Our exclusive weekly report on the 2007 edition of the Single-A Palm Beach Cardinals from our on-site beat reporter in Jupiter, Jim Rutledge. Right-handed starter Adam Ottavino is the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week.
An interesting week was headlined
by the first of what is expected to be multiple starts from former Cy Young
Award winner Chris Carpenter. The Palm Beach Cardinals were 3-3 this week with
two of their wins coming on one day and two of their losses to division-leading
Brevard County (Brewers).
Beach hitters gave starter P.J. Walters
more than enough run support in the Cardinals 8-1 rout of
Sarasota. The scoring was highlighted by
Allen Craig's towering home run to left and Jon Jay's first home run of the
season, a rocket to right. P.J. Walters kept Reds batters off balance mixing his
fastball and breaking ball to perfection, enabling him to strike out nine in
eight shutout innings. Michael Cooper came in to pitch the ninth and after
giving up back to back hits, Cooper settled down and retired the next three
batters he faced.
Thursday - Brandon Buckman may have
finally found his stroke in the Cards' 8-5 loss to the Reds. Buckman was on fire
going 3-for-5 including a home run to right. Dan Nelson was equally impressive
going 3-for-5 with two runs batted in. Starter Fernando Salas struggled with his
control, pitching just over two innings, giving up five runs on six hits and
walking two. Reliever Matt Trent looked sharp in his two innings of relief,
allowing only one run in two innings pitched.
Saturday - As every
Florida resident knows, rain is
inevitable this time of year. After a rain out on Friday, the Cardinals finished
their series against Sarasota with a double header on Saturday.
The Cards must have read their scouting reports a few extra times on Friday
because they ripped apart Reds starters during Saturday's game one 17-5 victory.
Craig got things started early, hitting his league leading 17th home run deep to
dead center field and the big third baseman stayed hot driving in a total of
five runs. Isaias Garcia drove in three runs, while Nathan Southard, Rapoport
and Jay drove in two each. Tyler Norrick was his usual dominant self, mixing his
hard slider and strong fastball to strike out seven in 5 2/3 innings. Jon Mikrut
came on in relief and gave up two runs on three hits.
In the second game, Adam Ottavino
had to put the Cards' hitters on his back. Ottavino tossed six dominant innings
allowing only six hits while striking out five. He was relieved by Luke Gregerson, who tossed a scoreless ninth en route to his 17th save of the season.
Craig hit a line drive RBI double to left in the first for his only hit and the
Cards' only run of the game.
Beach kicked off their four-game series
with Brevard County with a 6-3 loss to the Manatees.
With the score tied 3-3, a rare bad outing by Gregerson proved to be the Cards'
undoing. Gregerson walked one and gave up three runs on three hits in the ninth
and picked up just his second loss of the season. The Cards got on the board
early. After a single by Craig and a double by Rapoport, Nelson stepped in the
batters box and ripped the first fastball he saw - a line drive to right,
driving in both runners.
Tuesday - After Monday's rainout,
anticipation was in the air as Chris Carpenter made his first rehab start for
the Palm Beach Cardinals. Carpenter showed flashes of his old self, mixing a
strong fastball with solid breaking balls en route to striking two of the eleven
batters he faced. Unfortunately, Carpenter did have trouble when the other nine
batters. He gave up five runs on five hits, taking the loss as the Cards were
defeated 7-3 by Brevard County. Matt Trent and Trey Hearne
combined for just under six innings of solid relief, allowing only two runs on
four hits. Craig, Buckman and Brandon Yarbrough each had two hits during the
second game of Tuesday night's doubleheader was suspended due to rain.
had a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning when play was halted. The game
will be resumed later at a time to be determined.
Hot - Since being called up,
outfielder Jon Jay is hitting .313 with one home run, two doubles and three runs
batted in. The lefty out of the University of Miami seems right at home back in
Not - Catcher Brandon Yarbrough has
only five hits in his past 29 at bats, for an average of .172. Yarbrough has
struck out nine times in the past ten games, but on the positive side, he has
drawn five walks and has two runs batted in.
-- 07/02 - Adam Ottavino named
Florida State League Pitcher of the Week.
-- 07/02 - Pitcher
Chris Carpenter assigned to Palm
on a rehab assignment.
-- 06/30 -
Beach - Loaded pitcher
Fernando Salas to Saltillo of the Mexican
-- 06/30 - Quad
Cites - Sent pitcher Eddie Degerman to Palm
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