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Jordan Romano was outstanding for New Hampshire in a day game on Thursday. Over seven innings he allowed one run on two hits. The Fisher Cats won with Lourdes Gurriel hitting his first home run of the year. Dunedin were held to three hits and lost. Kevin Vicuna made three errors and Lansing lost by a run. He tried to compensate with four hits. Yesterday Logan Warmoth made three errors so there is some butter fingers among the systems shortstops.

Buffalo had on off day to let them rest from their rain and snow outs. They are on the road to Virginia for a weekend set and it should definitely be warmer down there.

Jordan Romano was excellent over seven innings. He had two wobbles, two innings where he hit a batter and then walked a batter and also gave up a hit. In one inning he conceded a run and in the other he escaped. The other five innings were routine. Romano ended his day with four strikeouts.

The heart of the order, the 3-4-5 hitters, had six hits between them out of nine total. Vlad Jr., Lourdes Gurriel and Max Pentecost each had two hits. One of Gurriel's hits was his first home run of the season. Pentecost also drove in a run. Cavan Biggio had a double and a sac fly. Biggio has nine hits this season but seven of those have been extra base hits. His slugging percentage is .576, just behind Vladdy.

Dunedin were out hit 10-3 and lost 4-2. Josh DeGraaf pitched reasonably well, most of the hits he allowed were with two outs. He did give up a home run and left in the seventh inning with a runner on. That runner was given a hit but reports from Dunedin suggest Josh Palacios misplayed the ball into the hit. Jake Fishman came on in relief and was taken deep for a two run shot, one of which was charged to DeGraaf. That made it two runs in 6.1 innings for DeGraaf. DeGraaf was converted to a starter in the second half of last season and this start was better than his first, getting him back closer to his 2017 form.

The Jays scored two runs on three hits. Eduard Pinto had two hits. The runs scored on an error and a ground out.

Lansing held Lake County to two hits and lost. Both of Lake County's hits came in the second inning. But back to back errors by Vicuna led to three unearned runs. Lansing fought back to tie the game but in the seventh another error by Vicuna allowed the go ahead run to score. All four runs were unearned. Yennsy Diaz started and allowed just those two hits over six innings. He had five strikeouts.

Lansing's runs scored on a bases loaded walk, a double play and a wild pitch. Kevin Vicuna had four hits, half of the Lugnuts eight. Chavez Young had two.

3 Stars

3rd star: Max Pentecost

2nd star: Lourdes Gurriel

1st star: Jordan Romano


Romano Throws the Cheese | 46 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Mike Green - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 12:34 PM EDT (#356608) #
The Lugnut game was a bit of a heartbreaker.  They trailed by a run heading to the ninth.  Chavez Young singled, Samad Taylor sacrificed him to second (I would probably have let him hit), and Kevin Vicuna had an infield hit to put runners on the corners with one out.  Kacy Clemens grounded into a 4-6-3 to end the game. 
Gerry - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 12:35 PM EDT (#356609) #
Buffalo now have four incoming players, Alford, Pompey, Mayza and Ngoepe. There will be more moves.

Michael De La Cruz could go back to extended.
Danny Espinosa could leave, now that he was bypassed for a callup.
In Parmley could go on the DL.
One pitcher, maybe Murphy Smith, could go on the DL.
uglyone - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 12:56 PM EDT (#356611) #
what are the roster limits in AAA?

they gotta move out an outfielder, no?

CF Pompey
RF Alford
LF Smith
3B Leblebijian
SS Ngoepe
2B Espinosa
1B Tellez
C Jansen
DH McGuire

UT Berti
OF Fields
IF Lopes
C DeLaCruz

OF Parmley
OF Sweeney

IR - IF Urena
Gerry - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 01:55 PM EDT (#356613) #

they gotta move out an outfielder, no?

I have Parmley to the DL. He could go to AA too.

Gerry - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 07:48 PM EDT (#356625) #
In addition to the Alford, Pompey and Mayza, Buffalo activated Jake Petricka. Gift Ngoepe has not been activated yet.

Murphy Smith was placed on the DL, Ian Parmley Michael De La Cruz and Chad Girodo were transferred to extended spring. Presumably they are waiting for re-assignment and for all the dominoes to fall.
Gerry - Friday, April 20 2018 @ 07:54 PM EDT (#356626) #
Pompey home run klaxon.
dan gordon - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 01:03 AM EDT (#356638) #
Bergen and McClelland each had another great appearance for Dunedin. They've now combined for 12 innings with 6 hits, 2 walks, zero runs allowed and 22 strikeouts.

Kevin Vicuna had 2 more hits to up the average to .358. Maybe the .340 he hit in his late season move to Lansing last year was no fluke. OPS just under .800 now for 103 Lansing at bats and he's just turned 20. Hopefully he can add a bit of weight and drive the ball a bit better. Although he has a reputation as an adroit fielder, he does make a LOT of errors - 52 in 159 minor league games.
ComebyDeanChance - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 08:37 AM EDT (#356646) #
By my count Lansing stole 7 bases last night, including the catcher Andres Sotillo, Ryan Noda, and Samad Taylor stealing home.
ISLAND BOY - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 12:00 PM EDT (#356663) #
Three different players stole home, or am I reading this wrong ?
jerjapan - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#356668) #
Bergen and McClelland both showing that dominance that John Northey talked about looking for in minor league relievers, but the org is clearly slow with prospects, even relievers.  Barnes and Ramirez spring to mind as AAA relievers having dominant seasons that took a while to get a promotion.

I hadn't realized that Kacy Clemens only became a full-time hitter in university due to arm issues.  Despite his age and lower pedigree (he was drafted as a senior and signed underslot) perhaps there is some unexpected room for growth in the guy.  Theoretically, we could field a team in a few years featuring up to 6 bloodline position players - Biggio and Clemens' starts to the season at least give something to dream on for some lower profile prospects.  Clemens is already considered a strong glove at 1B.  He and Noda often bat back-to-back and between them they have 34 BBs in 22 games. 

Borcuki's start reminds me of 2016 when he was aggressively promoted over Lansing and proceeded to get hammered in 6 starts.  With only 7 AA starts under his belt, perhaps another step back makes sense. 

Poor Murphy Smith - the ultimate org soldier.  I have to assume he's not actually injured.  Hope he at least has a decent minor league contract - anyone know what minor FAs make on average?  This is a good read (from last year) on his long path to AAA.

greenfrog - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 06:57 PM EDT (#356680) #
Biggio with a three-run HR in the early going tonight; he is off to a strong start this year. Vlad is 1/2 with a run scored. SRF with two scoreless IP so far.
Gerry - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 07:33 PM EDT (#356681) #
Gift was activated today by the Bisons. To make room Jon Berti was sold to the Cleveland Indians.
diamonds38 - Saturday, April 21 2018 @ 09:00 PM EDT (#356683) #
Fisher Cats win 6-2. Reid-Foley was good again but not as sharp as the last two starts. Only had 1 K through five but when they started to get to him in the 6th, he dialed it up and struck out the last two men he faced. Fastball command was not quite as good tonight.

Shafer was hitting 94 with movement. He looked very good.

Case throws a hard sinker but doesn't seem to have a swing-and-miss pitch.

Bichette had a great at bat in the 8th fouling off numerous 0-2 pitches before grounding out. Made a bad throw in the 9th to allow things to continue.

Panas really opens up his front side against lefthanded pitchers and then struggles to make hard contact. Obviously much more comfortable against right handed pitchers.

#2JBrumfield - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 12:55 AM EDT (#356684) #
Javier Hernandez made his season debut for Lansing tonight behind the plate. Andres Sotillo has been placed on the DL.

Ryan Hissey has been assigned to New Hampshire.
Cynicalguy - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 10:11 AM EDT (#356688) #
The second half in AAA could look like this:

CF Pompey
RF Alford
LF Fields
3B Guerrero
SS Bichette
2B Gurriel Jr
1B Tellez
C Jansen
DH McGuire/Smith Jr

SP: Biagini, Borucki, Reid-Foley
bpoz - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 12:08 PM EDT (#356693) #
The 2nd half should be July 1st. That is a strong lineup.

Maybe 2 or 3 players get up to Toronto.
bpoz - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#356694) #
That is a very/quite good lineup for Sept 2019 and the start of 2020.
Health is an unknown. Fields, D Smith and McGuire should be decent bench players. Strong defense. Uncertain offense.
Tellez will have 2018 and 2019 AAA ABs under his belt.
jerjapan - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 01:47 PM EDT (#356696) #
Thanks for the update diamonds. I'm still high on SRF - he's still just 22 - and find it encouraging that he can get results even without his best command.

Didn't realize that Shafer could hit 94 - he's an under the radar reliever like Case, both who could contribute on the Buffalo shuttle down the road. Too bad Case doesn't have closer stuff, the nickname would be just too good.

The org must just love Ngoepe's glove - I'd rather have Berti on the surface, but haven't seen Gift in the field enough to fully appreciate him.

We've got some real talent coming up in the OF. AAA is obviously stacked. Fringey Dwight Smith was a real prospect to me for the first time last year, and has continued hot. 2 HRs thus far, after 2 in the Spring, showing a little more pop than normal. Dunedin also sports some lower-ceiling guys who are red hot - Josh Palacios is looking great, DJ Davis needs to be in AA and is still only 23 and Orozco just turned 23 and has a solid 4th OF profile.

When do the lower levels get started playing?
Gerry - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 03:20 PM EDT (#356701) #
Richard Urena had three at-bats for Dunedin today. He should be back at a higher level in a week.
hypobole - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 03:21 PM EDT (#356702) #
Richard Urena started at SS for Dunedin today.
jerjapan - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 04:15 PM EDT (#356704) #
Tidy start for Jon Harris today, 6 IP, 6 baserunners, 2 runs and 5 Ks.  and Cavan Biggio with his 2nd HR in AA - I was surprised that he started in NH, but he's having the best stretch of his pro career - is he a legit prospect?

Richard S.S. - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 04:24 PM EDT (#356706) #
Short Season Teams start playing close after the MLB Draft, June 15th.
Mike Green - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 04:52 PM EDT (#356707) #
Ryan Noda had an interesting game in Lansing's win- 3 walks in 4 PAs, 3 stolen bases and one baserunner kill.  Noda has 7 stolen bases on the season, and has walked 22 times in 13 games.  He has an OBP over .509 in his career.  For fun, I looked up Kevin Youkilis.  At age 23 Youkilis started out the season in low A ball and was pretty comparable to Noda (actually a little less impressive), and then got the promotion to the FSL where he was about the same, followed by a late season promotion to the EL where he was even better and hit for some power. 
Richard S.S. - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 05:47 PM EDT (#356708) #
Sometimes players need more challenge than they are getting at the level they are playing at for their talent. Promote them higher than their current performance indicates can make them quality prospects again. There are a few every year, but they are hard to judge whom so move like that.

Sometimes they are overwhelmed by a move and need to repeat a level before they take off again. Sometimes they are what they are and nothing too much more. Sometimes the move is just a little more age appropriate.
diamonds38 - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 06:08 PM EDT (#356709) #
Saw pieces of the Fisher Cats game today. They won 4-2. Only saw Jon Harris throw the first inning and he was nibbling way too much and missing spots. After that he must have settled down. Zach Jackson got the last two outs for the save. Looks like a closer with a high leg kick and kind of falls off the mound. His stuff wasn't as impressive as I thought it would be. Fastball was around 93 according to the Reading announcer and his slider was pretty good but didn't seem like a wipeout pitch.
uglyone - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 06:19 PM EDT (#356710) #
youk was another beneficiary of the red sox pharmaceutical department.
Shoeless Joe - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 07:26 PM EDT (#356712) #
That was Biggio's 3rd homer of the season today and he's had a great start to the year. He's always hit a lot of fly balls and there is a small chance it turns into better power numbers this season.
Mike Green - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 08:32 PM EDT (#356714) #
UO,  I don't know anything about a particular issue in Boston different from anywhere else in MLB. and I don't recall allegations or even insinuations in relation to Youkilis.
hypobole - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#356715) #
Red Sox pharma dept is well known for PED's that give players the ability to lay off tough pitches.
greenfrog - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 08:54 PM EDT (#356716) #
Through 12 games, Biggio is hitting .302/.415/.674 with 3 HR, 8 BB, 10 K, and 2 SB (0 CS). I'm not sure how he is currently viewed as a prospect, but that is a really nice start (SSS) in AA for the second baseman. He just turned 23, so he's not really that old yet.
whiterasta80 - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#356717) #
There's a very clear relationship between PEDs and walks. If a player has no power then a pitcher can just throw fastballs to them continually.

Oh, and Papi,ManRam, mo Vaughan, probably nomar... Not sure it was worse than other places but the sox clearly had steroid issues in the day. No matter how much Mitchell tried to hide it.
jerjapan - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 09:55 PM EDT (#356718) #
I've read that Jackson's elite pitch is his hard curveball - a 65 per MLB pipeline when drafted.  Here's their take:

Jackson’s best pitch is a hammer three-quarters breaking ball with curveball break and slider velocity in the low 90s. He usually operates at 93-95 mph with his fastball and can hit 97, though it can get straight at times.

Haven't seen him pitch though.
hypobole - Sunday, April 22 2018 @ 10:16 PM EDT (#356719) #
Youkilis was never a no power guy. And his profile was basically the same in college and the pros.

And no matter how little power players have, they don't just get fastballs. The 2 guys with the lowest ISO last year (Peraza and Gordon) saw just under 60% FB's. Donaldson saw just over 51% FB's. So yeah, definitely a gap but nothing quite as dramatic as you make it seem.
whiterasta80 - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 09:45 AM EDT (#356731) #
Youkilis slugged .441 across 9 minor league seasons, only clearing .500 once (in 150 ABs at AAA). He then had 2 seasons at the major league level commensurate with this performance. Those seasons were followed by SLG% of .569, .548, and .564. Immediately after the institution of HGH blood testing (pessimist view) or right when he turned 32 (optimist view) he returned to sub-.460 slugging for the rest of his career.

In the years that he slugged >.500 his OBP was (naturally) over 30 points higher.

I didn't accuse him of PEDs specifically but that is a Caminiti-style bump.

Also, "all fastballs" was meant to be an exaggeration that was just lost in the text. All I mean is that pitchers aren't afraid to throw strikes if you don't have power. Hence OBP generally goes down.
Mike Green - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#356734) #
Youkilis did hit for more power between age 29 and 31 (2008-10).  His walk rate fell during that time (unlike what happened with Bonds).  It appeared to me that he changed his approach somewhat as he got a little stronger and swung at more pitches.  I thought, by the way, that the research showed that HGH was not effective. 

Anyway, it seems pretty thin to me.  I have no idea whether Youkilis took PEDs but I just don't see that there is any reason to believe that he took them and any other particular player did not.  The 2008 AL home run leaderboard ran Cabrera, Quentin, A-Rod, Thome, Dye, Sizemore, Cust, Huff, Hamilton, Giambi.  The 2009 leaderboard ran: (Carlos) Pena, Teixeira, Aaron Hill, Bay, Lind, Kendrys Morales, Cabrera, Longoria, Cruz, Cuddyer.    I'll venture a guess that some of them were using PEDs, but how many and who I really do not know. 

uglyone - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 10:48 AM EDT (#356741) #
AA 23-24: 614pa, .145iso
AAA 24-26: 504pa, .176iso
MLB 25-28: 1658pa, .154iso
MLB 29-32: 2161pa, .240iso

also coincided with other red sox prospects and pickups developing "surprising" power surges at around the same time, like Pedroia and Ortiz.

Mike Green - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 11:06 AM EDT (#356743) #
Pedroia had comparable HR rates in 2015 and 2016 (after HGH testing) to 2008-10. 

It seems awfully thin to me.  Pedroia always swung hard- he had an IsoP of almost .200 in the FSL at age 20 and in the Eastern League at age 21 to go with elite plate control.  Like Youkilis, he changed his focus a bit from swinging at strikes and fouling off pitches to hitting the ball with authority as he got older. It's a rational response to changing abilities as one gets a little older.  Ortiz is, of course, a different story entirely.

whiterasta80 - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 02:22 PM EDT (#356756) #
HGH is, of course, only one possible PED and not even the most likely candidate here.

I freely admit that I have no evidence of Youkilis doping (in contrast to, say Manny or Papi). His career trajectory just looks a little suspicious to me. Plus I never liked him and I'm not fantastic at separating that out.For example I'm more convinced of Youkilis (hate him, but no evidence) doping than I am of Nomar (loved him, some evidence).
Mike Green - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 02:51 PM EDT (#356757) #
Maybe I am missing something, but the only things that Youkilis has done since leaving baseball are selling beer and supporting gun control.  Did you not like his beard or something?   As a player, I found him somewhat comical when sliding into the plate on a close play after a throw from the outfield- what's the rabbi doing in the dust anyway?  And his batting stance was definitely weird.

He's married to Tom Brady's sister, but it would take more than that for me to dislike him.  But maybe it's because I am partial to players who control the strike zone well. 

mathesond - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 03:00 PM EDT (#356758) #
Youk had some foibles that some may have found grating...
whiterasta80 - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#356761) #
A person is within his rights to dislike someone without an overarching reason.

That said, if you need a specific justification then here's a sampling.

He was dirty (laying out Sandy Alomar Jr. and trying to do the same to countless other catchers, throwing his helmet at Porcello like a B!7@h), he constantly got in fights with both teammates and opponents, he played for BOTH THE RED SOX AND YANKEES. Oh yeah, and his batting stance looked like he suffered from encopresis.
Glevin - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 04:05 PM EDT (#356762) #
"I freely admit that I have no evidence of Youkilis doping (in contrast to, say Manny or Papi). His career trajectory just looks a little suspicious to me."

His career trajectory was definitely in the range of normal. He sacrificed some patience to be more aggressive and it paid off with more power and fewer walks for a couple of years and then he declined quickly. WRC+ by year: 106, 120, 111, 124, 146, 147, 159, 126, 103, 79.
uglyone - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 04:07 PM EDT (#356763) #
youk was king of the goateed schmucks.
Mike Green - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 04:20 PM EDT (#356764) #
OK, mathesond, he's more like Lenny Bruce than a rabbi.  Whatever.  Chacun a son gout. 

As for constantly getting into fights, I don't remember that at all.  He certainly charged the mound after Porcello hit him (in the context of a simmering dispute over several games between the clubs).  And I don't remember anything with Sandy Alomar Jr.  Like I said, every time I saw him go into the plate on a close play, it looked comical and not threatening.  Maybe I missed the bad ones.

uglyone - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 04:27 PM EDT (#356765) #
Kevin Youkilis

"No one mentions that PEDs have been a part of the game since WWII. If one player is in the HOF that did PEDs, all deserve to be in. #IMO #ComingFromANonSteroidUser"

2:58pm 26 Jan 2018

hashtag vindication
uglyone - Monday, April 23 2018 @ 04:30 PM EDT (#356766) #
p.s. googling "Youkilis" "jerk/prick/etc" is fun
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