Who Own Da Chiefs? The Lansing Lugnuts!!

Wednesday, April 23 2008 @ 06:42 AM EDT

Contributed by: #2JBrumfield

The Chiefs played a big role in the affiliates going 2-and-2 last night.  Syracuse and Lansing had the bats going, New Hampshire and Dunedin - not so much!!  For an explanation of the above title, click here.

Syracuse 13 Lehigh Valley 6

Syracuse, NY - The series finale against the former Ottawa Lynx saw ex-Lynx hurler John Parrish take to the mound for Syracuse.  He went up against former Mariners prospect and fellow lefty Travis Blackley. After Parrish gave up a lone two-out single in the top of the 1st, the Chiefs went about dismantling Blackley in the bottom half of the frame.  Buck Coats singled and stole second, Adam Lind walked and Russ Adams, the reigning International League Batter of the Week, drew a free pass to load up the bases with two outs.  Curtis Thigpen drew a third consecutive walk to score Coats and it was 1-0 Syracuse.  Jorge Velandia then delivered a two-run single to make it 3-0 Syracuse.  A Chip Cannon walk reloaded the bases and that ended the day for Blackley.  Former Blue Jay Kevin Beirne came on in relief and all three runners he inherited would score as Pedro Lopez came up with an RBI single and that was followed by a two-run knock from Wayne Lydon to give Syracuse an unconverted touchdown after one.  The Chiefs would add a safety with a pair of runs in the third as Lydon came through with an RBI single and Coats had a sac fly to make it 8-0 for the home side.

John Parrish scattered three hits in the first three innings but the Iron Pigs matched their entire hit total with three singles and a fielder's choice to break the shutout.  The Phillies Triple-A affiliate added another run in the fifth without the benefit of a hit as they drew three walks to load up the bases before Parrish uncorked a wild pitch to make it an 8-2 ballgame.  However, Parrish came up with his second strikeout of the inning to end the threat and his afternoon by going the minimum five innnings for the decision.  The game looked like it was going to be a laugher until the top of the 6th when Mike MacDonald took over for Parrish.  On the positive side, MacDonald did get two called strikeouts in the frame.  On the negative side, he gave up a run scoring double to Mike Spidale and a bases-clearing two-bagger to Andy Tracy as the Syracuse lead shrinked to 8-6.  After former Lynx pitcher Bubba Nelson worked a clean top of the 7th, the Chiefs offence got back to work.  RBI singles by Jorge Velandia, Chip Cannon and Pedro Lopez along with a two-run single by Adam Lind off 'Pigs reliever Steve Green put Syracuse ahead by a converted touchdown, 13-6.  Bubba Nelson went the rest of the way on the mound for Syracuse, scattering a couple of singles and a hit batsman along with striking out the side in the ninth.  He got former Jay Chris Woodward swinging to end the game and picking up the three-inning save for his efforts.  The Chiefs have now won eight in a row.

Boxscore Notes - The line of the night came from Jorge Velandia, who went 4-for-4 with three RBI and three runs scored to put his average up to .304...........former White Sox and Reds infielder Pedro Lopez had three hits in four trips to the plate with a double, an RBI and two runs scored.........Wayne Lydon and Adam Lind each went for 2-for-4 with Lydon contributing three of the five RBI between them.  Lind is batting .379 and his OPS is 1.051.  I`d say it`s time for him to join the big club!!.........Russ Adams was 0-for-2 but did draw a pair of walks as the DH before being pinch-hit for by Kevin Nelson, who spent last season in Lansing.  He struck out in his first at-bat of the season for Syracuse......Despite a WHIP of 2, John Parrish allowed 2 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks but did average a K an inning over his five frames of work to improve to 2-0.....Mike MacDonald had a WHIP of 6 on four hits, a walk and a plunked batter and that led to four runs in his lone inning of relief...Bubba Nelson struck out five over three shutout innings to get his first save of the year......Old friend Chris Woodward was 2-for-5 on the afternoon and scored a run but is struggling with a .182 batting average.

Portland 11 New Hampshire 2

Game Story from New Hampshire Union Leader

Fisher Cats Notes (Travis Snider blurb - lower half of article)

Portland, ME - I`ll keep it short but it sure as heck won`t be sweet.  Brandon Magee took on Sea Dogs lefty Kris Johnson in the middle game of this three game set.  Portland got to Magee with single runs in the second and fourth before chasing him with a five-spot in inning number five.  After striking out the leadoff man, Magee gave up a homer to Jeff Corsaletti and proceeded to load up the bases on a single and two hit batsmen.  Mike Gallo relieved Magee and he did not stop the bleeding as he served up a grand slam to Andrew Pickney to give the Red Sox Double-A affiliate a 7-0 lead.  The Fisher Cats broke the shutout with a pair of runs in the top of the 6th, courtesy of a Ryan Patterson double and a Jacob Butler sacrifice fly.  Portland responded with a field goal in the bottom half of the 6th as they got to Kyle Yates with a pair of singles and doubles to go up 10-2.  Bubba Bell launched a solo homer off Yates in the 7th to cap off the scoring.

Boxscore Notes -  Ryan Patterson accounted for half of the Fisher Cats hit total by going 3-for-4 with a hat trick of doubles and an RBI, pushing his average to .313.....Jacob Butler was only 0-for-1 thanks to a sac fly and a pair of walks.........Travis Snider`s second game at the AA level was one to forget.  He struck out twice and hit into a rally-killing double play with runners on first and second in the 4th inning when the game was still close.  He did draw a walk in the 9th inning but he is off to a 1-for-8 start with New Hampshire.........Brandon Magee is now 0-3 on the season and his ERA is over 7 after allowing seven hits, two walks and a hit batsman in 4 1-3 innings.......Kyle Yates gave up four runs on six hits and a walk but his K-BB ratio was 4-1 in his three innings of work...The trio of Mike Gallo, Magee and Yates allowed a home run each.

Sarasota 4 Dunedin 1

Sarasota, FL - Cuban righty Kenny Rodriguez toed the rubber for Dunedin against the Reds Daniel Guerrero.  ``Budding prospect`` Scott Rolen had an impact in the first inning but it wasn`t a positive one.  After popping out to end a 1-2-3 inning for the Dunedin offence, Rolen booted a groundball to allow the leadoff man to reach base.  D-Jays catcher Al Quintana also added another one under the ``E`` column by dropping a ball in foul territory.  Sarasota took advantage by using two singles and two sac flies to break out on top, 2-0.  Dunedin had runners on 1st and 2nd in the second inning and another man in scoring position in the third but they came up empty.  Rolen ended the third inning threat by grounding out. 

Kenny Rodriguez settled into a groove by keeping the Reds off the board in the second through fourth innings, retiring eight in a row.  Dunedin finally broke the goose egg in the 5th as Al Quintana, who reached on an error and went to third on a Luis Sanchez single, was driven home on a sac fly by Mississauga`s Chris Emanuele to put Dunedin in flight.  Rodriguez began the bottom of the 5th by retiring his ninth batter in a row but four singles later, Sarasota upped their lead to 4-1.  After flying out in the top of the 6th, Scott Rolen was replaced by Jesus Gonzalez at third in the bottom half of the inning.  Kenny Rodriguez would also be replaced after two outs and two singles in the 6th as Celson Polanco came out of the pen to pick up the final out of the frame.  Dunedin chased Reds starter Daniel Guerrero in the 7th and had runners at first and 2nd but they couldn`t bring them home.   Polanco and Connor Falkenbach did their part by contributing a scoreless inning apiece but David Smith`s one-out walk in the 9th was all Dunedin could muster as they lost their second in a row.

Boxscore Notes - The Dunedin offence had just four singles and four walks in this one.  Luis Sanchez went 2-for-3 on the night while Brian Dopirak and Matthew Lane also reached base twice.  Dopirak had a hit and a walk while Lane drew two bases on balls.  Dopirak is hitting .365 on the campaign.........Number 52 in your program, Scott Rolen, is 0-for-6 so far with the D-Jays.  At least he`s made contact in all six at-bats.........Kenny Rodriguez fell to 1-2 on the season by allowing 4 runs on 9 hits over 5 2-3 innings but two of the runs were unearned and his K-BB ratio was 4-0.........Celson Polanco`s ERA continues to hold at zero.  He`s given up just 10 hits and 4 walks in 12 scoreless innings and has struck out 9.........Connor Falkenbach`s scoreless inning lowered his ERA to 1.80.

Lansing 7 Peoria 2

Game Story-Audio Highlights from lansinglugnuts.com

Lansing, MI - It was a very productive night for pretty much everyone on the home side at beautiful Oldsmobile Park.  Lefty Nate Starner got the starting assignment for the Lugnuts.  South Korean righty Dae-Eun Ree, number 1 in your program, started for the Chiefs.  Matching his uniform number, that`s how long Ree lasted in this one.  After Starner shook off an error and struck out two in the top of the 1st, the Lugnuts let the dogs out (yes, the canine reference is intentional due to Peoria`s logo).  Raul Barron and Kevin Ahrens got things going with a pair of singles and Darin Mastroianni singled home Barron for a 1-0 Lansing lead.  A double play ball off the bat of Manuel Rodriguez appeared to kill the rally but Matt Liuzza singled home Ahrens to make it 2-0.  John Tolisano singled home a Johermyn Chavez walk brought home the third Lansing run while a passed ball led to run number four.  Ree, perhaps due to injury, would be replaced by Blake Parker to start the second for the Cubs affiliate.

Regardless, the damage was done for Peoria as Starner began to settle in.  His only threat came in the top of the 2nd when he had two runners aboard on a single and a walk.  However, he induced a double play ball and that led to a stretch of him retiring 10 of the next 12 batters that he faced, with the two hits not leaving the infield (bunt single and infield single to second).  He struck out the side in the third to negate a single and a walk and set down the side in order in the fourth.  Yes, Starner was not half-bad in this one!

Peoria celebrated Starner`s exit by scoring two runs off reliever Alan Farina via a triple, double and groundout.  The Peoria bullpen did a nice job of keeping the Lugnuts in check until Stephen Vento arrived on the scene in the bottom of the 7th.   Kevin Ahrens singled and reached second on an errant pickoff attempt.  Darin Mastroianni was then called out on strikes and that led to the ejection of Lugnuts skipper Gary Cathcart, presumably for arguing balls and strikes.  However, that didn`t faze the Lansing offence one bit as Johermyn Chavez doubled home Ahrens, Matt Liuzza`s sac fly plated a Manny Rodriguez single and John Tolisano singled home Chavez before being thrown out trying to stretch his single into a double.  Farina made things exciting in the 8th by issuing two walks and uncorking a wild pitch.  However, he induced a shallow fly ball to center for out number one, started a 1-5-2 putout to cut down a runner at the plate and got another groundball out to end the frame.  Ross Buckwalter pitched a one-hit, one-K ninth to wrap up the `Nuts third straight victory.

Boxscore Notes - Justin Jackson sat this one out but Raul Barron capably filled in at the leadoff spot, going 2-for-5 with a triple and a run scored and is now batting .514.  His only blemish was a throwing error................Kevin Ahrens is now hitting .308 on the season after going 3-for-5, including a triple and two runs scored.  The Jays first round pick of 2007 is slugging only .400 but his OBP is .416 thanks to a dozen walks in 65 at-bats......Johermyn Chavez is hitting .290-.383-.484 after a 1-for-3 night that included a double, a walk and two runs scored.....Manuel Rodriguez and John Tolisano had two hits apiece as the Lugnuts got a hit from all nine starters to total 14 on the night.  Tolisano and Matt Liuzza drove in two runs each..........Nate Starner kept his WHIP under one by allowing just four hits and a walk in six innings to improve his record to 1-2.  He struck out 7 while lowering his ERA to 1.71.  Seven of his 11 outs in play were on the ground...........Ross Buckwalter has a 0.93 ERA in 9 2-3 innings and his K-BB ratio is 8-0 while allowing just six hits.


*** 3 Stars!!! ***

3.   Ryan Patterson, New Hampshire - 3-4, 3 2B, RBI

2.  Jorge Velandia, Syracuse - 4-4, 3 RBI, 3R

1.  Nate Starner, Lansing - 6IP, 4H, 0R, 0ER, 1BB, 7K, 7 GO`s = W


Honourable Mentions............

Syracuse - Adam Lind, Wayne Lydon, Pedro Lopez, John Parrish, Bubba Nelson.

New Hampshire - Jacob Butler.

Dunedin - Kenny Rodriguez, Celson Polanco, Connor Falkenbach, Luis Sanchez, Chris Emanuele, Brian Dopirak, Matthew Lane.

Lansing - Raul Barron, Kevin Ahrens, Joherymn Chavez, Manuel Rodriguez, John Tolisano, Matt Liuzza, Ross Buckwalter. 



Syracuse -  13-7, TIED FOR FIRST WITH SCRANTON!  HOLY *&@#!!, 1.5 GA of Pawtucket in International League North Division, 8W, 9-1 Last 10.

New Hampshire - 4-13, last place, 9.5 GB of Portland in Eastern League Northern Division, 1L, 3-7 Last 10.

Dunedin - 11-8, 2nd place, 1.0 GB of Fort Myers in Florida State League West Division, 2L, 5-5 Last 10.

Lansing - 11-7, TIED FOR FIRST WITH WEST MICHIGAN!  (not as big a deal but still pretty good!), 1.0 GA of Dayton & Great Lakes in Midwest League Eastern Division, 3W, 5-5 Last 10.


Today's Schedule........

New Hampshire @ Portland, 12:00 p.m. EDT - LHP Ricky Romero, NH (0-2, 5.19) vs LHP Dustin Richardson, POR (3-0, 2.12).

Peoria @ Lansing, 6:05 p.m. EDT - LHP Zach Ashwood, PEO (0-2, 1.08) vs LHP Brad Mills, LAN (1-1, 4.20).

Syracuse @ Pawtucket, 6:15 p.m. EDT - LHP David Purcey, SYR (2-0, 1.89) vs  LHP Michael Tejera, PAW (0-2, 5.74).

Dunedin @ Lakeland, 7:00 p.m. EDT - TBA, DUN vs. RHP Luis Marte, LAK (1-1, 2.40)