Palm Beach Cardinals Notebook: 2013 Week 10

The Florida State League Cardinals have started to build some momentum for the second half of the season, winning five of their last seven.

June 6th: Palm Beach Cardinals 4 at Tampa Yankees 0

Juan Bautista (1-0) was spot on Thursday night, tossing six innings of run-less baseball, striking out one in the process. Iden Nazario finished the shutout, pitching three perfect racks, striking out three and not allowing a runner on base. He picked up his second save of the season, as the Cardinals extended their winning streak to two games.

Offensively, the Cardinals picked up 10 hits and scored four runs. Anthony Garcia started the scoring with a solo homer in the sixth. The Cards added three runs in the eighth to run away with the contest. David Popkins went 2-for-4 with a run scored, while Garcia added two hits and two RBI.

June 7th: Palm Beach Cardinals 13 at Charlotte Stone Crabs 7 (Game 1)
Charlotte Stone Crabs 4, Palm Beach Cardinals 0 (Game 2)

In a doubleheader makeup for their game postponed on May 30th, the Cardinals wished that they could have carried their offensive explosion from game one to game two.

In game one, the Cardinals connected for 11 hits and scored 12 runs to coast to a comfortable victory. The Beach Birds scored seven runs in their first four innings and then exploded for five runs in the sixth. Garcia provided the muscle, going 2-for-4 with two homers and four RBI, while Colin Walsh, Alex Mejia and Ronald Castillo had two hits each. Travis Miller (1-7) was the beneficiary of a little luck, picking up the victory despite allowing two runs on five hits in 2.2 innings of relief work.

In game two, the Cardinals did not have an answer for Felipe Rivero. The hurler tossed a complete game shutout, stifling the Cards for seven innings despite not striking out a single batter. The Cardinals outhit the Stone Crabs 6-to-5, but three walks and three errors doomed the Beach Birds in the second half of the double dip. Danny Stienstra led the offense, with the lone multi-hit game, 2-for-3.

June 8th: Palm Beach Cardinals 6 at Charlotte Stone Crabs 2

Chasing one run the whole game, the Cardinals scored five unanswered in the final two innings to take the series from the Stone Crabs.

In the top of the eighth inning, the Cardinals sent eight men to the plate, scoring four runs on five hits. Mejia started things off with a single, stole second and scored on a double by Jonathan Rodriguez. Popkins would double in Rodriguez to take the lead, 3-2. Stienstra and Juan Castillo added RBI singles to cap the scoring and give the Cardinals a commanding 5-2 victory.

Jacob Booden (1-0) picked up the win, hurling one scoreless frame, while Danny Miranda collected his first save of the season, tossing two shutout innings.

June 9th: Postponed (rain)

June 10th: Palm Beach Cardinals 4, Dunedin Blue Jays 3

Though no playoff implications were on the line for Palm Beach, the Cardinals handed the Blue Jays a crushing blow to their playoff bid. Leading the North Division by 1.5 games heading into Monday night's action, Dunedin was feeling good about facing the Beach Birds with the potential to clinch.

The Cardinals had other things in mind, as Rodriguez cranked a second inning homer to lead the Cards' to victory. Kurt Heyer (1-1) was impressive, tossing 5.1 innings, giving up two runs and striking out two. He picked up his first victory of the season, as Zach Petrick held off the Blue Jays for his first save of the season.

June 11th: Palm Beach Cardinals 5, Dunedin Blue Jays 4

The Cardinals went on the offensive, scoring five runs on 12 hits. After falling behind 2-0, Palm Beach scored five unanswered runs and fended off the Blue Jays late in the game.

Kyle Hald (2-5) was the victor, picking up his second win of the season, hurling five innings, scattering six hits and allowing two runs. Miranda closed out the game, hurling a scoreless ninth and collecting his second save of the season.

Walsh paced the offense, going 3-for-5 with an RBI and run scored, while Mejia, Stephen Piscotty and Nick Longmire added two hits each.

June 12th: Palm Beach Cardinals 5, Dunedin Blue Jays 3

Tyler Melling (3-2) got a huge lift in the bottom of the first inning, as Rodriguez hit a three-run homer to give the Cards an early advantage. With an early lead, the southpaw was on point, tossing seven innings, allowing three runs on four hits to collect his second win of the season. Ronny Shaban (S, 8) collected the save, tossing two scoreless racks.

Rodriguez added to his huge night, smacking an RBI double in the third. Fellow all-star Piscotty added three hits on the evening and scored two runs. The loss may cost the Blue Jays the North Division first-half title, as they are now tied for first with Clearwater and only a game in front of two other teams.

June 13th: Dunedin Blue Jays 13 at Palm Beach Cardinals 5

In the finale before the FSL All-Star Game, the Palm Beach Cardinals were crushed by Dunedin. Jay Voss (0-2) took the loss, giving up six runs on five hits in 1.2 innings.

Palm Beach did not have an answer for the Blue Jays offense, which pounded out 15 hits and scored 13 runs. Dunedin clubbed three homers, while collecting six doubles on the night. Piscotty, Popkins and Longmire tried to keep it close, picking up two hits apiece, but it wasn't enough.

Miranda Law - Danny Miranda has been dominant in 2013. The left-hander did not allow an earned run for the first 21 innings of the season. The streak was snapped on June 13th, as he gave up three runs on five hits to the Blue Jays. Before then, Miranda had tossed 14 scoreless frame since yielding two unearned runs to the Hammerheads on 5/18.

Power Shortage - Stephen Piscotty leads the Beach Birds with seven homers, but he has not gone deep since May 10th. Despite the power shortage, he is still a threat in the lineup, leading the Cardinals with 97 total bases and second with 28 RBI.

Hey now, you're an All-Star - Piscotty and Jonathan Rodriguez were selected for the 2013 Florida State League All-Star Game, to be held this Saturday night. This will be the first All-Star appearance for both players.

Mighty Mejia - After a sluggish start, going 1-for-23 in his first seven games, Mejia has turned it around of late. In his last seven games, the shortstop is hitting .385 (10-for-26) with one double and five RBI. He has raised his season average from .043 to .224.

Player of the Week - The Florida State League awarded outfielder Anthony Garcia with Player of the Week Award for the period of June 3rd through the 9th. Garcia played in seven games (all on the road) during the stretch and went 11-for-28 (.392) including nine extra-base hits. The 6-foot-0, 190-pound Dominican native collected 10 RBI on three doubles, one triple, and five home runs. Garcia currently sits with nine homers and 31 RBI on the season.

Transactions

6/8/13- RHP Jeff Rauh assigned to Palm Beach from Johnson City
6/10/13- OF Anthony Garcia placed on the DL
6/10/13- OF Nick Longmire added to Palm Beach from Springfield
6/10/13- C Casey Rasmus assigned to Palm Beach from Peoria
6/12/13- RHP Brady Adamek assigned to Palm Beach from Johnson City
6/12/13- RHP Travis Miller assigned to Springfield from Palm Beach

On the Horizon

The Palm Beach Cardinals will have three days off for the FSL All-Star Game festivities. When they return to action on Monday, they will match up against the Fort Myers Miracle for a three-game set.



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