Bakersfield Loses in Ninth

In 2012 Steve Selsky spent only a portion of a season at Bakersfield but it looked like that was enough as he blistered Cali League pitching for a monster finish to his season. After a brief and unimpressive start at AA this season he's back there and once again hitting Cali League pitching hard to earn another shot at the higher level.

Things were looking good for Bakersfield after eight innings yesterday as they led visiting Lake Elsinore 5-2 going into the final frame. Unfortunately the Storm was far from over as they rallied for six runs in the ninth and the Blaze lost 8-5. Shane Dyer got no decision from a fine effort. He allowed only one run on four hits over seven innings and handed over a four-run lead. Relievers Ben Klimesh and Carlos Gonzalez were roughed up in the final inning with Gonzalez taking the loss.

Offensively Ryan Wright got things started when he broke scoreless tie in the fifth inning with a two-run single and later scored on a Juan Silva double. The Blaze added on the next inning when Steve Selsky led off with a homer and Juan Perez added an RBI-single. Wright, Perez, and Juan Silverio each had two hits in the contest.

Many prospects enjoy the hitter friendly venues of the California League as they progress in their development and Selsky's name could probably be close to the top of the list. Last season he started out nicely at Dayton, earning a promotion. After that he immediately homered in his first two at-bats and turned a nice season into a monster one, hitting .348/.420 OB /.618 SLG with 15 HR in 69 games. With that stat line there didn't appear to be much left for him to prove at the high-A level and the Reds advanced him to AA to begin this season.

Unfortunately Selsky found the next level challenging and was sent back to prove his 2012 season was no fluke after starting out hitting below .200 in 32 games at Pensacola. He's now doing just that and since his return he's at .315/.406 OB/.560 SLG with ten homers in 45 games. Combining the past two seasons he's a .335 hitter with 25 homers in around 500 plate appearances at the high-A level.

Of course in between those stats is the eyesore he put up at Pensacola. In fairness, he didn't really get an extended chance to prove himself at the level and moved back to Bakersfield after only 99 plate appearances. He could have stood some improvement with his contact but his strikeout rate around once every five plate appearances was in-line with what he'd done at other levels. After a couple of injuries to their outfield the Reds added MLB veterans Luis Durango and Joe Mather to the Blue Wahoo roster to provide more organizational depth in the outfield. Now Yorman Rodriguez, who is on the 40-man roster and a recipient of a large signing bonus is playing regularly for the Blue Wahoos after starting off his season at Bakersfield.

Perhaps after the slow start Cincinnati opted to move Selsky back to a place that would guarantee regular playing time. In order to fit his bat into the lineup he's been moved to first base for most of his action, a position he'd never played at professionally before this season. With his performance against Cali League pitching it figures that it's only a matter of time before the Reds try to figure out a way to give him another shot at the next level.

Another reason to look for an opportunity to promote him again is his age. He'll turn 24 later this month and at that age players are supposed to be hitting single-A pitching. This is only his third season in the Reds organization but he started later than most after completing a senior college season. Originally the Rockies had drafted him in the 34th round in 2010, but he probably felt he could improve his status after another season at the University of Arizona. Instead he suffered through a tough year that was plagued by injury and the Reds found him still waiting with their 33rd round selection the next year.

For now he's doing time awaiting another shot. At least he's doing his time well and providing Bakersfield with nice production until that happens. .300 AVG/.400 OB hitters tend to advance in any system and even though it might not happen until next season Selsky should get another shot to see if he can maintain it in a second trip to the Southern League.

Other Organizational News:

The Reds dropped their first game in a home interleague series against Seattle with a 4-2 defeat. Mike Leake took the loss after allowing four runs in five innings. Three Reds relievers combined for four scoreless frames to end the game including Curtis Partch who threw two of them. Offensively Joey Votto led the Reds with two hits including a solo home run in the sixth inning. Devin Mesoraco reached safely twice with a hit and a walk and scored the Reds first run on a fifth inning double by Shin-soo Choo.

Daniel Corcino got the start for Louisville and allowed runs in only one of his seven-plus innings pitched. Unfortunately Columbus erupted for seven runs in the second inning in Louisville's 7-3 defeat on the road. Corky Miller had a couple of hits for the Bats and Felix Perez reached with a double and a walk while driving in a run and scoring once.

Pensacola's home game against Jackson was postponed by rain.

Dayton took their game against visiting Bowling Green into extra innings before losing 4-1 in ten. Drew Cisco got not decision from an outstanding effort, allowing only one unearned run and one hit with four strikeouts and no walks in six innings pitched to lower his ERA to 3.74. Jesus Adames relieved him with two-plus innings over which he was not charged with a run. Alejandro Chacin entered in the ninth and allowed three in the next inning for the loss. Seth Mejias-Brean had two doubles, a walk, and scored the lone Dragon run. Sammy Diaz stroked a couple of hits to raise his average to .338 during his time with Dayton this season.

Billings scored two runs in the eighth inning, but it was not enough in their 4-3 home loss to Missoula. The first two hitters in the Mustang lineup, Jonathan Reynosa and Ty Washington both had two hits while Jon Matthews and Jhimmy Lopez both reached twice with a hit and walk apiece. Ben Lively took the loss for allowing three unearned runs in three innings pitched and still has a zero ERA after three appearances. Austin Salter finished the game with three scoreless innings.

The AZL Reds allowed seven runs in the third inning and never really threatened after in their 11-3 loss at the AZL Indians. Juan Martinez got the start and was lifted in the third and charged with six runs and the loss. Leadoff hitter Kevin Garcia had two hits for the Reds including a home run to lead off the game. Corey Thompson hit a solo homer in the third that gave his team a brief lead. Logan Uxa reached safely three times with a hit and a couple of walks.

The DSL Reds committed five errors and allowed the game-winner in the eighth inning in a 3-2 loss at the DSL Orioles1. Three Reds pitchers made appearances and allowed only one unearned run each. Pedro Damian got the start and threw four innings. Luis Gonzalez relieved him with three frames before Joyce Hernandez took the loss for tossing the eighth. Hector Vargas had two hits and two RBI for the Reds to raise his average to .337.

The DSL Rojos committed four errors and allowed five runs over the first two innings in their 7-6 loss at the DSL Mets1. Pabel Manzanero had three hits, an RBI and scored twice. Francis Azcona added two hits and drove in two while raising his average to .380. Starter Warlin Pena threw only one inning and victimized by three unearned runs for the loss.

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