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Around the Minors: May 11th, 2013

Recaps and notes and such

Jacob Petit throws his hat into the ring for 5th Starter honors.
Jacob Petit throws his hat into the ring for 5th Starter honors.
Bill Vaughan/Bowie Baysox

Delmarva vs. Hagerstown (Nats)

Scheduled to play two. But with the sky cryin', both games were postponed.

Game 1: Wilmington (Royals) 6, Frederick 4

A rematch of a game I attended in Wilmington about a month ago, as highly regarded Royals prospect Kyle Zimmer (taken with the pick just after Kevin Gausman in the 2012 Draft) faced off against Tim Berry. Zimmer was fantastic in that previous outing, while Berry impressed by matching him inning-for-inning. Tonight was more of the same, as Berry cruised through the first 5 innings, allowing just 3 hits, 1 BB, and no runs before the defense fell apart in the 6th. An infield single, a pop out, a walk, and an error loaded the bases. A Sac Fly brought in 1 run before a squeeze play brought in another run as the batter beat the throw to first. Another RBI single and Berry's night was done. The RP promptly allowed both inherited runners to score, closing the books on Berry's night as such: 5.2 IP, 6H, 2 BBs, 5R (0 ER), 4 Ks (3 swinging). 86 pitches, 53 strikes. 6:4 GO:FO.

This kid is super impressive right now. 22 years old. Sporting a nearly 5:1 K:BB ratio. He's pitched 39.2 innings over his 7 starts, good for 5.2 IP averaged. And he's held his own twice now against Kyle Zimmer, a top 50 prospect. He now has 114.2 innings pitched for Frederick between last season and this season. I could foresee him getting a promotion up to Bowie in the not so distant future. And, man...this organization all of the sudden has quite a stable of intriguing southpaws. Berry, Eduardo Rodriguez, Josh Hader, Matt Taylor, Trent Howard, Lex Rutledge, Jason Gurka...good stuff.

Not so good stuff, however, is the Keys offense. As I've stated previously, it's a wasteland in terms of actual prospects. Glynn Davis was in the lineup for this game. He went 1-2, w/ 1 BB, 1 SB, and 1 R. Moving on...

Game 2: Wilmington (Royals) 18, Frederick 5

Ouch. The aforementioned Trent Howard (normally a bullpen guy) got the spot start. And, like Tim Berry, pitched a rather excellent 3 innings of 1 hit baseball before the wheels fell off in the 4th. An error by the SS opened the inning before back-to-back line drive singles loaded the bases. The next batter doubled to drive in 2, and Howard's night was over. Oh, but wait, the RP came on and immediately allowed both inherited runners to score. Sound familiar? That closed the book on Howard: 3 IP, 4 H, 0 BBs, 4 R (3 ER), 2 Ks (both swinging). 50 pitches, 33 strikes. 5 GO to 1 FO. The 'pen...well...14 more runs speaks for itself. And we'll leave it at that.

Glynn Davis: 1-3, with an RBI. Brendan Webb: 0-2, w/ 1 BB, 1 R, and 1 K.

Erie (Tigers) 2, Bowie 1

Kevin Gausman took the bump for Bowie on a soggy night, looking to redeem himself against an Erie squad that stung him for 10 hits and 6 runs (5 earned) that last time they met. Goose struggled with his command tonight, walking 3 over 4.2 IP. And uncorked a wild pitch that allowed the only run to score against him. The rain may well have been a prime contributing factor to his struggles tonight, if you want to call them that. Ultimately, Goose would go 4.2 IP, 3 H, 3 BBs, 1 ER, 7 Ks (6 swinging), 1 wild pitch, and 1 error (throwing high to 1st on a bunt play). 93 pitches, 59 strikes. Fastball was sitting 94-96. I personally saw a gun reading of 97 twice in the 3rd. Steve Melewski tweeted that the stadium gun popped 100. I find that reading to be dubious.

Either way, his stuff is electric. Even when he's off, as he was tonight, he's always around the zone and capable of causing batters to have fits as they swing and miss his stuff. His presence and fortitude are equally impressive. He nearly took a line drive to the face in the 3rd. Allowed the next batter to single. And then with runners at 1st and 3rd with one out he beared down and K'd the next two batters (though he did toss his wild pitch here, allowing the 1 run). In the 4th, he got himself into a pickle again, as the first two batters reached. Ho hum. Goose goes ahead and says, 'I'll strike you out. I'll strike you out. And I'll get you to ground out to the 2Bman.' Inning over. 5th inning, let's do it again. 1st two batters reach, runners on 2nd and 3rd. Weak popout to CF, followed by a strikeout and Goose's night was done as he was lifted for Clay Schrader. Clay had himself a good night, going 2.1 IP, allowing just 1 BB while K'ing 3. I still hold out hope that he can develop into another Pedro Strop-ian type RP. Maddening at times, but utterly dominant otherwise.

As for the offense, XAvery went 1-4, w/ 1 R. He was called out for batter interference after he attempted to lay down a Sac Bunt. Manager nearly got ejected arguing. Henry Urrutia went 1-4, and got caught stealing. Ty Kelly, 1-4 w/ a 2B.

Norfolk 3, Syracuse (Nats) 2

Jacob Petit made his AAA debut, and it was a rather successful affair. 6.1 IP, 8 H, 0 BBs, 2 ER, 7 Ks (all swinging). Do this a couple more times and perhaps he'll get his own shot at the 5th Starter slot for the O's. Jason Pridie and Russ Canzler continue to do their thang, combining to go 5-9, w/ 1 BB. Jonathan Schoop with another multi-hit game as he went 2-4. His AVG is now up to .254, which is nice, but his strikeouts are still concerning. To wit, 25 Ks to 9 BBs on the season.