Archive for August, 2009

Wordekemper, Sanchez Up To Scranton

August 31, 2009

– Eric Wordekemper and Humberto Sanchez have been called up to Scranton.  No word on who replaces them.

– New Britain will be losing players as well…

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 134: New Britain @ Trenton

August 31, 2009

Game 134 – New Britain Rock Cats @ Trenton Thunder
August 31, 2009
Waterfront Park – Trenton, NJ

Pitching Matchup: NB Matt Fox vs. TRE Jason Stephens

Starting Lineups:

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Erik Lis, DH
Wilson Ramos, C
Brian Dinkelman, LF
Steve Singleton, 2B
Whit Robbins, 1B
Yancarlos Ortiz, SS

THUNDER

Austin Krum, CF
Matt Cusick, 2B
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Chris Malec, 1B
Richie Robnett, DH
Edwar Gonzalez, RF
P.J. Pilittere, C
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B
James Cooper, LF

Radio Links: Click here for the links to each team’s broadcast.

Live Box Score: The MILB.com direct link is here.

Around the Eastern League: For scores from around the EL, go here.

In-Game Updates (LIVE from the ballpark): Rene Tosoni with a two-out, run scoring single up the middle in the third…New Britain leads, 1-0, T3.

Eduardo Nunez with a line drive home run to left field…ties the game, 1-1, B4.

Richie Robnett with a long home run over the video board in right…an absolute shot and one of the hardest hit homers I’ve seen here all year.  2-1, Thunder, B5.

Excellent start out of Jay Stephens…seven innings of quality work.  Grant Duff in with the season essentially on the line here in the 8th.  Still 2-1, T8.

2-2.  Brian Dinkelman ties it up with an infield single.  Amazing.  2-2, T8.

376,102 is where the Thunder end up at with attendance this year…most other teams would be happy with that, but this is the first time since 1994 they’ll end below 400,000 people.

Chris Malec with a two-run triple to the left center field gap.  Didn’t think he had that kind of speed.  It’s 4-2, B8.

In-Game Photos:

hall

Noah Hall wins the Samuel J. Plumeri Community Service Award

malec

And Chris Malec wins the Hamilton Jewelers Fan Favorite Award

malec2

Malec adds his signature to the bat that features the names of every player to ever win the award, which has been given out since the club’s inception in 1994.

In-Game YouTube Videos: Check out my YouTube account for videos updated throughout the game…

Final Score: 4-2, Thunder

Thunder Thoughts: Back to being one game back of a spot

Game 134: Pre-Game Notes

August 31, 2009

5:45 PM — Lineups…

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Erik Lis, DH
Wilson Ramos, C
Brian Dinkelman, LF
Steve Singleton, 2B
Whit Robbins, 1B
Yancarlos Ortiz, SS

THUNDER

Austin Krum, CF
Matt Cusick, 2B
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Chris Malec, 1B
Richie Robnett, DH
Edwar Gonzalez, RF
P.J. Pilittere, C
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B
James Cooper, LF

4:55 PM — As expected, Ryan Baker was placed on the DL to make room for Jason Stephens.

3:45 PM — I don’t really want to address the stuff about myself any more than I have to with this being an important time for the team.  So I’ll keep all of that to the comments…

3:25 PM — Someone was asking me about this yesterday…there would be a one-game playoff if New Britain and Trenton finish in a tie for the final playoff spot.  The only way a tie-breaker would be used is between two teams that are already in the playoffs — i.e. deciding a tie for first place in a division, etc.

However, a tie-breaker would be used to determine which team would have home field advantage in the one-game playoff.  That tie-breaker is head-to-head record, and New Britain and Trenton are currently 8-8 against each other.

Also, each team only has eight games remaining, including this one.  Each team “lost” a date this year, so they will each only play 141 games.  Trenton is currently two games back of New Britain.

2:40 PM — Just got here a little while ago, there doesn’t seem to be much going on. 

As for me, yes the rumors are true and this may very well be my last Trenton Thunder game.  I had a whole little paragraph or two written out, but it really isn’t worth the explanation.  So I’d expect the updates to be a little light as I attempt to enjoy what may be last time here for a while.

I have, to some extent anyway, enjoyed my time here over the past six years — particularly the last two with this blog.  But I honestly can’t tell you whether I’ll be back for a seventh.

As for the blog, it will continue through the regular season, any playoff action and at least some part of the off-season.  My primary focus is with my current employer, the Hunterdon County Democrat, and I will be continuing to be providing content for them, so I’d might as well continue to provide content here as well.

But with the way things are going in the industry, I’d be foolish not to consider looking elsewhere or at an entirely different line of work all together.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 133: Post-Game Notes (With Audio)

August 30, 2009

– Essentially, today never happened.  The Thunder started the day two games back of New Britain for second place — and the last playoff spot — in the division.  A win of the conclusion of the suspended game put them just a game back, but a loss in the seven inning “second game” put them right back where they started.

“We could have done ourselves a lot of good,” said Thunder manager Tony Franklin.

“That’s the way it goes sometimes.  But yeah, we could have been sitting pretty good.”

Had things not gone their way in the first game, though…they could be sitting…uhhh, even worse than they are now.

“The biggest question mark I had coming into today was if we were going to finish off the first game, and get that win,” Franklin said.

“That would have been a tough one to lose.”

– The loss of the second game boiled down to a play at the plate, where New Britain broke the game open in the sixth inning.  With the bases loaded and two outs, Steve Singleton singled home Luke Hughes on a somewhat hard hit ball to left.  Erik Lis was sent home by the third base coach, but James Cooper made a strong throw that easily beat Lis.  But Lis slid hard into Thunder catcher Kyle Anson, knocking the ball loose and allowing him to score.  Furthermore, with the ball rolling around by the backstop, Brian Dinkelman followed Lis home and made it a 5-1 game.

With Austin Krum having went on to hit a two-run homer in the seventh inning, those two runs ultimately turned out to be the difference in the game.

When approached at his locker, a polite but quiet Anson had very little to say about the play.

“I didn’t hold on to the ball,” he said.

“It was just a matter of just not holding onto the ball, guys.  I’ve got nothing else.”

Franklin was asked if it would have been a different ballgame if Anson was, in fact, able to hang on to the baseball.

“Yes, absolutely.  There’s no question about it,” he replied.

“Kyle felt bad about it, he came in and apologized.  It’s a tough play.  All you can do is move on, it happens from time to time.  He one-handed it and tagged him one handed, and when he did that, the ball flew out.  He didn’t have it secure with both hands.  That’s what you want to try and do, but I think the play was where the ball was on his left and he had to bring it back to the right, and he really didn’t have a chance to do it.  Tough play.  But I can’t fault Kyle for that.”

– No real word on what Jason Stephens taking Josh Schmidt’s scheduled start tomorrow does for Schmidt’s status.  Is he eligible for one of the “TBA” starts?  Does he stay in the bullpen?

As for Stephens, he last pitched on August 25th, a six-inning start for Tampa.  So tomorrow would be his day to pitch.  He is not yet officially active on the roster, however.  A move will need to be made.

– Before the game, Franklin, as expected, offered little in the way of his plans for the 2010 season and if a return was something he’d consider.

– I also spoke to Tony before the game about if he manages any differently at this point of the season considering the somewhat dire situation the club is in.  Download this audio clip to hear what he had to say.

– Chad Jennings has got a story posted about some possible September call-ups, including some interesting information on players who need to be added to the 40-man to be protected from the Rule 5 draft.  I’ve been asked a few times now about how that might affect Trenton, and outside of maybe losing one or two players, I don’t anticipate anything major.  Thing is, this team can’t afford to lose anyone.

– Stay tuned for the transcript of the lengthy chat that Trentonian colleague Josh Norris and myself had in the Thunder dugout today with Damon Oppenheimer.  It was my first time interviewing him, and hopefully not the last.  Really good guy.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 133: New Britain @ Trenton

August 30, 2009

Game 133 – New Britain Rock Cats @ Trenton Thunder
August 30, 2009
Waterfront Park – Trenton, NJ

Pitching Matchup: NB Deolis Guerra vs. TRE Ryan Pope

Starting Lineups:

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Erik Lis, DH
Brian Dinkelman, 2B
Steve Singleton, SS
Juan Portes, LF
Whit Robbins, 1B
Danny Lehmann, C

THUNDER

Austin Krum, CF
Matt Cusick, 2B
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Chris Malec, 1B
Richie Robnett, DH
Edwar Gonzalez, RF
Kyle Anson, C
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B
James Cooper, LF 

Radio Links: Click here for the links to each team’s broadcast.

Live Box Score: The MILB.com direct link is here.

Around the Eastern League: For scores from around the EL, go here.

In-Game Updates (LIVE from the ballpark): Thunder are trailing, 2-0, heading into B2.  Looks like Pope got his somewhat typical bad frame out of the way in the first.

Pope at around 75 pitches through four…2-0, B4.

Oh noes!  Austin Krum with a triple down the right field line that scores James Cooper and cuts New Britain’s lead to one.  2-1, two outs, B5.

Ryan Pope gets on the Popemobile and leaves to a polite round of applause after another decent outing marred by one rough inning.  100p/66s for Pope.  Wilkins “Arias 51″ in the game now, and yes…that is my second likely to be failed attempt at getting that nickname to stick.  2-1, T6.

Aaaaaaaaand Steve Singleton with the significant dent in the Thunder’s playoff hopes.  Arias loaded the bases with a walk, and then gave up a bases clearing single to Singleton…the second run scored when the runner knocked the ball away from catcher Kyle Anson, and the third scored as the ball and perhaps the season was rolling away…it’s now 5-1, T6.  Don’t really think anyone has too much confidence in Arias right now.

Oh noes again!  Austin Krum with a two-out, two-run shot down the right field line in the bottom of the 7th to make it a 5-3 game.

In-Game Photos:

anson

Kyle Anson

guerra

Deolis Guerra

guerra2

Guerra

guerra3

Guerra

nunez

Eduardo Nunez

sanchez

Humberto Sanchez

sanchez2

Sanchez

sanchez3

Sanchez

snyder

Justin Snyder

In-Game YouTube Videos: Check out my YouTube account for videos updated throughout the game…

Final Score: 5-3, Rock Cats.

Thunder Thoughts:

Game 133: Pre-Game Notes

August 30, 2009

– Spoke to Zach McAllister before the conclusion of last night’s game…he said he took the line drive off of the meaty part of his shin and is fine.  His lower left leg was wrapped.

– Jason Stephens is here and will now start tomorrow, in place of Josh Schmidt.  Stephens is not yet active, but I’d expect one of the catchers to be deactivated to take his place, if I had to guess.

– Both Paul Bush and Wilkin De la Rosa were throwing before the game.

– With their win in the completion of the suspended game, the Thunder improve to 65-67 and just one game back of second place New Britain.  With a win in uhhh…game two, they’d enter a tie with the Rock Cats.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 132: New Britain @ Trenton (Continued)

August 30, 2009

Game 132 – New Britain Rock Cats @ Trenton Thunder
August 29, 2009
Waterfront Park – Trenton, NJ

Pitching Matchup: NB Ryan Mullins vs. TRE Zach McAllister

Starting Lineups:

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Erik Lis, DH
Brian Dinkelman, 2B
Steve Singleton, SS
Juan Portes, LF
Whit Robbins, 1B
Danny Lehmann, C

THUNDER

Austin Krum, CF
Matt Cusick, 2B
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Noah Hall, LF
Chris Malec, 1B
Edwar Gonzalez, RF
P.J. Pilittere, C
Kyle Anson, DH
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B

Radio Links: Click here for the links to each team’s broadcast.

Live Box Score: The MILB.com direct link is here.

Around the Eastern League: For scores from around the EL, go here.

In-Game Updates (LIVE from the ballpark): I looked down for maybe a minute.  Zach McAllister had finished his first inning by the time I looked up.  0-0, B1.

So um, this Tony Franklin guy…seems to be a good manager.  Marcos Vechionacci was supposed to play game 1, but was scratched for Justin Snyder.  Snyder hit a three run double in game one.  Here in game two, Vechionacci just hit a solo homer to left field to give Trenton a 1-0 lead.  1-0, B3.

McAllister just got absolutely nailed by a line drive in the leg.  You could hear it from up here.  He seems to be fine, though.

Mister Clutch!  Edwar Gonzalez scores on a P.J. Pilittere RBI double down the right field line.  Thunder are up 2-0 now, B4.  Rain is coming, though…

ONE OUT AWAY FROM AN OFFICIAL GAME.  RAIN DELAY.  THUNDER WERE UP 2-0.

1:03 PM, Sunday — Humberto Sanchez induces a pop-out to third, and we now have an official game…2-0 still, heading into B5.

Daniel McCutchen, big leaguer.  Good for him.

Luke Hughes with a long, no doubt home run to deep center field off of Humberto Sanchez in the top of the 7th.  Now, things are a bit precarious.  2-1, Thunder, one out, T7.

In-Game Photos: From game 1…

z-arias

Wilkins Arias has a pre-game chat with James Cooper…

z-bleich

Jeremy Bleich

z-cooper

Cooper

z-devries

Cole DeVries

z-machado

Alejandro Machado

In-Game YouTube Videos: Check out my YouTube account for videos updated throughout the game…

Final Score: 2-1, Thunder

Thunder Thoughts: One game back of a possible playoff berth.

Betances Out After Tommy John Surgery

August 30, 2009

Just had a great 15-minute chat with the Yankees Vice President of Scouting, Damon Oppenheimer.

He confirmed that Dellin Betances underwent Tommy John surgery several days ago and is rehabbing in Tampa. 

There’s TONS of great info from this interview as well, but that’s the big one.  Stay tuned in the coming days for great stuff about the Yankees most recent draft class, many of the current prospects and so on.  Great, great stuff.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Updating Game 132, For Real This Time

August 30, 2009

12:00 PM — Jay Stephens is in the clubhouse, but apparently isn’t active.  There are two TBA’s in the upcoming rotation though, so you figure it out…

10:45 AM — Humberto Sanchez “starts” “game one” today.  Ryan Pope will start the “second game” as scheduled.  That’ll be seven innings, not nine.

Somewhat of a disaster last night.  They didn’t end up banging the game until a little before 12 AM, which is way too late to keep people without making some sort of a decision.  The radar apparently changed a few times — so the Thunder were merely doing all they could to try to play the game — but still, that’s way too late to keep people and ultimately a bad job.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Updating Game 132…Well, Sort Of

August 29, 2009

I am home.  Apparently, the tarp is still on the field and no decisions has been made regarding the game yet, which is…somewhat deplorable, if I’m being honest about it.

Bang it, don’t bang it, whatever…but it shouldn’t take this long to make the decision.

It’s obviously a huge game for both teams, but if they can just suspend it and finish it up tomorrow, I don’t really see what the need is to make everyone wait around at this hour — it’s 11:30 PM as I write this.

My alarm’s set for 8:30 AM tomorrow, and I will be at the ballpark.  I just have no idea how many innings I’ll be covering.  Check out the Thunder website for any updates on tonight’s game and what may happen tomorrow if tonight’s second game is suspended.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 52 other followers