Johnson City Cardinals Notebook: 2012 Week 9

The Cardinals are in a tight race for second place in the Appalachian League West Division.

Johnson City holds onto second place in the West Division by a half-game and has the fourth-best record in the entire Appy League as they come closer to playoff time. Their winning percentage is now .554 with a 31-25 record. The Cards start off this week with a big five-game series against the Bristol White Sox.

Tuesday, August 14, Johnson City 2 at Kingsport 4; Johnson City 4 at Kingsport 2

Johnson City came away with one win after a loss in the first game in their double-header Tuesday evening against the Mets.

The Cardinals managed six hits in the first contest and lost 4-2. Ildemaro Vargas went 2-for-4. Adam Ehrlich, Jeremy Schaffer, Bruce Caldwell and Lance Jeffries Jr. added a hit each. In the top of the second, Schaffer hammered the ball to left for his eighth home run of the season. Caldwell also scored in the second, when C.J. McElroy Jr. was walked with the bases loaded. That proved to be the only runs of the night for the Cards.

Stalyn Lopez (3-3, 5.05 ERA) took the loss, allowing the Mets all four runs (one unearned) in 4 IP.

The Cardinals gained momentum and won the second game against Kingsport, 4-2. They had eight hits.

McElroy Jr. went 2-for-4, while Gerwuins Velazco, Schaffer, Caldwell, Dutch Deol, Leandro Mateo and Ronald Castillo contributed one hit each. Both Schaffer and Caldwell belted one out of the park. Schaffer (9) did it in the second and Caldwell (4) in the sixth. McElroy Jr. singled in the third and the seventh, scoring Castillo twice.

Thomas Lee (2-4, 4.23 ERA) earned the win. In 6.1 IP, he gave up just two earned runs off four hits. Ronnie Shaban (S, 13, 3.63 ERA) relieved Lee for 1.2 innings to solidify the victory for the Cards.

Wednesday, August 15, Johnson City 4 at Kingsport 14

In the third game, the Cardinals were defeated by Kingsport in a disappointing loss, 14-4. They had ten hits, but went 1-for-16 with RISP.

Carson Kelly and Cesar Valera belted out two hits each. C.J. McElroy Jr., Jeremy Schaffer, Bruce Caldwell, Trevor Martin, Ricardo Lizcano and Lance Jeffries Jr. all contributed a hit each. Martin slammed his second home run of the season.

Schaffer started off the scoring for the night in the first inning, when third baseman Yeixon Ruiz made a throwing error. The remaining three runs were supplied in the eighth inning. Martin knocked out his home run to start the eighth. Valera doubled to left, scoring Kelly. Valera then scored on a wild pitch by Martires Arias.

Juan Bautista (2-4, 6.12 ERA) took the loss after pitching three innings and allowing the Mets seven runs (six earned). Mike Aldrete (7.03 ERA) and Cole Brand (5.40 ERA) split the rest of the game. Aldrete gave up four earned runs and Brand, three.

Thursday, August 16, Johnson City 14 at Kingsport 3

The Cards ended their series against the Mets with a 2-2 split after winning by a landslide in the last game. They had eighteen hits that night, three of which were home runs by Carson Kelly, Michael Knox and Trevor Martin.

Bruce Caldwell went 4-for-6. Martin, Knox and Ronald Castillo contributed three hits apiece, and Kelly supplied two. Dutch Deol, Leandro Mateo and Adam Ehrlich also had a hit.

Knox doubled to left, scoring Caldwell in the second. Martin then roped a line drive to center, allowing Knox to score. Martin amazingly stole home for the third run of the second inning. Ehrlich got his run off a single by Caldwell in the third. Knox then hit his fifth double of the season to plate Caldwell. Kelly belted out his eighth home run of the season, which also plated Knox. Martin doubled again in the fifth. Caldwell and Knox both scored. Martin then crossed home off a double by Deol. Kelly also scored that inning when Castillo grounded out. Caldwell started the eighth with a double. Knox and Martin both hit home runs, giving the Cards the last three runs of the night and the win.

Silfredo Garcia (3-2, 3.50 ERA) earned the win behind the strong offensive outing. He gave the Mets three runs (one unearned) in 6 IP. Jacob Booden (4.22 ERA), Sam Tuivailala (3.60 ERA) and Roberto Canache (0.00 ERA) all pitched an inning to close out the game. They had a combined three allowed hits and no runs.

Friday, August 17, Johnson City 10, Princeton 9; Johnson City 8, Princeton 4

Johnson City started off their series against the Princeton Rays with two solid wins on Friday.

The first game was a close one, but the Cards pulled away with the victory, 10-9. Gerwuins Velazco went 3-4, and Ildemaro Vargas and Trevor Martin both had two hits. Carson Kelly, Jeremy Schaffer, Cesar Valera, Ronald Castillo and Lance Jeffries Jr. all added a hit as well. They went 5-for-10 with RISP and the team left on base was just four.

The Cardinals did not start scoring runs until the fourth inning. Schaffer doubled (19), scoring Vargas. Schaffer then scored after Martin grounded out. Velazco doubled, and then scored after Castillo blasted a double to right. Martin homered in the sixth. The Cards rallied in the seventh for six more runs.

Willy Paulino (3.72 ERA) and Cesar Aguilar (1-1, 4.22 ERA) split the innings, with Aguilar taking the win after relieving Paulino. Paulino gave up eight runs (only three earned), and Aguilar just allowed one earned.

In the nightcap, Johnson City managed twelve hits. Martin belted out another home run, making it his fifth of the season. He went 2-for-3. Vargas and Adam Ehrlich contributed two hits apiece. Bruce Caldwell had three. Castillo, Valera and Michael Knox also had a hit.

Caldwell singled to right in the first, plating C.J. McElroy Jr. and Vargas. Martin's home run came in the fourth. Knox doubled to right in the fifth, allowing Ehrlich to score. Martin singled on a ground ball to right. Caldwell scored. Knox then scored while Martin was attempting to steal second. Caldwell belted his tenth double of the season in the sixth inning. Vargas and Dutch Deol scored, closing out the scoring for the Cardinals.

Zach Petrick (2.50 ERA) started, pitching three innings. He gave up all four runs to the Rays (three earned) before being replaced by Joey Donofrio for 2.2 innings. Donofrio (2-2, 1.66 ERA) came away with the win. Ronnie Shaban (3.38 ERA) took yet another save, his 14th.

Saturday, August 18, Johnson City 9, Princeton 8

The Cards once again rallied, this time for a walk-off win against the Rays in the third game of the series.

Ricardo Lizcano and Ronald Castillo supplied three hits each, one of which was a home run by Lizcano (his first of the season). C.J. McElroy Jr. had two hits. Ildemaro Vargas, Jeremy Schaffer, Trevor Martin and Gerwuins Velazco hit as well.

Martin, Castillo and Velazco scored via singles by their teammates in the second inning to take the lead. Lizcano slammed a home run in the fourth, scoring Castillo too. Johnson City lost the lead in the seventh, but battled back with four runs in the ninth. Lizcano scored while McElroy Jr. reached on a fielding error. Vargas doubled on a line drive to left; plating McElroy Jr. Schaffer hit his second triple of the season, scoring Vargas. Schaffer accounted for the last run after Martin singled, giving the Cards the walk-off win.

Victor De Leon (2.89 ERA) pitched five innings and gave the Rays just one earned run. He was relieved by Jeff Rauh (5.31 ERA) for 1.1 inning, who allowed Princeton five runs. Two were home runs. He was relieved by Roberto Canache (BS, 1, W, 2-0, 0.00 ERA), who earned the win. In 2.2 IP, Canache allowed two unearned runs from five hits.

Sunday, August 19, Johnson City 2, Princeton 10

The Cardinals may have suffered a large loss to the Rays in the last game of the series, but they still came out on top overall, taking the series three games to one. Johnson City had five hits for the night.

Leandro Mateo went 2-for-3. C.J. McElroy Jr., Adam Ehrlich and Bruce Caldwell were the other three players to contribute hits. The two runs came from Lance Jeffries Jr. and Ricardo Lizcano in the eighth inning. Lizcano walked and reached third on a fielding error. He then scored when Jeffries Jr. grounded out. Jeffries scored the final run for the Cards later in the inning when Mateo singled on a line drive to center.

Stalyn Lopez (3-4, 4.89 ERA) took the loss. In 3 IP, he gave up seven runs, though only one was earned. Jacob Booden (3.55 ERA) and Cole Brand (6.23 ERA) also pitched. Booden allowed one unearned run and Brand, two earned.

Hot and Cold Players of the Week


Zach Petrick (2.50 ERA) continues to perform for the Cards, with four wins this season. In 39.2 IP, he has only allowed twelve runs, eleven of which were earned. Silfredo Garcia (3-2, 3.50 ERA) earned another win this week against the Mets.

As a team, Johnson City holds an overall ERA of 4.26, placing them sixth in pitching in the Appy League.

Juan Bautista (2-4, 6.12 ERA) took another disappointing loss this week against the Mets. The 19-year-old right-hander yielded seven runs in three innings.


Ildemaro Vargas is now third in the Appalachian League in hits for the 2012 season. The second baseman has had 63 hits in 195 at-bats, with 34 runs scored. C.J. McElroy Jr. follows behind him closely in eighth place with 56 hits. McElroy Jr. has 211 at-bats and scored 34 runs.

Jeremy Schaffer and Ronald Castillo continue hitting well, too. Schaffer (9) has the most home runs on the team, but Kelly (8) is close behind. Trevor Martin belted out two home runs this week to bring him to third in that ranking, with five total.

Next Week's Schedule

Monday-Wednesday, August 20-22: Johnson City Cardinals vs. Bristol White Sox for five games (Monday will be the completion of July 13's suspended game. Tuesday's extra game will cover the July 11 rainout.)

Thursday-Saturday, August 23-25: Johnson City Cardinals at Burlington Royals

Sunday, August 26: Johnson City Cardinals vs. Danville Braves

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