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With Toronto idle and New Hampshire, Dunedin, and Charleston all rained out last night, it fell to Syracuse to provide good news for Jays fans and worthy candidates for the Three-Star Selection. Two fourth-outfielder hopefuls and a pitcher acquired for another of their ilk were up to the task as the SkyChiefs won for the first time in five outings.

Syracuse 7, Ottawa 5

The SkyChiefs chased Lynx starter Javier Martinez with a pair of runs in each of the first two innings. Jorge Sequea led off the game by reaching on an error by erstwhile SkyChief Pedro Swann. Noah Hall walked but was erased on a fielder's choice by Alex Rios, moving Sequea to third. Chad Hermansen's fly ball to centre scored Sequea. After Howie Clark singled to left, Martinez walked Shawn Fagan and Gabe Gross, scoring Rios from third. Guillermo Quiroz flied to centre to end the inning.

Ninth-place hitter Russ Adams led off the second by beating out an infield hit. After Sequea flied out, Adams stole second and moved to third on Hall's single to left. Rios' single to right plated Adams and moved Hall to third, and Hall would later score on Hermansen's fly to centre. Howie Clark's walk chased Martinez, and Rodney Ormond got out of the inning without further damage.

Ottawa came back to tie the game with two runs off Bruce Chen in each of the second and third innings. Tim Raines's second-inning double off the left-field wall plated a pair, and Clark's error in the third allowed two more runs to score. Chen was replaced by Talley Haines after the third inning.

Syracuse went ahead again in the fourth when Hall singled, stole second, and came home on Hermansen's double. With two out in the fifth, Quiroz tried to score from first on Sequea's double to left, but he was cut down by the relay from Eddy Garabito. The Lynx tied the game once more in the bottom of the inning. Darnell McDonald reached on an error by Adams, stole second, moved to third on a groundout, and scored on Geronimo Gil's single to left.

The SkyChiefs took the lead for good in the sixth. Hall led off with a walk, stole second after Rios flied out, and scored on Hermansen's single to left. Clark flied to left, but Fagan beat out an infield hit, allowing Gross to cash Hermansen with a single to left. Quiroz took a called strike three to strand Fagan and Gross. Jason Frasor relieved Haines in the seventh and promptly struck out three of his first four batters; he would pitch two strong innings before turning the ball over to Mike Smith, a Bill Caudill in the making. Smith loaded the bases with one out in the ninth but got out of the jam when Garabito grounded into a 3-2-3 double play.

Every SkyChief except Quiroz had at least one hit. Noah Hall went 2 for 3 with two walks, two stolen bases, and three runs scored. Hermansen had a single, a double, two sacrifice flies, a run scored, and four RBIs in five trips to the plate. Sequea's double was the only other extra-base hit for Syracuse. Chen gave up four runs on five hits and two walks in three innings, striking out three. Haines fanned two against two singles and a hit batsman and gave up a solitary run in three frames. Frasor was the most effective pitcher for the SkyChiefs, whiffing four in two innings against a single and a walk.

Links Of The Day

1. has a game recap.
2. has a boxscore and game log for the real diehards.

Today's Games

Syracuse at Ottawa, 1:05 pm
New Hampshire at Trenton, 5:05 pm (doubleheader)
Dunedin vs. Sarasota, 5:00 pm (doubleheader)
Charleston at Lakewood, 6:05 pm (doubleheader)

Three-Star Selection!

Our Third Star: Jason Frasor, Syracuse. 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 4 K. Mark, who was at the game, said that he was "throwing the ball hard and looked dominant."
Our Second Star: Chad Hermansen, Syracuse. 2-for-3 with a double, two sac flies, a run scored, and four RBIs.
Our First Star: Noah Hall, Syracuse. 2-for-3 with two walks, two steals, and three runs scored.
Minor League Update: April 13 | 29 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
_EddieZosky - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 09:31 AM EDT (#72794) #
Jordan, Mark and I caught this game last night. Here are my thoughts in no particular order:

-Hermansen was the star of this game. At least one of his Sac flys was to the deepest part of the park and would have been a homer had the wind not been blowing in from left. Tim Raines Jr, who looks good, albeit entirely too flashy for Ottawa, made a fantastic backwards basket catch to rob Hermansen of extra bases.

- Tailey Haines looked terrible. He's very tall and brittle looking and none of his pitches seemed to be working last night. He came in for Bruce Chen who himself worked an effective first few innings, but then relapsed back into his old self.

-Jason Frasor looked fantastic! He was the hardest thrower of the night for either team and he made a whole lot of Ottawa batters look very foolish. Whoever made the comparison to Cliff Politte was pretty much dead on. He looks just like him and throws about as hard. He gave way to Mike Smith who fooled about 0 batters with his fastball. He either missed the strike zone or he was hit extremely hard. He's not long for this organization.

-Russ Adams has great range! His arm looked fine as well. He booted one easy ball over second but made up for it with a fine play in the hole and another fine play ranging to his left. He's a got a compact, but athletic build and it looks like he'll fit in fine in the Majors. Looked comfortable from both sides of the plate. Late in the game we caught him gabing with Gross before an at bat about the what the pitcher was throwing. He looked pretty intense.

-Rios has the body of a high school player. He needs to eat a meal. Once he bulks up, he's going to be a super star. I was surprised at how gangly he looks in the box and running down the line. He looked fine in the field though, and he made a nice play to throw a runner out at second from his knees.

-Quiroz seemed comfortable working with his pitchers. How he catches a fastball on such a cold night I'll never know.

-Sequea made very loud outs and makes a lot of power out of his squat frame. He drove to or three hard balls to the outfield and played a quiet 2B all night.

-Gabe Gross looks like a major leaguer...or a college QB.

-Jordan and Mark's knowledge of baseball was impressive, however, their understanding of musical chairs was uncanny. They nailed the outcome, spotting both the winner and the circumstances of the win. They always stop the music when the little girl is adjacent to the empty chair.
_Stephen Scudds - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 09:58 AM EDT (#72795) #
nice to know there were some other hardcore jay fans at the game last night. Myself, and two buddies popped in to check out our top prospects as well. We left in the 7th after Lexi's final at bat, but only because it was FREEZING....

It will be nice to catch up on the boxscores tonight; 3 double headers in the organization...sweet.
Pistol - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 10:12 AM EDT (#72796) #
-Russ Adams ....Looked comfortable from both sides of the plate.

Wait, is he switch hitting? I thought he was just a LHB?

It will be nice to catch up on the boxscores tonight; 3 double headers in the organization...sweet.

No cheap stars will be handed out tomorrow.
_Jordan - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 10:18 AM EDT (#72797) #
As Mark mentioned in his game report (linked above), it was sunny but chilly here in Ottawa yesterday. I was happy to meet Mark and EddieZosky at the game -- the more Bauxites I can meet in person, the better! It wasn't hard to find them; Section EE (directly behind the visitors' dugout) had maybe 25 patrons. We were four rows back from the on-deck circle. Mark's estimate of 250 fans in the entire ballpark may have been overly complimentary. Really, it was ridiculous: this was Opening Day, against the Blue Jays' top farm team no less. If there was any marketing promotion or media coverage of this event beforehand, we all missed it. I seriously worry about the future of minor-league baseball in Ottawa.

Anyway, I arrived late at the game and had to leave early, so I can't add much to Mark's comprehensive comments, but here are a few thoughts:

* I did like Rios' approach at the plate: in his second at-bat, he worked the count to eight or nine pitches, taking a number of inside offerings and fouling off pitches he didn't like until lining a sharp single to the opposite field; an excellent plate appearance. He really is still quite skinny, so it's exciting to think about the kind of power he'll flex when he gets to the majors, fills out and, um, hits the gym. He plays a nice defensive right field; the organization has apparently moved him over there in preparation for his promotion to Toronto, so any questions about which of Wells or Rios will play CF appear to be answered for the moment.

* Russ Adams singled once in four at-bats, and hit two flies to center that were exactly the wrong kinds of outcomes he should be getting. Adams hasn't got the power to drive balls off or over the wall; he wants to be hitting grounders and line drives. Possibly he could be a little more aggressive at the plate -- a fair number of called strikes went whistling by -- but now we're getting into sample size issues. He can definitely run (though I'd characterize him as having great quickness more than blazing speed) and stole a base easily after watching the pitcher like a hawk (the Chiefs were running wild on the basepaths). We were talking during the game about the controversy surrounding Adams defensively; the consensus among scouts seems to be that although he has the hands, range and instincts for short, his arm wasn't strong enough to handle the position. I did notice that he seemed to be playing a fairly shallow shortstop, perhaps to cut down on the distance his throws need to travel; good instincts and reading the ball well off the bat can allow you to cheat a little that way, on grass at least. In any event, his error was a garden-variety bobble on a grounder hit slightly to his left, which didn't enhance his report card on the day. Overall, though, he was fine. I haven't changed my mind about his prospect status or his value to the big-league club, but I will reiterate that Adams is going to provide value in less obvious ways, and that he's going to be a solid big-leaguer rather than a breakout star.

* Having a good day was Adams' double-play partner, Jorge Sequea. He's not a big man -- maybe 5'11 in heels -- and while he's solid, he's not beefy by any means. But he showed impressive power for a relatively small package, smacking a double and hitting the ball hard on two other occasions. He played a pretty smooth second base, too. He looked comfortable and confident out there. I don't think he has any future in Toronto other than as a backup, but I imagine he could play a better second base than a handful of current MLB regulars. If the Jays needed to deal a package of minor-leaguers at some point to obtain a star, Sequea could be a valuable commodity.

* Guillermo Quiroz also had a fairly quiet day while I was there, walking once in five otherwise unproductive at-bats. His bat is heavy and his swing is a little long, but if he gets ahold of a mistake, he'll send it a long way. We had more opportunity to see him defensively. The Lynx stole two bases off him, though they weren't being kept very close by the pitcher and they got good jumps both times. Quiroz's reputation is that his arm is stronger than Cash's; on this day at least, I didn't see that, though I definitely liked the quickness and accuracy of his throws to second. On one occasion, he fired the ball from his knees and it still travelled on a line right to the second baseman's glove. He's an active catcher, going out on multiple occasions to talk to his pitcher (the struggling Bruce Chen, mostly) and always leaving with an encouraging word and a swat on the backside; there seems little doubt that's he's in charge out there. He plays with his game face on, and when he was thrown out at the plate (on a questionable decision by the third-base coach), his expression was stormy and intense; he's a gamer. He's not a finished product, and of all the prospects at Syracuse, he's the one that would benefit most from a full year at Triple-A. But I'm looking forward to seeing him in the majors.

* Quick hits on other guys: I missed Gabe Gross's hit, but he was having good at-bats when I saw him. Like a lot of the Skychiefs, he doesn't swing and miss too often, taking the bat off his shoulders only when required. Chad Hermanson is swinging a very hot bat right now, and it would be good to see it in the majors, if possible. Bruce Chen really struggled; after the first few batters, the hitters were laying off both his fastball and his breaking stuff, and when they did swing, they were hammering the ball. I can't see him as a factor for the parent club at all. I only saw half of Haines' innings; he doesn't look impressive at all, but as the box score indicates, he sure gets the job done. I was sorry to miss Frasor, as I was hoping to get a glimpse of him, but Mark's report echoes what I've read elsewhere.

Overall, it was great to finally see a lot of these guys in person, and with such excellent company. I would've liked to have seen the rest of the Chiefs-Lynx series, but not only am I too busy at work, it's raining here in Ottawa today and it's not supposed to stop till Thursday morning, so the rest of the games are in jeopardy. But hey, if that means some doubleheaders in warm and sunny June, no complaints here.
_EddieZosky - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 10:27 AM EDT (#72798) #
Wait, is he switch hitting? I thought he was just a LHB?

We puzzled over this as well - but I'm pretty sure we watched him hit from both sides of the plate. None of us were drinking either...
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 11:53 AM EDT (#72799) #
No surprise for those of us in Ontario but todays Syracuse Ottawa game has been postponed.
_Fozzy - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#72800) #
No surprise for those of us in Ontario but todays Syracuse Ottawa game has been postponed.

Dang, my one chance to see Syracuse this year (I go home for the summer at the end of the month) and it's foiled by the weather; between that and the university exams, it's gonna be a long time before I get to see them Baby Jays :(
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#72801) #
According to the skychiefs website there will be a double header in Ottawa tomorrow. Josue Matos will start game #2. So what happened to Justin Miller already?
_JohnnyS99 - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 12:50 PM EDT (#72802) #
Matos will be starting, interesting. His numbers as a reliever were pretty dominant.
_EddieZosky - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 12:54 PM EDT (#72803) #
According to the skychiefs website there will be a double header in Ottawa tomorrow

Assuming it goes tomorrow (which I kinda doubt it will), is anybody up for the second game?
_Steve Z - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 01:00 PM EDT (#72804) #
And you thought pay-per-view for Jays' games was a joke...

From Charleston's website.

Games are Available on a Pay-To-Listen Basis

To listen via the Telephone OR Internet please read the payment options below. A portion of your paid call is paid to this team to help support their athletic programs. The games and sports available for this team are listed in the schedule box on the right. Enter your home telephone number below to register for your broadcasts. (More Info)

You have three payment options:

You can pay $5 for every 10 minute listening block.

You can pay a flat $40 to listen to today's entire game. (More Info)

You can purchase 4,000 minutes of listening time in advance, (featuring
our lowest rate: 10 per minute) Total cost: $400*. (More Info)
*Rates apply only to U.S. Residents. International customers call for rates in your area.
_Mark - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 01:04 PM EDT (#72805) #
A few other assorted comments:

I see in the boxscore the attendance was listed as 1080, however this number must be massively inflated by ticket purchases.

It wasn't Opening Day (or the home opener), the Lynx had played 4 games against Scranton, all in Ottawa, previously. They did have a (paid?) attendance of 2650 on Opening Day, which presumably translates to about 600-700 people if yesterday was any indication.

I didn't comment about Gross earlier but he looks good too. Solid, patient hitter that looks like a pro to me. He drew a walk with the bases loaded in the first inning and singled in a run in the sixth.

Quiroz did have a passed ball (the pitch kind of sailed through his mitt, we figured he was expecting something else) and didn't throw anyone out, but looked comfortable catching and at the plate. Just after the PB, Howie Clark had a messy error where he fielded a grounder, bobbled it, recovered, and then made a wild, ill-advised throw that let the runner from second score.

Oh, and just for the record, (and not to pick on her, because she did have a decent voice), the anthem singer messed up TWICE! First of all she got a couple of lines into the Star-Spangled Banner and then restarted with an embarrassed "Sorry". Then she stumbled, saying, "Spar-" instead of "Star-" in the penultimate line of the American anthem.

No ball today in our dreary, cold and rainy nation's capital.
_John Neary - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#72806) #
Erratum: the original text of the report read "Every SkyChief except Adams had at least one hit." This has been corrected to "Every SkyChief except Quiroz..."

It's great to have reports from people who were at the game!
_Sneeps - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 01:40 PM EDT (#72807) #
I saw that PPV garbage on the Alley Cats website. Either thats a late April Fools joke, or they are completely out of the minds.
_Jordan - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 01:45 PM EDT (#72808) #
Mark, thanks for the correction; Opening Day was indeed last week. It flew so far under the radar around here that it should be classified as a stealth weapon.
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 02:10 PM EDT (#72809) #
From the wire:

Dunedin - Added David Hanson to roster and put on disabled list. Added Justin Maureau to roster and put on disabled list. Added Robert Nunley to roster and put on disabled list.

I also hear, unofficially, that Rodney Medina has been DL'd and Tim Whittaker has been added to Dunedin's roster.
_Sneeps - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 02:15 PM EDT (#72810) #
Can you provide us w/ any more information on the above mentioned players going to the DL. How long will they be there? What are their injuries... etc.

P.S. - injuries suck.
_Steve Z - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#72811) #
Thanks Gerry!

According to a Fisher Cat press release, Mike Nakamura's been promoted to Syracuse! I don't get it!
Coach - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 02:50 PM EDT (#72812) #
Steve, maybe this was just a housekeeping move. There was a release yesterday announcing that Nakamura was reassigned to Manchester and Whittaker, at least temporarily, to Auburn.

I've tweaked our always unofficial, constantly-evolving depth chart to reflect the latest news and Gerry's rumour.

Thanks very much for the eyewitness accounts, guys.
Mike Green - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 02:58 PM EDT (#72813) #
Thanks, Gerry, for the injury update.
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#72814) #
Item: Justin Miller is not starting tonight
Item: Mike Nakamura promoted to Syracuse

Could these be linked? Miller could have been sore after his first start, or Ottawa's tundra like conditions could be deemed unsuitable for his arm.
_JohnnyS99 - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 03:53 PM EDT (#72815) #
On the Fishercats website, they have Jeremy Harper's profile, under Jesse harper. Jeremy Harper was decent in Auburn, too bad he could not make the Charleston team.
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 04:26 PM EDT (#72816) #
My speculation re: Miller was incorrect. Bruce Chen has been placed on the DL with Nakamura replacing him.
Gerry - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 04:37 PM EDT (#72817) #
Weather is bad all over the East coast. New Hampshire at Trenton has been rained out, again, another DH scheduled for Wednesday.

The Charleston games at Lakewood NJ must also be doubtful. I think Dunedin should play. End of weather report.
_DW - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 05:37 PM EDT (#72818) #
Other teams do the pay-to-listen thing as well - I figured that it was a way to make a few bucks off the well-to-do parents of a player or two.
_Steve Z - Tuesday, April 13 2004 @ 07:17 PM EDT (#72819) #
As expected, the Jays extended their player development contract with Syracuse. Toronto's AAA affiliate will remain in Syracuse for at least two more years.
_Smack - Wednesday, April 14 2004 @ 04:02 AM EDT (#72822) #
Hermansen replaces Pond on big league roster, does that mean Rios will play centre again?
Minor League Update: April 13 | 29 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.