Yankees Minor League Notebook for April 29th

Mike Vento on fire for Columbus after a very slow start; Beal solid in 5 innings of work; Bronson Sardinha hit streak counter now at 18 straight games; El Duque leaves his rehab start in Tampa after one inning due to shoulder stiffness but is still scheduled for his next rehab start; Kenny Lofton rehabbing in Tampa as well; Shelley Duncan blasts 5th homer of the year; Battle Creek crushed 20-0 and nearly no hit by Kane County. All this and more in this edition of Yankees Minor League Notebook.

Columbus Clippers. The Columbus Clippers dropped yet another game to the Toledo Mudhens by the score 0f 7-4. They did get a break out game out of Darren Bragg though. Bragg had a 2-3 evening as he raised his season batting average to .323. in his previous 19 at bats, Bragg had only 3 hits (.157). Caonabo Cosme kept his hot stick going as he stroked a single. He is now 16 for his last 37 at bats. Caonabo has probably been the most consistent hitter for Columbus so far this season batting out of the two spot. After a horribly slow start in which it seemed he could not buy a hit for a few weeks, Mike Vento is about as hot as a hitter can get. Vento had another multi hit game, going 2-5 with an RBI. Vento is now 11 for his last 18 plate appearances. He now has a steady .314 batting average. The catcher, Sal Fasano made his return from the disabled list and made his presence known by poking a single and racking up to RBI. Jeff Deardorff continues to slowly pull out of his tailspin as he slapped a single in this one and is now 5 for his last 11 at bats. Andy Beal was on the hill for the Clippers and he had an excellent outing. Beal went 5 innings, surrendering 1 run on 5 hits while walking 2 and striking out none.

Trenton Thunder. The Trenton Thunder took this game from Akron by the score of 3-2 in a well pitched, well played game on all sides. To get things going was Sean Henn who pitched brilliantly on Thursday. Henn went 6 innings, giving up two runs on 7 hits while walking one and striking out six. Sean Henn has been superb most of the season and has an impressive 2.78 season ERA.. Despite his efforts, Henn only got a no decision in this game. At the plate, Kevin Reese is really starting to heat it up again. For the third straight game, Kevin Reese had a multi hit game performance as he poked two hits in 5 at bats on Thursday. It seems that the hot streak of Dioner Navarro has dwindled as he has gone hitless in his last two games. Mitch Jones continued his strikeout problems as he went hitless in four at bats and also fanned two times. The team's tow hottest hitters, Jackson Melian and Andy Phillips were both silenced in this game. Phillips did have an RBI though despite his hitless evening. Very quietly, Jason Grove is putting up good numbers as he blasted his 3rd homer of the year on Thursday and he is now batting a solid .306 for the year.


Tampa Yankees. The Tampa Yankees got a couple special visits in this game from a place from above. They had visitors from the big club, Kenny Lofton and Orlando Hernandez who were rehabbing for their returns to the Bronx. Hernandez started the game and went only one inning. He was experiencing stiffness in his throwing shoulder but is expected to make his next rehab start. In his one inning, El Duque did not surrender anything, no hits and no runs. The rest of the game was turned over to the bullpen. Benjamin Moore got the win in the Tampa victory by the score of 7-3. Kenny Lofton was also playing in the game preparing for his return to New York, batting leadoff. Lofton went 1-4 with a run scored. With another huge night was Bronson Sardinha, picking up three hits. Sardinha extended his amazing hitting streak to 18 straight games. Again, Shelley Duncan was the big producer for Tampa, knocking in three runs to add to his farm system leading total and smashed his 5th home run of the season (2nd in the system). Tommy Winrow was finally cooled off as he went hitless in the game. Previously, he was 6 for his last 9 plate appearances.


Battle Creek Yankees. In almost all aspects of the game, this was a game to forget for the Battle Creek Yankees team. They got absolutely squashed by the Kane County Tigers by the final score of 20-0 as they pounded out 22 hits. The starter for Battle Creek was Tyler Clippard and the score speaks for itself as far as his performance is concerned. Clippard was pummeled in only two innings of work, surrendering nine runs on ten hits. He took the loss as his record drops to 1-2. However, it was not nearly all to the fault of the BC pitching performances. The offense was just as awful in this game. As a matter of fact, the offense was non existent until there was one out in the ninth inning. Erold Andrus broke up Steve Bondurant's no hitter with one out in the ninth inning. But that would be all they would get as Bondurant pitched a complete game and struck out 14 BC Yankees. Melky Cabrera was shut down on Thursday after going 16 for his last 30 at bats. Melky and just about everyone else was completely shut down in this game. They face Kane County again on Friday and will look, every one of them, to get themselves and their bats back on track.


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