Some good news on the farm on Thursday. Nate Pearson pitched well. The New Hampshire bullpen picked up their first save of the season in game 32. Sem Robberse looks to be finding his groove. Samad Taylor and Kevin Smith continued to get on base. The Bison's split a doubleheader, New Hampshire and Dunedin won. Vancouver lost.
Scranton 3 Buffalo 2 - game 1
Scranton 0 Buffalo 10 - game 2
New Hampshire 5 Portland 3
Vancouver 0 Spokane 8
Dunedin 6 Lakeland 1
This is what I noted from yesterday's games.
Jacob Waguespack pitched well in game one, he went five innings with just one run allowed.
When Riley Adams was called up, the Jays assigned Rodrigo Vigil, a 28 year old journeyman, to Buffalo. Up until the seventh inning of game one he had the Bisons only two hits. Cullen Large got the Bisons on the board with a two run home run in the bottom of the seventh. It was his first home run of the season.
It was Nate Pearson versus Deivi Garcia in game two. The Bisons got to Garcia for five runs and he was gone in the third inning. Dilson Herrera and Jared Hoying each homered off Garcia. The Bisons tacked on five runs against the bullpen. Cullen Large followed his home run by going 2-2 with two walks. Kevin Smith was 1-2 with an RBI double in game two. He also walked twice. His on base streak had ended in game one.
Pearson threw five shutout innings, three hits, three walks and six K's. He did need 87 pitches, 52 strikes and 35 balls, so still a little wild. Patrick Murphy followed and needed just ten pitches to get through the sixth inning.
The New Hampshire bullpen was 4-17 entering Thursdays game. To put that into perspective, the Fisher Cats have 21 losses and 17 of those were attributed to the bullpen. They also had no saves and were zero for 13 in save opportunities. So it was with some surprise that Fitz Stadler and Brady Rodning combined for three shutout innings. It was particularly good for Rodning who had blown his three previous save opportunities. Troy Miller started and pitched six innings. Portland pushed three runs across against him.
The Cats faced ex-Jay Josh Winckowski for the fourth time this season. Its a credit to Winckowski that the hitters just scored two runs off him even though they are now quite familiar with him. Otto Lopez went 3-4 with a double and two RBI. Samad Taylor picked up two more hits, and a walk, and one strikeout. Jordan Groshans was back in the lineup and had a hit.
As discussed New Hampshire have a losing record. The bullpen is one reason but the offense is another. The team is middle of the pack in team OPS. Taylor, Martin, Moreno and Lopez are hitting well. Talley and Groshans are middle of the pack but the bottom four in the order are hitting at or under .200. The Cats need some or all of those four to pick up the pace.
The C's had only two hits in their game. Luis Quinones was wild, he walked six in four innings. He did strike out eight and only allowed one hit, that was the positive. He needed 87 pitches to get through four innings.
Sem Robberse had a rocky start to his season. We don't know what he did in 2020. Did he pitch? Was it in Holland or in North America? So it's understandable that he might have started slowly. But on Thursday, Robberse went five innings of one hit ball with seven strikeouts. This follows four shutout innings with seven K's in his last start. Robberse was followed by Alejandro Melean who pitched four shutout innings. Melean has allowed just one earned run over his last four appearances.
Orelvis Martinez hit a three run home run, his fourth, Steward Berroa added a two run shot, his second. Leo Jimenez went 3-5. He is 10-23 over his last six games.
Third Star - Cullen Large
Second Star - Otto Lopez
First Star - Sem Robberse