Results tagged ‘ Wilmington Blue Rocks ’
Usually on this blog, we spend our time talking about the current Burlington Royals. We focus on recent games and recurring trends. But, today we will start expanding.
Burlington became a Kansas City Royals affiliate in 2007. Since then, four men have graduated to the major leagues from the Royals’ Appalachian League club and many others are impacting teams at higher levels of the minor leagues. Beginning today, we will keep you up-to-date on B-Royals alumni from Low-A Lexington to Kansas City.
Kansas City Royals: The Royals feasted on Twins pitching, hitting four home runs to beat Minnesota, 9-3. Two former B-Royals were in the starting lineup: Catcher Salvador Perez (2008) and RF David Lough (2007). Lough went hitless in four trips to the plate, but Perez singled to finish 1-for-4.
Salvador Perez: Perez is beginning his first full season as the Royals’ regular starting catcher. Last year, he came up to the big club in late June and was more or less a regular starter from then on. He played in 76 games in 2012, finishing with a .301 average, 11 home runs and 39 RBI. The 2008 Burlington catcher has been the starter since opening day this season and is approaching his numbers from last year. While his power through 64 games in 2013 (4 HR) is not where it was last year, Perez has been productive (30 RBI) and consistent (.303 AVG) hitting in the middle of Kansas City’s order.
David Lough: Lough made his major league debut last September as a late-season call-up. He began 2013 where he began 2012, at Triple-A Omaha. But, the 2007 Burlington alum has been steadily in the majors since mid-May. In his first half-month in Kansas City this year, Lough hit .294 and he carried that into his first full big league month in June. Lough has hit .289 in June to give him a season average of .291. He has not had many RBI opportunities hitting largely in the bottom third of Manager Ned Yost’s order, but he has done a pretty good job getting on base with a .314 OBP.
**Wil Myers: The Burlington Royals have one current major leaguer who is no longer with Kansas City’s organization. Wil Myers, who played for the Appalachian League club in 2009, was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays this offseason. Myers made his major league debut in a June 18 doubleheader at Boston’s Fenway Park and has adjusted nicely to the majors. In 11 games with the Rays, Myers has hit .289 with three home runs and 9 RBI.
Last night, Myers hit his third home run of the year in a 6-3 Rays loss to Detroit. Myers’ homer was a solo shot off Tigers starter Max Scherzer in the fifth inning. He also singled in the game and finished 2-for-4.
Omaha Storm Chasers: The Storm Chasers could not muster enough offense to beat the Iowa Cubs last night. Omaha finished with just six hits to Iowa’s 16 in a 5-1 loss. No former Burlington Royals played in last night’s game.
Northwest Arkansas Naturals: Northwest Arkansas beat the Midland RockHounds, 7-3, thanks in part to 2011 Burlington grad Andy Ferguson. The starting pitcher hurled six strong innings, holding the RockHounds to two runs on five hits. Ferguson did not factor in the decision, as the Naturals needed a late rally to earn a comeback win.
The Naturals overcame a one-run deficit with a five-run eighth inning and a 2010 Burlington alum had a big part in the comeback. Brian Fletcher led off the eighth with a sharp single and eventually came around to score the tying run. He was 1-for-3 in the game with a walk and two runs scored.
Wilmington Blue Rocks: Wilmington’s game against the Potomac Nationals was postponed due to rain last night. They will make up the game today, as part of a doubleheader.
Lexington Legends: Three members of last year’s Burlington Royals combined for a three-run ninth inning rally, as the Legends came from behind to beat Hagerstown, 3-2. Trailing 2-0 on the road, Mark Threlkeld hit a two-run home run to tie the game. Fred Ford followed up Threlkeld’s homer with a triple and Bubba Starling drove him in with a sacrifice fly to give Lexington its first lead of the game.
In the bottom of the ninth, another 2012 Burlington Royal came in for the save. Right-hander Mark Peterson walked one, but induced a game-ending double play to seal the win for the Legends.
Royals Wrap: Hope you enjoyed the first installment of the Burlington Royals alumni report. We’ll continue to keep you updated on former B-Royals as they climb the organizational ladder. This year’s installment of the Burlington Royals returns home tonight to start a three-game series against the Greeneville Astros. Burlington has dropped its last three games to fall to 5-4, but the Royals are still only one game behind Bluefield for first place in the east. First pitch tonight is at 7 p.m. Listen to the game HERE.
We continue our look through the Royals organization at former Burlington Royals. After our look at the Midwest League’s Burlington Bees Thursday, it is time for the next level. Here are the Royals-turned-Rocks in Wilmington, Delaware (with the year in Burlington in parentheses).
- Manauris Baez (2008): 2-4, 4.58 ERA in 15 appearances and five starts. He was sent up to Triple-A Omaha from mid-June until the beginning of this month. For the O-Royals, Baez went 2-2 with an ERA of 7.09.
- Buddy Baumann (2009): 3-2, 2.36 ERA in 26 appearances. He was moved to the starting rotation in late June and is 1-2 as a starter, but his ERA is barely above 2 since that time. He was Kansas City’s seventh round selection in ’09.
- Barry Bowden (2008): 2-5, 1.60 ERA in 33 relief efforts. The righty has 10 saves on the year. In his last ten outings, Bowden has given up only one earned run in ten innings of work. He, like Baez, went to Omaha for two outings earlier this season.
- Bryan Paukovits (2007): 3-3, 5.13 ERA in eight starts with the Blue Rocks. He began the season with the Bees before getting the promotion. The 6’7″ righty has struggled in his last two outings, giving up 10 runs in nine frames of action.
- William Myers (2009): .389 average in 32 games. He is working on a switch to the catcher spot, but his offense hasn’t needed any adjustments. Over his last eight games, Myers is 16-for-28 (.571) with six runs scored. He was named a Midwest League Mid-Season All-Star while with the Bees.
- Patrick Norris (2007): .227 average in 100 games. The Oklahoma City native has one homer and 34 RBIs as one of the club’s every day outfielders. He spent the entire ’07 campaign with Burlington.
- Salvador Perez (2007): .266 average in 79 games. A Carolina League All-Star at the halfway point of 2010, Perez has three long balls and 38 RBIs. He is scorching over his last nine games, hitting 15-for-35 (.429).
Seven former Royals are making progress in the eight-team, advanced-A Carolina League. For more information, be sure to log onto the Blue Rocks’ web site.
UPDATE (7:30 p.m.): Tonight’s game has been postponed due to rain. The full story is available on the Royals’ home page. Tomorrow’s double dip begins at 5 p.m., so our pre-game coverage starts at 4:45.
UPDATE (6:30 p.m.): Still no official word, but it is not looking good. We are not broadcasting yet, and we probably will not this evening. Twitter is struggling this evening as well, so we will keep you updated here.
UPDATE (6:05 p.m.): The rain continues to pour here in Burlington. The tarp is on the field, and there is plenty of rain still coming. There is no end in sight, so my guess is there will not be a game this evening. Stay tuned to our twitter for more information.
Is there one thing, event, or moment that captures the essence of your passion, your life, or simply you? Is there one memory that you have that will always linger and will always evoke the purest of emotion? Personally, I can point to one day, above all others, that exemplifies why I am such a big baseball fan. It was nine years ago today at then Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio. The team I grew up rooting for, the Indians, trailed the 80-30 Seattle Mariners 14-2 through seven innings.
Cleveland scored three in the seventh and four in the eighth to trim the lead to 14-9. I will never forget when my dad, during the top of the ninth, pointed to the scoreboard and said, “It only makes sense. Three in the seventh, four in the eighth and five in the ninth.”
Sure enough, the Indians did score five in the ninth, capped off by an Omar Vizquel three-run triple that sent the most loyal of fans who stuck around into an unparalleled frenzy.
The Indians would go on to win it in 11 innings, 15-14. To this day, it is the greatest game I have ever attended. And yes, I did stay for the entire comeback.
I treat August 5th like an anniversary, and I always relive the comeback on this website. And what makes this especially memorable is the voice of Tom Hamilton, the “Voice of the Indians” and the man I look up to the most in the world of broadcasting. I try to bring a little bit of Hammy into each one of my broadcasts.
So with the P-Mariners in town, I am reminded of that one incredible night. The night that embodies my love for this game.
With that, here are some Bullets on this Thursday.
- About five minutes before I started this blog, the Royals have inked a new pitcher. Jake Ramsey, a 6’2″ righty from Placerville, Calif., has joined the fold. Ramsey is a graduate of Oral Roberts University. He made just three appearances for ORU in 2010 and was not selected in the June MLB Draft.
- Another hurler with only a couple of appearances on the season, Daniel Hernandez, took another important step toward returning. He threw 30 pitches in a batting-practice-like manner to three Royals–Yunior Figueroa, Adrian Martinez and Derek Rodriguez. Everything appeared to go well, and the trio of hitters only put a few balls in play.
- Hernandez has only made two appearances and one start, so it has been a challenge for him. “In college, they just want to win,” Hernandez said. “Here, there’s a pitch count. [You] can’t throw nine innings. So it’s a lot better here.”
- Originally, Hernandez was told that Tommy John surgery may be the plan of action, but that plan has changed. The plan is for Hernandez to throw one more batting practice session in a few days and then throw one inning next Wednesday at Johnson City.
- Burlington southpaw Jon Keck will make his second start of the season this evening, with his pitch count bumped up to around 70, ten more than his maximum during his last outing.
- Keck will have quite an act to follow after Crawford Simmons worked seven and two-thirds Monday and Leonel Santiago went seven complete Tuesday. In a league that has only seen three complete games this season, those outings are remarkable.
- Brian Fletcher is officially in the lineup for tonight’s tilt in the clean-up hole. This will be Fletcher’s first game in professional baseball after three great seasons at Auburn in the Southeastern Conference.
- During the off day yesterday, I had a chance to see Kansas City’s advanced-A affiliate, the Wilmington Blue Rocks, play at gorgeous BB&T Field in Winston-Salem against the Dash. The “Blue Crew” snapped a five-game losing streak, pulling away from the White Sox affiliate 9-5. Make sure to check out all of the great work that Wilmington broadcaster John Sadak does with game notes, recaps and the actual broadcasts on the Blue Rocks site. Sadak was nice enough to invite me up to the booth to listen to a few innings of the action.
- Kansas City’s Assistant General Manager for Scouting and Player Development J.J. Picollo is in Burlington today and tomorrow to check out the Royals. This is Picollo’s second full season as an assistant GM. He joined the Royals staff four years ago, coming from the Atlanta organization.
The weather in Burlington is very dicey for this evening. One Appy League game (Johnson City at Bristol) has already been postponed. Stay tuned to our twitter page (twitter.com/BRoyalsKC) for updates on the status of tonight’s game between second-place Pulaski and third-place Burlington. Enjoy the broadcast!
One of the many awesome aspects of being a broadcaster at various levels of sports is being able to watch former players progress further and further into the sport. Today is pretty cool because this will be the first player I see in this league from the team I used to cover. In 2008 and 2009, I was the “Voice of the Southern Ohio Copperheads.” The Copperheads are a summer collegiate league team in the Great Lakes League, located in Athens, Ohio. During my first summer, a guy by the name of Ricky Marshall, now a reliever for the Bristol White Sox, went 3-3 with a 2.56 ERA for the Copperheads.
Marshall, an Austin Peay hurler, is pictured here on the team website, right above my favorite coach in the Great Lakes League, Chris Moore. And according to White Sox skipper Ryan Newman, Marshall will probably pitch at some point during this series. If so, I promise there will be a couple funny stories to share from the comical and talented friend of mine.
Now for today’s Bullets on a cloudy Sunday from Boyce Cox Field.
- With only 29 games left in the season, skipper Nelson Liriano knows one thing that he wants his team to work on down the stretch–solving the offensive woes, especially with men in scoring position. “I’d like to see, with men in scoring position, a little patience with our hitters,” Liriano said. “The pitchers have the problem, not the hitter. So just have a little patience and have a good swing.”
- In the last two losses to Bluefield Friday and Saturday, Burlington went a combined 1-for-14 with men in scoring position. The only hit came in the first inning Saturday, when Ryan Jenkins brought in the Royals’ only two runs of the game on a single.
- As promised, I had a chance to speak with new pitcher (and former Royal hitter) Ryan Wood. He switched positions earlier this season and worked four and a third innings in Surprise before returning to the Appy League. “It was kind of a mutual decision,” Wood said about the switch to pitching. “I was happy with it and I was excited to get going.”
- Wood joins a pitching staff that is among the league’s best, boasting the third best ERA in the league at 3.20. “I’ve heard a lot of good things about the…guys we have up here,” Wood said. “I’ve been impressed so far.”
- Speaking of the bullpen, Josh Worrell is back with the club after a week with Kansas City’s advanced-A affiliate in Wilmington. He worked three shutout innings with the Blue Rocks in two appearances.
- Burlington finishes the month of July with a record of 15-15 to put them right in the playoff chase in 2010. The Royals finish the season with 16 road games and 13 home games. And, as mentioned before, 14 of the final 26 (beginning Thursday) are against either Pulaski or Danville.
Our pre-game coverage begins with the sixth installment of the “Royals Rewind” at 6:30 p.m. First pitch is slated for 7, as Jonathan Dooley looks to win for the fourth time in his last five outings. As always, you can e-mail into the broadcast at firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy the broadcast!
UPDATE (6:30 p.m.): The grounds crew is still working on the field, so we will not get this game going on time. The plan is to play the game but at a later time. For all the up-to-the-minute updates on the field and the broadcast start time, log on to our Twitter at http://twitter.com/BRoyalsKC
For the fifth time this season, a big league pitcher fired a no-hitter last night. Tampa Bay’s Matt Garza (a former Elizabethton Twin) allowed just one base runner, a second inning walk to the best-named player in the league–Brennan Boesch. Boesch was erased on a double play, so Garza faced the minumum.
It is the most no-nos since 1991, and there have been more during the first four months of the 2010 season than in ’08 and ’09 combined.
The Burlington Royals are contributing to the “Year of the Pitcher” in the Appalachian League. Some stats and moves, among other things, in today’s edition of the Bullets.
- Burlington has made a switch in the rotation, with Michael Giovenco heading to the bullpen. Giovenco has surrendered 20 runs in his last three starts. Replacing him in the rotation is Robert Penny, who is on the opposite side of the spectrum. He has not given up a run since June 25, which is a span of 21 and two thirds innings.
- Reliever Josh Worrell is heading to Wilmington to join the Blue Rocks’ bullpen. Wilmington is the advanced-A affiliate for Kansas City. Worrell went 1-1 with a 2.45 ERA in 14 innings of work here in the Appalachian League.
- Worrell becomes the third Burlington Royal to earn a promotion during the season. After only a few games with the club, catcher Drew Robertson was sent to Burlington, Iowa, to join the Bees, KC’s A affiliate. Ryan Stovall also went to Wilmington, but his trip only lasted a few days before returning to Burlington.
- Despite last night’s 5-1 loss, the Royals bullpen continued its stellar efforts. Over the last four games, the men in the ‘pen have allowed only one earned run in 23 and a third innings. “It’s really good when you know every night you are going to have good pitchers on the mound,” skipper Nelson Liriano said.
- Every reliever has been a part of this four-game stretch, and it has helped push the Royals to a team ERA of 3.32, the third-best mark in the league. “Pitching and defense wins games,” reliever Chas Byrne said. “We’re just working really hard. All the pitchers are.”
- But the offense has been struggling. Burlington is now ninth in the league in batting average (.242) and eighth in runs per game (4.4). The Royals have only scored 13 runs in their last five games, with the team posting just one win during that span. “Our weakness lately is the hitting,” Liriano said. “We need to score more runs.”
- Break out the Bluefield Orioles. The O’s, the worst offensive team in the league, posted 11 runs to defeat Pulaski last night, which is a big help to the Royals.
Rain has passed through the area, but we should be set for baseball. Our pre-game coverage begins at 6:45 with the Pre-Game Show brought to you by Best Western. Enjoy the broadcast!
Anytime you get to meet a person who enjoys your broadcasts, it is a humbling experience. Normally this part of the blog is for a witty anecdote, but today it is a thank you to Anna, reliever Cole Lohden’s girlfriend, for a bag of Texas Rangers’ memorabilia (shirt, hat, calendar, etc.). She works for the Rangers down in Arlington, Texas, and she is a public relations girl. She knows how to get me on the side of the Rangers.
The day that Kansas City is eliminated from postseason contention, I may have to turn my attention to the Rangers (see, she’s pretty good at promoting her team). Until then, here are a few notes prior to afternoon baseball in Princeton.
- A win is a win, even if the game only lasts until the sixth inning. But skipper Nelson Liriano is able to prove a point that he has emphasized for a long time. “That’s why always, when you are ahead, you are ahead,” Liriano said.
- It was quite a return for Seth Furmanek to the Royals. His fourth-inning tater proved to be the deciding blow. He was sent down to Surprise to catch more, and he will start at the catcher spot this afternoon. “I was disappointed, but you have to stay positive and do what they tell you to do,” Furmanek said about the brief trip to Arizona.
- Burlington has now taken three of four games from the Rays this season, and those three triumphs have come by a combined four runs.
- How about a number five starter going for 10 innings and surrendering just two runs (one earned) during a week. That’s exactly what Jonathan Dooley did this past week, including his five-inning victory last night. Liriano credits Dooley’s ability to locate his pitches and keep them down in the zone for his drastic improvement.
- After each player got a routine day off, both Alex Llanos and Luis Piterson are back in the Royals’ lineup this afternoon. Geoff Baldwin is also making his first start since Monday. He is at first base.
- Third baseman Eric Hosmer, one of the top prospects in the Kansas City organization, was sent from Wilmington to Northwest Arkansas, the Royals’ double-A affiliate. Burlington third baseman Ryan Stovall was sent up for a few days to replace Hosmer as he competed in the MLB Futures Game last week.
Our pre-game coverage begins at 3:30 with the Royals Rewind. Listen back to how the Royals went 4-2 this past week. As always, you can e-mail into the broadcast at email@example.com. Enjoy the broadcast!
As I mentioned yesterday, I am staying in Gatlinburg, Tenn., during the Royals’ series with Greeneville. Before heading to Pioneer Park for the game, my family and I stopped for a late lunch at Bubba Gump Shrimp Company in downtown Gatlinburg. If you like the movie Forrest Gump, you have to visit Bubba Gump. Quotes and photos from the movie are plastered all over the walls. All of the major historical happenings covered in the movie are featured on a mock newspaper. And, most importantly, the food was excellent.
With shrimp in my stomach and some Burlington Bullets in my brain, here is today’s helping:
Ryan Stovall made his return to the Burlington lineup Wednesday after three games in Wilmington with the advanced-A Blue Rocks. “It was a lot of fun,” Stovall said. “There are a lot of rehab guys there, so it was an older group, so the atmosphere was nice.”
Everyone, Stovall included, anticipated that his visit to Delaware would be short. Still, constant shuffling in minor league baseball is the norm, and Stovall, a player who has been a part of it for more than a year now, knows that. “You just have to take it for what it is,” Stovall said. “You have to go up there and you have to play, get your mindset right, and do the best you can. Hopefully it will help you down the road.”
Including the two tallies yesterday, Leonel Santiago has surrendered seven runs this year, five of which have come against Greeneville.
The Royals are among the highest run scoring clubs in the Appalachian League, but yesterday was the 12th time Burlington has been held to three runs or fewer. Still, the Royals have won four of those games.
The Royals are now 3-5 in the first game of a series. When the Royals have fallen in the first game of a series, Burlington has come back to win the middle contest three out of four times.
It was fun chatting with Steve Wilhout, the “Voice of the Astros.” He has been around the Appalachian League for many years, including a stint with the Elizabethton Twins. He had the incredible opportunity to call Joe Mauer’s first professional home run. He says he still has a copy of that call. What a thrill.
Our Pre-Game Show brought to you by Best Western begins at 6:45 tonight, with first pitch slated for 7. Enjoy the broadcast tonight!
While perusing ESPN this morning, I noticed something that I could not forget about on the “Bottom Line.” They had calculated how many of each Home Run Derby participants’ homers would have been homers at Angels Stadium, the home of this year’s All-Star Game. In reality, do we really need to know this? Uh, no. But we have the power to know it, and we have the technology to know it.
Pretty soon, every hypothetical will have an answer. Every puzzle will have a solution. Until then, I will attempt to answer some Royals’ questions in today’s Bullets.
- After a few rough outings, Jonathan Dooley hurled his best game as a Royal yesterday. The Arkansas native went five scoreless innings, scattering four hits. “It was a big weight off my shoulders,” Dooley said. “I was pretty determined to not have the same outcome I had the first few times. I just went out there with a plan and tweaked my mechanics a little bit.”
- “He changed and had better quality pitches,” skipper Nelson Liriano said about Dooley. “He threw down and he changed speed very well.”
- The Royals, like every team in the Appalachian League, will have tomorrow off. And Liriano says that the guys will have no responsibilities with the team tomorrow.
- This off day symbolizes the unofficial end of the first third of the 2010 season, and Liriano is happy with the position of his ballclub. “Already we know each other better,” Liriano said. “That’s why we have had success early.”
- Third baseman Yunior Figueroa was pulled from the game yesterday after just two innings, and it was because he did not hustle down the line in his only at bat, a groundout to short. Adrian Martinez replaced him at third.
- Pitcher Daniel Hernandez still has not thrown a bullpen session since his first and only start of the season at Bluefield July 1. There is no timetable on his return, but Liriano says that the team is taking it slow with the righty.
- Ryan Stovall went 2-for-4 with a triple for Wilmington yesterday, his first appearance with the Blue Rocks this year. He is expected to rejoin Burlington in a few days.
Like the rest of the Appalachian League, the blog will take a day off tomorrow before the Royals head to Greeneville for a three-game set with the Astros. There is still one more game tonight at 7, as Crawford Simmons will start for Burlington. Pre-game coverage begins at 6:45 p.m. Enjoy the broadcast!
If you ask most people if they would rather be a Royal or a Blue Rock, my guess is very few would pick the latter. But in baseball, the Blue Rocks rock in this situation (although one could also be a Triple-A Royal or a MLB Royal, but work with me here). Baseball nicknames are great, especially in the minor leagues. Only in the minors could you have team names like the Lugnuts (Detroit’s single-A affiliate), Ironpigs (Philadelphia’s triple-A affiliate), Manatees (Milwaukee’s A-advanced affiliate) and Biscuits (Tampa Bay’s double-A affiliate).
No matter what the name, Ryan Stovall, at least for a few days, is a Blue Rock. News on him and others in a Saturday edition of the Bullets.
- Stovall found out about the move prior to the game yesterday and flew to Delaware this morning. The move was made because of Wilmington first baseman Eric Hosmer’s selection to the MLB Futures game out in Los Angeles.
- Skipper Nelson Liriano believes the move will only be for a few days, with Hosmer set to return to Wilmington after the Futures Game. “He will only go for three or four days,” Liriano said. “We feel happy because he will go over there and show people he can do well.”
- Liriano on Stovall’s great effort with Burlington thus far this season: “Stovall has been doing great with us. I think he’s going to be OK over there because he is aggressive and he is playing great defense.”
- “I was excited,” Stovall said on the promotion. “It’s always a good thing to get some reps at a higher level.”
- And if Stovall returns in a few days as expected, he is still excited about what Burlington has done and can do for the rest of 2010. “I’m very happy. The team’s winning and I’m playing good so I couldn’t be happier,” Stovall said.
- Stovall and the Blue Rocks were rained out at home against Myrtle Beach this evening, so the two teams will play one tomorrow and two seven-inning contests Monday. Then, an off day comes up Tuesday for Wilmington.
- I hope you are ready and willing to get to know the Princeton Rays very, very well. Tonight marks the beginning of the season series. Over the next 13 days (12 games), the Royals will play Princeton nine times. Then both teams will part ways for the rest of the season (unless both make it to the championship series, that is).
- The Rays are riding a roller coaster right now. Princeton dropped its first four games and then won six of seven. Since then, the Rays have lost five of seven to sit at 8-10, two games behind the Royals for first place.
- Tonight should be a great showing at the Stadium. All lower bowl seats are sold out. We are looking forward to a great crowd to kick of this three-game set.
Tune in beginning at 6:30 this evening for the “Royals Series Report.” At 6:45, it’s the Pre-Game Show brought to you by Best Western. Hear from Ryan Stovall, Nelson Liriano and Princeton manager Michael Johns. Enjoy the broadcast!