Yankees Minor League Notebook for April 25th

Jon Lieber throws 7 innings of two hit, shutout ball in Tampa rehab start; Beam fans 10 in only 5 innings of work; Wang tosses 7 innings of 3 hit shutout baseball while walking none and whiffing 10; Navarro is red hot with 7 hits in his lat 9 at bats; Sardinha extends his hitting streak to 14 straight games; Melky is sizzling hot for Battle Creek; Melian the big surprise for Trenton Thunder. All this and more in this edition of Yankees Minor League Notebook.

Columbus Clippers. After beating first place Indianapolis on Saturday, the Columbus Clippers dropped the second game of the series by the score of 6-4. The team's hottest hitter, Caonabo Cosme, continued his offensive tear picking up a single in this one. He is now 12 for his last 22 at bats. He still remains fourth in the International League in hitting at .396. After going cold in his last game, Darren Bragg put up a fencepost in this game and maintained his solid .327 batting average. He also had an RBI in this game. Todd Betts has suddenly fallen into a mild slump for Columbus but did manage to get a single in this game. Betts actually has a 7 game hitting streak but in those 7 games he has only one multi hit game. Brain Myrow had a good game, smacking two hits. Myrow is now 6 for his last 12 at bats with three extra base hits. Mike Vento seems to be coming out of his slump slowly but surely as he got another hit in this game. He rocked a solo home run, his third of the season. Jeff Deardorff remains in his prolonged slump as he went hitless in this one and nears the .200 mark. John Rodriguez's bat also seems to be coming alive again as he picked up two hits including a home run, a triple and an RBI. Buddy Carlyle got the ball for Columbus and pitched 5 innings. Carlyle gave up 3 runs on 6 hits while walking one and striking out four.


Trenton Thunder. Trenton really seems to be playing excellent baseball as of late and this did not change in this game as they crushed Reading 10-2. After being absolutely lost at the plate for about a week straight, Dioner Navarro is suddenly on fire. Navarro has 7 hits in his last 9 at bats and has raised his batting average 118 points since the start of Saturday's contest. In other words, he is really raking it right now. He also had a double and an RBI in this game. Jackson Melian had yet another huge day at the plate, picking up 2 more hits. Melian has been playing himself into the lineup day in and day out. He is now 8 for his last 15 at bats as he had a home run, a triple and 5 RBI in the game! The home run was his third of the year. Aaron Rifkin finally got a hit today but he is still a hideous 4 for his last 35 at bats. He has also seen his once .300 average dip to a lowly .196. His double in this game was a welcome site though. Another good sign for Trenton was that struggling shortstop, Ferdin Tejada got a two hit game and raised his average to .171 for the year. Chien-Ming Wang pitched another excellent game and picked up the win (1-1). Wang went 7 innings, surrendering 3 hits and no runs while walking none and striking out 10! He lowered his season ERA to a team best for starters, 1.53.


Tampa Yankees. The Tampa Yankees may very well be the most talented Yankee farm team of them all and are certainly showing it as of late. They beat Fort Myers again by the score of 2-0. A welcome site was more of a note for the big club in this one. Jon Lieber made his first rehab start coming off his groin injury and was absolutely outstanding. He went 7 innings of shutout baseball, giving up only 2 hits while walking none. This was a very encouraging pitching performance for the organization. The big story to follow on the Tampa ball club are the hitting exploits of Bronson Sardinha. Sardinha has been the teams most consistent hitter all year long. He has pushed his now very impressive hitting streak to 14 games now. He extended his streak with a single in this game. Gabe Lopez is really swinging a good bat as of late as he went 2-5 in this one and is 4 for his last 9 at bats. Lopez drove in both of Tampa's runs. This is after he was in a 4-21 slide. Rudy Guillen has been cooled off as of late but he did manage a single in this game. Shelley Duncan appears to be back on track as he picked up a single in this game. Matt Brumit picked up his first save of the year as Tampa gave their lights out closer, Edwardo Sierra a rest.


Battle Creek Yankees. As a team, the Battle Creek Yankees seem to be very inconsistent especially on offense. They dropped this game to West Michigan by the score of 7-3. The designated hitter, Bryce Kartler was in the leadoff spot in this one and had another hitless day. Kartler is now 1 for his last 11 at the plate and sees his average sitting on .200. It is official, Estee Harris is finally hitting like he is capable of. Harris had three hits in this game and is now 6 for his last 12 at bats. He finally has gotten his batting over .200 (.208). In his return to the lineup, Melky Cabrera also had a good night with two singles. Cabrera is 11 for his last 21 at bats and also extended his hitting streak to 6 straight games. Eric had his first hitless game in who knows how long but he has still hit safely in 13 of his last 15 games. Hector Made had a two hit night as well as he raises his season average up to .286. Perhaps the big story of the night though was the man on the mound, T.J. Beam. Beam went 5 excellent innings, surrendering two runs on only two hits while walking two and striking out 10. Beam has been a victim of lack of run support this year as his record falls to 1-3 as he picked up the loss.

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