Last (Two) Nights on the Farm
After a minor scheduling snafu, here are the last (two) nights on the farm, wherein the farm temporarily loses Fernando Martinez to greener pastures, Brad Holt pitches more like Brad Holt, and Tobi Stoner and Bobby Parnell continue their rehab with varying degrees of success.AAA:5/12: Scranton 5, Buffalo 3A solid seven-and-a-third-inning, two-run Josh Stinson start and a Val Pascucci home run, amongst other things, had the Bisons up against the Yankees, but the late-inning combination of Taylor Tankersley and Bobby Parnell coughed up the lead big time. On the bright side, while Parnell did allow a home run to Jesus Montero, he did strike out three in an inning and a third.5/13: Buffalo 7, Louisville 15This one turned into a laugher quickly, as Casey Fossum surrendered seven (!) runs in the first inning, before tossing a scoreless second and a two-run third for good measure. Dylan Owen relieved him and wasn’t much better, allowing five runs over three for good measure.The Buffalo bats did not take the blow-out as an excuse for a night off, notching three home runs Louisville starter Matt Maloney. Captain Kirk Nieuwenhuis had another solid game for the Bisons, collecting two RBIs on a solo home run and a double; Nick Evans and Luis Hernandez both also went yard. Nieuwenhuis is now hitting .308 with six homers and posting a .973 OPS, so you have to think he’s getting close.AA:5/12: Binghamton 4, Trenton 7What is it with the seven-run innings this week? Up 4-0 after tossing six scoreless innings, Mark Cohoon struggled in the seventh before being relieved by Brandon Sage, who gave up four runs on four hits without recording an out. The late struggles should not distract too much from another terrific start from Cohoon, who succeeded despite struggling with his command (five walks in his six innings). Dillon Gee’s success should be an interesting for Cohoon’s potential, although Cohoon seems to have a bit more stuff than Gee from what I’ve seen.On the offensive side, Jordany Valdespin, Josh Satin and Kai Gronauer all had doubles, with Gronauer recording a couple RBIs for good measure.5/13: Binghamton 3, Trenton 5As mentioned earlier, Brad Holt struggled mightily for his second straight start Friday in New Jersey, allowing three earned (one unearned) runs on three hits and five walks in 3.1 innings. It was Holt’s second straight start with five walks, and you can’t help but get a little nervous about the guy regressing. Needless to say, Holt’s next start will be a huge one.Offensively it was another fairly quiet day for the B-Mets, was the lineup could clearly use the infusion of some more power (Reese Havens and Matt Den Dekker aren’t too far away, folks!). Eric Cambell did hit his second home run of the season off Kei Igawa (remember him?), but the rest of the lineup was pretty quiet.A:5/12: Lakeland 0, St. Lucie 7Finally, some good news! Francisco Pena was the St. Lucie offense Thursday, posting four RBIs on a two-run homer and a two-run double. Pena has been somewhat of a forgotten man in the Mets system after pretty high expectations a few years ago, but power at catcher will always play if he can get it going. Juan Lagares added two more RBIs and Cesar Puello added his own, but with the way the Mets pitched, they only needed one.Tobi Stoner took the hill and threw five scoreless in his first rehab start returning from an elbow injury. Stoner scattered four hits over his five, and struck out four. Look for him to return to Buffalo soon, and perhaps be the next man up if the big-league rotation suffers another loss. Collin McHugh was also stellar, collecting a rare four-inning save as he held the Flying Tigers to just one hit.5/13: Lakeland 7, St. Lucie 6Another Mets affiliate emulated the Astros bullpen Friday, as St. Lucie coughed up a five run lead to drop their second game against the Flying Tigers. Scott Moviel had a fairly solid start turn sour in the sixth when Lakeland finally got on the board after Moviel walked the bases loaded before departing. Michael Powers allowed all three to score, and even allowed two more for good measure, leaving the game tied at 5. To their credit, the Mets battled back in the seventh with a Pedro Zapata RBI single, but Adam Kolarek and Jeffrey Kaplan combined to give up two in the eighth, and that was that.Nonetheless it was another nice day hitting for St. Lucie. Wilmer Flores had three hits, including one double, and Matt Den Dekker continued to make his case for promotion with a triple. I don’t think it’s too much of a stretch to say that St. Lucie’s lineup is presently a bit more potent than the B-Mets, and that can only mean a bit of upheaval between the two affiliates.SALLY:5/12: Hickory 1, Savannah 0There are pitcher’s duels and then there are instances of gross offensive incompetence, and this appears to be an example of the latter, as the Crawdads and Sand Gnats combined for 20 runners left on base through 13 innings. Cory Vaughn reached base five times, on three hits and two walks, but never scored. Vaughn, for those keeping score, is hitting .336 with a .472 (FOUR SEVENTY TWO!!!) on-base percentage, and appears to have somewhat mastered the league. Robbie Shields and Luis Nieves both had two-hit games as well.Ryan Fraser had a very nice start for the Gnats, going 6.2 innings and only allowing four base runners. The bullpen was excellent until Luis Rojas took the tough loss by plating a runner on a wild pitch in the 13th. The Gnats battled to the end, but Aderlin Rodriguez popped out with the bases loaded and two out in the bottom half of the frame.5/13: Savannah 5, Rome 1A four-run first was all the Gnats would really need Friday, as Erik Goeddel was terrific over six innings of one-run baseball. The Gnats gave him enough to work with early; the first four Gnats all had hits, capped by a Cory Vaughn two-run double and then an Aderlin Rodriguez two-run bomb. Rodriguez is hitting just .206, but has a solid six home runs to his credit thus far in the young season. You can’t teach power.