When Lowell SP Caleb Clay went on the DL last week to rest his elbow/shoulder, many of us at SoxProspects got a little nervous, because that type of assessment is usually bad news for a 19-year old pitcher. Today SoxProspects.com learned that Clay will undergo Tommy John Surgery later this week and will miss the remainder of the 2007 season and likely at least half of the 2008 season. Good luck with the surgery Caleb, and best of luck with the rehab, hope to see you next year at full force!
Multiple media sources are reporting that RHP Eric Gagne, who had listed Boston as a team that he would not accept a trade to, has waived his no-trade protection and has accepted a trade to join the Boston Red Sox. In exchange for Gagne the Red Sox will send outfielders Engel Beltre and David Murphy and LHP Kason Gabbard to the Texas Rangers. In 34 appearances with Texas this season Gagne put up a 2-0 record with 16 saves in 17 opportunities over 33.1 IP allowing eight ER (a 2.16 ERA) on 23 hits, walking 12 and striking out 29. Gagne reportedly waived his no-trade clause in exchange for guaranteeing performance clauses in his contract which expires after this season. Beltre, 17, was a free agent signee out of the Dominican Republic in 2006 and spent most of this season with in the GCL; Murphy, 25, was a 2003 first round pick from Baylor and except for a brief major league call up has spent the year in Pawtucket; and Gabbard, 25, who was a 29th round pick in 2000 out of high school, began the '07 season in Pawtucket, making a spot start in May for the big club before being called up June 26.
The Boston Red Sox have sent RHP Joel Pineiro and cash considerations to the St. Louis Cardinals for a player to be named later. The PTBNL reportedly will be a minor leaguer. Pineiro had been designated for assignment by the Sox July 23 and accepted a move to Pawtucket. He made two starts for the Paw Sox allowing two ER on three hits, striking out three and walking four in eight innings of work.
7/31 Cup of Coffee: On Monday, Pawtucket defeated Columbus 3-1. Mike Burns (3-7) got the win going 6 innings. He gave up 1 run on 4 hits and 2 BB. He had 4 Ks. Craig Hansen continued to pitche effectively pitching 2 scoreless innings. He allowed 3 hits while striking out 5. Travis Hughes threw a scoreless inning allowing 2 hits. He struck out 3. Alex Prieto went 2 for 4. George Kottaras went 1 for 3 with a home run and 3 RBI.
Visalia doubled the score on Lancaster 4-2. Mike Rozier (4-7) took the loss going 3 1/3 innings. He gave up 4 runs on 6 hits. He had 1 K. Jason Blackey pitched 3 scoreless innings. He gave up 1 hit and 1 BB. He had 1 K. Chad Rhoades threw 1 2/3 scoreless, hitless innings. He had 2 Ks. Zach Daeges went 2 for 4. Brad Correll went 1 for 4 with a home run and 2 runs scored.
Greenville defeated Lake County 5-1. Jimmy James (1-1) went 6 scoreless innings. He allowed 4 hits and 2 BB. He had 5 Ks. Jorge Rodriguez went 2 innings allowing 1 run on 2 hits. Josh Papelbon threw 1 scoreless inning and had 1 K. Josh Reddick went 1 for 4 with a home run and 2 runs scored. Jon Still went 2 for 4 with a home run and 3 RBI.
Brooklyn defeated Lowell 7-2. Jordan Craft (5-1) took the loss giving up 4 runs on 4 hits and a BB in 5 innings of work. He had 7 Ks. Willy Mota threw 2 scoreless, hitless innings. He had 2 Ks. Chad Povich went 1 inning and gave up 2 runs on 1 hit and a BB. He had 1 K. Eric Beattie went an inning giving up 1 run on 1 hit and 2 BB. Mike Jones went 2 for 4. Rafael Cabreja went 1 for 4 with 2 RBI. David Marks went 1 for 3 with a run scored and a RBI.
In the Gulf Coast League, the Orioles defeated the Red Sox 9-4. Pedro Perez (1-4) went 3 innings and gave up 7 runs on 6 hits. He had 4 Ks. Victor Galue threw 2 innings and gave up 2 runs on 5 hits and 2 BB. He had 1 K. Armando Zerpa pitched 2 scoreless, hitless innings. He allowed a BB while fanning 3. Dan Buller gave the team a clean final frame. Luis Sumoza went 2 for 4 with a home run. Ricardo Burgos went 2 for 3 with a home run and 2 runs scored.Pete Gilardo went 2 for 3.
In the Dominican League, the Giants defeated the Red Sox 5-2. Yeiper Castillo had a strong start going 5 innings. He gave up 1 run on 2 hits and 3 BB. He had 2 Ks. He did not factor in the decision but lowered his ERA to 1.95.Wilfi Santana went 3 for 4 with a RBI.
Player of the Night: Jimmy James who pitched 6 scoreless innings in Greenville's win.
Greenville OF Josh Reddick continued his meteric rise up the SoxProspects.com rankings last week turning in a .400/.467/.960/1.427 line with four HR and two doubles, batting in 14 runs and scoring seven himself, easily earning Player of the Week honors for July 22-28. A 17th round pick in 2006 out of Middle Georgia, the lefty-hitting 20-year-old is currently SoxProspects.com's 14th ranked prospect.
Portland RHP Justin Masterson turned in another in his string of dominant performances since joining the Sea Dogs when he struck out 10 in 6.2 innings of work at home against New Hampshire (Blue Jays) allowing two runs on three hits, earning the win and his fourth SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week award. Masterson had previously earned the weekly pitching honor June 17-23, July 1-7 and July 8-14. He is currently SoxProspects.com's # 4 rated prospect.
For the past nine years, Bobby Scales has rode buses from place to place playing professional baseball. From the Pioneer league, to the International League, through three different organizations, Scales has yet to get a taste of the major leagues despite demonstrating solid success in the upper minors. But by the end of 2007, that may change.
Scales’ journey to his big league goal started at the University of Michigan - just a short drive from his hometown of Southfield, Michigan. “The reason I went to Michigan was for the academics,” said Scales, “I didn’t receive a baseball scholarship but I ended up walking onto the team.” Regardless of being a walk-on, Scales not only graduated from Michigan with a degree in Sports Management, but as the Wolverines’ Team MVP and an All Big-Ten Selection.
He was eventually drafted in the 14th round of the 2001 draft by the San Diego Padres. Over the next six seasons, Scales would make stops in Idaho Falls, Fort Wayne, Lake Elsinore, and Mobile, where he was mostly a part time player. In 2005, Scales played in 120 games for AAA Portland (OR), hitting .274 with 14 home runs. After the 2005 season, Scales signed with the Philadelphia Phillies organization on a minor league contract and played the 2006 season with the AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre Red Barons, hitting a respectable .291 with a .820 OPS.
However, Scales again found himself a minor league free agent after the 2006 season despite two successful stints at the AAA level. In November of 2006, the Red Sox inked Scales to a minor league contract with an invite to big league Spring Training. According to Scales, “One of the reasons I signed with the Red Sox is that if a player is doing a good job in Triple A, whether he is a prospect or not, then those players have gotten an opportunity in the big leagues the past couple years.”
Coming into the 2007 season, Scales was a long shot to win a job with the big club: “My standpoint was to go to big league camp to show them what I could do,” said Scales. He eventually was assigned to Triple-A Pawtucket to start the 2007 campaign. However, even in Pawtucket, he was unsure what his role would be: “They said I would have an opportunity to play - but I didn’t know if it would be as a consistent starter.”
When the season started, Scales was a super utility man for Ron Johnson’s PawSox. He got a few starts a week but it was not until he started hitting bullets that Johnson decided to start playing him every day. “The lineup starts with Bobby Scales now,” asserts Johnson. Scales has done nothing but hit for the PawSox, putting up a .304 average with 6 home runs and 40 RBI in 313 at-bats.
Scales has also enjoyed his time playing baseball in New England: “The fervor for the Red Sox is awesome. Growing up in Atlanta being in SEC country, it’s a little different down there than up here, but it’s an awesome environment to play in. The people at McCoy have been great.”
Coaches and teammates have nothing but good things to say about Scales. “He plays multiple positions. He works hard and gives 100% effort, and he is a great teammate”, said center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, “he is a guy you want on your team.” “He’s a manager’s dream,” said Johnson, “Anytime you can get a multi-position guy that switch hits it's huge. He is always upbeat and has a great mentality. He’s a very impressive young man. He really has put himself in consideration for the majors.”
Many players would have given up their major league dream after five or six years in the minors, but Bobby Scales is still going strong after nine minor league seasons for one reason: “I know that I can play in the big leagues,” said Scales, “I know for a fact. San Diego gave me an opportunity to play pro ball and I’m grateful to them. But I didn’t quite get the opportunity I wanted over there but that’s life. I feel in my heart that I can go to the big leagues and help a team win games in some capacity whether it’s stealing a base or playing defense. “
What Scales has earned is a shot in the big leagues. After nine years, he has done everything he has been asked in hopes of fulfilling his major league dream. Come September 1st, we at SoxProspects.com are hoping there’s a spot for Scales on the Red Sox big league roster – not only because he’s earned the right, but because he can and will help the big league club down the stretch.
Cup of Coffee: Sunday was not a good day for Sox affiliates as they lost four of the five contests played. Columbus defeated Pawtucket 10-6. Joel Pineiro started and went 5 innings giving up 2 runs on 3 hits and 3 BB. He had 2 Ks. Craig Breslow blew the save giving up 4 runs on 4 hits in an inning of work. He had 1 K. Bryan Corey (3-6) took the loss giving up 4 runs on 6 hits and a BB in 1 1/3 innings. Edgar Martinez finished off the game striking out the 2 batters he faced. Joe McEwing went 2 for 5 with a RBI. Brady Clark went 1 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI.
In a game whose score resembled that of a football game, Connecticut defeated Portland by a converted touchdown 20-13. Charlie Zink went 4 innings allowing 12 runs on 12 hits and 4 BB. He had 1 K. Andrew Dobies went 2 innings giving up 1 run on 1 hit. He had 4 Ks. Chris Jones (0-1) took the loss giving up 6 runs on 5 hits and a BB in 2 innings. He had 3 Ks. Mike James threw an inning allowing 1 run on 2 hits. He had 1 K. Jeff Corsaletti went 4 for 5 with 3 runs scored and 3 RBI. Jay Johnson went 2 for 4 with a run scored and 3 RBI. Bryan Pritz went 2 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI. Dusty Brown went 3 for 5 with 2 runs scored. He is now hitting .297.
Lancaster fell to Visalia 6-4. John Barnes started and went 5 1/3 innings. He gave up 2 runs on 3 hits and 4 BB. He had 4 Ks. TJ Large (5-2) threw 2 1/3 innings giving up 4 runs on 3 hits and 3 BB. He had 3 Ks. Blake Maxwell finished the game off retiring the only batter he faced. Aaron Bates went 2 for 4 with a RBI.
Lowell defeated Hudson Valley 11-5. Nick Hagadone threw 2 scoreless innings allowing 1 hit and a BB. He had 2 Ks. Ryne Lawson (3-2) pitched 2 1/3 innings giving up 5 runs on 3 hits and 2 BB. He had 2 Ks. Adam Blackley went 2 2/3 frames. He did not allow a run on 2 hits. He had 5 Ks. Scott Lonergan pitched a scoreless inning allowing 2 hits. He had 1 K. Felix Ventura threw 1 scoreless inning on a hit and a BB. He had 2 Ks.Kade Keowen went 2 for 4 and scored a run. Deshaun Brooks went 2 for 4 and scored 2 runs. Yamaico Navarro went 3 for 4 with a home run, 3 runs scored and 4 RBI. He is now hitting .297.
In the Gulf Coast League, the Reds defeated the Red Sox 10-4. Hunter Strickland (0-2) started and took the loss. He gave up 6 runs on 12 hits in 5 1/3 innings of work. He had 4 Ks. Dan Buller did not allow a run in 1 2/3 innings. He allwed 1 hit while recording 3 Ks. Argenis Paulino threw 2 innings and gave up 4 runs on 4 hits. He had 2 Ks. Che-Hsuan Lin went 2 for 4 with a run scored. Ricardo Burgos went 2 for 3. Arlington, Ma. native Matt Cooney went 1 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI.
Player of the Night: Yamaico Navarro who had 3 hits, a home run, 3 runs scored and 4 RBI in the Spinner's win
7/29 Cup of Coffee: Saturday saw Columbus defeat Pawtucket 6-2. David Pauley (6-4) took the loss. He went 6 innings and gave up 4 runs on 7 hits and 2 BB. He had 4 Ks. Newly promoted Lincoln Holdzkom pitched the final 2 innings and allowed 2 runs on 4 hits and 2 BB. He had 1 K. Joe McEwing went 2 for 4 with a RBI.
Connecticut took both games of a doubleheader from Portland. The Sea Dogs lost the first game 4-3. Chris Smith (3-7) went 5 innings and allowed 2 runs on 3 hits and 2 BB. He had 3 Ks. Beau Vaughan threw 2 innings and gave up 2 runs on 3 hits. He had 3 Ks. John Otness went 2 for 4. The Sea Dogs fell 15-0 in the second contest. Daniel Haigwood (3-5) took the loss going 2 innings. He gave up 6 runs on 6 hits and 2 BB. He had 2 Ks. Jose Vaquedano threw 3 innings giving up 3 runs on 2 hits and a BB. He had 2 Ks. Kyle Jackson pitched a clean inning with 2 strikeouts. Mike James did not retire a batter but allowed 5 runs on 4 hits and a BB. Outfielder Jay Johnson made his first professional appearance as a pitcher and finished up the game allowing 1 run on 2 hits and a BB. Dusty Brown went 2 for 3.
Lancaster blasted Visalia 12-2. TJ Nall (1-1) went 7 innings allowing 2 runs on 6 hits and a BB to earn the win. He had 3 Ks. Kyle Fernandes threw 2 scoreless innings allowing 1 hit. He had 2 Ks. Tony Granadillo went 4 for 5 and scored 2 runs. Ryan Khoury went 2 for 6 with 3 RBI. Aaron Bates went 2 for 5 with a home run and 3 RBI. Brad Correll went 3 for 5 with 2 runs scored and 2 RBI. Zak Farkes went 2 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI.
Greenville defeated Charleston 8-6. Ryan Phillips went 4 2/3 innings allowing 1 run on 2 hits and 6 BB. He had 6 Ks. Brantley New (1-1) went 2 1/3 frames and did not allow a hit or a run. He gave up 1 BB while striking out 2. Chris Province threw 2 innings and allowed 5 runs on 7 hits. Reid Engel went 4 for 5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI. Josh Reddick went 1 for 4 with a home run and 3 RBI. Jason Place went 2 for 3 with a run scored and a RBI.
Hudson Valley edged Lowell 3-2. Miguel Socolovich (1-2) went 5 innings and gave up 3 runs on 7 hits and a BB. He had 3 Ks. Eammon Portice threw 3 scoreless, hitless innings. He allowed 2 BB while striking out 4. Kade Keowen went 1 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI.
In the Dominican League, the Dodgers edged the Red Sox 5-4. Edwin Lopez blew the save and took the loss going 1 1/3 frames. He allowed 2 runs on 4 hits and a BB. He had 1 K. Ronald Bermudez went 1 for 4 with a home run and 3 RBI. He is now hitting .351.
Player of the Night: Reid Engel who went 4 for 5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI for the Drive
7/28 Cup of Coffee: Last night, Pawtucket doubled Toledo by the score of 4-2. Clay Buchholz started and went 4 innings. He allowed 2 runs on 3 hits and 4 BB. He had 7 Ks. Craig Hansen (3-1) came on in relief and picked up the win. He threw 2 scoreless innings giving up 1 hit and 1 BB. He had 1 K. Edgar Martinez pitched 1 2/3 scoreless frames giving up 1 hit and 1 BB. He had 1 K. Bryan Corey pitched a perfect final frame striking out the side. Alex Prieto went 3 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI. Newcomer Brady Clark went 2 for 4 and scored a run.
Portland trounced Connecticut 9-2. Michael Bowden (5-4) started and went 5 2/3 innings to earn the win. He allowed 2 runs on 6 hits and a BB. He had 7 Ks. Hunter Jones came on in relief and pitched 3 1/3 perfect innings. He had 2 Ks. He lowered his ERA to 2.61. Bubba Bell went 2 for 5 and scored a run. Bryan Pritz went 2 for 5 with 2 home runs and 3 RBI. Jay Johnson went 2 for 5 and scored a run. Andrew Pinckney went 2 for 4 and scored a run.Dusty Brown went 3 for 4 with a run scored and 3 RBI.
Lancaster fell 8-4 to Visalia. Kris Johnson (6-6) went 7 innings giving up 5 runs on 7 hits and 3 BB. He had 3 Ks. Ismael Casillas pitched the final inning allowing 3 runs on 2 hits and a BB. He had 2 Ks. Brad Correll went 2 for 3 with a home run and 2 RBI.
Charleston defeated Greenville 5-1.Brian Steinocher (2-9) took the loss going 6 innings. He gave up 2 runs on 3 hits. He had 3 Ks. Bryce Cox went 2 innings and allowed 2 runs on 3 hits. He had 4 Ks. Josh Papelbon threw 1 frame and allowed 1 run on 2 hits. Reid Engel went 2 for 4 with a RBI.
Lowell edged Hudson Valley 5-4. Jose Capellan went 6 innings and gave up 3 runs on 5 hits and a BB. He had 6 Ks. Adam Mills (2-1) threw 2 innings of relief and picked up the victory. He did not allow a run. He gave up 3 hits while fanning 3. Chad Povich pitched the final frame and gave up a run on 4 hits. Jorge Jimenez went 3 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI. Mike Jones went 2 for 5 with a run scored. Pedro Vasquez went 2 for 4 and scored a run. Ty Weeden went 1 for 3 with a home run and 3 RBI.
7/27 Cup of Coffee: Last night's action saw Toledo edge Pawtucket 3-2 in 10 innings despite an outstanding rehab outing by Curt Schilling. He went 5 scoreless innings allowing 2 hits. He did not walk a batter and had 8Ks. Criag Breslow threw 2 innings giving up 1 run on 1 hit and 3 BB. He had 2 Ks. Travis Hughes took the loss going 2 2/3 innings. He gave up 2 runs on 7 hits and 2 BB. He had 3 Ks. David Murphy went 3 for 4. Jeff Bailey went 3 for 4 with a home run.
Lancaster blasted High Desert 12-3. Travis Beazley (2-1) went 6 innings allowing 2 runs on 7 hits and a BB. He had 2 Ks. Cody McAllister threw 2 scoreless, hitless innings. He gave up 2 BB. He had 2Ks. Chad Rhoades pitched 1 inning and gave up 1 run on 1 hit and a BB. He struck out the side.Tony Granadillo went 2 for 4 with a run scored and 2 RBI. Aaron Bates went 1 for 4 with a run scored and 3 RBI.
In the Gulf Coast League, the Red Sox edged the Pirates 7-6.Ryan Colvin pitched 5 innings and gave up 2 runs on 7 hits. He did not walk a batter and had 6 Ks. Argenis Paulino threw 1 inning and gave up 3 runs on 3 hits and a BB. Alberto Gil threw the final 3 frames and allowed 1 run on 3 hits. He had 1 K. Oscar Tejeda went 3 for 4 and scored 2 runs. Ricardo Burgos went 2 for 4 with a home run and 3 RBI. Rafael Gil went 2 for 4 with a home run.
In the Dominican Summer League, the Red Sox blasted the Devil Rays 13-3. Randy Consuegra went 5 innings and allowed 1 run on 5 hits and a BB. He had 5 Ks. Wilfredo Pichardo went 3 for 5 with 3 runs scored and 3 RBI.
MaineToday.com is reporting that SoxProspects.com # 7 rated prospect SS Jed Lowrie has been promoted to AAA Pawtucket. In 93 games with AA Portland Lowrie was .297/.410/.501/.911 with eight HR, 31 doubles, seven triples and 49 RBI, walking 65 times while striking out 58.
7/26 Cup of Coffee: On Wednesday,Pawtucket fell 12-2 to Toledo. Joel Pineiro threw 3 scoreless innings. He did not allow a hit while giving up 1 BB. He had 1 K. Devern Hansack went 1/3 of an inning and allowed 2 runs on a hit and a BB. Edgar Martinez (2-4) took the loss giving up 3 runs on 3 hits and 3 BB in 2 innings. He had 1 K. Barry Hertzler went 1 2/3 innings giving up 7 runs on 7 hits and 3 BB. InfielderZach Borowiak came off the bench to pitch the final inning. He did not allow a run on 1 hit. He had 1 K. Joe McEwingwent 4 for 5 with a RBI.
Portland defeated New Hampshire 5-3. Justin Masterson (4-0) had another sparkling performance allowing 2 runs in 6 2/3 innings of work. He gave up 3 hits but did not walk a hitter. He had 10 Ks. Beau Vaughan went 1/3 of an inning striking out the only hitter he faced. Daniel Haigwood threw 1 scoreless inning. He allowed 1 hit while fanning 2. Lincoln Holdzkom pitched the final frame giving up 1 run on 1 hit. Jay Johnson went 2 for 4 and scored a run. Bryan Pritz went 3 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI.
Lancaster blasted High Desert 16-7. Mike Rozier started and went 4 2/3 innings. He gave up 5 runs on 7 hits and 4 BB. He had 4 Ks. Blake Maxwell went 1 1/3 frames allowing 2 runs on 4 hits. He had 1 K. TJ Large (5-1) was credited with the win. He went 2 scoreless innings giving up 3 hits. He had 3 Ks. Jason Blackey pitched a scoreless final inning allowing a BB. Zach Daeges went 2 for 4 and scored a run. Aaron Bates continued to hit like he had never missed any time going 2 for 4 with 2 runs scored and 2 RBI. Brad Correll went 3 for 4 with a home run and 3 runs scored. Mark Wagner went 2 for 4 with a home run and 3 runs scored. Zak Farkes went 2 for 5 with a home run, 3 runs scored and 4 RBI. Christian Lara went 3 for 5 with 2 runs scored and 3 RBI.
Charleston defeated Greenville 7-5. Daniel Bard (3-2) took the loss going 3 innings. He gave up 6 runs on 3 hits and a BB. He had 3 Ks.Chris Jones went 4 innings and allowed 1 run on 3 hits. He had 5 Ks. Chris Province pitched the final 2 innings and did not allow a run. He gave up 1 hit. Jon Still went 3 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI. Paul Smyth went 2 for 4.
Lowell defeated Jamestown 8-6. Jordan Craft (5-0) threw 6 scoreless innings. He allowed 1 hit and 2 BB. He had 4 Ks. Eric Beattie went 2 1/3 innings and gave up 6 runs on 1 hit and 7 BB. Willy Mota pitched 2/3 of an inning. He did not allow a run on 1 hit. Pedro Vasquez went 3 for 4 with a home run and 3 runs scored. Deshaun Brooks went 2 for 4 with a run scored and 3 RBI. Aaron Reza went 2 for 2 with 2 RBI.
In the Gulf Coast League, the Orioles doubled the Red Sox 4-2. Pedro Perez went 1 1/3 innings. He gave up 1 run on 4 BB. He had 3 Ks. Victor Galue (0-3) went 2 1/3 innings allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and a BB. Mauricio Mendez pitched 2 1/3 scoreless frames. He allowed 1 BB while fanning 1.Armando Zerpa threw 2 innings and gave up 1 run on 2 hits. He had 2 Ks. Ryne Miller threw a perfect final inning striking out 2 of the 3 batters he faced. Mitch Dening went 2 for 4. Ricardo Burgos went 2 for 4 with a home run and 2 RBI.
In the Dominican League, the Red Sox fell 5-1 to the Yankees. Stolmy Pimentel had a strong start throwing 5 scoreless innings on 2 hits and a BB. He had 6 Ks.Alberto Gonzalez (1-1) took the loss giving up 5 runs on 3 hits and 2 BB in 2 2/3 innings of work. He had 4 Ks.
Player of the Night: Jordan Craft who threw 6 scoreless, 1 hit innings for the Spinners.
GCL Red Sox CF Che-Hsuan Linswung the bat at a blistering .429/.484/.821 (1.305 OPS) rate in 28 ABs, hitting two HR, three doubles and one triple, batting in and scoring eight runs and stealing two bases, earning SoxProspects.com (Position) Player of the Week honors for July 15-21. Lin, 18, a highly-touted Taiwanese free agent is .263/.323/.444/.767 in his U.S. debut with three HR, six doubles, two triples, 18 RBI and seven stolen bases (2 CS) over 99 ABs in 25 games. Honorable mention: Greenville CF Josh Reddick who went .375/.448/.875/1.323 with three HR, one double, one triple and two stolen bases, scoring five runs and batting in 10.
The SoxProspects.com voters showed Pawtucket RHP Craig Hansen some love, rewarding a good week's work for the former highly rated prospect with Pitcher of the Week honors for July 15-21. In 6.1 IP over three appearances, Hansen allowed one run on seven hits (.269 BAa, .629 OPSa), striking out 11 and while walking one, and earning a save July 15 against Syracuse (Blue Jays). Hansen, 23, is 2-1 with three saves in 40.1 IP over 32 appearances, allowing 22 ER (4.91 ERA) on 51 hits (.295 BAA), striking out 37 and walking 26 with the Paw Sox in '07. Honorable mention: Lowell RHP Miguel Socolovich, who was 1-0 in 9.0 IP over two starts allowing one run on three hits (.097 BAA, .394 OPSa).
7/25 Cup of Coffee: Last night, Pawtucket edged Toledo 3-2. Mike Burns started and went 6 2/3 innings allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and a BB. He had 6 Ks. Craig Hansen (2-1) had another strong outing going 1 1/3 innings and did not allow a run. He gave up 2 hits but did not walk anyone. He had 1 K. Bryan Coreythrew a clean 9th with 2 Ks. Brandon Moss led the offense going 3 for 4 with 2 RBI. He is now hitting .308.
Portland doubled New Hampshire 4-2. Andrew Dobies(4-2) started and went 5 innings to earn the win. He allowed 1 run on 2 hits and 3 BB. He had 4 Ks. Jose Vaquedano went 1 inning and gave up 1 run on 2 hits and 2 BB. He had 2Ks. Hunter Jones continues to pitch well. He threw 2 scoreless innings giving up 1 hit and 1 BB while striking out 3. Mike James pitched a scoreless 9th. He did not allow a hit but walked 2 batters. He had 2 Ks. Andrew Pinckney led the attack going 3 for 4 with a home run. Jed Lowrie went 1 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI.
Lancaster defeated High Desert 15-8. John Barnes (4-4) got the win going 5 innings. He allowed 5 runs on 9 hits and 3 BB. He had 3 Ks. Kyle Fernandes threw 1 2/3 innings of relief allowing 3 runs on 3 hits and 3 BB. He had 1 K. Ismael Casillas finished up the game throwing 2 1/3 scoreless innings. He allowed 2 hits while fanning 2. Zach Daeges went 2 for 4 and scored a run. Aaron Bates went 3 for 5 and scored twice. Brad Correll went 2 for 5 with a home run and 3 runs scored. Mark Wagner went 4 for 5 with a home run, 2 runs scored and 6 RBI. Scott White went 3 for 5 and scored 2 runs. Christian Lara went 2 for 5 with a home run, 2 runs scored and 4 RBI.
Greenville came from behind to defeat Savannah 9-7. Jimmy James went 5 innings giving up 3 runs on 4 hits and 2 BB. He had 4 Ks. Brantley Newgave up 4 runs on 5 hits and a BB. He had 1 K. Bryce Cox(1-0) earned the win throwing 2 perfect innings of relief. Kris Negron was the offensive star hitting a 3 run homer with 2 out in the bottom of the 8th to put the Drive in the lead. He went 2 for 4 in the game with 2 runs scored and 4 RBI. Argenis Diaz went 3 for 5 with 2 runs scored and a RBI. Reid Engel went 2 for 4 and scored 2 runs. Paul Smyth went 3 for 4 with 2 RBI.
Lowell fell to Jamestown 6-5 in 10 innings. Nick Hadadone started and threw 2 scoreless innings. He did not give up a hit but had 1 BB. He had 3 Ks. Ryne Lawson threw 4 1/3 innings giving up 4 runs on 4 hits and 2 BB. He had 3 Ks. Adam Blackley went 1 inning giving up 1 run on 1 hit and 1 BB. He had 1 K. Felix Venturathrew 1 2/3 scoreless, hitless frames. He did not allow a BB and had 3 Ks. Willy Mota(1-3) took the loss going 2/3 of an inning in the 10th. He gave up the winning run on 1 hit and 2 BB. He had 1 K. Rafael Cabreja went 2 for 5 with a home run, 2 runs scored and 3 RBI. Carlos Fernandez-Oliva went 3 for 5 with 2 RBI. Deshaun Brookswent 2 for 4 with 2 runs scored.
The Gulf Coast Red Sox were trailing the Reds 1-0 in the 3rd inning when the game was suspended due to rain.
In the Dominican Summer League, the Red Sox doubled the Royals 6-3. Manuel Rivera (1-1) picked up the win in relief. He threw 3 1/3 scoreless innings allowing 1 hit and a BB. He had 6 Ks. Wilfi Santana went 2 for 4 with a run scored and a RBI.
Player of the Night: Mark Wagner who led the Jethawks to victory with 4 hits, a home run, 2 runs scored and 6 RBI.
7/24 Cup of Coffee: Well after a 13 hour drive yesterday, I am back at the keyboard enjoying another cup of coffee, although this time it is Tim Hortons rather than Dunkin Donuts. Last night's schedule was a rather light one with Lancaster, Lowell and the Gulf Coast Red Sox all enjoying the day off.
Pawtucket edged Louisville 3-2 in 10 innings. David Pauleyhad a strong outing going 7 1/3 innings. He allowed 2 runs on 6 hits while striking out 7. He did not give up a BB. Travis Hughes (5-3) pitched 2 1/3 innings of relief and earned the win. He did not allow a run on just 1 hit. He walked 3 and struck out 4. David Murphy led the offense going 3 for 5 with 2 runs scored. Joe McEwing went 2 for 5 with a home run. Ed Rogers went 3 for 4 while Michael Tucker went 2 for 3.
Portland fell 5-3 to New Hampshire. Chris Smith (3-6) started and took the loss giving up 5 runs on 12 hits and 3 BB in 6 1/3 innings. He had 5 Ks. Chad Povich finished the last 2 2/3 frames and did not allow a run on 2 hits and a BB. He had a K. Andrew Pinckney went 2 for 4 whileBryan Pritz went 1 for 4 with 2 RBI.
In the Dominican Summer League, the Red Sox dropped a doubleheader to the Blue Jays by scores of 2-0 in 14 innings and 5-1 in a 7 inning contest. Lefthander Nestor Lastreto took the loss in the first game giving up 2 runs on 3 hits in the 14th inning. Wilfi Santanawent 2 for 5 in the game. In the second game, Edwin Lopez blew the save and took the loss allowing 5 runs on 5 hits and 3 BB in the top of the 7th. Ronald Bermudez went 2 for 2 with a BB in the game. He is now hitting .374.
Player of the Night: Josh Reddick who had 2 home runs and 6 RBI to lead the Drive to a win.
Portland SP Justin Masterson recently took some time out of his road trip to respond to some questions from Mike Andrews of SoxProspects.com. Justin devoted a substantial amount of time to answering our questions, so big props to the big righty. As of July 23, the 2006 2nd round draft pick is 3-0 with a 0.47 ERA, 22 strikeouts and only five walks since making his AA debut ealier this month.
SP: You pitched in the Cape Cod League in 2005. How did the CCL help your game and did you come away with any impressions of Red Sox Nation during your time on the Cape?
JM: The Cape Cod League was a real big confidence booster if anything for me. I got there in a round about way, that only the hand of the Lord could be in, and was only there as a temporary player, but then I did well enough that they signed me on for the long haul as a closer. It let me know that the stuff that I had could play well against the best talent in the country. I also refined my sinker and was able to get a slider under my belt at the same time. I had never really followed the Red Sox, but being on the Cape I started to understand that Red Sox Nation is pretty extreme and they LOVE their Red Sox. Maybe even sometimes a little to much, haha.
SP: During your time at San Diego State, to what extent did Tony Gwynn help you understand how hitters approach their at bats?
JM: The whole coaching staff at San Diego State had a large impact on how to approach hitters. Rusty Filter, my pitching coach there, was always offering advice as did our assistant Mark Martinez. As far as Coach Gwynn, after practice or just at times he would talk about how he approached hitting. By listening when he would talk to our hitters, I could hear his approach. It was more of just trying to pick up everything I could from everyone to get a better understanding of what I knew from being a hitter myself to what one of the greatest hitters in history thinks. It's hard to always put words to all that is learned but it was and is a great asset to have in my life. Tony Gwynn is a great man on and off the field.
SP: You were drafted in the 2nd round in 2006. Was that about where you expected to be drafted? Did you have a lot of contact with other teams during the draft process? What impressions did the Red Sox make on you during the process?
JM: Coming into the draft I didn't have a whole lot of expectations. I was hoping to go high just like every other person who was waiting to be drafted. But a lot of it was out of my hands, not under my control. I knew that God's hand was in it, and all and I could just rely on him. I had done all that I could and the final decision would be made by the teams. But I didn't have a whole lot of contact with many teams, although my agent, Randy Rowley, was in contact with some teams and making sure everything was running smoothly. I honestly wasn't worried about anything, I was just looking for an opportunity, I didn't care who it was with. I'm not in it to get rich, but to play a game that I love and to meet so many new people. Then came the call from Dan Madsen, my Red Sox scout. I was unsure who it was at first, but I didn't care. A good offer was made at the get go and I was ready to get my pro career underway. The Red Sox were good to me in the process, made me feel good, and I felt like I was going to be a steal for them in the 2nd, at least that was my motivation.
SP: You dominated in a short stint with Lowell in 2006. Was the transition to the pros easy for you? What was it like pitching in front of the Fenway crowd for the Spinners last August?
JM: Lowell was a great time and great place to play. Some of the great fans of Red Sox Nation are up in Lowell. I was excited about the transition because of the beauty of wood bats - movement is a lot more effective when wood bats are added into the picture. I felt the transition was not too difficult - I had been preparing myself for a long time. My dream since I was in kindergarten has been to play Major League Baseball and I knew this was the first step. But the Fenway game was amazing. Best crowd I've ever played in front of and it was electric. Honestly, when I went out to pitch I lost track of where I was. I get so much in the zone that I didn't even realize how big a stage that it actually was. It was amazing, just a great appetizer that has left me with a hunger to try and get back there as a mainstay.
SP: What goals did the organization set for you at the beginning of the season? What goals did you set for yourself?
JM: The goals for this season were simple - get accustomed to the life and long season as a starting pitcher, while also continuing to work on and develop my sinker, slider and change up. My personal goals were very simple too - work on being consistent and hopefully, though it's out of my control, get the call up to Double A at some point.
SP: How did playing in Lancaster make you more prepared as a pitcher? Do you think that experience is generally a good thing for a pitcher?
JM: In Lancaster I learned a lot about myself mechanically, physically, and mentally. Things I probably would have learned no matter where I was starting, but were made larger in the picture due to the surroundings. But it gave me a very confident attitude and the ability to not worry about what I can't control. In all truth, I never felt that I pitched horrible, but there was still room to improve and there still is. But it showed that you can make the perfect pitch, have a hitter miss-hit the ball, and still have it travel over the outfield fence for a home run. If you were not mentally sound when you went out there, you definitely learned how to be by the time that you left. Although it might skew numbers in both directions, I enjoyed the experience and thought it did well for me. It gave me the sense that if I can be successful in Lancaster, I can be successful anywhere.
SP: Describe the feelings you had during that July 4th playoff game. What was it like to be given the start in a winner-take-all environment? Would you say that you thrive on that pressure?
JM: Well first off, I didn't feel as much pressure as I did the last game of the first half which we had to win in order to even have the July 4th game. Plus, with that game we had lost two in a row rather than the big win streak that we went on after the All Star break. But I absolutely loved it. I can't say that I'm always successful in big games, but I love to be in them. I love knowing that everyone is counting on you and you'll be the hero or the goat. I know every other pitcher on the team would have loved to been in that position and would have done great, but I got the nod and I was pumped. But you have to treat it like another game, because to be successful you have to control that emotion and that's the most fun - the mental battle that takes place.
SP: Most players say that the jump from A ball to Double-A is the most difficult for a player coming up through a team's farm system, but you’ve shown great success right out of the gate. What are your first impressions of pitching in High-A vs. AA? Of pitching in Lancaster vs. Portland?
JM: It's definitely true that the talent improves as you move. Most of all, the hitters in Double-A look to make adjustments at the plate a little quicker than at the lower levels. The trick is to make the adjustments with them. But what I've learned this year with the staffs in Lancaster and up in Portland is that I didn't need to do anything MORE when I moved up to Portland, but rather continue. Continue to be consistent, continue working on command. And as I've found out there is much truth to that. The hardest thing is mentally being able to deal with things, the fans, new team, new clubs you've never faced, and adversity within games themselves. Although I've done well there have been times when guys have got on base and keeping them from scoring felt better than having a quick one two three inning. I'm not sure if the ball moves a little more out here, but God has blessed with me a pitch and it continues to bode well for me.
SP: OK, now on to the nitty gritty – we’ll ask you to give a scouting report on yourself. What pitches do you have in your repertoire? At about what speeds and how often do you throw those pitches? What do you consider your out pitch?
JM: Well, my scouting report is simple. I am a sinker, slider, change up guy. My sinker is used most often and to add to its effectiveness I vary the speeds up a bit. This year they have ranged in a singular game from 84-94. Then I have the slider which is a great compliment to my sinker and comes in around 80-83. I finish it off with a circle change at about 77-81. My out pitch is my sinker, but I also enjoy mixing in the slider and change to finish someone off just the same. I am always working to be consistent and control the strike zone which allows me to be effective.
SP: What pitch have you improved the most this season? How is your change-up coming along? At this stage of the season, what parts of your game are you looking to improve to take it to the next level?
JM: Right now I think that all my pitches have improved this season. The change up is great and has been all year, the only problem is that there are not a lot of opportunities to throw the pitch. Which as we continue more opportunities will arise, but at this point we are trying to force feed the change up a little bit. I have total confidence and feel that I can throw it for a strike whenever I need too. At this stage I am looking to continue to be more consistent, and that's the name of the game. I need to continue to not try and do too much mechanically and let my pitches do the work like they are supposed to. It sounds simple - it is but it isn't, because the body always wants to try and do more.
SP: Have there been any further discussion on Justin Masterson remaining a starter or moving to the bullpen since last year? Which spot do you personally prefer?
JM: I haven't had ANY discussions since I've been in the organization about it. I've just gone along with what they have told me. I don't have a preference whatsoever. It was once told to me that starters make more in the Majors, but then again it's not about the money to me, it's about getting there and playing the game. There are so few who actually get that opportunity but would love to do it for free. I love both. I like starting and being the workhorse and knowing which day that I'm throwing, allowing me to prepare for a few days. But just the opposite, I like relieving in knowing that you could pitch any day and always have to be ready to go - it very well could be in a tense situation when you need to command the zone and get that double play ball or that strikeout.
SP: Who of your teammates have impressed you the most this season?
JM: Wow, such a hard question to answer because there have been so many guys who have done so many good things this year on both of the clubs that I have been on. Since I was in Lancaster the longest I'll go with that. First off, Michael Bowden continues to impress me with not only his pitching ability but his maturity on and off the field, a true testament to his mother. But honestly, most of the guys in Lancaster have impressed me this year, which is shown by how well the team has done this year. Ryan Khoury has always had a great glove, but he's shown a great hitting ability this year. Zach Daeges has done great hitting, but also shown athleticism by playing multiple positions. TJ Large has been a good anchor in the bullpen with his great cutter along with Chad Rhoades as a closer who throws gas with a dirty split. Aaron Bates has continued his greatness at the plate but has also greatly improved his first base skills. Scott White has impressed me with his third base skills and also showed improvement with each day at the plate. And talk about battling - Kris Johnson and Michael Rozier have turned around and put up great numbers and are doing awesome. And lest we forget Kevin Guyette and his dirty curveball. But as I said the whole team has impressed me, even if I haven't said every name. This is a great organization filled with great talent - maybe too much, haha.
7/23 Cup of Coffee: On Sunday Pawtucket was hammered by Louisville 11-1. Clay Buchholz pitched 5 innings giving up 2 runs on 3 hits while striking out 10 and walking 2. Barry Hertzler pitched 1 inning giving up 6 runs on 6 hits while walking 2. Alex Prieto went 2 for 3 with a walk and Kevin Cash went 2 for 4 in the loss.
Lancaster beat Inland Empire 10-4. TJ Nall pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up 3 runs (2 earned) on 5 hits while striking out 3 and walking 3. Chad Rhoades pitched 1 1/3 innings perfect innings striking out 1. Mark Wagner went 1 for 2 with 2 walks while Mickey Hall went 1 for 3 with 2 walks in the win.
Greenville defeated Savannah 5-4. Dustin Richardson pitched 6 innings, giving up a run on 6 hits while striking out 6 and walking 1 and hitting a batter. Chris Province pitched the final 3 innings, giving up 3 runs on 5 hits while striking out 3. Josh Reddick went 2 for 3 with a double, home run and walk while Jonathan Egan went 1 for 1 with a home run and 3 walks. Lars Anderson also went 1 for 3 with a walk in the win.
Lowell beat Williamsport 1-0 in 12 innings. Jose Capellan pitched 6 innings giving up no runs on 3 hits while striking out 2. Felix Ventura pitched 2 innings giving no runs on a hit while striking out 2 and walking 1. Dan Milano went 1 for 1 with a stolen base. Carlos Fernandez went 1 for 4 with a stolen base. David Marks drove in the winning run on a pinch hit single in the 12th.