Archive for August, 2009

Walk-Off Celebration

August 29, 2009

Trenton has won 38 times at home now. 13 of those have been of the walk-off variety. 13.

Game 131: New Britain @ Trenton

August 29, 2009

Game 131 – New Britain Rock Cats @ Trenton Thunder
August 29, 2009
Waterfront Park – Trenton, NJ

Pitching Matchup: NB Cole DeVries vs. TRE Jeremy Bleich

Starting Lineups:

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Alejandro Machado, 2B
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Wilson Ramos, C
Juan Portes, DH
Erik Lis, 1B
Brian Dinkelman, LF
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
Justin Snyder, 3B

Nacci was a late scratch…

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): Jeremy Bleich needed to step up tonight.  He did not.  Trenton’s down 2-0 already in the first.  Wilson Ramos just hit a long, two-out double to the deepest part of the ballpark.

Matt Cusick snatching the a single from the jaws of a double by tripping while rounding the corner at first on a hard hit ball down the right field line.  Pretty much sums up the season.  Still 2-0, B1.

31 minute first inning.  31 minutes.  1,860 seconds.  Doubleheader.  Come on.

Edwar Gonzalez drives in Eduardo Nunez in the bottom of the third with two outs…anything resembling a good throw from Rene Tosoni and Nunez is out, but a great slide scores the run and cuts the deficit in half.  2-1, B3.  Really, the Thunder must sweep this doubleheader.  Every game is a must-win now.

And now they’ve tied it on a wild pitch that Ramos couldn’t locate after it bounced behind him.  2-2, B3.

Justin Snyder…wait, Justin Snyder?  Yes, Justin Snyder with a bases clearing double.  5-2, Thunder, B3.  Wow.  Five run third so far.

5-3.  Ramos does it again, this time with a single through the left side.  T5.

Kanekoa Texeira in to pitch the 6th.  Hmmm.  Texeira.  Texeira.  Guy looks familiar.  Has he been used at all this year? 

The line for Bleich: 5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K.  Not bad…but honestly I don’t think he was as decent as the line would indicate.  He’s really struggling out there, but you have to give him credit for keeping them in the game this time around. 

Texeira came in, got one out and put some runners on…odd that he might not be good, considering he seems to have thrown about 1000 innings this year.  Then Jose Valdez came in and was absolutely awesome threw two wild pitches to tie the game at 5.  It’s like they spin a wheel in the clubhouse and whatever new way to lose it lands on, that’s what they go with.  It’s hard to be anything but sarcastic sometimes when covering this team, because they don’t seem to give consistent reason to be confident in them as a whole.  5-5, T6.

Valdez gets out of it, but did manage to tie it up.  5-5, heading into B6. 

7′ 1″ Loek Van Mil into pitch the 7th.  I was in the press box, he was on the mound…we shook hands.  Nice moment.  Pfft.  Anyway, there’s runners on the corners with no outs for the Thunder, and Richie Robnett is being intentionally walked to get to Edwar Gonzalez.  Tie game, B7.  Walk-off?  Yes?

Walk-off indeed.  Van Mil issues a four pitch walk to Gonzalez.  Thunder win, 6-5.  Played in a crisp 2:47.

In-Game Photos:

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

Final Score: 6-5, Thunder.

Thunder Thoughts: Special thanks to one of my loyal readers for sharing a birthday brownie.  ‘Twas good. 

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 131: Pre-Game Notes

August 29, 2009

4:05 PM — Tarp’s on the field, and it’s raining lightly.  Sweet.  Meanwhile, here are your Game 1 lineups…

ROCK CATS

Brandon Roberts, CF
Alejandro Machado, 2B
Rene Tosoni, RF
Luke Hughes, 3B
Wilson Ramos, C
Juan Portes, DH
Erik Lis, 1B
Brian Dinkelman, LF
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

3:50 PM — Richie Robnett has been activated, and Francisco Santana has been sent back to Staten Island.

Damon Oppenheimer is in the house…

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Notes From The Past 48 Hours

August 29, 2009

– It, um, rained a lot.

– Friday night’s game has been postponed and rescheduled as part of a doubleheader that is set to start at 5 PM today.  Thankfully, these would be two seven inning games.  Via the Thunder, fans with tickets to Friday’s game may exchange them for tickets of equal or lesser value to another 2009 Thunder regular season home game OR a game in April 2010, subject to availability.  Ticket stubs may be presented in person at the Thunder Ticket Office at Waterfront Park starting at 9:30 AM on Sunday, August 29.

– Assuming the rotations stay as is, Jeremy Bleich and Zach McAllister will pitch both games.  If you’re interested in top prospects from other teams, New Britain’s Deolis Guerra will toe the rubber on Sunday against Ryan Pope.  Guerra, a Futures Game alum, was one of the key pieces in the Johan Santana trade.

– Eduardo Nunez was named as the shortstop on the 2009 Eastern League Postseason All-Star Team.  In what may be telling as to who wins the 2009 Eastern League Pitcher of the Year, Akron’s Jeanmar Gomez got the nod at the Right-Handed Pitcher slot over Zach McAllister.   

Via the Thunder, the rest of the selections for the 2009 EL All-Star Team are as follows:

1B: Brett Pill (CON)
2B: Brock Bond (CON)
3B: Neil Sellers (REA)
SS: Eduardo Nunez (TRE)
C: Carlos Santana (AKR)
OF: Quintin Berry (REA)
OF: Brennan Boesch (ERI)
OF: Michael Taylor (REA)
DH: Brian Dopirak (NHP)
UTL: Brian Dinkelman (NBR)
RHP: Jeanmar Gomez (AKR)
LHP: Joe Savery (REA)
RP: Anthony Slama (NBR)

Nunez joins the following Thunder players who have been named to the Eastern League Post-Season All-Star team: Phil Coke (2008), Alan Horne (2007), Randy Ruiz (2006), Shelley Duncan (2005), Mitch Jones (2004), Freddy Sanchez (2002), Shea Hillenbrand (2000), David Eckstein (1999), Raul Gonzalez (1999), Dernell Stenson (1998), Adam Hyzdu (1996), Walt McKeel (1996), Carl Pavano (1996), Pork Chop Pough (1995), Nomar Garciaparra (1995), and Tony Clark (1994).

– The Thunder continue to find ways to lose perfectly winnable games.  In this case, the bullpen essentially self-destructed on Thursday night in a 9-4 loss to Altoona.  It was particularly disappointing considering the solid start they got from Lance Pendleton on short rest.

– Trenton has actually performed worse than I predicted they would very early this year, when I suggested they’d finish five or ten games over .500.  Injuries have really, really hurt this team — figuratively and literally — but they just don’t seem to have the overall talent level they’ve had in years past.  Missing the postseason this year would snap a streak of four straight playoff appearances that goes back to 2005.

I seem to remember this post getting a lot of attention…

…and you have to ask yourself, ultimately did things ever get any better?

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Three Down With 13 To Go…

August 26, 2009

(PR) (Altoona, PA)- Altoona scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to stun Trenton 4-3 on Wednesday night from Blair County Ballpark. Trenton has now dropped four games in a row. Trenton remains three games behind New Britain for second place in the Eastern League Northern Divison. New Britain lost to Connecticut on Wednesday night.

Down 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth, Altoona (57-73) scored two runs to win the game. Altoona Center fielder Gorkys Hernandez doubled off of Thunder Reliever Grant Duff to start the ninth inning. With one out, Altoona Third baseman Pedro Alvarez doubled off of Thunder Reliever Wilkins Arias to tie the game at 3-3. Two batters later, Altoona Shortstop Jonel Pacheco singled down the third base line to plate Alvarez with the winning run. Altoona Reliever Scott Nestor (2-2) earned the win by getting the final out in the top of the ninth. Arias (5-4) took the loss for the Thunder, as he allowed two hits and a run in the bottom of the ninth, without retiring a batter.

Trenton (63-66) broke a 2-2 tie in the ninth inning with a run. Catcher Kyle Anson singled to start the top of the ninth inning against Altoona Reliever Daniel Molleken (1-2). Pinch-runner James Cooper moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Center fielder Austin Kurm. A line out by Second baseman Justin Snyder advanced Cooper to third base. Thunder Shortstop Eduardo Nunez drove Cooper in with a two-out single to give the Thunder a 3-2 lead. Nunez had four hits in the loss for the Thunder.

Trenton jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Center fielder Austin Krum led off the game with a single off of Altoona Starting Pitcher Daniel Moskos. Krum moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Second baseman Matt Cusick. Nunez followed with an RBI single to plate Krum and give the Thunder a 1-0 lead. The Thunder added a run in the fourth inning to take a 2-0 lead. With two outs and Nunez at third base, Right fielder Edwar Gonzalez delivered an RBI double to make it 2-0. But, Altoona scored two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to tie the game at 2-2. With runners at first and third base and one out, First baseman Miles Durham drove home a run with an RBI groundout. Later in the frame, Hernandez produced an RBI single to score Durham and tie the game at 2-2. Gonzalez went 3 x 4 with an RBI and a walk in the loss for the Thunder.

Trenton Starting Pitcher Josh Schmidt hurled 3 1/3 innings in a spot start. He allowed two hits and two runs. Schmidt struck out four and walked two. Moskos scattered eight hits and two runs in six innings. He struck out two and walked two. Trenton went 4 x 17 with runners in scoring position, and left 12 men on base. Altoona went 3 x 11 with runners in scoring position, and left 12 men on base.

Trenton and Altoona play the final game of their series on Thursday night. RHP Lance Pendleton (0-2, 4.97) will start for Trenton against Altoona LHP Donald Veal (0-0, 0.00). Game time is set for 6:35 p.m.

Newman’s Talkin’ Trenton

August 26, 2009

Well, sort of.  Chad Jennings — he being the guy whose blog you should be reading about 20 times a day — got a chance to catch up with Mark Newman before tonight’s game in Scranton, and he came away with some valuable information that pertains to many of the organization’s prospects, as well as some players who either are in Trenton now or have seen some time at Waterfront Park this year.

Chad would also frown on a run-in sentence like that, but so be it.

In any event, check it out here.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Thunder Playoff Hopes Dwindle With Loss

August 26, 2009

(PR) (Altoona, PA)- Altoona scored four runs in the second inning, and hung on to top Trenton 4-3 on Tuesday night from Blair County Ballpark. Trenton dropped its third straight game, and third straight in the season-series against the Curve. With New Britain’s loss to Connecticut on Tuesday, Trenton remains three games behind New Britain for second place in the Eastern League Northern Division.

Down 1-0, Altoona (56-73) scored four runs in the bottom of the second inning against Thunder Starting Pitcher Ryan Pope (5-11). Left fielder Jeff Corsaletti connected on a one-out RBI double to score Catcher Steve Lerud and tie the game at 1-1. Center fielder Gorkys Hernandez followed with an RBI double to give Altoona a 2-1 lead. Later in the inning, Third baseman Pedro Alvarez drove home Hernandez with an RBI groundout. First baseman Jason Delaney capped off the scoring with an RBI single. Altoona had five hits in the inning. Trenton chipped away with single runs in the sixth inning and eighth inning. Trenton Designated Hitter Noah Hall had a two-out RBI single in the sixth inning to close the gap to 4-2. Trenton closed to 4-3 in the eighth inning on an RBI infield single by First baseman Chris Malec. Malec had two hits in the loss for the Thunder. But, Altoona Reliever Jared Hughes tossed a 1-2-3 ninth inning to notch his second save for the Curve. Altoona Designated Hitter Ray Chang had three hits in the win for the Curve.

Trenton (63-65) took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Right fielder Edwar Gonzalez reached base on an error by Alvarez to start the inning. He advanced to second base on a groundout by Left fielder James Cooper, and scored on an RBI double by Catcher P.J. Pilittere. Trenton Shortstop Eduardo Nunez had two doubles in the game. He had his team-leading 39th multi-hit game of the season.

Pope allowed eight hits and four runs over five innings to take the loss. He struck out four and walked one. Altoona Starting Pitcher Tim Alderson won his third game in four starts against the Thunder this season. He scattered five hits and two runs (one earned) over seven innings to pick up the win. Trenton Relievers Wilkins Arias and Jose Valdez combined to toss three shutout innings.

Trenton and Altoona play the middle game of their series on Wednesday night. RHP Josh Schmidt (8-3, 1.34) will start for Trenton against Altoona LHP Daniel Moskos (10-9, 3.78). Game time is set for 6:35 p.m.

Taking Every Angle On Zach McAllister

August 25, 2009

You can always check my YouTube account for videos from Thunder games throughout the season.  But here are four videos — which I shot last night — of Zach McAllister pitching from four different angles.

One was shot behind the plate, another from the stands down the third base line, another from inside the visitor’s dugout, and another still from the stands on the first base side.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Pitching Matchups @ Altoona

August 25, 2009

8/25: TRE Ryan Pope (5-10, 4.76) vs. ALT Tim Alderson (8-1, 3.57)
8/26: TRE Josh Schmidt (8-3, 1.34) vs. ALT Daniel Moskos (10-9, 3.78)
8/27: TRE Lance Pendleton (0-2, 4.97) vs. ALT Donald Veal (0-0, 0.00)

Jeremy Bleich would be on pace to take the ball against the Rock Cats when the team comes home for the last time on Friday, August 28th.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Zach McAllister Post-Game Audio

August 25, 2009

Click here to download and listen to Zach McAllister’s post-game chat with Josh Norris and myself.

Listen to his thoughts on his outing, and if he was surprised that he didn’t come back out for the fourth inning after throwing 70 pitches through three.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com


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