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Not much action in the minors last night --- New Haven and Dunedin were rained out again, while Charleston didn't play -- but there are some scores to report, along with odds and ends of news. To start with, the Futures Game Rosters have been released, and two Jays prospects will be on the World squad, New Haven's Alexis Rios and Guillermo Quiroz. Those two guys are part of what some prospect-watchers are calling the best team in the entire minor leagues.

Elsewhere, the John-Ford Griffin trade was finally completed when Toronto sent Dunedin first baseman Jason Perry to Oakland. You may recall Perry ripping apart the Pioneer League last summer (a 1.300 OPS) before jumping to the FSL, where he started slow but was coming around nicely: his stats at deal time were .304/.356/.422 in 135 AB (11 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR) and a 10/32 BB/K rate. The Jays' farm system is not long on hitting prospects, but I'd rather they surrender a fairly replaceable quantity like a first baseman than one of their young arms. Perry is interesting, but offer me the choice between him and Griffin, and I'll take Griffin every time. As PTBNLs go, this is a good trade for the Jays.

On to the games:

Syracuse 6, Louisville 0

Josh Towers threw 8 shutout innings (8 baserunners, 6 Ks), but the more interesting news is that Kevin Cash's bat is finally coming around. Last night, he singled, doubled, tripled and drove in two runs, bringing his season totals up to .268/.319/.389 -- still not great, but better than the .240/.284/.352 he was sporting June 1. His numbers are approaching the level of respectability that could warrant a promotion, but with Greg Myers scorching and Tom Wilson doing great, there's no need for Cash to be anything but a September callup. It's good to see the progress, though.

Auburn 14 Jamestown 4

The Doubelday Express rolls on. I missed his big-league debut, but last night Aaron Hill had 4 hits in 6 trips, driving in 2 and scoring 2, on 3 singles and a double. Leadoff man Juan Peralta outdid Hill with 2 doubles and a home run, scoring 3 times, while first baseman Vito Chiaravolotti hit his second round-tripper and drove in 3 (Jason Who?). Best of all, perhaps, was the second start for Josh Banks, who threw five shutout innings (3 H, 0 BB, 5 K). Auburn has started the year 6-1.

Bluefield 8, Pulaksi 2

Another typical Appalaichan League game in June: Pulaski committed 5 errors, such that starter Brian Grant allowed 4 runs in 3 IP (5 H, 2 BB, 1 K), but none were earned. Catcher and 2003 draftee Joey Reiman singled, doubled and was hit by a pitch, and hence was the hitting star. I won't normally report on Pulaski games, bcause at this stage, the results don't tell you a heckuva lot about the progress of the players, many of whom were playing college ball this time last month. If anything really interesting happens down there, I'll make a note.
Minor-League Update | 20 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
_Spicol - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 12:56 PM EDT (#99262) #
In other roster news, the Jays booted Dewayne Wise from the 40-man, a move that should probably have happened in the offseason. They now sit at 39 players.

Why is JP making room?
_Ryan - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 01:30 PM EDT (#99263) #
Could just be a timing thing. The organization might have looked at the rosters for other teams and felt Wise stood a better chance of clearing waivers now than he might have later on. I know there's quite a bit of strategy for retractable waivers in August, so I would assume there's a bit of that with regular waivers in the other months of the season.
Coach - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 01:58 PM EDT (#99264) #
I agree there's no hurry, and I'd hate to lose Howie Clark's bat, but Cash could be useful in Toronto right now. Why wait until Myers or Wilson gets tired and stops hitting? Kevin could work some blowouts and finish a lot of games, saving wear and tear on the five-hitters. Don't expect him to contribute much with the bat up here until about 2005 (if then) but he's got more pop than the previous third catcher and is amazing defensively. That will be a valuable role in September, if not sooner. It moves Quiroz up to work with Huckaby, too. Who knows when everyone will be considered ready, but it won't be a surprise whenever it happens.

Hill is 6-for-13 with two walks and a .563 OBP in his first three pro games. His arrival made a very good Auburn team great, with Vermilyea, Banks and Mastny an imposing rotation. Looks like a bountiful draft already; Dunedin will be loaded next year. Do we see a pattern developing?
_jacksons point - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 02:02 PM EDT (#99265) #
Cash has to hit. As often as possible.

No time for the bench, he needs as many ABs as he can get!
_Jordan - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 02:21 PM EDT (#99266) #
I forgot to mention two more roster moves: Syracuse released Tim Young and Rob Ryan in the last few days.
Craig B - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 02:25 PM EDT (#99267) #
I agree there's no hurry, and I'd hate to lose Howie Clark's bat, but Cash could be useful in Toronto right now. Why wait until Myers or Wilson gets tired and stops hitting?

Well, neither is playing all *that* much... the purpose of the platoon is to keep both of them fresh, and it's still working. Myers is hitting like Barry Bonds so far in June... .449/.542/.673.

Besides, three catchers isn't just a problem if it's Ken Huckaby. Kevin Cash isn't going to hit that much more than Huckaby if he's here. If one of the catchers picks up a tweak, then sure, Cash is a good idea. But until then, he's better off learning how to hit AAA pitching.

I like the idea of getting Huckaby to work with Quiroz, too.

If we're talking about putting Kevin Cash on the roster to work in blowouts, I'd rather have the twelfth pitcher.
_Brent - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 02:25 PM EDT (#99268) #
Calling up Cash would be like reliving the whole Werth situation all over again. It seems to me that Cash is really starting to heat up, so sending him to the bench in Toronto doesn't really seem like best idea.

As for the new opening on the 40 man, is there anyone that was left off it that the team will probably want to protect?
Coach - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 02:57 PM EDT (#99269) #
putting Kevin Cash on the roster to work in blowouts

Maybe I should have emphasized the "preventive maintenance" aspect more and the situation less. So far, I agree, the catching workload seems ideal for both Wilson and Myers. I'm not suggesting Cash be rushed up right away to solve a non-existent problem, only that he won't be a liability when he does finally get the call.

Craig, would you give up Howie Clark for that twelfth pitcher? When Hinske comes back, supposedly in five days, it's decision time.
robertdudek - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 03:38 PM EDT (#99270) #
I wouldn't. But I'd be tempted to cut Berg loose and keep Clark. We need a lefthanded bat on the bench more than anything else offensively and Clark can cover all the positions Berg can. Bordick and Reed Johnson would likely be in the lineup against a lefthander.

I realize that Berg seems to be a favourite of J.P.'s, but from a strictly "rational" p-o-v I don't see what Berg adds that Clark/Bordick/Johnson can't cover.
_Eric C - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 03:48 PM EDT (#99271) #
Didn't they release Mike Morriaty as well?
_DS - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 04:09 PM EDT (#99272) #
Craig B - Tuesday, June 24 2003 @ 04:59 PM EDT (#99273) #
I'm not convinced that Clark can cover the up-the-middle positions as well defensively as Berg can, which is the main "rational" factor. Berg's a decent second baseman and shortstop; don't know about Clark but my instincts tell me he's no shortstop, though I'm sure he can fake it. Also, Berg has a two-year deal that you have to eat if you release him, and has to be exposed to waivers regardless.

I guess Robert's point is that it not just Berg vs. Clark; it's Berg vs. Clark given the construction of the roster, and on a purely baseball analysis I might prefer Clark. Epecially because Berg looks bad at third base. But the business side makes that a difficult proposition.

Clark has options, right? I may be mistaken there, but if he does it makes a hell of a lot more sense to send Clark back for the time being. To answer Coach's question, I'd rather have Howie than a twelfth pitcher, at least for the time being with the staff largely healthy and not settled. The last thing that the team needs is another relieve trying to prove himself.

A shame about Moriarty, but let's face it, Reed Johnson beat him out.

Coach said that Cash won't be a liability when/if he comes up; I disagree. No matter his defensive talent, a rookie catcher is going to struggle at the MLB level, they all do. And his bat is not ready; he'll be the worst hitter among the position players and I don't want that guy getting a lot of at-bats in a pennant race.
_Brent - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 09:07 AM EDT (#99274) #
Quick update: according to BA's draft page, the Jays signed Marcum, James and Mulholland. So that means that the Jays have signed picks 1-16. Keep those young arms coming!
Pistol - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 10:00 AM EDT (#99275) #
The Jays now have their first 16 draft picks signed, recently signing a handful of players. Click on the link for details.
_Brent - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 10:35 AM EDT (#99276) #
Ha! Beat you Pistol...
Pistol - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 10:52 AM EDT (#99277) #
Apparently I can't read.

But I can provide a link!
_Brent - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 11:46 AM EDT (#99278) #
Well, you beat me in that regard. Touche.
_Jonny German - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 12:11 PM EDT (#99279) #
Refresh my memory on the waiver rules after the trading deadline... IIRC, players can be and are routinely put on waivers in August, and if a claim is placed his team can then let him go or retract him from waivers. If the player clears waivers, they're free to trade him or keep him. Not sure if sending him to the minors is an option. At any rate, unless I'm way off on the waiver rules I'd be inclined to send Clark to the minors when Hinske comes back, then put Berg on waivers after the deadline and hope somebody takes him. That would solve the problem of eating the rest of his contract and show more class than releasing a good soldier like Berg outright.
Coach - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 02:31 PM EDT (#99280) #
It's like Groundhog Day for Auburn -- another ten walks last night, 18 more runs, Hill (.526) 4-for-6 again. Mastny got hit hard.

Jason Arnold spun seven shutout innings for Syracuse but tired in the eighth, allowing two earned runs (seven hits, a walk, three K's) and settling for no decision. Eric Hinske went 1-for-5 leading off.

Dustin McGowan lasted five innings for New Haven, allowing 5 hits, 2 ER, 2 BB and fanning 6. Jordan DeJong got the win in relief, and Juan Pena notched his fifth save. Alexis Rios (.362) went 3-for-5 and stole two bases.

Chad Pleiness pitched one-hit shutout ball through five (2 BB, 3K) to earn his fifth W for Dunedin. D.J. Hanson went six strong innings to get credit for Charleston's win.
_DS - Wednesday, June 25 2003 @ 10:35 PM EDT (#99281) #
A quick update from the Syracuse game tonight, only because of a couple of standout performances.

Simon Pond had an outstanding game going 5-5 with 3 HR. Hinske seems to be well on his way back after a 3-3 night with a homer. Corey Thurman seems to be rounding into form after another strong outing: 6 ip, 7 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 7 K. I have a feeling he'll be up before the September callups.

Here's the boxscore
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