The IronPigs got a big win last night, over Scranton-Wilkes-Barre ace Ramon Oritz, to remain 1/2 game up in the International League wild card standings, and pull within six games of the IL North lead.
Yesterday was a long day for the Krammer. It started at 8AM with a baseball game “Away” in a neighboring community for the older kiddo. It progressed through four tournament soccer games in the afternoon, then on to the ‘Pigs game. My young one was the starting goalkeeper for the first soccer game of the day. Unfortunately–and despite his usually outstanding play–they fell behind 0-2 in the time-shortened tournament game. They battled back, though, and won a well-earned 3-2 victory. They don’t always win, but they didn’t give up and it paid off.
I took time between the games to post a comment over on the excellent Bacon and Biscuits board: I was fearful of last night’s game because I’m always nervous when the guys come home–that the bus ride will have them flat or that other distractions of life could get in the way of a win. I was also concerned about the pitching matchup: Scranton’s best starter–by record, experience, and ERA–versus one of our young, and largely untested guys. Mario Hollands had one start for us Tuesday night as part of a doubleheader and has started 17 games this year across FOUR LEVELS of minor league baseball, but remains somewhat of an enigma. He’s not been dominant, really, at any level. He’s got a pitch–perhaps it’s a cutter–that he sometimes has some difficulty locating, and a reasonable fastball which touched 95 last night.
The 4-1 lead through 2 1/2 innings did little to calm my fears, but we had baserunners and the guys were playing hard. Up steps DMitch with two on, and already one in, and my young goalkeeper says, “I don’t think we’re ever going to come back in this game.” Really young Padawan? What happened when you were down in your soccer game? Isn’t Mitchell your favorite player since Rich Thompson left? Yup. Three-run dinger to left. ‘Pigs take the lead, never to look back.
Juan Marillo got the win. He touched 98 on the notoriously slow Coca Cola Park stadium gun, and froze several batters with his big hooking curve. He’s a dynamic pitcher; stats show he sometimes struggles when asked to pitch more than one inning. Control is the thing. My friendly neighborhood usher, who frequents Reading games as well, points out that with him throwing gas like that, the backstop is always in danger of damage. In short, he’s our new Aumont. But last night he did fine over two innings to earn the win–his first at AAA.
OF Nate Schierholtz will start a rehab today with the IronPigs. Rumor has it, he will remain with us until the rosters expand September 1. However, reports out of Philadelphia this morning suggest that his rehab may not begin until tomorrow. Stay tuned to Twitter for the latest on today’s lineup. The ‘Pigs send the so-far-excellent Jonathan Pettibone (4-0, 1.69) to the mound to face the Future-Frogs’ Justin Thomas (1-1, 3.58, only his sixth start in 33 AAA games this season) in a 1:35PM tilt. Tomorrow’s a school day; that’s my assumption on the unique August Sunday start time. Back to 5:35 next Sunday, with the Monday holiday following.
There Once was a Team from Pawtucket…
The PawSox won last night to remain a half game behind us in the wild card chase. Talk at the bar last night quickly turned to the Boston Red Sox’ massive trade with the Dodgers. Boston gutted their team to save on salary as money seems to be no problem for the Magic Johnson owned Dodgers. How does this affect us? Well, Boston’s going to have to replace those players who were traded. Here’s a look at a couple of transactions impacting the Pawtucket roster over the past week:
8/25 SS Jose Iglesias, OF Che-Hsuan Lin, and RHP Junichi Tazawa from Pawtucket to Boston
8/25 INF Ivan DeJesus, Jr. in from Los Angeles, assigned to Pawtucket
8/22 3B Danny Valencia from Boston to Pawtucket
8/18 INF Mauro Gomez from Pawtucket to Boston
So, good or bad? It remains to be seen. Pawtucket loses a couple good players, but gets a couple back. They remain in the midst of their 8-game far-southern road swing with two more in Charlotte followed by four in Gwinett. They will then return to Pawtucket to face Scranton. IL-record is the tie-breaker for the wild card, and we seem to be on the short end of that. With IL games remaining, though, we could gain ground. Aim remains the same: Win.
The Big Screen
As much as I love Cheryl Pursell’s photography, I’m really a multimedia guy at heart. So I flipped last night when I saw this; I must have watched it ten times. I just love this video she put together using her photos, and I’m leading the charge to get it on the big screen when (not “if”) we host our first playoff game this season. Enjoy, and spread the word. Let’s go!
See you at the park,