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Orioles minors recap 8/15: Two Ironbirds excel in All-Star Game

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Aberdeen’s Matthew Hammonds and Willy Yahn were star performers at the NY-Penn League All-Star Game. Elsewhere, Norfolk and Bowie each split a doubleheader.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Baltimore Orioles Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Norfolk Tides 4, Pawtucket Red Sox 1 — Game 1

Southpaw Josh Rogers, acquired from the Yankees in the Zach Britton trade, continued his hot start in the Orioles’ organization. He allowed one run on six hits in a strong five-inning effort, striking out seven while walking just one. Rogers now has a 1.42 ERA in his four starts for Norfolk. Lefty reliever Luis Gonzalez followed with two scoreless innings, including three strikeouts, for his second save, lowering his ERA to 2.12 in eight games at Norfolk. Rogers and Gonzalez are both making strong bids for a promotion to the majors before the season is out.

On the offensive end, DJ Stewart and Pedro Alvarez each homered (Stewart’s 12th, Alvarez’s eighth) and Breyvic Valera had three hits. In less encouraging news, Chance Sisco was 0-for-3 and is now batting .205 for Norfolk after hitting .195 in the majors.

Pawtucket 4, Norfolk 0 — Game 2

The Red Sox salvaged a split of the doubleheader with a shutout in the nightcap, a makeup of Monday night’s rained-out game. Pawtucket starter Mike Shawaryn threw a brilliant outing, a seven-inning shutout in which he gave up just two hits — both singles by Luis Sardinas. The other eight Tides hitters combined to reach base just once, on a Valera first-inning walk.

Tides starter John Means labored through 98 pitches in five innings, giving up three runs (two earned) and seven hits in the losing effort. Left fielder Jaycob Brugman had a rough night with the glove, committing two errors.

Bowie Baysox 10, Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants) 2 — Game 1

It was an offensive explosion for the Baysox, whose No. 1 through 7 hitters in the lineup went 12-for-24 with nine RBIs. The most prominent was Austin Hays, who finally had a 2017-esque performance by getting hits in all three of his at-bats, including a first-inning grand slam. His seven total bases were a season high. Corban Joseph also homered, a three-run shot, while Ryans McKenna and Mountcastle each had two hits. Yusniel Diaz reached base twice and scored twice.

The ample run support backed Keegan Akin, who pitched well with a two-run, seven-strikeout performance, though his pitch count was a bit high (102 pitches in 5.2 innings). His season ERA is 2.92. Zach Pop, part of the Manny Machado trade package, retired all four batters he faced, striking out two.

Richmond 8, Bowie 5 — Game 2

They had to go to extra innings to settle this one — which in case meant the eighth, since it was only supposed to be a seven-inning contest. Richmond scored three runs in the top half of the eighth to break a five-all tie. Tanner Chleborad was charged with all three runs, but none of them were earned, because one was the free baserunner who started on second base and two others were set up by an Aderlin Rodriguez error.

Yusniel Diaz hit his second home run since joining the O’s organization, and Rodriguez powered his 20th. Among other recently acquired O’s prospects, Rylan Bannon was 0-for-2 with a walk and Brett Cumberland 1-for-3. Mountcastle had another 2-for-4 performance, but Hays failed to follow up on his productive first game, going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

Salem Red Sox 7, Frederick Keys 2

It was a pretty forgettable night both on the mound and at the plate for the Keys. Starter Matthias Dietz got torched again, issuing a whopping seven walks in four innings. That’s how you give up four runs while only allowing one hit. Dietz, the Orioles’ second-round pick in 2016, now has an even 9.00 ERA in eight starts at Frederick. Not ideal!

The Keys’ bats managed just five hits, one of which was a homer by Jomar Reyes (his sixth). Randolph Gassaway was the only batter with multiple hits, going 2-for-4 with an RBI.

New York-Penn League All-Star Game

Five members of the Aberdeen Ironbirds — catcher Cody Roberts, first baseman J.C. Escarra, third baseman Willy Yahn, left fielder Robbie Thornburn, and lefty Matthew Hammonds — played for the NYP South All-Stars in their 7-1 win over the North All-Stars.

Hammonds started the game and pitched a perfect inning with a strikeout, getting the win (for whatever that’s worth). Among the hitters, Yahn — who started at third base — was the standout, going 2-for-2 with a double, a triple, and a run scored.

Roberts, Escarra, and Thornburn all came in as mid-game replacements and were a combined 0-for-6 with a strikeout apiece.

Complete box scores from last night’s games can be found here, and the box score of the NYP League All-Star league can be found here.

Wednesday’s scheduled games:

  • Norfolk at Pawtucket, 12:05 PM. Starter: Luis Ortiz (1-0, 3.27)
  • Bowie vs. Richmond, 7:05 PM. Starter: Brian Gonzalez (4-6, 7.01)
  • Frederick vs. Salem, 7:00 PM. Starter: Zac Lowther (3-2, 2.75)
  • Delmarva vs. Charleston, 7:05 PM. Starter: Brandon Bonilla (0-1, 2.57)
  • Aberdeen vs. Lowell, 7:05 PM. Starter: TBD