The Tampa Bay Rays organization had a miserable day on Friday, with only the big league Rays winning their game. It wasn’t a matter of pitching–in fact, only one Rays’ affiliate gave up more than 4 runs in only one game. Rather, it was offensive problems that led to the poor day.
Triple-A International League: Buffalo Bisons (TOR) 4, Durham Bulls 3
From a length and peripheral standpoint, Matt Andriese had a good start, throwing 7.0 innings and allowing 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out 5. But his 4 runs allowed in the 1st inning left much more to be desired. Andriese has pretty much lived up to expectations this year, posting a 3.63 ERA and a 113 to 42 strikeout to walk ratio in 141.1 innings. He is never going to be an ace-caliber pitcher, but he is close to being ready to be a back-end starter for the Rays. Behind him, Adam Liberatore threw a pair of scoreless innings while striking out 3.
8 of the 9 Bulls starters in the game had at least 1 hit, and the team as a whole managed 9. Though they put up a 3-run 4th, they couldn’t never put together the hits needed to end up with the win. Jeremy Moore had a nice day, going 2 for 5 with a run scored, but he was the only Bull with multiple hits.
Double-A Southern League: Chattanooga Lookouts (LAD) 3, Montgomery Biscuits 0
Albert Suarez put together a decent start for the Biscuits, giving up 3 runs in 6.0 innings while striking out 4 and walking none. It seemed that Suarez’s career, let alone his chances of starting, were potentially in jeopardy after an injury forced him to miss about a year of action. But he’s actually pitched well since joining the Biscuits’ rotation mid-way through the season, pitching to a 3.41 ERA in 7 starts. Behind him the bullpen was solid, as Matt Lollis, Bryce Stowell, and Cory Burns each threw a scoreless inning. The offense, meanwhile, struggled managing just 5 hits, 2 of which were by Taylor Motter.
High-A Florida State League: Palm Beach Cardinals 4, Charlotte Stone Crabs 3
The Stone Crabs got to Cardinals starter and 2014 1st round pick Luke Weaver early as they chased him from the game before the 2nd inning was even over by scoring a trio of runs. But against the bullpen they had no answer and only managed 1 hit from the 3rd inning on. Johnny Field had a nice day at the plate, going 2 for 4 with an RBI. Tim Beckham also continued his rehab from an offseason ACL surgery, going 1 for 4 as the Stone Crabs second baseman. It remains to be seen just how Beckham factors into the Rays’ plans, but it has to be encouraging that he is continuing to ramp up his workload. Reinaldo Lopez had a solid outing for the Stone Crabs, allowing 3 runs (1 earned) in 5.0 innings of work. Marcus Jensen then threw 3.0 innings while giving up a single run. Ultimately though, the offense couldn’t help out the pitching staff in this one.
Low-A Midwest League: Game 1: Dayton Dragons (CIN) 3, Bowling Green Hot Rods 2 in 7 innings
D.J. Slaton had a good start for the Hot Rods, throwing 5.0 shutout innings while striking out 4. Brad Schreiber was not as good in relief, giving up 3 runs (2 earned) in 2.0 innings of work. Offensivelym the Hot Rods got some production from a James Harris homer and a Willy Adames double, but no player had more than one hit.
Game 2: Dayton 8, Bowling Green 7 in 7 innings
The good news in this one–the Hot Rods found some offensive production after having little in game 1. Armando Araiza was the catalyst, going 3 for 4 with a pair of doubles, a run scored, and an RBI. On first look Araiza’s .238 batting average and .666 OPS this season are nothing to get excited about, however his bat has the potential to be at least average or a tick above if he can make a couple of mechanical tweaks. Alexander Simon also added a nice performance, going 2 for 4 with a run scored an an RBI.
Now for the bad news–the pitching staff imploded and the offensive night was spoiled. Jacob Faria had a poor start, giving up 4 runs in 3.2 innings on 7 hits while striking out 4 and walking 3. Stone Speer then gave up 4 runs (1 earned) in 2.1 innings before Josh Kimborowicz threw a scoreless inning.
Short Season-A New York -Penn League: Williamsport Crosscutters (PHI) 4, Hudson Valley Renegades 3
In what has become a recurring theme in the organization for the day, the Renegades got a decent pitching performance, but the offense couldn’t do enough to get the win. Jose Alonzo was the starter for the Renegades, and he ended up going 5.1 innings while allowing 3 runs (2 earned). Edgar Gomez then allowed 1 run in 2.2 innings of work before Kyle McKenzie threw a shutout inning. Braxton Lee had a nice day out of the leadoff spot, going 3 for 4, but he was the only Renegade with multiple hits. Hunter Lockwood did smack a solo homer, his 13th of the year.
The Advanced Rookie Princeton Rays were postponed
The Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays were postponed