Archive for June 13th, 2009

Game 60: Post-Game Notes

June 13, 2009

— If you were looking for Tony Franklin to deliver a inspirational speech between games…uhhh, keep looking. If you were, however, looking for him to deliver a closed-door, profanity-laced tirade that could be heard by anyone within earshot of the clubhouse…check.

“You figure out some things to help you become a better baseball player, that’s what I want them to do,” said an animated Franklin.

“Don’t keep doing the same damn things over and over again, and then keep accepting them as OK. It’s not OK. That performance out there today was not OK. But they’ll come in and they’ll eat and they’ll go, and it’s OK. And it’s not OK with me, and I don’t want them to think it’s OK.

— Ryan Pope started…but didn’t. He prepared before the game as though he was going to start, but 15 minutes after he ordinarily would after conceding to Brian Bruney for the first frame.

“I don’t think that had anything to do with it,” Pope said.

“I just left some pitches up, and they hit them. They capitalized on mistakes, that’s what happens.”

— Brian Bruney’s ho-hum outing, at least on the field, was somewhat of an afterthought after Franklin’s…ummm, speech.

“I think he pitched well,” Franklin said.

“He came in and did exactly what he needed to do. He completed his assignment.”

Jesus Montero caught Bruney and seemed to think he pitched pretty well.

“I thought he was pretty good,” Montero told me.

“He was throwing a lot of strikes, and he told me he felt really good. He got everybody out real quick.”

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

K-Rod To Bruney: “I Don’t Even Know Who That Guy Is.”

June 13, 2009

That’s the response Pete Abraham got from Mets reliever Francisco Rodriguez about the rather fast-spreading controversy regarding Brian Bruney’s in-game comments here in Trenton…

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Brian Bruney Quotes (Featuring A K-Rod Rip)

June 13, 2009

1:45 PM — Brian Bruney in-game quotes…

On last night’s Yankee game: “Unbelievable, I’ve never seen anything like that. I have, but in high school. Couldn’t have happened to a better guy on the mound, either. He’s got a tired act. I think that’s bad, but two years ago, when he lost the game…I don’t know if anybody saw it, I did. He was in Oakland and he was pitching for Anaheim, didn’t get a call, and so he was like complaining. The catcher threw it back and he just kind of did one of these (Bruney half-heartedly holds his arm out) and hit off his glove and bounced behind and the guy from third scored and they won the game. He gets what he deserves, man. I just don’t like watching the guy pitch. I think it’s embarassing.”

Rehab Stuff: “I think I was getting pretty close to getting activated without going on a rehab. Just because we’re kind of short on arms. It was important for me to face hitters, just because it’s kind of a different gear than throwing live BP or bullpens or anything like that. I think everything came out well and everything felt good. I think the next step will be rejoining the team.”

“I felt good. I did what I wanted to do, attack hitters and pitched in the zone. I threw all my pitches. I was just looking to just throw and make sure it felt good.”

“I don’t think I want to be out there much longer than that. I think if you throw strikes and attack hitters, 12 (pitches) is a pretty good number. I was happy about that. I think if I’m out there throwing 25 pitches, I’m probably not very sharp. It was important that I did have a relatively low count, that means I was throwing the ball effectively.”

“I would doubt (I get activated tomorrow), just because I threw today and they’ll probably want to give me a day to see how it feels. We have an off day on Monday, so I’ll probably re-join Tuesday.”

“I think I showed enough in my bullpens, and I threw I live BP in Boston…I think I showed enough. I think it was four total bullpens and live BP, so I think I showed enough in there to where they had some confidence in me to where they could put me in a game and get people out. But ultimately, they wanted to see me in a game setting before I got back.”

“Part of me wanted to come, and part of me wanted to re-join the team, obviously. Any competitive athlete would want to try to help right away and I’m pretty competitive, so I wanted to throw with the team a month ago. But we had to take it easy and let it play out and that everything was good.”

“I had a strained flexor mass, which is not a good thing, especially being a pitcher. Just a strained muscle. I first noticed it…I threw a game against, I believe it was Oakland. There was a home run that Posada hit, and it took quite a long time to review the replay. I think I threw a lot of pitches that day, and the next day I had to come back and pitch again. I noticed it warming up. The whole time, it wasn’t a pain that I couldn’t pitch (with), it was just annoying and you don’t want to feel anything. You want to feel good all the time. It was every pitch, and I had to say something just hoping to get a few days off. We got an MRI and it showed the muscle flare.”

“I think every pitcher has experienced some stiffness or tightness or soreness of some sort, and you’ve got to know between sore and hurt. Every time you feel something, you can’t just say I feel something in my arm, I can’t throw. That would be all the time. It’s a long season, it’s 162 games, and you’ve got to be counted on to go four or five times. Sometimes you’re going to go out there when you don’t feel good, or it’s hurt or it’s sore. I didn’t think it was hurt, so I kept pitching. It turns out it was hurt.”

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Brian Bruney Audio, Photos and Videos

June 13, 2009

Downloadable AUDIO of Bruney’s K-Rod comments…

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Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Brian Bruney Updates

June 13, 2009

1:20 PM — Bruney is DONE after one inning and 12 pitches.  He did not allow a hit, nor did he strike anyone out.  A riveting performance.  Ryan Pope is out to start the second.

1:15 PM — Bruney threw 12 pitches in the first inning; 8 strikes and 4 balls.

Two pitches to Emmanuel Garcia, two to Jose Coronado, and then eight to Josh Thole.

I saw one of Bruney’s fastballs on the gun, and it was at 94 MPH. Videos, photos and whatnot coming. Stay tuned.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 60: Binghamton @ Trenton

June 13, 2009

Game 60 – Binghamton Mets @ Trenton Thunder
June 13, 2009
Waterfront Park – Trenton, NJ

Pitching Matchup: BNG Tobi Stoner vs. TRE Brian Bruney (Rehab)

Starting Lineups:

METS

Emmanuel Garcia, CF
Jose Coronado, SS
Josh Thole, C
Lucas Duda, 1B
Shawn Bowman, 3B
D.J. Wabick, DH
Josh Petersen, LF
Matt Watson, RF
Ruben Tejada, 2B

THUNDER

Reegie Corona, 2B
Noah Hall, LF
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Chris Malec, DH
Jesus Montero, C
Richie Robnett, RF
Kevin Smith, 1B
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B
Justin Snyder, CF

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): Ah, there’s a game going on. With the circus that erupted after Brian Bruney’s comments, I missed quite a bit of updating.

Ryan Pope started the second inning and picked up Bruney…he was good early, but struggled late and gave up a long solo home run to Salvador Paniagua in the 5th and got nailed for three more runs in the 6th. J.B. Cox now in to make his Thunder debut for the ’09 season.

In-Game Photos:

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

Final Score: 4-0, Mets.

Thunder Thoughts: That Tobi Stoner’s first career shutout and first complete game since 9/4/06.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Game 60: Pre-Game Notes (Bruney Starting)

June 13, 2009

12:00 PM — Bruney will either throw one inning, or the more likely scenario is him throwing about 25 pitches.  I’ll have all the info and pictures and videos and so on…

11:00 AM — Brian Bruney is STARTING game one. I’ll have more in a little bit on what the plan is for him.

Lineups…

METS

Emmanuel Garcia, CF
Jose Coronado, SS
Josh Thole, C
Lucas Duda, 1B
Shawn Bowman, 3B
D.J. Wabick, DH
Josh Petersen, LF
Matt Watson, RF
Ruben Tejada, 2B

Tobi Stoner, P

THUNDER

Reegie Corona, 2B
Noah Hall, LF
Eduardo Nunez, SS
Chris Malec, DH
Jesus Montero, C
Richie Robnett, RF
Kevin Smith, 1B
Marcos Vechionacci, 3B
Justin Snyder, CF

Brian Bruney, P

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Mike, Tell Me More About Richie Robnett

June 13, 2009

OK, valued reader.  With pleasure.

I picked up my copy of the 2005 Baseball America Prospect Handbook, and didn’t need to turn too many pages to get to Robnett’s spot among Oakland prospects.

Signed for $1.325 million — the highest bonus Oakland awarded that year and at the time just outside of their five highest ever — Robnett was rated as being the best athlete of Oakland’s 2004 draft class and as having the potential for the best raw power.

He was listed as Oakland’s 9th best prospect at the time.

Robnett’s draft status apparently rose after a strong showing against Rice’s feared trio of Philip Humber, Jeff Niemann and Wade Townsend while he was at Fresno State University.  The publication lists Robnett as having “a tantalizing combination of power and speed,” and that “the ball makes that special sound coming off his bat.”

Flip open the 2006 Baseball America Prospect Handbook, and Robnett has fallen to 13th on their list of A’s prospects.  They point out that his first full pro season was marred by 40 more strikeouts (151) than hits (111), but that after some second half adjustments, he hit 14 home runs in last 60 games.

Robnett is criticized for “bad jumps and poor routes” to balls, and says he’s already lost a step since college.

In the 2007 Baseball America Prospect Handbook, Robnett is listed as the organization’s 11th best prospect.  According to the book, “scouts outside the organization frequently put Robnett at the top of their follow lists because his tools stand out in the system.”

However, they criticize his pitch recognition skills and his subsequent propensity for the strikeout, as well as continuing to harp on his inconsistent routes to balls and “other fundamentals.”

The 2008 Baseball America Prospect Handbook, in which Robnett is rated as Oakland’s 15th best prospect, also starts with a promising lead: “Robnett’s name surfaces frequently during trade talks, as other clubs obviously value his wide base of skills.”

His participation in the 2007 Texas League All-Star Game would serve as a testament to that.

Robnett was added to Oakland’s 40-man roster before the start of the 2008 season, but BA now cites him for a “lack of patience” and “a poor two-strike approach.”  Outside of that, all the claims about his “huge raw power” remain intact.

Open the 2009 Baseball America Prospect Handbook and look for Robnett…and well, you’ll have to keep looking.

Robnett, now 25 years old, hit only four home runs in 83 games between Double-A and Triple-A last year with Oakland, who eventually gave up on him and dealt him to the Cubs in exchange for Michael Wuertz in February.

Robnett struggled in both Double-A and Triple-A with Chicago, and was released in late May.  He was not playing anywhere when the Yankees called…and voila, now he’s wearing #26 for the Trenton Thunder.

Hopefully, I’ll be able to talk to him tomorrow and ask him a few questions about his past and what he hopes to accomplish here in Trenton.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com

Bruney Tomorrow. No, Seriously.

June 13, 2009

Pete Abraham reports that Brian Bruney will pitch in the first game of tomorrow’s doubleheader in Trenton.

I was reading Bryan Hoch’s blog (6/11 game thread), and found it interesting that Bruney seemed to think he wouldn’t have to rehab this time around…and considering there was a lot of talk he’d just get activated tomorrow, he almost got his wish

No idea how this affects which pitcher — Ryan Pope or Josh Schmidt — starts which game, or whether one doesn’t start at all.  Rather obviously, Thunder Thoughts is the place to be for all the Bruney info you’re going to want.  Keep checking back tomorrow for all the latest.

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com