Tuesday, April 20th, 2010
I went to the Smokies game last night and came away with a couple quick impressions.
- Andrew Cashner was really good, but different than we’ve seen so far this year. He didn’t blow guys away with the strikeout (five on the night through seven innings), but he didn’t allow good contact. Everything hit was in the infield or shallow outfield. He was a notch ahead of the hitters.
- Starlin Castro has such a smooth and fluid demeanor about the way he plays defense at SS. I’m excited to see him in the Majors.
- Tony Campana is crazy fast. He made every play at first a close one, even the routine grounders. At one point he almost beat out a grounder to the pitcher. He did steal a base and it wasn’t even close.
First Inning Players of the Night
No recap sent by the Nashville media department. Guess that must be too difficult for them.
A classic pitchers’ duel went to the Tennessee Smokies on Monday night, as Tennessee beat the Carolina Mudcats 2-1 thanks to an RBI single by Jake Opitz in the top of the ninth inning.
Starter Andrew Cashner pitched seven innings, only allowing one run on two hits. The right-hander struck out five batters in the game, increasing his Southern League lead to 25 strikeouts in 2010.
The Mudcats jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the first. During Luis Terrero’s at-bat, Kris Negron broke from second to try and steal first. Smokies catcher Robinson Chirinos made a throwing error that allowed Negron to score to put Carolina 1-0.
The pitchers settled into a nice groove until the top of the sixth. With Tony Campana at third and Starlin Castro at first, Ty Wright hit a grounder to third baseman Jake Kahaulelio. He threw onto second to retire Castro for the second out of the inning, but Carolina second baseman Jose Castro overshot first base with a throwing error to allow Wright to reach second and Campana to score to tie the game at one.
That was the only run Carolina starter Matt Klinker allowed in the contest. Like Cashner, he pitched seven innings while only allowing a run, although Klinker gave up five hits.
Tennessee’s top of the ninth rally began with a Brandon Guyer single to lead off the inning. Guyer stole second base and advanced to third on a groundout by Ryan Flaherty. Optiz collected his seventh RBI of the season when he singled in Guyer to give Tennessee a 2-1 lead.
Ryan Buchter began the bottom of the ninth for Tennessee on the mound. He retired Yonder Alonso on a swinging strikeout before manager Bill Dancy brought in Jake Muyco for the final two outs. Muyco did allow a single but was able to record the save as he struck out Eric Eymann looking to end the game. Muyco now has a team-leading three saves this season.
The Smokies and Mudcats will play game two of the series at 11 a.m. tomorrow. Fans can listen to the game on smokiesbaseball.com. Tennessee’s Chris Carpenter will face Carolina’s Dallas Buck.
The Daytona Cubs (5-7) and Dunedin Blue Jays (6-6) each picked up a victory on Monday night. The Cubs took game one of Monday’s doubleheader, 4-2, but the Jays took game two by the same score.
Daytona got on the board in the top of the second inning. Nelson Perez, David Macias and Mark Reed hit three straight singles with one out off Jays starter Andrew Liebel (1-2) to load the bases. After a line-drive out by Junior Lake, Brett Jackson cleared the bases with a triple down the right field line.
The Cubs made it 4-0 in the top of the fourth inning. Right fielder Kyler Burke reached on a fielder’s choice and moved to second on an error by Dunedin third baseman John Tolisano. Cubs third baseman took advantage with a single to center field that brought home Burke.
The Blue Jays scored a single run in the third and then the fifth before threatening in the bottom of the sixth inning. Luke Sommer came out of the bullpen for Daytona with runners at first and second with no out and struck out Sean Shoffit for out number one. Cubs Manager Buddy Bailey then went to Michael Perconte who struck out the next two batters to end the threat.
Rafael Dolis (1-1) pitched five solid innings to pick up his first win of the year. Liebel took the loss for Dunedin. Perconte pitched a one-two-three seventh to pick up his first save of the season and finish off the victory.
In game two, Matthew Spencer gave Daytona a 2-0 advantage with a home run in his first at-bat as a Cub. Josh Vitters had walked before him to set the table.
It was all Dunedin from there as Brian Van Kirk scored the first Blue Jays run in the bottom of the second inning. Right fielder Daniel Perales brought him in with a sacrifice fly.
The Blue Jays tacked on two more runs in the third inning. After a John Tolisano, designated hitter Travis D’Arnaud doubled off the right field wall to tie the game at two. Van Kirk followed with a single to score D’Arnaud and give the Blue Jays their first lead of the day at 3-2.
Mike McDade continued the Blue Jays onslaught with a solo home run off of Cubs starter Dae-Eun Rhee (0-2) to make it a 4-2 Dunedin advantage.
Jays starter Ryan Page (1-1) pitched six strong innings to pick up his first victory of 2010. Rhee took the loss for Daytona. Matt Daly sat the Cubs down in order in the top of the seventh inning for his fourth save of the year.
The Cubs and Jays will meet in the rubber match of the series on Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. Alberto Cabrera will get the call for Daytona and Chuck Huggins goes for Dunedin.
The Peoria Chiefs welcomed Chicago Cubs All-Star pitcher Ted Lilly on Monday night in the final game of their home series against the Burlington Bees. Lilly started on the mound for the Chiefs and batted ninth, becoming the first Chiefs pitcher in nearly ten years to hit for the team. Lilly would not disappoint as he pitched seven innings and allowed only one run as the Chiefs won 2-1. The victory is the fourth consecutive for Peoria and improves their record to 7-5.
Burlington got on the board early against Lilly as Hilton Richardson led off the game with a walk. Following a Deivy Batista strikeout, Wil Myers hit an RBI triple to left-center that scored Richardson. Lilly worked his way out of the inning by striking out Joey Lewis and Gerard Hall.
Lilly took his first at-bat in the third inning and registered the first hit for the Chiefs, lining a single over Hall at shortstop. He was thrown out attempting to steal second and later drew a walk in his only other plate appearance in the fifth.
The Chiefs came back to tie it in the bottom of the fourth. Hak-Ju Lee drew a walk followed by a Logan Watkins pop-up on a bunt attempt. Lee then stole second and third base and was driven in by a Matt Cerda RBI single.
Peoria took the in the bottom of the sixth inning. Cerda singled to start the frame before advancing to a wild pitch with Greg Rohan at the plate. Rohan then drew a walk and Justin Bour scored Cerda on an RBI single. Jovan Rosa flew out to center field and Alvaro Ramirez grounded out to second base to end the inning with the Chiefs leading 2-1.
Lilly (1-0) went seven innings and allowed one run on three hits and a walk while striking out nine. Rob Whitenack pitched the final two innings of the game and did not allow a single runner to reach base. He struck out one on his way to his first save of the season. Lilly and Whitenack retired the final 16 Burlington batters in order.
All recaps provided courtesy of the respective team’s media department. For a complete breakdown of the organization head to the First Inning organizational report.
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