Archive for September 15th, 2010

ELCS Game 2: Post-Game Quotes

September 15, 2010

I might throw up a few notes afterwards, but here’s what Dellin Betances and Tony Franklin had to say after tonight’s 6-4 loss…


“I was falling behind too many guys.  I was down 2-0, and the next thing you know, I walked three leadoff guys.  I had too many walks.  I don’t know, my stuff just wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be.”

“I was just opening up too much, but it’s no excuse.  I just wanted to have a good game.  I wish I could have given the team a chance to win.  I just fell behind too many guys.  Too many walks.  There was a wild pitch.  I hurt myself.  It was just a bad game overall.”

“I don’t know what’s going on right now (with my fielding).  I’m going to go to instructs to work on some stuff.  I need to make those plays, and that’s probably one of the reasons that we lost this game.”

“It’s just a thing now (the fielding).  I don’t know why I’m not throwing good to bases.  But I’ve got to fix it.  I’m going to go to instructs and work hard on that.”

“My changeup’s been working all year.  Today, I felt like my changeup was (expletive deleted).  I just felt like I walked too many guys.  At these levels, you can’t fall behind too many guys.  If you throw fastballs, they’re going to attack it.  That’s what happened, I gave up two home runs.  That’s a thing I have to take on next year.”

“Both (home runs) were on fastballs that caught too much of the plate.  I fell behind on the first guy, and it caught to much of the plate.  Second guy, I fell behind and gave him a fastball, and that’s what guys do on this level.  It was just a bad game overall.  I didn’t have my changeup…I just couldn’t get it for a strike, so they were laying off of it.”

“I felt like being healthy is key.  I stayed healthy throughout the year and I feel good.  This was just one of those days.  I wish I could have got a win for the team, but we’ve got Warren and Banuelos, so hopefully we’ll end it in four.”


“He had some trouble throwing to the base, that’s about it.  The one bad inning, it hurt him.  It hurt us.  Other than that, we were pretty good.  We tried to bounce back offensively and did a great job after that; pitching and getting ourselves out of some jams.  But yeah, it was that one bad inning.  It was an errant throw that did it.  You look back at that, you say that’s the ballgame right there.”

“We are a PFP practicing team and organization, and we think it’s a major part of the game for the pitchers.  If we executed it…which we have done pretty much all year, we’ve been in good shape with that, but we didn’t do it tonight.”

“Everyone needs to get better at PFP.  There are some guys that field their position extremely well; D.J. Mitchell comes to mind.  You’ve really got to lock in some things.  Get your feet set, make some throws, and understand how quick you have to be to make those plays.  They’re not easy plays to make, but they’re important plays to make, and if you don’t, the outcome of the game is generally changed.”

“He needs to be better, I will acknowledge that.  If you make a couple of errant throws, balls that get away…you’ve got to be better at that.”

“We got a win here.  We had an opportunity for two, we just didn’t pull it off here.  We didn’t play well enough to get the second one.  But we’ve got a three-game series at home, at our place.  I feel OK about that.”

“Two home runs gets us back in it, I was starting to feel pretty good about it.  But it’s a testament to the guys in there.  They don’t quit, they battle.  We did it tonight, but we just fell short.  When Hankins came in, I gave no thought to the fact that we may have been hitting him well all year.  But as it turns out, we did and we continued to do so.  Sometimes, you have success against a particular pitcher or pitchers and it works out in your favor.  We did a decent enough job to get back in it.”

“Absolutely, it’s pretty much a no-brainer (that you have to get to the Curve before Moskos comes in).  Moskos is tough.  He’s not going to give you a heck of a lot to hit, and he didn’t tonight.  I’ve always said there’s no surprises, you know what you’re going to get, and it’s going to be pretty good from Moskos.”

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT

Mercer’s Two Home Runs Lead Curve Past Thunder, 6-4; Series Tied 1-1

September 15, 2010

Boosted by two Jordy Mercer home runs, the Altoona Curve defeated the Trenton Thunder, 6-4, and evened the best-of-five Eastern League Championship Series at one game a piece.

Dellin Betances started for the Thunder and struggled, allowing five runs (four earned) on four hits and four walks over 5 2/3 innings.  Back-to-back eighth inning home runs by Dan Brewer and Austin Romine off of Curve reliever Derek Hankins brought the Thunder to within one, but Mercer’s second longball of the night off of Trenton’s Josh Schmidt gave the Curve a much-needed insurance tally.

Game 3 will take place tomorrow night at Waterfront Park at 7:05 PM.  Stay tuned for post-game reaction here on the blog…

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT

ELCS Game 2: In-Game Updates

September 15, 2010

Top 1st — Jeff Locke retired Austin Krum and Justin Snyder in order, but Dan Brewer singled and stole second to put a runner in scoring position for Austin Romine.  But Locke struck Romine out…0-0, going into B1.

Bottom 1st — Dellin Betances gave up a solo, one-out home run to Josh Harrison to give Altoona a 1-0 lead heading into T2…

Top 2nd — 1-2-3- inning for Locke…1-0, Curve, going into B2

Bottom 2nd — Betances walked Andrew Lambo to lead off, but retired Hector Gimenez and got Jim Negrych to ground into an inning-ending double play…1-0, Curve, going into T3.

Top 3rd — Luis Nunez leads off the inning with a double, and Austin Krum drives him home on a double of his own…it’s a 1-1 game going into B3.

Bottom 3rd — Well, that went bad quickly…Dellin Betances got kind of lost this inning.  He fielded a bunt and promptly threw the ball away past first base, allowing a run to score.  Another scored on a wild pitch, and then Jordy Mercer crushed a Betances offering over some fencing they’ve set up in left center field to make it a 5-1 game…

Top 4th — Locke strikes out the side..he’s dealing right now.  5-1, Curve, heading into B4.

Bottom 4th — Betances recovers and strikes out the side as well…but Trenton still trails, 5-1.

Top 5th — The Thunder couldn’t capitalize on a huge opportunity.  Justin Snyder’s RBI single was all they got, and they trail, 5-2.  Dan Brewer walked on four pitches to load the bases with two outs, but Austin Romine grounded out to end the threat.

Bottom 5th — Outstanding play by Matt Cusick…saves Betances from giving up a run.  Altoona had a runner on third with nobody out, but he stayed there…Cusick made a great diving stop on a two-out ground ball and fired to first just in time to make the play.  5-2, Curve, going into T6.

Top 6th — Marcos Vechionacci singled to lead off the sixth, but Locke retired the next three batters in order to keep this a 5-2 game.

Bottom 6th — Betances is out after 5 2/3…Arias in…and he struck out the only man he faced.

Top 7th — 1-2-3 inning for Locke.  Again.  He’s got the Thunder on…Locke-down.  5-2, Curve ahead.

Bottom 7th — Josh Schmidt in for the seventh…and he K’s the side.  5-2 game, Curve ahead, going into T8.

Top 8th — Derek Hankins came in for Altoona, and Dan Brewer and Austin Romine quickly took him out.  Two first pitch home runs cuts the lead to 5-4…Daniel Moskos in to attempt a four-out save…and he strikes out Matt Cusick for out #1 of 4…

Bottom 8th — Jordy Mercer takes Schmidt deep to left with one out…6-4, Curve…Trenton’s got one last shot.

Top 9th — Austin Krum led off with a single and stole second…but Justin Snyder and Dan Brewer flew out.  Austin Romine came up and struck out to end the game.  6-4, Altoona win.


Dellin Betances



Dan Brewer

Austin Romine

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT

ELCS Game 2: Pre-Game Notes

September 15, 2010

5:45 PM — Sounds like Cory Arbiso is in line for a Game 5 start, if necessary…



Austin Krum, CF
Justin Snyder, 3B
Dan Brewer, RF
Austin Romine, C
Marcos Vechionacci, 1B
Rene Rivera, DH
Damon Sublett, LF
Luis Nunez, SS
Matt Cusick, 2B

Dellin Betances, P


Chase D’Arnaud, 2B
Josh Harrison, 3B
Jordy Mercer, SS
Matt Hague, 1B
Andrew Lambo, LF
Hector Gimenez, C
Jim Negrych, DH
Miles Durham, RF
Anthony Norman, CF

Jeff Locke, P

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT

ELCS Game 1: Post-Game Notes

September 15, 2010

— You see games like the one the Thunder played last night, and you have to wonder if it’s just destiny at this point.

Trenton pitched its way in and out of huge jams in Game 1, and came out on top after Austin Romine shot a little flare to right center field off of Bryan Morris to score Austin Krum and put the Thunder ahead for good over the Curve in the tenth inning…

“I’ve faced Morris all year,” Romine told me.

“Morris loves throwing me cutters and loves throwing me curveballs.  I was sitting on a curveball the entire at-bat.  You could tell me the first swing, I had curveball timing, curveball everything.  I swung and missed horribly on the first one, so I was like well, he’s going to throw it again.  He left it up a little bit.  I was able to put a little bit of wood on it, but not all of the good part of it, and I got lucky.  It fell in.”

Romine’s single came a few frames after another base hit sent Krum charging towards the plate, only to have him thrown out at the plate to end the inning.

“It was kind of funny how it turned out the same way,” Romine said.

“(Hitting coach) Frank (Menechino) was joking with me when Krum got thrown out, he said you hit it too hard.  I said, ‘All right, I’ll work on that.’  So it just worked out. I hit it softer and he got to score.”

— Andrew Brackman is a large man.  But he also came up large last night, shutting down Altoona over the final five innings to pick up the win in relief of Andy Pettitte.  Brackman says it was a bit difficult adjusting to his new, one-time role of coming out of the bullpen…

“I was a little nervous,” he said.

“I just wanted to make sure I was warm before I got out there.  Coming out of the pen, you don’t know how much time you have, so I just tried to make sure I was ready to go back on the mound.”

The 40-man roster righty has allowed just three runs in his last 38 innings and will inevitably carry a lot of momentum into the 2011 season.  He says there’s a lot of reason for excitement…

“I still don’t feel like I was in college,” he said.  “I definitely think there’s more in the tank.”

— Dellin Betances is a large man.  Reporters are at risk of Tommy John surgery during every interview, overextending arms to try to reach the towering righty for an interview.  Thankfully, he obliged when approached by the traveling group of Trenton reporters when  asked about his Game 2 start later today…

“It’s a different game just because it’s the championship, but you’ve got to take the same mentality and try to attack the zone early and just give your team the chance to win,” he said.

Betances was outstanding in his first playoff start, but says there’s no momentum to be had from that.

“To be honest, I actually forgot about that,” Betances said.

“I’m just focused on (today) and just trying to go out and throw strikes and give the team a chance to win.” 

— The Thunder are a loose bunch.  Even Wilkin De La Rosa had time for a smile when Wilkins Arias grabbed Trentonian reporter Josh Norris’ recorder and joined in on the group interview with De La Rosa.  It hasn’t been an easy few weeks for De La Rosa, who has been the subject of a Major League Baseball investigation on his possible use of B-12 and was removed from the Yankees 40-man roster to add Steve Garrison, who ultimately never joined the Thunder as was the plan.

“I’m happy to be back,” De La Rosa said.  “That way, I can try to help the team to get a championship.  That’s all we want.”

“In this organization, it’s hard.  If you don’t do your job, they’re going to find somebody else.  I just want to get another opportunity, maybe next year, and come back and try to show something better.”

Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT