Sergio’s Surge of Strength

Saturday, May 05 2007 @ 05:24 AM EDT

Contributed by: Thomas

The affiliates split the four games as Mike MacDonald earns a well-deserve promotion to Syracuse. None of the Jays organization’s starting pitchers pitched well last night, although Josh Banks remains undefeated. However, some of the bats came to play, including Sergio Santos who is trying to prove that his demotion to Double-A was a mistake and that he's overcome his struggles at Syracuse.

Buffalo 4 @ Syracuse 12 - Boxscore

Josh Banks threw a 7-inning complete game and allowed two runs the last time I wrote a minor-league update. He wasn’t quite as effective last night, but he did pitch innings again and turn in a quality start. Banks improved to 3-0 as he allowed seven hits and three runs over 7 innings, while striking out three and walking one. He was pulled after 92 pitches with a 5-1 lead after allowing the first two batters of the eighth to reach base. Two hits off Beau Kemp brought home both runners and an Eric Kratz error led to an unearned run off Kemp and gave Syracuse a one run lead. However, the Chiefs scored a week’s worth of insurance runs and put up seven in the bottom of the eighth and win 12-4. Jim Ed Warden, a Phillies Rule V draft pick who was eventually returned to Cleveland and native of Murfreesboro, TN, was tagged for seven runs, six earned, and nine baserunners over 1.1. innings.

John-Ford Griffin and Kevin Barker were the only Chief starters not to get a hit, but they went 0-5 with five walks and were able to contribute to the offence. Interestingly, no Chiefs started had more than 2 hits. The offence was led by Chad Mottola, who went 2-4 with a 2B and 3B and four runs, and Ray Olmedo, who went 2-2 with two walks. Ryan Roberts got the start in left field today, which might be a first for his professional career. A sign that the Jays are growing tired of Jason Smith? We’ll have to wait and see. Meanwhile, congratulations are in order for Michael MacDonald, who was promoted to Syracuse today. Last year, MacDonald was mentioned as a prospect to watch in the Box’s annual “Rising and Falling” article for our minor league top prospect series.

Bowie 4 @ New Hampshire 6 - Boxscore

David Purcey struggled yesterday, allowing four runs on seven hits and three walks over 5 innings. Even though one run was unearned, that doesn’t add any shine to Purcey’s performance. Purcey got nine fly balls compared to two groundballs and on the heels of that poor outing his ERA rises all the way to 3.23. He was relieved by Jean Machi and Jesse Carlson, who held the lead and each pitched two scoreless innings of baseball to lower their ERAs to 2.08 and 2.79, respectively.

The Fisher Cat offence was led by a few players last night, as Manny Mayorson, Ryan Klosterman, Juan Peralta and Chip Cannon combined for one hit and one walk and were non-factors throughout the game. Sergio Santos continued his hot hitting with two home runs in five at-bats. He increased his slugging percentage to .720 and has nineteen extra-base hits on the season. Outfielders David Smith and Aaron Matthews put up identical stat lines, each going 3-4 with a 2B and one run scored. A blow was delivered to Bowie in the third when the Fisher Cats scored Smith and Klosterman on a Sergio Santos home run to tie the game at three. The teams swapped runs in the fourth and then in the bottom of the ninth the Fisher Cats were down to their final strike, with two out in the inning. Then Mayorson doubled and Sergio Santos promptly hit a two-run walkoff home run for the victory. Also of note is the news that Ricky Romero has been shut down for about ten days following the news that he has some inflammation in his shoulder. That detail, as well as the news of the MacDonald promotion, was first reported on the Box by FisherCatsScribe.

Lakeland 10 @ Dunedin 6 - Boxscore

Brandon Magee struck out seven over 5 and didn’t allow a run. However, he did walk three and give up three hits and get himself chased relatively early. At this point, let’s fast-forward to the top of the ninth, with Dunedin leading 6-1. The normally-reliable Connor Falkenbach replaced Sean Stidfole, who did three innings and gave up a run. Falkenbach gave up two singles and a double and looked like he might not have it today, but then he struck out the next two batters. However, three singles led to three runs and due to various fears or business, no one can look underneath the cab.

Errors by Cota and Garibaldi led to the seventh and eighth run, before a last single scored the eight and ninth runs of the inning for Lakeland, and the ninth and tenth overall. Lakeland scored 9 runs in the ninth to turn a 5-run defecit into a four-run margin of victory. Offensively, players of note include Luke Hetherington, Carlo Cota and Cory Patton, who all had multi-hit games. Cota also hit his second home run of the season.

Clinton 9 @ Lansing 5 - Boxscore

Kyle Ginley and Paul Phillips both continued to struggle this year. Although he notched five strikeouts, Ginley didn’t make it out of the fifth inning and allowed five runs on eight hits and a walk. Phillips allowed three runs in two innings on four hits and a walk. Ginley’s ERA rose to 6.98 and he’s given up 28 hits in 19.1 innings. Meanwhile, Phillips’ ERA also rose, but considering he had 12 K’s to 1 walk before tonight’s game, I don’t think there’s as much need for concern here.

Travis Snider went 2-4 with a 2B and a run and was the only Blue Jay to record a multi-hit game. Matt Liuzza (also on the “Rising and Falling” list) recently hit a triple and Chris Emanuele hit a double. Four of Lansing’s five runs scored in the fifth as the team strung together a series of hits, including doubles by Emanuele and Snider, and scored 4 runs, to tie the game at 5. The Chiefs didn't score again last night and slowly watched the team's lead erode.

3 star selection

3rd star – Aaron Matthews and David Smith, 3-4, 2B, R, 4 TB

2nd star – Eddy Rodriguez, 1.2 IP, 1 H, 3 K

1st star – Sergio Santos, 2-5, 2 R, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 8 TB