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Quick hits only today:

- Don't look now, but Mike Smith is turning it around at Syracuse: 8 shutout innings last night (5 H, 1 BB, 3 K). On May 1, Smith had an 8.15 ERA and had allowed almost 2 baserunners an inning. Since then: 36 IP, 32 H, 12 BB, 23 K, and his ERA is now 4.10. Still not dominant, but he continues to progress towards usefulness.

- New Haven got blasted 10-1. Not much to tell here, except Rich Thompson had two more hits and now has 13 steals.

- David Bush threw a terrific game against the Tampa Yankees (6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 K) and left with a three-run lead, but his bullpen let him down: Andy Torres and then Jordan DeJong blew the win, the latter allowing 3 runs on 2 hits and 2 walks in just a third of an inning.

- Brandon League threw the game of the night in Charleston: 8 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 11 K in a 4-1 win. On the season: 2-3, 2.08, 60 IP, 49 H, 18 BB, 52 K, 24% KBF.
Minor-league update | 11 comments | Create New Account
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_R Billie - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 11:03 AM EDT (#101432) #
It's the same situation as last year with Mike Smith though. Does he have an out pitch? Is the fastball all he really has to offer? Until he addresses that, I think his usefulness at the major league level is quite limited. Maybe a Jeff Tam role...another guy that doesn't really have an out pitch but can soak up some innings in relief. He's 25 or 26 now so the clock is ticking...I might be inclined to protect someone else on the 40-man after this year if it came down to it.
Dave Till - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 11:16 AM EDT (#101433) #
I don't expect anything from Mike Smith. 23 strikeouts in 36 innings isn't very many.
_Shane - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 12:06 PM EDT (#101434) #
If you check the minor-league box scores everyday, not just lately but all season long, three things are a constant almost daily thus far:
#1 Collectively, Blue Jay middle relief is yucky, whether you're young or you're old
#2 John Ford Griffin will have struck out "twice" in that game
#3 Russ Adams had a "E"
_Spicol - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 12:07 PM EDT (#101435) #
Prior to 2002, Smith had K/9 rates of nearly 8 or better with K/BB rates of better than 3:1. He hasn't been great in Syracuse, either in his 2 months there this year or his 4 months there last year, but I'm of the mind that it's very possible his early call-up to The Show just messed him up 'sumthin fierce' and he's been slow to turn it around. We'll know more as the year progresses. He throws a quality slider to go with the fastball and major league relievers have been getting by on a similar arsenal for ages.
_coliver - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 12:24 PM EDT (#101436) #
Do not worry too much about Adams' errors. They are pretty much indicative of most shortstops at the Class A level.

Adams may be shifted to Second Base in the future.

On a totally unrelated note, I have always wanted to sit in the "In The Action" seats. Does anyone know of a ticket broker who has those access to those seats in Toronto?
_R Billie - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 01:59 PM EDT (#101437) #
Make no mistake, Smith has a good fastball with good movement and pretty good command of the pitch. It's not surprising to me that he could breeze through AA just throwing mostly the fastball in good locations. He was on the older side for AA too. But at every level you move up the hitters get more patient and more difficult to strike out. It's not uncommon for pitchers to have a lot of success, particularly in the low minors, and hit a wall at one of the high minor league levels.

I don't want to say his results through AA are meaningless...but considering his age and the fact that he hasn't developed an above average secondary pitch yet, I don't think it's reasonable to expect great things from Smith. Maybe a 5th starter or middle reliever until the performance shows otherwise.
_Shane - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 02:17 PM EDT (#101438) #
For those interested in who might be also facing the Blue Jays this weekend as a member of the Boston Red Sox, ESPN/Gammons is reporting a Byung-Hyun Kim for Shea Hillenbrand deal is finalized and needs only the owners (Jerry Colangelo) approval. Supposedly the Red Sox had sought Kim to be the "closer", but Perdo Martinez is not going to be healthy enough to start vs. Toronto so maybe Kim will fit in there if acquired?
_Jurgen - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 02:43 PM EDT (#101439) #
Durazo for Dessens... Kim for Hillenbrand... the Diamondbacks are doing a good job of being the village idiots.
_Jordan - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 03:16 PM EDT (#101440) #
There's now a separate thread on Kim for Hillenbrand.
Pistol - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 03:21 PM EDT (#101441) #
Selfishly, being a Kim owner in a fantasy league with an extra closer already, I hope he's in the rotation. But given the generally accepted SABR believe that a starter pitching 200 innings is more valuable than 70-100 innings I think they'd put him in the rotation over Fossum or Burkett.

Kim started Tuesday night I believe so he'd be able to start on Sunday.

If this goes through, what a bad trade for Arizona. Look at a couple moves this way: Durazo for Hillenbrand and Kim for Dessens. Ouch. Looks like 2 downgrades to me. This is a panic trade I'd hope the Yankees would make.
_leftcoast pete - Thursday, May 29 2003 @ 04:49 PM EDT (#101442) #
Fossum, Burkett and Wakefield have all had mixed results so far. But I believe Boston should keep Wakefield in the rotation. Wakefield isn't giving up many hits its the walks that are hurting him. Once the warm still air summer starts then Wakefield will excel just as he has the past two years. Count on it. Burkett is a veteran who probably wouldn't take kindly to a long relief role. But he will likely breakdown during the long season. If the Sox have a starting role in mind for Kim and I'm not so sure then it should be Fossum who goes into relief, at least for now. But me thinks that they will use Kim in relief where he probably belongs and move Lyon into a more innings situation. Anyway this shakes out it is clear Boston will have a very good pitching staff from top to bottom, not incl. Mendoza and they are seriously making a run for 1st place. Wonder how George will respond. Blackmail Colango?
Minor-league update | 11 comments | Create New Account
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