Mets Minor League Notebook - April 21st

Binghamton, St. Lucie, and Capital City all lost in their opponents' final at-bats; David Wright's extra-base power was wasted by Binghamton's bullpen; St. Lucie falls in 16 innings; and Ian Bladergroen's 4th home run in six games could not lead the Bombers to victory. All this and much more in Wednesday's edition of the Mets Minor League Notebook.

Norfolk Tides: The Tides were off Tuesday and begin a quick 5-game home stand Wednesday, starting with three games against the Durham Bulls. Norfolk (5-5) is one game out of first place behind the Charlotte Knights (White Sox) and Durham Bulls (Devil Rays). 2B Danny Garcia will look to improve on his current four game hit streak. After a slow start this year Garica has hit .313 (5-16) during his streak to raise his average to a somewhat respectable .250 average. Someone other than Craig Brazell and Victor Diaz is going to help pick up the offensive slack for the Tides. Garcia, Rodney Nye, and Raul Gonzalez have combined for just 5 RBI in the last 5 games.

J. Diaz
Diaz: Last 9 IP: 0 Hits, 8 BB, 10 K's.
Binghamton Mets: RHP Jeremy Hill and the Binghamton Mets could not hold a 5-2 lead in the ninth inning Tuesday as the New Britain Rock Cats scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth to win 6-5. Hill surrendered all four runs (three earned) to pick up his second loss in his last three relief appearances. He's walked five batters in his last 4 1/3 innings and spoiled another gem from starter Joselo Diaz. For the second straight start, Diaz allowed no hits! He walked four and struck out two in his four innings of work. In the last nine innings, Diaz has given up zero hits, walked eight, and struck out ten batters to lower his season ERA to a miniscule 0.71. 3B David Wright broke out of a mini 0-6 slump by going 2-4 with a double and his second home run of the season. Wright's 11th double of the year leads the entire AA-Eastern League, six more than the next highest total in the league. His .717 slugging percentage is second only to New Britain's Jason Kubel (.750).

Two streaks came to end in the loss. CF Prentice Redman went 0-5 to end his six-game hit streak. OF Wayne Lydon had his six-game hit streak snapped as well, going 0-2 Tuesday, but did manage to steal a base to give him four straight games with at least one stolen base (8 SBs in 4 games). Binghamton closes out their 7-game road trip Wednesday night against New Britain before heading home for a 6-game home stand starting Friday.

St. Lucie Mets: It took 16 innings Tuesday for the St. Lucie Mets to eventually fall to Jupiter 3-2 to drop 1/2 game out of first place in the East Division of the Florida State League. The two teams combined for 26 base hits, but only four extra-base hits as each club had two doubles. LHP Ryan Olson spoiled eight shutout innings of relief by the bullpen, giving up two hits and an intentional walk before serving up the game winning hit to Charles Frazier. Olson, who has now given up a run in three straight relief appearances, relieved David Byard who three more innings of scoreless relief Tuesday. In 10 2/3 innings this season, Byard has not allowed any earned runs and has walked just one batter. RHP Luz Portobanco allowed just one hit in his 3 2/3 innings of work and now has thrown 8 2/3 scoreless innings of relief since his Opening Day meltdown. Portobanco has given up just four hits and has not allowed a walk during this stretch.

3B Aaron Baldiris and OF Alhaji Turay each chipped in with three hits. Turay extended his hitting streak to six games and stole his second base of the season. Baldiris' three hits extended his mini-hit streak to four games and is hitting .375 over his last six games to raise his average to .326 on the year. One streak Baldiris is fighting? He has not gotten an extra-base hit in his last eight games.

Capital City Bombers: RHP Celso Rondon could not pick up the save in the Bombers' 6-5 loss to Kannapolis Tuesday. Rondon served up a two-run, walk-off home run to Charlie Lisk in the bottom of the ninth. Rondon has had a nightmare beginning to the season, giving up seven earned runs in his first four relief appearances. RHP Tanner Osberg has another solid start Tuesday, allowing just one earned run while scattering seven hits through five innings. Osberg has walked just two batters this season but opposing batters are hitting .290 off of him thus far.

In what is quickly becoming "old" news, DH Ian Bladergroen (2-4, HR, RBI) was the offensive star for the Bombers, homering in his fourth game in his last six played. 3B Shawn Bowman (1-5) extended his hitting streak to six games in his final at-bat with the go-ahead RBI single in the ninth inning before Rondon's blown save. While Bladergroen, Bowman, and Tyler Davidson have thrived at the plate, 2B Blake Whealy has struggled mightily. Whealy went 0-3 Tuesday, his fourth game out of his last five without a hit to lower his average to .154 for the season. Whealy has struck out 7 times in his last 16 plate appearances.

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