Johnson City Cardinals Notebook: 2012 Week 10

The Cardinals have clinched second place in the Appalachian League West Division and the resulting playoff spot.

The Johnson City Cardinals currently have the third-best record in the Appalachian League at 38-27, a winning percentage of .585. The Cards, after a slugfest win Sunday evening, have locked up second place and the final playoff spot in the West Division. The Elizabethton Twins clinched the division and the best record in the league with a .667 percentage. Two games remain in the regular season before the playoffs begin against the Burlington Royals.

Monday, August 20, Johnson City 3, Bristol 1; Johnson City 6 at Bristol 3

Johnson City began their last regular season series against Bristol this week with two wins in a double header.

They managed nine hits in the first game with C.J. McElroy Jr., Gerwuins Velazco and Ronald Castillo each suppling two. Ildemaro Vargas, Carson Kelly and Dutch Deol picked up a hit as well. McElroy Jr., Velazco and Deol accounted for the three runs. Castillo singled in the second, scoring Velazco. The last two runs came in the third inning. Vargas singled to left and Deol scored. While Jeremy Schaffer grounded into a double play, McElroy Jr. scored.

Thomas Lee (3-4, 3.77 ERA) faced 26 batters in 7 IP and only allowed the one earned run, giving him the win. Sam Tuivailala (H, 3, 3.27 ERA) and Ronnie Shaban (S, 15, 3.20 ERA) pitched an inning apiece to close out the game.

In the second game, the resumption of the suspended game from July 13, the Cards had seven hits, with Vargas, Schaffer and Velazco roping two hits each. Kelly contributed the other. Bristol took the lead quickly in the first inning, but the Cardinals fought back and tied the game in the fifth inning. Velazco belted a line drive, scoring Castillo and Vargas. McElroy Jr. was plated in the fifth off a single by Schaffer. Johnson City rallied in the ninth for three runs for the win.

Joey Donofrio (1-1, 0.00 ERA) pitched the last three innings, earning the win. Zach Petrick (3.07 ERA), Thomas Lee (5.27 ERA) and Willy Paulino (0.00 ERA) also saw time on the mound. Petrick pitched the first four innings, giving up three earned runs off four hits. Lee and Paulino pitched one inning each.

Tuesday, August 21, Johnson City 2, Bristol 0; Johnson City 1, Bristol 3

The White Sox and Cardinals battled in another double header on Tuesday. Johnson City walked away with one win. Each game was seven innings.

The Cards had nine hits in the first game. Adam Ehrlich went 3-for-3, and Jeremy Schaffer, 2-for-3. Ildemaro Vargas, Ronald Castillo, Cesar Valera and Carson Kelly contributed hits as well. Schaffer tripled in the third to score Ehrlich for the first run of the night. The last came in the fifth inning when Vargas was plated by Ehrlich.

Silfredo Garcia (4-2, 2.93 ERA) earned the win pitching all seven innings. He only allowed four hits and no runs in his very impressive outing.

The Cards lost momentum in the last game, losing 3-1. Leandro Mateo, Michael Knox and Gerwuins Velazco accounted for the three hits. The Cards one run came in the second inning. Knox scored when Trevor Martin grounded out and first baseman Alex Williams made a throwing error.

Juan Bautista (2-5, 5.73 ERA) took the loss. In 6 IP, he allowed the White Sox two earned runs from five hits. Jeff Rauh (5.48 ERA) relieved him for the remaining inning. He gave up one earned run.

Wednesday, August 22, Johnson City 9, Bristol 0

Johnson City met up with the White Sox once again on Wednesday, and won yet again. They had 13 hits and the team went 7-for-10 with RISP.

Every starter except for Michael Knox contributed at least one hit, but Knox had one RBI and two runs scored. The Cards started off the game with four runs in the second inning. Ronald Castillo hit a sacrifice fly to center, plating Knox. Ricardo Lizcano then singled to score Carson Kelly. C.J. McElroy picked up two RBIs from his double (10) to left. Lizcano and Cesar Valera scored. The remaining five runs were supplied in the eighth inning. Vargas scored off a wild pitch by Jose Brito. Knox grounded into a force out. Ehrlich scored. Kelly doubled, scoring Knox. Castillo singled to left, bringing in Valera for the last score of the game.

Zach Petrick (5-0, 2.17 ERA) earned the victory. He gave up four hits, but no runs in 6 IP before being relieved by Cesar Aguilar (S, 1, 3.70 ERA) who notched his first save of the season by closing out the game with only one hit and no runs.

Thursday, August 23, Johnson City 3 at Burlington 6

After the five-game series against Bristol, the Cardinals traveled to Burlington. The club did not open the series well in a disappointing loss to the Royals.

Willy Paulino (1-1, 5.40 ERA) took the loss. In 6 IP, he allowed Burlington six earned runs off six hits, two of which were home runs. Jacob Booden replaced him for the last two innings. He had one walk and three strikeouts to finish out the game.

Ronald Castillo went 3-for-4. Ricardo Lizcano and Jeremy Schaffer contributed two hits each. The remaining hits were supplied by C.J. McElroy Jr. and Adam Ehrlich. Bruce Caldwell hit a sacrifice fly to score Ehrlich in the fourth. Lizcano belted a line drive to right in the seventh, plating Castillo. Castillo singled on a ground ball to center in the ninth. Caldwell scored for the last run of the night.

Friday, August 24, Johnson City 6 at Burlington 5

The Cardinals had a tough battle against Burlington in the second game of the series, but managed to win by one run.

Bruce Caldwell blasted two home runs and picked up five RBI. He went 3-for-4. Ildemaro Vargas supplied two hits and Adam Ehrlich contributed one. Caldwell began the game right for Johnson City in the first inning with a grand slam to right field. He scored Vargas, Ehrlich and Jeremy Schaffer. Cesar Valera hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Caldwell in the fourth. Caldwell homered again in the sixth inning for the last run of the night.

Victor De Leon (3-0, 2.91 ERA) pitched six innings to secure the win. He allowed three runs (one unearned). Sam Tuivailala (H, 4, 4.50 ERA), Roberto Canache (H, 1, 0.00 ERA) and Ronnie Shaban (S, 16, 3.05 ERA) followed. Tuivailala allowed two earned runs in 1 IP before being replaced by Canache. Shaban took the save.

Saturday, August 25, Johnson City 5 at Burlington 1

The Cardinals fought hard again on Saturday night, winning 5-1. They had eight hits for the night.

C.J. McElroy Jr., Gerwuins Velazco and Bruce Caldwell had two hits. Ildemaro Vargas and Carson Kelly supplied a hit. Four of the five runs were plated in the first inning. Caldwell singled on a line drive to center. McElroy Jr. and Vargas scored. Kelly then hit a line drive to center as well, scoring Jeremy Schaffer. Ronald Castillo hit a sacrifice fly to center to plate Caldwell. Caldwell scored again in the third when Velazco grounded into a force out. That was the last run of the game.

Stalyn Lopez (4.43 ERA) and Joey Donofrio (4-2, 1.26 ERA) both pitched four innings. Donofrio took the win, just giving up one hit and no runs. Lopez allowed one unearned run and three hits. Jeff Rauh (5.24 ERA) pitched the remainder of the game. He allowed one hit and no runs.

Sunday August 26, Johnson City 15, Danville 7

The Cards ended their week with a big win against the Braves as they knocked out 20 hits on the night.

Ildemaro Vargas singled in the first to score C.J. McElroy Jr. Gerwuins Velazco grounded into a force out, which allowed Vargas to score. However, Danville was leading by two runs until the Cards scored four runs in the third inning. Vargas belted his 15th double of the season to begin the inning. C.J. McElroy Jr. Vargas then scored off a throwing error by third baseman Seth Moranda. Bruce Caldwell doubled to left, plating Jeremy Schaffer. Caldwell then scored when Carson Kelly grounded into a double play.

Johnson City rallied in the sixth for six more runs. Ronald Castillo doubled, scoring Cesar Valera. McElroy Jr. doubled soon after. Trevor Martin and Ronald Castillo scored. Vargas singled allowing McElroy Jr. to score. Schaffer slammed out a home run, plating Vargas as well. Vargas singled in the seventh, bringing Martin home. The last two runs were scored in the eighth inning. Castillo singled to right. Velazco scored. Leandro Mateo singled on a line drive to left, plating Valera for the final run.

Thomas Lee (4-4, 4.03 ERA) earned the victory. In 6 IP, he gave up just four earned runs on nine hits. Cesar Aguilar (4.10 ERA) and Roberto Canache (0.73 ERA) followed. Aguilar relieved Lee for two innings and gave up two earned runs. Canache allowed one run in the last inning.

Hot and Cold Players of the Week


Zach Petrick (2.17 ERA) now holds the eighth spot in the Appy League for most wins in the 2012 season with five. He earned one win this week against Bristol. In his six innings of pitching, he gave up no runs. He now has a spotless 5-0 record.

Juan Bautista (2-5, 5.73 ERA) and Willy Paulino (1-1, 5.40 ERA) both picked up losses this week. Bautista pitched six innings against Bristol and allowed two earned runs. Paulino lost to Burlington. He gave up six earned runs from six hits in 6 IP.


Ildemaro Vargas (.324 average) is third in the league. The second baseman leads the team with 41 runs scored during the 2012 season and has the most hits (73). C.J. McElroy Jr. (65) and Jeremy Schaffer (62) follow closely behind. Jeremy Schaffer has belted out ten home runs.

Michael Knox is lower on the scale for hits and runs. Knox has had 14 runs and 14 hits in 87 at-bats this season. Of the 14 runs Knox has contributed, four were home runs.

Next Week's Schedule

Monday-Tuesday, August 27-28: Johnson City Cardinals vs. Danville Braves (End of regular season)

Wednesday-Friday, August 29-31: The playoffs begin at home against the Burlington Royals for game one with games two and three in Burlington on Thursday and Friday nights. The winner of the three-game series will take on either West Division Champion Elizabethton or East Division second-place team, either Danville or Princeton, in the finals.

Follow me on Twitter @KFernandez0524.

© 2012 The Cardinal Nation, and All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Cardinal Nation Top Stories