The Johnson City Cardinals were
5-2 this week (33-19 overall). They
remained in second place in the five-team Western Division of the Appalachian
League, two games behind the Elizabethton Twins but nine games ahead of the Kingsport Mets for a
playoff berth. The Cardinals have
the second best record in the league.
I was able to attend one road game and five of the six home games in person this week. I listened to the internet broadcast of the home game I missed. It was called by Brian Boesch of the Burlington Royals on Wednesday night. Those observations provide the basis for this report.
P Chris Patterson, pictured,
has retired from
baseball. He packed up his bags and left for his
P Tyrell Jenkins, the 50th overall
pick (Supplemental 1st round) in the June 2010 First Year Player Draft, arrived
in Johnson City during Saturday's game late this week after signing for a reported $1.3
million bonus on Friday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. Jenkins will become a tandem starter and
is currently expected, assuming no weather delays or other changes, to pitch two
the home stand that begins Wed August 25. Minor League Pitching Coordinator Dyar
Miller is expected to arrive
The roster remains at 30 active players (max of 35).
RF/1B Phil Cerreto was hit on the back of his left hand in the fifth inning against the Elizabethton Twins on July 30. Cerreto missed two games after some swelling and returned to play Monday August 2 against the Greeneville Astros. He was hit again in the left hand in the fifth inning on Friday August 6 but remained in the game and even hit a home run in his only at bat after being hit. Cerreto had a compression wrap on his left hand, wrist, and lower forearm prior to his first missed game on Saturday August 7. Cerreto, pictured, was seen without anything on his left hand on Monday August 9 at Elizabethton. A couple of days later, it was confirmed that Cerreto had fractured his hand.
Cerreto's hand is now in a cast (pictured) and he will be out (no activity with the hand at all) for two weeks from August 10. On August 24, he will be reevaluated. It is expected that he will begin rehab at that time, but he may be done for the rest of the regular season (through August 31). The post-season is still a question mark. Everyone, including Cerreto, is holding out hope that he can return for the playoffs. Amazingly, while playing between the two hit-by-pitches to the hand, Cerreto was named Appalachian League Player of the Week (Aug 2-8) for the second time this year.
P Charllan Jimenez missed his scheduled start on Wednesday August 11 due to sickness. Jimenez is scheduled to return to his normal spot in the tandem rotation on Monday August 16.
P Trevor Rosenthal experienced some pain in his right pitching elbow after his start on July 16. "Rosie" has returned and has looked very strong in his two starts since the off time. He has been paired with Cale Johnson in the piggyback system. Rosenthal will go on the front end of the tandem for one more limited start (four innings/60 pitches). Rosenthal and Johnson will then likely begin rotating their starts.
P Francisco Guzman appeared Monday August 9 in relief after missing eight games in a row. Manager Mike Shildt and Pitching Coach Doug White confirmed that Guzman was healthy and ready to pitch. They just couldn't find a good spot to use him after he appeared in back-to-back games on July 29 and 30.
Team Statistical Review
The first place offense hit above their season average for the second week in a row. After posting a line of .295/.374/.419 last week, they improved to a line of .308/.373/.447 this week. They hit 21 extra base hits in seven games while striking out 51 times. They averaged 5 runs and 10.4 hits per game. They stole four bases this week but were caught five times. They hit four home runs this week to maintain third in that category. The offense is in first place in the league in twelve different categories: batting average (.292), on-base percentage (.361), slugging (.448), on-base plus slugging (.809), at bats, hits, runs, doubles, triples, RBIs, walks, and total bases. Pretty impressive considering all the offense lost with Chris Edmondson, David Medina, and Phil Cerreto.
The defense committed ten errors this week that led to five unearned runs. Pat Daugherty suffered the most, due mostly to his own error, by collecting three of the unearned runs. The season total stands at 82 errors (74 by batters and eight by pitchers) for an average of 1.6 errors per game.
The Cardinals pitching staff's ERA improved for the second week in a row after getting worse for four consecutive weeks prior to that. A 3.57 ERA this week gave them a 4.12 season ERA (sixth in league). The pitchers allowed just three home runs this week in seven games. They are still worst in the league with the most home runs allowed (42). The pitchers allowed just eleven walks (three each from Angel De Jesus and Pat Daugherty) this week in 63 innings pitched. They have the fewest walks (96) through 52 games. Their walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP) was just 1.03 this week. Their season WHIP of 1.28 is sixth in the ten-team league. As a team for the season, the pitchers have grounded out 26.4 percent of the batters they have faced, struck out 22.2 percent, and walked 4.9%. The relievers inherited no runners this week (33 percent scored for season).
After seeing the Cardinals fall
behind 6-1, Taveras hit a bases loaded 0-2 pitch over the left field netting for
a grand slam that tied the game at 6-6 in the seventh inning. Taveras, pictured, then plated a
head-first-sliding Greg Garcia with a one-out walk-off double in the ninth for
an exciting 7-6
The big offensive blow was a three
run home run by 2B Greg Garcia, pictured, that was pulled high over the left
field wall on a 1-0 pitch. The
interesting part of that home run was the previous pitch. With
The Cardinals lost the final game
of the series against the Burlington Royals by a score of 5-1.
On Thursday night,
The Astros' eighth overall and
seventh round picks in the 2010 draft made their Appalachian League debuts with
Greeneville Friday night in
Saturday brought the arrival of
Tyrell Jenkins (pictured) to
NOTE: The scoring problem at Bristol last
Saturday Aug 7 (one less win for Corpas, one more win for Revesz, and one more
save for Corpas – among other minor changes) should be corrected this week.
Greeneville 1 @
Greeneville 6 @
Greeneville 6 @
Tandem Starting Pitchers
Listed below are the pairings. The five primary starters (which usually switches between the two every six days) are limited to around 85 pitches and the secondary starters are limited to around 65 pitches (varies from pitcher to pitcher – i.e. Rosenthal). Six of the pitchers spent time in the Cardinals organization last year (Hernandez, De Jesus, Daugherty, Johnson, Jimenez, and Siegrist). The other four pitchers were drafted during the June 2010 First-Year Player Draft. One of the pitchers will be bumped from the rotation when Tyrell Jenkins enters it. Although I have been told who is out, I am not yet sure that the pitcher knows it yet so it can't be published yet. Sorry!
Tandem Starting Pitchers (10):
LHP Ryan Copeland and LHP Hector Hernandez
RHP Angel De Jesus and LHP Pat Daugherty
RHP Trevor Rosenthal (reduced pitch count) and RHP Cale Johnson
LHP Kevin Siegrist and RHP Charllan Jimenez
RHP Boone Whiting and LHP Jeff Nadeau
Tandem Starter Pitch Counts
8/8: Hector Hernandez: 55 pitches, 37 strikes, 12-for-16 first-pitch strikes.
8/8: Ryan Copeland: 61 pitches, 44 strikes, 13-for-17 first-pitch strikes.
8/9: Pat Daugherty: 66 pitches, 35 strikes, 9-for-18 first-pitch strikes.
8/9: Angel De Jesus: 45 pitches, 28 strikes, 7-for-11 first-pitch strikes.
8/10: Trevor Rosenthal: 41 pitches, 32 strikes, 8-for-10 first-pitch strikes.
8/10: Cale Johnson: 48 pitches, 36 strikes, 7-for-14 first-pitch strikes.
8/11: Kevin Siegrist: 84 pitches, 49 strikes, 14-for-21 first-pitch strikes.
8/12: Boone Whiting: 61 pitches, 43 strikes, 13-for-17 first-pitch strikes.
8/12: Jeff Nadeau: 30 pitches, 21 strikes, 5-for-8 first-pitch strikes.
8/13: Ryan Copeland: 61 pitches, 42 strikes, 15-for-20 first-pitch strikes.
8/13: Hector Hernandez: 65 pitches, 41 strikes, 10-for-18 first-pitch strikes.
8/14: Angel De Jesus: 65 pitches, 44 strikes, 13-for-19 first-pitch strikes.
8/14: Pat Daugherty: 52 pitches, 35 strikes, 8-for-12 first-pitch strikes.
Who's Hot (Hitters)
Seven different hitters hit .333 or better this week. Those hitters are listed below in decreasing order of this week's batting average. Taveras, Hill, Stanley, and Ruiz who each hit between .150 and .250 this week, are listed after the top four due to their top ten listings in the league rankings. Cerreto is still a league leader in a few categories despite falling below the 140 minimum plate appearances required for qualifying for the season averaged categories.
2B/3B Packy Elkins (.281) was 9-for-17 (.529) with two doubles, a home run, and six runs in five games this week. Elkins led the team in all four slash categories: .529/.556/.824/.1.379.
RF Roberto Reyes (.252) was 9-for-23 (.391) with two doubles and a stolen base in six games this week.
2B/SS Greg Garcia (.306) was 10-for-26 (.385) with a double and a home run in seven games this week. Garcia is third in the league in runs (40) and just barely missed the top ten in batting average.
C Travis Tartamella (.304) has really improved his offense this year. This week he was 4-for-11 (.364) with a double and a home run. Tartamella is 15-for-26 in nabbing base stealers (58% caught stealing) with three passed balls and one pickoff.
LF/CF Reggie Williams (.283) was 7-for-20 (.350) for the second week in a row. Williams, pictured swinging in front of an off-speed pitch, hit two more triples this week and is now tied for second in the league with six.
SS Cesar Valera (.205) was
6-for-18 (.333) in five games this week.
All of his hits were singles and he struck out eight times.
DH/1B David Medina (.375) has
returned and is still hitting, although not for power.
LF Oscar Taveras (.319) posted a rather low (for him) .160/.250/.360 line this week in seven games. He appeared to be swinging for the fences a little bit too much although he still collected three walks. Taveras ranks third in the league in RBIs (37) after collecting a team high six this week. He is fourth in the league in both slugging (.552) and OPS (.917). He is fifth in batting average (.319), sixth in total bases (90), and seventh in home runs (7).
C Cody Stanley (.319) was just
4-for-18 (.222) with a team high five walks in five games this week.
Phil Cerreto (.420) didn't play this week but he is still a league leader in four offensive categories. Cerreto is third in RBIs (37), fourth in doubles (15), sixth in total bases (90), and seventh in home runs (7).
3B/DH Romulo Ruiz (.244) was just 3-for-20 (.150) in five games this week as he continues his slide down the team batting average ranks. Despite his struggles, Ruiz ranks second in the league in walks (27), fourth in doubles (15), and sixth in games (48). Ruiz committed two errors for the second week in a row.
OF Virgil Hill (.281) is seventh in the league in walks (20) after walking a team high five time this week in five games.
Who's Not Hot (Hitters)
It was another good team effort
this week for
Who's Hot (Pitchers)
Three pitchers allowed no earned runs this week with WHIPs of less than 1 over at least three innings pitched. Those three are listed below followed by the top ten league leaders in several pitching categories.
Boone Whiting (4-2, 4.30 ERA) allowed two hits and no walks this week (0.40 WHIP) over five scoreless innings pitched. Whiting is eighth in the league in strikeouts (53). Whiting led the tandem starters in both K/9 (12.6) and BB/9 (0.0) this week. He also leads the starters for the season in the percentage of strikeouts per batter faced (28.5) and the percentage of walks per batter faced (2.2). Whiting even made a very nice catch of a foul pop-up near the opponent's dugout this week when neither the first baseman nor catcher was able to track it very well.
Aidan Lucas (1-0, 2.65 ERA) allowed one hit and no walks this week (0.33 WHIP) over three scoreless innings pitched. Lucas leads the league in holds (6) and is second in games (18).
Trevor Rosenthal (3-0, 2.10 ERA) is back, looking strong, and pitching well. Rosie allowed one hit and no walks this week (0.33 WHIP) over three scoreless innings pitched.
Ryan Copeland (6-0, 1.59 ERA) is first in the league in WHIP (0.79), second in ERA (1.59), second in wins (6), and ninth in holds (2). Copeland is pictured warming up before one of his team-high nine innings pitched this week.
Hector Corpas (0-1, 2.18 ERA) recorded another two saves this week. He leads the league in saves (13), games finished (17), and games (19).
Chris Patterson, Drew Benes, Charllan Jimenez, Hector Hernandez, Angel De Jesus, and Jeff Nadeau are among the league leaders in holds.
Who's Not Hot (Pitchers)
Four pitchers posted ERAs of greater than 5.6 and WHIPs greater than 1.25 over three or more innings pitched this week.
Angel De Jesus (2-1, 5.27 ERA, pictured) allowed six earned runs (9.00 ERA), nine hits, and three walks (2.00 WHIP) over six innings pitched this week.
Francisco Guzman (1-0, 5.50 ERA) allowed three earned runs (9.00 ERA) and five hits (1.67 WHIP) over three innings pitched this week.
Cale Johnson (4-4, 4.47 ERA) allowed two earned runs (6.00 ERA) and five hits (1.67 WHIP) over three innings pitched this week.
Hector Hernandez (0-2, 6.03 ERA) allowed five earned runs (5.63 ERA), eight hits, and two walks (1.25 WHIP) over eight innings pitched this week.
Week Eight Schedule
Game 53 (Sun): Rosenthal (4 innings-60 pitches)/Johnson vs. Pulaski Mariners
Game 54 (Mon): Siegrist/Jimenez vs. Pulaski Mariners
Game 55 (Tue): Nadeau/Whiting vs. Pulaski Mariners
Game 56 (Thu): Hernandez/Copeland @
Game 57 (Fri): Daugherty/De Jesus @
Game 58 (Sat): Johnson/Rosenthal @
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