Australian Baseball League – A couple of quick observations. First, the announcers remarked that the Perth Heat roster contains 4 members (3 active for the playoffs) of the the first family of baseball in Western Australia, the Kennelly family. You may remember that Tim Kennelly was in the Phillies system for 8 years (2005-12). The Phillies tried him at every position but shortstop. He’s currently playing right field and DH for the Heat.
And second, the venue for the championship series is Adelaide’s Norwood Oval. It has dirt cutouts like any artificial surface for the mound, catcher’s/batter’s boxes, and the bases. One of the announcers remarked about the condition of the “grass”. This piqued my interest and I had to google the Oval. It is also known as Coopers Stadium (Coopers Brewery sponsership) and is rented to the Norwood Football Club. It’s primary use is for Australian rules football, but is also use for a variety of other sporting events including soccer, rugby, American football, and baseball. it has a grass surface. An interesting twist for infielders – less certain bounces off grass but maybe a little less velocity on some ground balls. Continue reading Winter Ball Round Up; Feb. 2 – Fini
Australian Baseball League – The Perth Heat swept the Sydney Blue Sox in two games to advance to the best-of-three series against the regular season champion Adelaide Bite. Brian Pointer started in left field both games and went a combined 3 for 7 while getting hits in both games. He scored a run and drove in one, too. He walked once and struck out only once. Brian also recorded an outfield assist when he cut down a runner at second base.
MLB is broadcasting Friday’s game one live at 3:30AM. So, if your up late Thursday or up early Friday …
Continue reading Winter Ball Round Up; Jan. 26 – Feb.1
Since the last winter ball post, the Caribbean Leagues have entered post season play. The Mexican League begins their semifinals today. The other leagues are in the middle of their round robin segments. The Australian League is still playing regular season games. Over the past 2 weeks, Phillies’ players have put up the following lines. Continue reading Winter Ball Round Up: Dec. 28 – Jan. 10
I was on the road last weekend and couldn’t provide an update. So, here’s a two-week update today.
- In the VWL
- Willians Astudillo played in 8 games and went 10 for 31, no XBH, 1 RBI, and his first 2 VWL Ks. His overall slash is .314/.351/.400/.751. He has been splitting time in Left and center fields, has one outfield assist from LF, and has committed no errors.
- Andres Blanco played in 12 games and went 13 for 41, 5 XBH, 6 RBI, 6 BB, 5 K. His overall slash is .306/.444/.472/.917. His BB rate is 11.4% and his K rate is 18.3%.
- Freddy Galvis played in 13 games and went 16 for 53, 5 XBH, 8 BB, 7 K. Overall, he is .259/.326/.345/.671 with 12 doubles. His BB rate is 8.4% and his K rate is 21.9%. Surprisingly, he has been caught stealing in 4 of 5 attempts.
- Cesar Hernandez played in 11 games and went 9 for 38, 3 XBH, 9 BB, 7 K, 3 SB. Overall he is .315/.393/.371/.764 with 7 doubles. His BB rate is 11.4% and his K rate is 17.7%.
- Obudel Herrera played in 12 games and went 18 for 47, 2 HR, 6 BB, 6 K, 3 SB. Overall he’s .378/.434/.567/.1.001 with 5 HR, 13 doubles, 3 triples, 7 SB in 7 attempts. His BB rate is 8.6% and his K rate is 14.2%.
- Gabriel Lino played in 9 games and went 6 for 24, 8 K. Overall he’s .247/.345/.329/.674 with 6 doubles. His BB rate is 13.1% and his K rate is 31.5%.
- Wilmer Oberto saw time in 4 games and went 0 for 5. Overall he has 39 at bats in 19 games. His slash is .179/.273/.179/.452. He has 15 Ks in those 39 ABs.
Continue reading Winter Ball Round Up: Dec. 7 – Dec. 20.
Updates on Phillies’ minor league players from around winter ball during the last week –
- Aaron Altherr hasn’t played since November 18th.
- Willians Astudillo hasn’t played since November 23rd, his only appearance where he hit a 3-run HR in a 1-4 outing.
- Emmanuel Marrero hasn’t played since November 26th.
- Cameron Perkins hasn’t played since October 29th.
- Darin Ruf hasn’t played since October 31st. I read that he suffered a muscle strain, returned to the US for a second opinion, and was sent home for the winter.
- Wilber Oberto hasn’t played since November 4th.
- Jesse Biddle hasn’t pitched since November 8th when he was shut down for the winter after an injury.
- Ethan Martin hasn’t pitched since November 29th.
- Lino Martinez hasn’t pitched since November 6th.
- Yacksel Rios hasn’t pitched since November 18th.
- Alexis Rivero hasn’t pitched since October 20th.
Position players – Continue reading Winter Ball Round Up: Nov. 30 – Dec. 6
The Threshers finished their home schedule with a loss to the Tampa Yankees that lowered their home record to 21-51. With three road games in Lakeland this weekend they can improve on their 25-38 road record. Tonight, Colin Kleven got the start. The big righty has been effective this season. He came into the game with the fourth lowest walks per 9 innings in the FSL with 29 walks in 130.2 innings for a ratio of 2.0 walks per game.
The first batter Kleven faced seemed to set the pattern for his evening. The lead off batter worked an 8-pitch at bat before lining a double to center field. Kleven would continue to run deep counts through the first two innings. At the conclusion of the second inning, he had already thrown 42 pitches to nine batters. Kleven continued to battle until the Yankees got to him in the sixth inning. His final line and pitching stats – Continue reading Threshers Close Home Schedule With 8-2 Loss; August 28, 2014
Miguel Nunez Faced the Brevard County Manatees Sunday afternoon and pitched one heck of a game. He threw a season high 8 innings, and 67% strikes before leaving with a 2-1 lead. The bullpen failed to hold on and a ninth inning rally fell short as the Threshers dropped a heart breaker 5-4.
Nunez got offensive support on solo home runs by J.P. Crawford and Art Charles. Crawford came through again in the ninth but it wasn’t enough. Continue reading Nunez Pitching Gem Wasted; August 24, 2014
Kevin Walter made his third start of the season and recorded his second win with 5 solid innings against the Brevard County Manatees. The Threshers used a four run fourth inning to erase an early deficit, and the bullpen kept the Manatees at bay to post a 6-2 victory.
Brevard County is an affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. They boast 7 of the Brewers’ top 20 prospects. Their line up includes #1 Tyrone Taylor (2012, 2nd round, 92nd overall), #2 Orlando Arcia (2010, international free agent), #9 Victor Roache (2012, 1st, 28), and #12 Michael Reed(2011, 5th, 161). They hold down the second through fifth positins in their line up. The Threshers’ staff held them to 4 singles in 15 at bats with a walk and 6 strike outs. Continue reading Walter Wins Again; August 23, 2014
The Threshers followed up their come-from-ahead first game loss to the Brevard County Manatees with a 7-2 loss in the second game of the double header. They continued their passive offensive ways with 4 hits in the night cap. Newcomer Jesmuel Valentin was replaced by Angelo Mora in the second game.
Jeb Stefan was touched for a run in the first inning. He allowed the first 5 batters to reach base in the second inning on the way to giving up another 5 runs. He settled down after that and retired 13 consecutive batters before surrendering a solo home run in the sixth inning. His final line was – Continue reading … And Threshers Can’t Overcome 6-0 Second Inning Deficit; August 22, 2014
The Threshers had a fun first inning in game one of a double header tonight. For the first time all season, I had to change the innings on the score sheet as the Threshers sent 10 batters to the plate. The big damage came on three-run home runs by Art Charles and Chris Serritella. Unfortunately, the Threshers’ offense packed it in for the rest of the game.
Roman Quinn, Jesmuel Valentin, Brad Pointer, and Harold Martinez all hit singles in the first to score ahead of the home runs. The Manatees’ Taylor Williams rebounded from a 33-pitch first inning and shut down the Threshers through the end of the fifth. Williams is the Brewers’ #13 prospect. He was their 4th round pick in 2013, #122 overall. He was recently promoted and came into this game with a 1.80 ERA and 1-1 record in 3 Florida State League starts.
The Threshers’ starter was Colin Kleven. Kleven is among the league leaders in lowest walks per innings pitched at 1.92 per nine. He came into the game having allowed 27 walks and striking out 95 batters in 126.2 innings. He had an easy 1-2-3 first inning. However, he didn’t appear to have his best stuff, and the plate umpire seemed to squeeze him on a couple of occasions. He battled but surrendered single runs in the second, third, and fourth innings before a complete implosion in the fifth allowed the Manatees to tie the score.
Kleven’s pitching notes and some game notes –
- Kleven – 4.0 IP, 4 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 2 BB, 5 K
- 21 batters, 12 first pitch strikes
- 92 pitches, 57 strikes
- Of the 57 strikes – 5 swinging, 19 called, 20 fouls, 13 balls in play
- Of the 13 balls in play – 6 infield ground balls, 3 fly outs to CF, 4 base hits
- Of the 4 hits – triple off the top of the CF wall, home run to CF, line drive single, ground ball double down the left field line
- 5 three-ball counts – 3B, SF8, BB, K, and a bases loaded BB on the final batter faced
- Kleven allowed 1 run in a 32-pitch third inning where he faced 5 batters and struck out two
- Kleven’s hard luck fifth inning included an HBP on an 0-2 pitch, a failed fielder’s choice when Crawford was ruled off the bag on Valentin’s throw (blown call) on a 1-2 pitch, an errant throw to second by Martinez on another failed fielder’s choice on a 2-2 pitch, then a 6-pitch walk to end his night
- Quinn, Valentin, and Charles each had 2 hits
- Quinn got picked off first after a leadoff walk in the 4th
Forsythe came in with the bases loaded and the score 6-4, nobody out. Gabriel Lino allowed a passed ball on a pitch where he gave less than minimum effort. Forsythe did give up a run-scoring single, but his 2 strike outs and inning ending fly ball limited the damage. Ridenhour gave up a lead off single in the eighth and couldn’t stop the Manatees’ momentum as they pushed ahead the go ahead run.
The Threshers went quietly in the bottom of the eighth, they managed only 4 hits after the first inning, and we’re getting set for another game in 25 minutes. Yippee.