3 for 4 with 2 doubles, a stolen base, an RBI, and 3 runs scored, Ariel Soriano went 2 for 4 with a triple, 3 RBI, and 2 runs scored, and Omar Narvaez, in 3 at-bats, had 2 each of hits, RBI, walks, and runs scored. Oscar Hernandez also went 1 for 5 with a triple and 2 RBI. But the cake goes to Brandon Martin. Martin went 1 for 4 with a single and 3 RBI. All the RBI came on the single. What? A 3-run single? Well, here’s what MILB.com had to say.
What happened to second base?
Rookie Gulf Coast League: GCL Twins 8, GCL Rays 4
Other than a severe bullpen implosion, this game was great. Chris Andujar got the start and allowed 2 hits and 2 walks while striking out 2 in 3 shutout innings. The impressive thing was a 7-0 groundout to flyout ratio. Lenny Linsky followed with a perfect relief inning. And in his pro debut, nondrafted signee Alex Moshier tossed 1.2 shutout innings to finish the game, allowing 1 hit and 1 walk while striking out 1. On offense, Adderly Rosa, Johnny Eierman, Jiminson Natera, and Armando Araiza all had multi-hit games, with Rosa going 3 for 5 with a double, Eierman also doubling, and Natera driving in 2.