The 'Wolves were playing great baseball at Jerry Uht Park last week and that continued on Tuesday in Akron but on Wednesday things took a turn for the worse and the 'Wolves started what would become a season worst four game losing streak. The 'Wolves most recent skid has them four games behind the Harrisburg Senators in the Southern Division.
The SeaWolves have battled inconsistent pitching all season and this week was no different. The 'Wolves pitching staff allowed 28 runs in the four losses this week while allowing only six in the two victories. Luke French gave Erie two good starts this week pitching four innings and earning a no decision in the win over Akron on Tuesday and pitching a seven inning complete game victory in the night cap of Sunday's doubleheader.
The bullpen has looked really good on some nights and other nights they leave you shaking your head. On Tuesday the bullpen pitched five innings and allowed only one hit and one earned run with Brett Jensen earning the victory. In the four losses this week the bullpen allowed 17 hits and nine earned runs in only 12 innings of work. Jensen had his worst outing of the season on Friday pitching one inning and allowing four hits and three earned runs while taking the loss. He has a 3.00 ERA in nine outings and will now be the closer in Erie with Freddy Dolsi getting called up to Detroit.
Brett Jensen wasn't the only reliever who struggled this week. Casey Fien, Danny Zell and Anthony Tomey all had at least one bad outing. Fien pitched only 2 1/3 innings and allowed four hits and three earned runs, including the walk-off home run in the bottom of the eighth in game one Sunday. The entire Erie pitching staff has been inconsistent and their 4.75 ERA is good for the third worst in the league. They have allowed 286 hits and 24 home runs which both rank near the bottom of the league.
While the pitching staff continues to struggle, the offensive continues to roll. The 'Wolves lead the league with a .280 batting average and 185 runs scored. Their 29 home runs are second only to Harrisburg who have 31. Max St. Pierre and Dusty Ryan continue to lead the way. St. Pierre leads the team with a .379 batting average and he is currently on a six game hitting streak. Dusty Ryan is currently on an eight game hitting streak with a .319 batting average and he hit his fourth home run of the season on Sunday. There was never any question as to how good either guy was defensively but nobody expected this type of output offensively from these guys.
The catchers aren't the only ones putting up big numbers, as the outfielders are also hitting well. Wilkin Ramirez picked up where he left off after hitting the game winning home run last Sunday, hitting two more on Tuesday raising his season total to 6. Ramirez was 9-for-25 on the most current road trip raising his average to .313 for the season. His 36 hits are fourth in the entire league and his six home runs are also fourth in the league. Ramirez is also playing fairly well in his second season in the outfield. Deik Scram continues to lead the team with 21 RBI and he has nine multi-hit games. He was 3-for-5 on Sunday and 8-for-19 for the week raising his average to .284.
Freddy Guzman continues to wow people with his speed, leading the league in triples (5) and stolen bases with 14. He is hitting .289 for the season and he has walked 14 times; second on the team behind Scram. Jeff Frazier leads the team in multi-hit games with 10 after going 2-for-4 in game one on Sunday.
Kody Kirkland has been hitting the ball well after starting the season 0-for-28. After his 0-for-28 start he is 17 for his last 51 and hit his second home run of the season this week. His average has climbed to .215 after many questioned whether it would ever reach .200. Kirkland had six RBI on the road trip giving him 15 for the season. Max Leon is still the teams unsung hero, playing in a number of different positions and hitting .316 with a .451 on base percentage.
The 'Wolves will be happy to return home for a seven game home stand that will begin on Monday against the Northern Division leading Trenton Thunder. The four game series with Trenton will be the only time they will visit Jerry Uht Park this season. It will be the first meeting between Erie and Trenton this season. The home stand will continue with a three game set against Harrisburg that will begin on Friday. Harrisburg is ahead of Erie by four games in the Southern division and the season series is 3-3.
News and Notes: Virgil Vasquez was activated off the Toledo disabled list. To make room for him, Jon Connolly was sent back down to Erie, where he'll take the spot that was opened up by Freddy Dolsi getting called up to Detroit. No announcement has been made, but Connolly will most likely move back into the rotation, with Josh Rainwater returning to the bullpen, and Brett Jensen shifting back into the closer's role.