Monthly Archives: April 2008

Clearwater Threshers Report

Well last week’s report contained 8 games due to a 10:30 am game on Wednesday last week, so this week’s report includes only 5 games because of a day off for the league on Tuesday this week. Of course the big story for the week was Antonio Bastardo’s line in his game this past week. Overall the team went 2-3 on the week winning it’s last two games making it the first time this season the team has won two games in a row.

The offense has come to life a bit as of late coming up from last in the league in team batting average after week one, and next to last in batting average after week two to fourth (of twelve teams) in batting average currently. The offense has drawn the second most walks in the league, and has struck out fewer than all but one team in the league. Unfortunately the team is hitting without any power at all. The offense is last in slugging percentage, and in all XBH categories, last is RBIs, and next to last in runs scored as a result. (The odd thing is the team with the fewest runs in the league, the Tampa Yankees, are only one game out of first in the division.)

For the most part pitching remains the team’s strength and they lead the league with four shut outs so far this year, and have allowed the second fewest runs. The team has the third most strikeouts in the league with 197, but has also allowed the second most walks with 99. Continue reading Clearwater Threshers Report

All Bastardo, All the time

Its Monday Morning Ten Pack time

Antonio Bastardo, LHP, High-A Clearwater (Phillies)
Bastardo can be seen as one of those “is what he is” kind of players: a short lefty with average velocity. However, beyond his left-handedness, he’s also got fantastic command and a killer changeup. That’s enough to make him some kind of prospect, and he’s on a roll with the Threshers, striking out 13 over eight two-hit innings yesterday—his third double-digit strikeout game in five starts. Currently sitting with a 1.17 ERA and 47 Ks in 30 2/3 innings, Bastardo is starting to get some attention as something more than just a future lefty lefty specialist, though he still has that in his back pocket, as lefty batters are currently 3-for-37 with 23 strikeouts against the 22-year-old Dominican.

I think KG is getting a little carried away with the “excellent command”, but Bastardo is getting noticed. Move over Cole Hamels….

Another lesson on patience

Its not a surprise for me to log on and see people ranting about Antonio Bastardo, and of course you only have to go back to last summer to see this lesson, which will be explained again, in the case of Tyler Mach. I had a few posters vocally ranting about Mach needing to be promoted to Clearwater, because he was clearly a better prospect than I was giving him credit for. This was when he was hitting a ridiculous .400+ after a weeks of the short season. Of course he cooled down dramatically, and now he’s still MIA and pondering retirement. Of course those calls about how off base I was, and how I was “disrespecting his prospect status” have died down. Now it looks like history is getting ready to repeat itself with Antonio Bastardo. So, again, I ask you to be patient, and here’s why…

Continue reading Another lesson on patience

Bastardo and the Sharks Blank the Yanks

Despite having given up just four runs in four games while striking out a league high 34 batters Clearwater Threshers’ starter Antonio Bastardo had earned just one win in his first four tries this year. On Sunday afternoon he would be given his fifth chance to earn a win, and he certainly made the most of his outing. Antonio had his best outing of the year going 8.0 innings and striking out 13 Yankees in the process both season highs for him. Continue reading Bastardo and the Sharks Blank the Yanks

More trouble for Mathieson?

This note was in Mike Radano’s column today

Finally, reliever Scott Mathieson scheduled a visit with Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., for a third opinion on his surgically repaired right elbow. Mathieson saw Dr. Lew Yocum in Los Angeles as well as the Phillies’ doctors. Even though he has some discomfort, he appears to be going through the natural progression of recovery.

“It’s not a setback,” Steve Nowryta, the Phillies director of the minor leagues, said. “(Mathieson) wanted to get another opinion, and that’s understandable.”

Forgive me for being slightly skeptical of the Phillies PR machine. Mathieson had Tommy John Surgery in September 2006. The normal recovery period is anywhere from 12-18 months. Last summer Mathieson pulled himself out of game after feeling discomfort in the elbow and then had surgery in the offseason to relieve discomfort, which was just a product of the TJ surgery. The team said he’d be fine, but its now almost May, but its now 20 months since he’s had the surgery, and clearly something isn’t right.

Tony Bastard makes the team photo

Baseball America’s weekly wrap up of the best performers of the week comes out today, and Antonio Bastardo makes the team photo.

IN THE TEAM PHOTO

White Sox 1B Brandon Allen hit .381/.435/.952 with three homers this week for high Class A Winston-Salem, though he remains strikeout prone and a bit rough at first base . . . Phillies LHP Antonio Bastardo struck out 12 in a seven-inning outing this week for high Class A Clearwater and is among the top five in the minor leagues in strikeouts, with 34 . . .

Hey, not bad. There will be a chat at 2:30 Eastern, so if you want, try and get some Phillies questions answered.

Iron Pigs–Week 3

Lehigh Valley lost each and every game since we last spoke and now stand at 2-20, in last place in the Northern Division of the International League, already 12.5 games out of first. The ‘Pigs have no player among the league leaders in hitting.  In the pitching categories, JA Happ is 4th in innings (26.1)and first in strikeouts (32).  Ron Chiavacci is 3rd in innings pitched (27.1). and 7th in strikeouts with 23. Continue reading Iron Pigs–Week 3